Homeschooling With Chronic Pain

This post was originally written as part of a Blogging Through the Alphabet series. When I came to the letter F. I pondered what to write. F is for Funny. I have some incredibly funny kids, and I could tell you some stories. F is for Fast. The kids are growing up so fast that I just want to stop time! F is for Friends. I have some great friends, and I am appreciative of them. F is for Father. I have a wonderful father, and my husband is a wonderful father, so I'm sure I could write about that.

But I decided not to write about any of these. Instead F is for Fibromyalgia. I have fibromyalgia. I don't say that on the blog very often. If you meet me in real life, it's something I'll rarely talk about- except with my husband or close friends. I don't talk about it because I don't want to be defined by it. I don't want to be that homeschooling mom blogger with fibromyalgia. Having chronic pain doesn't define me.

Homeschooling with chronic pain

But I'm writing about it because I want you to know: living with chronic pain or other illnesses doesn't have to keep you from homeschooling. And I want to encourage you if you have chronic pain, and you are weak and tired and just done with it.

Here is something pretty amazing that I've learned over the last few years as I've learned to live with almost constant pain: When I am weak, God is strong.

I know that sounds simplistic, and I know that it's not really the answer you're looking for if you are hurting and hopeless. You want an answer that will make you feel better. You want that next great treatment that will make you pain free. But, that's probably not an answer you're going to get. Instead you can hold on to this: When I am weak, God is strong.

When I was a young mom, new to homeschooling (and not struggling with pain), I felt pretty good about my abilities. Yes, I was overwhelmed by life in general sometimes with four children within six years of each other. But, overall, I thought I was pretty good at this whole homeschooling thing. I was creative. I was organized. We did fun lessons. I wrote my own curriculum. Even though I prayed every day, I felt as if I had a pretty good handle on things. God was just there for backup.

But then I began to struggle to live with constant pain. I wake up in the morning and I hurt. I lay there and come to grips with the fact that I have to get up and I have to do it again, one more day at a time. I struggle because there are limits to what I can do. I can't take the kids everywhere I want to. I can't spend hours creating curriculum. I can't be the mom who plays with the kids.

I've had several people suggest I stop homeschooling. It would make life easier. It would reduce stress. It would give me more time to rest.

But I believe that it's God's will that we still homeschool. So how can I homeschool when most days I wonder if I can get out of bed? The answer? When I am weak, God is strong.

When I homeschooled before a life of chronic pain, my reliance was on myself, on how well I had it together. Now, my reliance is on God. Because I know there is no way in the world that I could do what I do in my own strength. Chronic pain takes away my ability to succeed in homeschooling. So the fact that I can keep going is a testimony to God's strength. When I am weak, God is strong.

And that's why I'm writing about fibromyalgia even though I don't really want to. Because I want to get the message to you that you can homeschool through chronic pain when it is God's will. Because when you are weak, God is strong.

Homeschooling with chronic pain




 
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8 comments:

  1. I'm so glad you wrote this post! I think it's important to be honest about our struggles and give the glory to God for getting us through. I also have fibromyalgia (and other autoimmune diseases) and struggle with chronic pain and inflammation. It's not easy, but you're right -- when we're weak, God is strong! And homeschooling is worth it! :)

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    1. I agree! Homeschooling is worth it, and I've learned to rely on God!

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  2. Thank you so much for writing this. I too homeschool and have fibromyalgia. I have homeschooled my kids for 16 years. I can remember a time, when I wasn't sick. When it was a lot easier. Now I have to pick and choose what we can and can't fit into our days. But by God's grace I am able to keep on keepin' on. So thank you for the encouragement. =) Valerie

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    1. I can remember a time when I didn't hurt, and it's frustrating to know I have limitations now. But I am thankful that, by God's grace, I can keep on. :-)

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  3. Honesty with a hope and strength. Great post, Leah! God is so good, even when things around us are not. Thanks for sharing your heart. - Lori

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  4. so very true Lori.. just so VERY VERY true. God is so strong through our weaknesses. May he continue to be source of your strength. Good post. :)

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  5. I know you wrote this last year, but I had to comment to you. The Lord sent me this page to me today...just when I needed it. One more day of, the nighttime migraine medicine makes me so tired in the morning...but I've got to do this. One more day of, a migraine...but if I don't take my medicine for it, it will become unbearable...that outweighs making sure we get Language Arts done right now. I am slowly coming to realize that God is with me (I seem to have forgot that), and as long as my 2 know that, they've learned the most important thing.

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    1. I'm so glad you read it at just the right time. I have to remind myself every day that God's got this. And I have to remember to prioritize and know I'm just not going to be able to do it all.

      Thank you for coming by and commenting. And I'm stopping to pay for you right now as I reply.

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