Once the clutter is taken care of, I can take a deep breath and get back to work. Clutter makes me feel oppressed and a tidy house makes me feel productive and energetic.
I notice that my house is not the only thing that gets full of clutter. My email inbox can fill with clutter. My purse can accumulate all kinds of mess. My car can look like a locker room floor sometimes.
But, the worst clutter of all, is the clutter that builds up in my heart. It can damage my relationships and keep me from homeschooling effectively.
Clutter in our Hearts
What can build up in our hearts that is so damaging to our lives and homeschooling? Well, women can tend to be savers. We are so sentimental. We save cards, notes, letters, movie tickets, newspaper clippings, and recipes. But, we can also hold on to hurts, anger, resentments, negative words, and memories of negative episodes in our lives. We remember something our husband did or said on our honeymoon (15 years ago!) or the Mother's Day that our son said, "I wish I had a different mommy." We take these things out from yesterday and examine them closely, remembering how they hurt and experiencing more pain from them today.
We remember failures too. Our own failures are etched in stone, along with our husband's failures which we often build a shrine to, keeping them alive forever. We remember mistakes our children have made and can label our children based on these mess-ups.
"We are a sarcastic family," "None of us can control our tempers," or "This house is full of lazy pigs," are all things I have heard homeschooling moms say. Our words reveal the clutter in our hearts. I would rather hear moms say, "We are learning to be kind," "Our family is growing in anger management," and "We are learning to be tidy!" Now, that may sound silly to you, but how we view our family affects how we homeschool our children.