Homeschooling with Anxiety: Baking, Hiking, and Leaving the House

posted in: Homeschooling | 6

Homeschooling with anxiety is a daily challenge and keeps me busy finding activities for Apollo.

Sometimes, when you kids are teens, you have to sneak in first day of school pictures. Here are Enoch and Kalina (and Frodo) on their first day of Running Start (community college). Enoch is a senior and Kalina junior.

Homeschooling with anxiety is a daily challenge and keeps me busy finding activities for Apollo.

Campus classes two days a week and homeschooling three days seemed like the perfect balance for Apollo (and me) this year. What I didn’t anticipate was the immediate return of his Fear of a Quiet House. Just as soon as Enoch and Kalina started school his anxiety returned with a vengeance. He is perfectly fine when there are people and activity in the house, but the anxiety sets in as soon as it is just the two of us and the house gets quiet.

Homeschooling with anxiety is a daily challenge and keeps me busy finding activities for Apollo.

To offset this turn in events, I have become The Needy Friend. Two of Apollo’s friends from kindergarten and first grade are also in this partnership program and I have been begging them to come over to add some noise and activity to our house on non-school days. Last week I offered to bake blueberry muffins with the kids which turned out to be a wonderful activity. All the kids enjoyed it and our house was most definitely not quiet.

Homeschooling with anxiety is a daily challenge and keeps me busy finding activities for Apollo.

We killed two birds with one stone, as they say. We had a lesson in math, reading, and life skills all while keeping Apollo’s anxiety at bay. The kids had a great time and plenty of learning took place.

Homeschooling with anxiety is a daily challenge and keeps me busy finding activities for Apollo.

I mentioned the return of Apollo’s anxiety when I had him in at the doctor last week and he told me that if it came back after two years, it never really left. He said this obviously wasn’t a just a phase, or a stage, and he strongly feels Apollo needs to see a counselor so he can find ways to combat his anxiety now, rather than continue to bury it or hide it.

Homeschooling with anxiety is a daily challenge and keeps me busy finding activities for Apollo.

And, of course, I am going to New Zealand in November for the birth of my first grandchild. Apollo doesn’t know I’m leaving yet (two months is forever to a seven-year-old) and the doctor agreed there was no reason to get him worried this far in advance.

Apollo’s double aortic arch is like the gift that just keeps on giving. It has robbed him of proper nourishment and growth, it has emptied our bank account, it has stolen the gift of sleep, it has left him scarred, scared and anxious. Every mountain we climb, it seems, reveals a new one in our future. Some are big and some are small, but there seems to be no end in sight.

In the meantime, we bake muffins with friends, go to the library and hike. And I am, indeed, the Needy Friend, desperate to fill our homeschooling days with noise, activities, adventures and fellow humans.

SaveSave

SaveSaveSaveSave

Facebook Comments

6 Responses

  1. Regarding seeing a counselor: I am one of those people who always saw shrinks in some form, Freudians to behavior mod, until one day I thought of that popular bestseller for women, The Rules, and went online to discover that they offer not just advice to women looking for husband-and-boyfriend help, but also to moms seeking help with, say, overbearing eighteen-year-olds and dads who don’t do discipline. Typical family problems, that is. I got more out of ten minutes with one of those Rules-trained counselors than I’d gotten out of an embarrasingly long run with “the professionals.” Also, the help was much, much, much less expensive.

    • Really?! I have never heard of that book. I will definitely be checking out books about helping kids with anxiety. I mean, he has plenty of reasons to feel anxious and I KNOW there are methods out there to help kids like him. I have an appointment for him next week and will be doing research in the meantime.

  2. Our 4 year old has anxiety. She might also have spd, but we are not sure of she does, or if she’s just already so on edge from anxiety that every little thing sets her off. Her pedi referred her to an occupational therapist, but there is a waiting list :/

  3. Panayiota

    Hello. Though i am not an expert,nor do i aspire to become one, i will tell you what i did with my anxiety attacks. I would immediately distance myself from the current “excuse” the anxiety had to attack, breathe and try to distract myself. Plus, I would address my guardian angel and asked him to help me through this. At the same time, i prayed for this, asking God to help me, since this put a distance between him and the people around me. And i followed experts’ advice and asked for support.
    But i did these as a young adult, not a child and since i am not an expert, nor do i know Appollo, only you know if you can use such an approach together with the counselor’s advice. For what it’s worth, it worked when my two year old nephew had a fear that someone scary was in the living room for some time.

Please share your thoughts!