Posted in Enjoying the Simple Things, On Life, On Parenthood, Thinking Out Loud

Learning in the Silence



I actually wanted to post my images from the gardens, but somehow all these words came out instead.  I’ve decided I will make that a separate post.  Since I have been a way for a bit, I wanted to explain what we’ve been up to and where I have been… both mentally and physically.  The older you get, it seems, the more you truly start to understand things that SERIOUSLY would have been so useful when you were younger!  This year and especially this summer has been a great time of reflection and growth, I believe.  Even though I wish I could always be writing or conversing, I cannot complain about the silences as they have been essential for me to truly reflect on what matters most.


First of all, today we are hoping to go out to a different garden location.  Today is the only day with cooler temperatures as the rest of the week will be in the mid to high 90s F.  I’m not afraid of warmer weather, but the warmer it is, the brighter it is which means it is more difficult to take photographs.  As I’m still learning about my camera I’m always messing up and somehow taking photos that are too bright or those that are too dark.  Here, you can be pounded down by the heat of the sun one moment and the next second a cloud will come in and you are drenched in darkness.  I’m am always trying to fix the settings on the camera and still get them wrong.  I am a work in progress 🙂  Beyond that, I also have noticed that a lot of times the extreme heat causes me to rush my photos, which makes it harder to actually get a good one.  I’m always in a hurry to click and then run for a shady spot 🙂  So, today it is!


As you may have noticed, I have not been on much since the end of school.  We started the summer off taking time away from the computers.  It was actually something nice to do because since our schooling is all online, we are almost always attached at the hip to our computers.  I seriously get to the point where I don’t want to see one!  After taking some time off, I am now enjoying time online as well as a lot of time offline.


We have not yet gone hiking although we did get a shorter walk in the woods last week.  We were going hiking but the weather did not cooperate.  Last night we finally hooked up my son’s new trailer bike to take it for a spin.  We started late, so we didn’t go far but it was a nice trial run.  My son is attached to my husband’s bike on his own bike and let’s just say that kiddo is still used to using training wheels.  He kept leaning from side to side, especially if he was pedaling.  Fortunately 🙂 the bike trailer would not fit on my bike because initially my husband installed it incorrectly, otherwise he might have caught me off-balance.  The trial went well, so I am hoping that we start biking as a family more.  Even on the hotter days, it usually does cool down in the evenings.


Aside from enjoying my time off, I am also rather happy to be back.  I have missed not writing or posting and when I mean not writing, I mean at all.   It’s not a bad thing as I know that if I get a thought in my head that needs expression, it will force its way out anyway.  However, I miss these conversations as it is as much of a conversation with myself as it is with you.  I tend to think out loud when writing… there is a little voice in my head that recites every little word I write.  And I don’t know about you, but I truly find that I learn a lot about myself when I take the time the listen to my own thoughts.


Anyway, I know it has been quite a long time and I apologize, but I know the importance of what I do in life is way beyond what I can ever write.  As much as I love writing, I know that the most important job I have been given is being a mother and I have the added blessing that I have been able to homeschool them… so teaching them is equally as important.  It is not enough to just teach the the basics (although they are also incredibly important) but I also know my job is to prepare them for college and then for later life.  We spend time learning how to best take notes, but we also talk about how we should treat others (often using current world events as examples).  We discuss, communicate, and reflect with one another and allow each other to see the world through our unique eyes.  I find that not only the children are growing and learning… but so am I.


I have found that the most impact I can make in this world is through teaching, supporting, loving, and being there for my children and I guess at this point in life, I have found that this is more than enough for me.  Anything else is just icing on the cake.  And as the years have passed, I am also finding that I only have a few years left with the kiddos (at least at this stage in life), so these very moments are incredibly important to them as well as to me.  I want to live without any regrets.


My oldest is graduating high school next year and now my two youngest (who need most of my help) are going into higher grades which means more assistance will be required than the last year.  My next youngest is moving into tenth grade, so in two years she will also be graduating.  She is still working on her writing, by the way and has been published… twice this year!  You cannot imagine how excited I am for her.  She is really talented and writes from a rather mature perspective despite being younger.  I have always wished that I had been more supported in my youth with my writing, but now I have the chance to make a difference for someone else and I could not be happier that she is finding the value in her own voice.


My youngest daughter has been having eye issues… they are not focusing properly… so she doesn’t see well most of the time and that makes it hard because I was hoping to tutor her over the summer.  We’re still trying some things with her doctor to see if we can come up with a solution, but right now she is using a different prescription and her eyes are slowly adjusting.  That might fix all of the problems or only part of the problem and unfortunately, we need her to wear the glasses for three months before we will know.  That means she could still be struggling when school starts… but some things just take time.  My youngest guy still wants to grow up to be a superhero.  You could not imagine my thrill when we went to the store the other day and found t-shirts that said on them “superhero in training.”  I could not help myself and bought him one.  He was over the moon and wore it proudly.


Oh, that reminds me of something that happened recently that was rather adorable.  We went to visit a friend recently who has a younger son, Adam.  I believe he is 4 or 5 now.  My son played with him while the girls talked.  When we drove home, he told me in amazement, “You would never believe what I found out mom!  Adam is also a superhero!  He told me!  His name is Superhero Adam!”  He was so thrilled to have actually met another superhero in flesh and blood.  Even thinking of it now makes me smile.


Other than that, I am slowly working on learning how to just ‘be.’  I think, with the way the world is… and the fast rate at which the world moves requires us to relearn that sometimes.  I’ve been learning a lot about myself in the process and perhaps I am looking at myself a little more kindly and that, in turn, also requires me to do the same for others.  It’s hard to explain, really… but we think we know what motivates others or perhaps it is just that we are so darn quick to judge… and yet, we really have a hard time grasping why we are the way we are… or why we do the things we do.  I mean, we love to sit in the illusion that we know… but I’m not all that convinced.


As I am learning to reflect and take time to breathe, I am really becoming aware of my own humanity as well as those around me.  I know, it may sound strange… but what I mean is that being human means to make mistakes.  We often jump quick to an excuse whenever we make a mistake but we are often less willing to make an excuse for others when they do the same.  We are so much less forgiving but we insist that others should be moreso for our own mistakes.  I don’t know… and perhaps I am only talking about my own experiences, but it has truly been a useful lesson.  It’s not to say I would not make similar mistakes in the future… but the more I learn about myself and the way I am motivated… the way my past has molded who I am… my quirks and everything else… the more I realize that there is so much more to the people around me than I had ever imagined.  In the end… I hope that it makes me more sympathetic to the others, or perhaps at least see their actions through a different lens, even if we may disagree.


(c) Sumyanna 2018