Saturday, April 23, 2011

What we want from each other, what we want for each other

(Photo by my friend, Chris Nuzum)

I'm reading about homeschooling and unschooling. Homeschooling seems very well supported in California, but there is very little here in Rhode Island. No charter schools that have homeschooling as it's goal, no outreach from local public schools. A lot of catholics and other christians.

This has been a monumentally difficult week for Lucy and her parents. Émile is teething, and Laurent and I are very sleep deprived. And Lucy is being silly, not listening, having breakdowns from stress and lack of sleep. Ugh! She has told me that she wishes I was more like her friends' mom, quicker and laughing more; I, in turn, have yelled every time she doesn't listen to me. Lovely.

So I was really struck by these quotes from Sandra Dodd, an advocate for the unschooling movement (about which I am generally feeling uncertain):

Neediness expresses itself differently with different kids. Abundance expresses itself similarly in all.

Neediness creates various interpersonal problems, health difficulties, psychological stress and sorrow. Chronic neediness becomes a vacuum that cannot be filled.

This led me to think about Lucy and abundance. Our expectations of her are causing anxiety, and need for more love. What is the kindest way to love her now? Enforced bedtimes? No need for bath? Screw dinner, let's go for a pizza? Let schedules go?


  1. Oh, those are wonderful quotes. Sending you a hug. Try to be gentle with yourself, and maybe let the schedules and such go a bit, just to create more space for you all. I am also interested in unschooling...been looking at the home Waldorf course materials.

  2. Thank you. I haven't heard of home Waldorf programs. I'll look into it.