Patient or Lazy? You Decide.

You must have so much patience” is the most inaccurate comment I hear when people find out I homeschool the kids. I would like to assert here that I do not have any more patience than that woman down the street. Instead, I think I choose the Path-of-Least-Resistance method of parenting.

Exhibit A:

Daughter #1 was born via unexpected c-section. (My) pain + her never-ending nursing = baby in my bed.

We tried putting her in the crib for, oh, one night. But, she cried! And, I had to get out of my warm bed! So much work and noise.

She spent the next two years in our bed. Ditto child number two. Ditto child number three. At the age of (almost) four, we have finally got #3 out of our bed, and into his (sister’s) room (you don’t think we actually have finished his room yet, do you?). And for the past month or so, Fairly Odd Father and I have had our big king bed to ourselves, although we still cling to our own sides as if there are little warm bodies in between us, hogging the coveted middle.

Exhibit B:

Daughter #2 spent the ages of two and three channeling Linda Blair in the Exorcist, especially between the hours of 2am and 4am.

Almost nightly, she’d wake up thrashing and screaming, Screaming, SCREAMING!!!! It was so bad that our oldest slept with ear plugs, and I said goodbye to any hopes that I’d hold onto my hearing past 60.

I meant to take her to a sleep specialist to see what was wrong with her, and I even made the initial call, but I never followed up and she never saw anyone. Thankfully, she outgrew these nightly acts of torture and now only screams during daylight hours, like any normal kid.

Exhibit C:

Oldest daughter turned seven last January and could not read. OK, she could read “cat”, “stop” and “the”, but longer words or actual books? Nope.

What made this harder to comprehend was that language had come easily to her. At the age of five, her vocabulary was better than anyone on MTV’s The Hills.

What made this harder to admit was that I was her teacher. I tried not to panic, but panic I did. I was convinced that it was all my fault and if you saw how many phonics programs I own, you will know that I paid my penance in cold hard cash.

And, you know what? None of it really mattered. This summer, with absolutely no reading help from me, she has started to read on her own. Maybe the absence of my pressure made her willing to learn or maybe she needed something to “click” in her head; I’ll never know.

Exhibit D:

Youngest, our son, has taken his own damn time to do everything. He was born a week past due. He didn’t walk until well past 14 months. At three, I nervously brought him to a speech therapist for evaluation (but balked at the twice-weekly speech therapy sessions they recommended, so we never went back).

Our last major hurdle in the transition from “toddler” to “little boy” has been the all-mighty diaper.

It isn’t easy to have a tall, almost-four year old, in diapers. I met one person who gasped when she heard (as if!). But, you know, we’ve been busy, I hate pee on my floor and it’ll happen someday, won’t it?

You know how this ends, don’t you? Yes, for the past two days, he has been diaper free and doing (almost) perfectly.

So, is it patience, laziness or just dumb luck that these things have resolved on their own? I’m not certain, but I sure hope I can get through the teenage years like this.


  1. The Cooking Lady says

    I nearly spit milk out of my nose reading this…remind never to read blogs with a bowl of granola in my hand.

    Why do people get hung up over time frames. Both my children were not potty trained until the age of three. Didn’t bother me one darned bit, but it bothered thr crap out of everyone else. My MIL kept touting how she had trained(I so dislike that word) her first two by 1(She held them over a potty after they ate. I wanted my children to understand what their bodies were telling them.

    When my daughter was three, she came down stairs, and told me she was dirty…I looked and nada, nothing. she came down a few minutes later, telling me the same thing. then my lihgtbulb went on…duh, she had to go. Within 2 weeks she was 100% potty trained. Her body was ready.

    But the same with everyting else, when they are ready they will do things. I do not rush, life is to short.

    Loved this post!

  2. I say lazy can be a virtue, when it means you take the pressure off yourself and the kids to do something. Viva la Lazy Parenting! (My boy was 4 before he was potty trained, and at 5 still wears a pull-up to bed. And I’m fine with that, since it means I don’t have to get up in the middle of the night to change the bed.)

  3. I’m another lazy parent. LOL I’m probably less patient than I should be. LOL But hey, it works!

  4. Three of my four kids were late (and homeschooled) readers. Reading just “clicked” for each of them when their brains were ready to read. . . at the age of 8 or 9. Funny thing is, they were reading at high school level by the time they were 10 or 11 and are voracious readers. Letting kids develop at their own pace might be perceived as lazy but I think it’s best for the kids.

  5. AnotherMomCreation says

    Well I don’t think you give yourself enough credit. What you do is hard work. It requires patience and determination. If you ask me, sending your kids to public school for someone else to teach them just about everything is the hard stuff.

    Oh, and I know first hand, you are NOT lazy…

  6. I kinda think if EVERYONE managed to just chill out, maybe there would be fewer behavioral/development/delay diagnoses.

    Kudos for patience.

  7. I agree…people say this to me all the time! I also agree with toyfoto. I think we are so conditioned for our kids to be doing things at a certain time that we all (and yes we all do) stress out about the timeframes. It is worse when we are their primary ‘teachers’.

    As soon as Noah was born (literally), they had early intervention come to the house. They wanted to come 3 days a week but I shut that down fast. So they started once and worked up to twice. He is now 3 and that is all ending. Did they help? In my opinion, not really. The things he is doing is from time, not anything they have done. So I do believe if we guide them along gently, they will find their way.

    And go Dante!

  8. I vote for patience. But I think that it’s also just your most excellent laid-back momming skills that accept that you can’t make things happen on your schedule.

    Although the ear plug thing? Holy hell. That’s not patience you were exhibiting, I think that was bad judgment brought on by sleep deprivation.

  9. It’s refreshing to learn that everyone deals with their own little (and sometimes big) challenges as a parent and each one is different, while many are the same! 🙂 I like to call it “going with the flow”…

  10. Patient. Definitely! Especially as a new parent, I find it hard not to jump to conclusions when stuff doesn’t happen “by the book”. But, honestly, as parents, don’t our guts tell us if something is truly wrong and needs to be addressed by a professional? Hopefully. The temptation to compare kids to each other is great. Resist and let them be who they are! I like your style. 🙂

  11. nuttnbunny says

    Patience, laziness or luck? Flip a three-sided coin and let’s just call it “Life” which, much to my constant amazement, seems to move forward in spite of me. 🙂

Speak Your Mind


CommentLuv badge