02 March 2009

Restarting......

...as a mother. That's what I've been trying to do these two weeks.

I quit my job when ds was about to enter primary school. The intention was to stay at home to coach him since we couldn't find anyone to coach his work if both hubby and me were working. More than 3 years have passed by. I've failed terribly at that intended role. For the past 3 years, I was always engaged in lots of other things, primarily my own interests. Perhaps it was because I couldn't switch over from my work life. Being the kind who cannot sit still, I just had to do something, anything. And so, I explored into baking, gardening, anything, but coaching the kids.

Unfortunately, ds does not belong to the rare breed of hardworking kids. Without someone pushing him, he has ended up doing last minute revision for the past 3 years. It was tough for both of us. I had to cramp in as much info as possible into him during the exam period, only to realise that his foundation is really weak, especially his languages. The last minute cramping is really too much for his carefree mind to handle. As such, his results were never fantastic and it only gets worse as he proceeds to higher level. Every year, his results would remind me how I have failed to work towards my original goal. It was a tiring cycle, repeating itself again and again.

He's in P4 this year. I don't know what had happen to me. It's like I just woke up one day with a new set of engine and memory. Suddenly I feel the urge and need to plan for the kids, not only for ds, but also for my two younger girls. Are they going to follow the footsteps of their brother? The thought of it wake me up.

For the past two weeks, I tried to allocate time every weekday afternoon to sit down with the 3 kids and coach them on their work. The younger ones will do lighter stuff that they enjoy while ds did his homework. The response, esp from ds, has been most encouraging. His interest in his studies is still there, despite the fact that he hasn't been doing at all well for the past years. Perhaps there is still some burning passion in him to improve.

Doing all these naturally means less time for all my indulgence. I try to settle all housework and meals preparation in the mornings when the kids are out. At the end of the day, I'll usually feel rather tired. I do not know how long I can persist in this new "hobby", but for the sake of our kids, we should give it a shot, right?

14 comments:

MamaElla said...

Same here, when I quit my job to concentrate my son for Pri 1 at that time, I was abit worried. I am use to work and when the reality come, I am glad to be able to go thru all the task.
Now, as I teach them, I managed to provide time for my another hobby, and at the end of the day..I am the Happy mother and wife..hehe

KWF said...

MamaElla, to tell the truth, I used to dread sitting down teaching ds. Perhaps tt was why I escaped from reality by turning to my hobbies. But this time round, when I really sit down to teach him each day, I find that it's not as bad. In fact I'm slowly enjoying teaching. I even jokingly told dh tt perhaps I can give tuition as a second job...lol... But my dream is to be like you one day, to find time for the kids, hubby and my hobbies. :)

Linda Chong said...

加油! I'm sure you can do it! I struggle between work and family. Luckily my hubby actively shared the burden of coaching my daughter who is in P3 on her studies. Trust me, in the day time, vomit blood at work. When I'm home at night, vomit blood while coaching her. Still have 2 younger ones. Not sure what future has in store for me. Hahaha.

Happy Homebaker said...

Hi, I share the exact sentiments!

I guess I have spent more time doing other things than coaching my kids with their studies. Like what I used to do when I was in school, WE will only study hard when the exam is drawing real close. Each time, I will tell them for the next exam, we should prepare early, but we never seems to be able to do just that! It is tough to sit down to teach the kids, like Linda, I always ended up vomitting blood. On one hand, it is good to be "陪读妈妈" everyday, however, when the child gets older, I feel that it is also equally important to teach them how to study on their own...that's what I have been trying to teach my elder one, he's in P5 this year. They need to know how to priortise their homework, need to know how to extract relevant information and make their own notes as they progress to a higher level. On the other hand, you don't have to feel guilty when you indulge on your own hobbies...you are not alone ;)

Mool said...

Hi KWF,

I'm CY, we met at Gina's house learning fondant, wonder u still rem me? Hehe. After the "class", been dropping by your blog here n there.

U r a super mum, keep it up. For me, when I am preparing my ingredients or beating my stuffs, I told my kids to read on their own. When the bake goes into the oven, then I will sit down n coach/drill them. By the time finish coaching, we can have some yummy bakeries as well.

