Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Heather Truett, Filthy Whore, Happy Failure

Looks gross, but it is just food coloring.


David is learning about scientific method. Yesterday, as he did an experiment with red food coloring and ice, I thought about the concept of a hypothesis and, again and again, I repeated, "Scientists observe."

"Mom, can I swish the jar just a bit to see what happens?"

"No, scientists observe. You are observing."

"But... It's hard."

Ain't that the truth?

In Here's To Not Catching Our Hair on Fire, Stacey Turis writes, "If patience is a virtue, then I'm a filthy whore." Boy can I relate. I have no more patience than my children in most cases.

Yet, here I am, homeschooling and starting a writing career. Both activities call for infinite patience. Both require me to be a scientist.

Had you told me, as a kid, that I'd have to be a scientist, I would have laughed. It still makes me giggle, but it's true. When you have a kid, you become a scientist. You form a hypothesis about parenting. Most of the time, however, we turn our hypothesis straight into a theory and a law without bothering with the observation part.

Guilty? Me?

Definitely.

I am trying to observe more. My hypothesis must change from time to time. Yearly. Monthly. Weekly. Daily... sometimes hourly. I think I've got a handle on things, and my kids get "flip turned upside-down." I want to quit. I stare at them and think, "Who are you and how did we end up together?"

I'm a failed scientist. But failing is how we learn what doesn't work, so on I go, failing some more, failing differently, in bigger or smaller ways.

Today, I'm failing on the couch with my youngest and an episode of Doctor Who. Of all episodes, he picked The Impossible Planet which will be followed by The Satan Pit. These episodes basically make me want to cry and are bound to give me nightmares. But that is beside the point. David doesn't seem to care if this morning's hypothesis about having a drama-free day was incorrect. He gets to watch Doctor Who and eat popcorn. He's a happy kid. I'm a happy failure.


2 comments:

  1. Homeschooling calls for an immeasurable amount of patience. I homeschooled my two children out of necessity as we were traveling on our sailboat/backpacking through S America for 4 years. Our daughter was in first grade and my son in 5th when we left. Let me tell you, it was a little slice of hell. In the beginning I was very Type A and determined we would cover everything. Not possible. Toward the end I mellowed and discovered that they were learning so much just with our travels. That was when I learned to love homeschooling. When we came back, they went to school and I wrote my book (A Life Without Borders) I miss the homeschooling though, and they are so far ahead of their peers, more so in things that can't be measured. I am now a big proponent of homeschooling, especially after subbing a few times at the high School and middle school and seeing how little work they actually get done. Good luck with the schooling and writing!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Carla. I agree, it sounds like your kids were learning loads. I am going to look up your book.

      Delete

Leave me some lovin'!

Disqus for Madame Rubies