It's quiet. The blur of activity that defined last week is past. I'm in a moment of calm.
Whenever I think back over a busy week, I'm surprised I did as much as I did. In the midst of it, all I can think of is getting through it. As I drive from the doctor's office to drop off two kids and take the third to his internship, I mentally tick it off my list. I think, only one more activity, then pick up my son, and I'm done. Then I try to focus back on driving, because mentally checking your to-do list is as dangerous as talking on your phone or texting while driving.
This past week included setting up the homeschooling carnival, a doctor's appointment for my three children, my storytelling workshop, and helping Marina gather what she needs to return to the university for the spring term (she left on Sunday). This is on top of the usual: mom-taxi services for Sierra's religious ed class and Chase's internship, volunteering at the library, and lots of laundry, and grocery shopping.
So I face each challenge as a stepping stone. I stand on the stone I am on and then focus on the next step. It's too easy to stumble when you look at all of your responsibilities at once. I'm not saying that I never stumble. Things can get overwhelming if I haven't slept enough, if someone is sick, or if I simply overscheduled myself and my kids. When I feel overwhelmed, I try to return to my breath and refocus. At the end of the week, I look back to see how far I've come.
Being busy isn't an occasional thing, it's life. Homeschooling is about managing several schedules and hoping you didn't forget anything, whether you have one child or ten. The secret is to make sure some of your own activities end up on that to-do list. For me, that means making the time for writing, exercising, and volunteering at the library. It isn't always easy to fit in time, but I consider it necessary to help carry me through the week.
And when it comes, it is just as important to savor a moment of calm.