Maybe u can do that too. Can still coach the kids while not giving up our "hobbies". Not exam time, still can involve the kids in the beating of ingredients .... ...

KWF said...

Linda dear, thanks for your encouragement. 2 yrs later, my girl will join Natalie in our old school. :) The thought of her following her gor-gor's footsteps is really too much for me now.

HHB, so glad to find a "kaki" (I know, very bad of me). But it's really a relief to hear from someone on the same side as me. The few mothers I know of are all taking good care of their kids' studies, so I really look bad when comparing to them.

CY, I hope I can be like you one day, but not now. Ds super lacks self discipline at this stage although he's already in P4. For his past 3 yrs, I was trying to train him to study independently, but apparently it just didn't work. He needs CONSTANT CLOSE SUPERVISION. Ahem...pardon the loud words. So if I walk away to bake or cook, he'll sit there dreaming, or lay his head on the table.

ShirasChoice said...

Hi KWF,

Really afraid when I think about my girls going to primary school (starting next year). I quit my job too to be spend more time with my girls. Have been quite carefree cox 2 of them still going to childcare. Cookbook is the only kind of book I can keep reading w/o falling asleep. So I truly understand how you joggle with guilt and sense of fulfillment between your your children interest and your own "ME" time. Let's not forget what our mother nature and believe we can make it!!! Jia You!

shira

Katharine said...

Well.. after reading what you've shared, I guess you are determined to do "something" to change the situation so it's never too late. You'll definitely reap your "fruits" in due time when you persevere with love. Don't compare with other mums cos you have your own strength which they may lack. Follow your heart, remind yourself constantly of the objective of being a SAHM (Stay at home mum) and of course we can't have both sides of the world. You can do it! 加油!

Linda Chong said...

KWF, good that you've decided to send your girls to our old school. My Roxane will also go there in 4 yrs time. Now I'm thinking very hard where to send Raphael. Slim chance at Catholic High as even if I stay < 1 km in phase 2B, I need to ballot and only 50% chance. Maybe Maris Stella, but quite far from my house for a poor boy.

Blessed Homemaker said...

I'm definitely with you, for the sake of our little ones, we just have to give it a shot.

I became a sahm not for the same reason but because I have no one to take care of my kids. And with dd1 in P1 this year, I'm struggling. The time for her to do her homework is the time for ds2 and dd3 to take their nap. It's also close to dinner preparation time. I have totally no time to sit down with her. She's always left alone to do her own stuff. I feel guilty sometimes but I can't help it.

BTW, I've just created a blog, may I link you please?

Reena (KC)

Jackie said...

I quit my job to concentrate of being a "milking cow" LOL no la actually breastfeed my DD back 10 year ago, and now still a happy SAHM. Is the way u see life - i m very content and very happy to see my baby grow into a young girl from step 1 to now. I am glad that i didnt miss out the stages of her life.

Hence please do not feel bad or guilty of not being able to coach him in his studies or what-so-ever. If we feel unhappy, our kids will too.

Be happy dont worry !!Take a break from the stress and do something that we enjoy - baking, knitting, cuppa of kopi O, chatting on line...hahahaha

KWF said...

Thanks ladies for your encouragement. I am glad that I'm still persisting on at this point in time. I have a lot of plans in my mind, but ds is still taking things easy, which makes me more anxious at times. But I kept reminding myself that I must learn to take things slowly. Hopefully one day, I can see the light at the end of the path.

Reena, thanks for linking me. Do try to readjust your schedule and spend some time coaching your girl. Don't end up regreting later, like me. I try to settle housework, lunch and dinner preparation in the morning when the kids are out so that by the time ds returns from school, I'll be ready to sit there to be his private tutor! At times a little difficult, but we just have to keep trying and adjusting.

Zhen said...

Hi,
just pop in to take a look at your blog. :D
it's never too late to start. :)
for me, it's the opposite. my priority has always being my ds so much so that i don't even have a hobby or useful skill (eg baking etc) :(
striking a balance would be good, but it is definitely not easy.

Blessed Homemaker said...

Thanks for your advice. I'll keep them in mind.