Saturday, January 17, 2009
My sweet boy Luca has always been quite independent. From the time he could hold a board book he preferred to "read" by himself rather than be read to. I marveled at how this child could play so contentedly by himself while his older brother Max always desired to have Mama in the mix. Thus, it came as quite a surprise when we began schooling Max that it seemed Luca was the biggest challenge to our day.
I began to supplicate the Lord. He gave me confidence that our schedule was not just mine but His own plan for us. I was reminded of Charlotte Mason's teaching to "Get rid of the weeds and foster the flowers" and that just like an illness, "moral ailments need prompt attention." I enlisted Max's help in many ways, including remaining joyful during this time of training. There were many times I heard Max praying for Luca as I called on the Lord for His wisdom in each situation. Just as the boys' play needs to be as interesting as my work, Luca's play needed to be as interesting as Max's school. I took Teri Maxwell's advice on toy rotation, bringing a different toy out each day and storing the rest. I continually kept in mind Psalm 127, that "Unless the Lord builds the house, its builders labor in vain."
Steadily, whining and sullenness turned to cheerfulness and sweetness. When I get Max settled into a subject, Luca is ready to help me with chores. He happily participates in many subjects or looks forward to Max's break, when they can play together. Luca has even surprised us on occasion with a drawing from a reading in Our Island Story or -- noticing Max is stuck on a point in narration -- will pipe in from the corner where he is busily organizing his rocks.