Yes, it’s true. We have to be vulnerable to homeschool. To allow ourselves to be imperfect and to be seen.

And in Waldorf homeschooling in particular, all of our flaws and shortcomings when it comes to the lively arts are right there to greet us every day! Along with our other imperfections.

Whether we like it or not, homeschooling involves being vulnerable.

So how do we deal with this aspect of homeschooling?

We Have to be Vulnerable to HomeschoolI have some tips for you and me both. But first, I want to tell you a little story.

Just recently my teenage daughter had a meltdown. She was feeling overwhelmed going into her finals (for her community college classes), finishing a final paper, and keeping up with her work schedule at a local coffee shop. It was all happening all at once.

And then on top of all of that, she got sick. The perfect formula for a meltdown, really.

And guess what? I had my own overwhelm going on! New projects combined with technology glitches (which I find very challenging since I don’t fully understand the technology and get frustrated that I don’t have control!).

So the very night when my daughter needed me most, the last thing I wanted to do was stop everything, sit on the bathroom floor with her and be fully present. I wanted to say all kinds of things that would rush the process so that I could get back to my own overwhelm!!!

(Because our own overwhelm always seems better than someone else’s  😉 )

I was giving advice and trying to listen. And then I got a strong message when my daughter said to me, “Could you just try to stop sounding so annoyed with me.”

I took a deep breath and let go of my projects, my tech challenges, and my walk with my husband. And listened deeply.

Then I said, “You know what? I’m feeling totally overwhelmed right now, too. And here’s what I am noticing. When I get overwhelmed, I get snippy. And when you get overwhelmed, you get weepy.”

And that was the start of a heart-to-heart talk that ended with some laughs and my daughter taking a hot bath and going to sleep. Often the perfect remedy for overwhelm.

The truth is, we have to let ourselves be vulnerable to move forward. And as homeschoolers, we are challenged with being vulnerable on a daily basis. Here are my tips for getting more comfortable with vulnerability (for myself as much as anyone else here!).

Tips for Getting More Comfortable with Vulnerability

  • Be Honest with Yourself
  • Accept Yourself, Flaws and All
  • Be Gentle with Yourself
  • Be Willing to Learn New Skills
  • Don’t Try to Do It All at Once
  • Stop Talking and Just Listen

As you find yourself wrapping up current projects and beginning new ones, remember to take good care of YOU.

And be proud of your willingness to be vulnerable. It really is a gift.


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  1. Aww, Jean, you seem to always share what’s needed in such a grounded way.
    Thank you and CONGRATULATIONS!

    1. Thanks so much, Anne Marie! Sharing helps me to process it all, and hearing that my experiences help others is wonderful. 🙂

  2. I love how you explained overwhelm and vulnerability! I get snippy too and I tend to give short directions for action when I get overwhelmed. We don’t often think about other people and how they react to being overwhelmed, at least I don’t. One of my kids goes into shutdown mode and the inaction makes me more tense and snippy.

    Congratulations on the completion of 25 years of homeschooling. What a huge accomplishment! And, thank you for sharing your personal highs and lows with all of us.

    1. Thank you, Rebecca! Yes, it’s interesting how we need to factor in our children’s response, too. My oldest gets angry when overwhelmed (more than snippy!) and my middle son shuts down as you describe! That emotional dynamic is a lot to juggle along with the lessons, isn’t it!?! Can’t wait to see you at Taproot!

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