I sat with my daughter at the dining table, the homeschool work in front of us forgotten. Instead she shared a part of her heart with me, one that had not been expressed before.
I listened, we cried, we prayed. Afterward I felt so grateful:
- Grateful for homeschooling,
- Grateful for my daughter’s courage and vulnerability, and
- Grateful for my own nature as an introverted mom, which enabled me to “hold the space” for that moment
Life can be tough as an introverted homeschooling mom. Face to face with our own limits on a daily basis, we easily feel like what we have to offer our family isn’t enough.
If we have to say “no” in any given moment, because we just can’t handle any more people time or any more words from a chatty child, we wrestle with guilt.
And when we push past those natural limits again and again, sometimes for years? That guilt piles up and spills over, overflowing into frustration, overwhelm, and at times, rage.
But I wrote Introverted Mom to remind introverted moms about the exceptional gifts that we bring to our families and others. To begin to see ourselves and our superpowers in a new way.
Just as a bird soaring overhead doesn’t know to be impressed by his own flying skills, introverted moms might not be aware that what we show up with on a daily basis is our own work of art, a marvel in and of itself.
Here are a few of those superpowers:
Introverts, especially those who understand their personalities well, are less likely to take on too much. Instead of quantity in our homeschooling endeavors, we gravitate toward quality–a “less is more” philosophy.
Business people call it essentialism, and in our fast-paced society people desperately try to cultivate this skill, but for introverted homeschool moms, this comes naturally because it’s a necessity.
Because we do less, we go deeper. Incredibly, it’s even been shown that the brain of an introvert processes information on a deeper level than the brain of an extrovert.
Can’t you see how much this benefits your family as a homeschool mom? Whether it means going deeper with your children, deeper in one subject instead of six, or deeper with three friends instead of two dozen, all of that results in the capacity for greater insights, understanding, and connection.
Quality + Depth = Simplicity. And if you think this elusive quality comes easily to everyone, remember that whole books have been written about the importance of eliminating excess from the lives of children, whose brains (whether they are introverts or extroverts) were not made for more, more, more!
This is why the book Simplicity Parenting was such a godsend when my kids were young. My introverted heart resonated with its principles, feeling within myself the truth and necessity of them in our home.
Have you ever seen those video clips where people who are scared of sharks go swimming with sharks? They face their greatest fear in order to overcome it.
Choosing to homeschool when you’re an introverted mom also takes great courage.
To knowingly sign up for something that you’re aware is going to drain you? To swim in the waters of overstimulation and noise for the good of your family? It doesn’t get more courageous than that.
And for all the times when you don’t feel courageous? You’re still there, doing what you’ve decided is right. Courage isn’t the absence of fear, but action in the midst of it.
You are some of the most courageous women I know.
Because we know what it’s like to have limits on our energy levels, introverted moms who are in a healthy place more easily accept the limits of others, including our children.
This means we are likely to offer the grace to others that we often know we ourselves need. And an atmosphere of grace transforms our homes, our relationships, and our lives.
It’s in honor of you and all your superpowers that I poured heart and soul into a Word document for over a year. I shared stories that I never thought I’d ever write about, because I think it’s important for us to tell our truths, even the hard parts, if it helps someone else.
Some of those parts:
- the story of my dad passing away 18 years ago, and how that tragedy affected my introverted heart (Ch 4: On Navigating Heartache and Disappointment as an Introvert)
- the story of a huge Mommy meltdown I had on the phone with a friend, and how she saved the day with her own superpowers (Chapter 7: On Good Books and Good Friends)
- the story of an awkward conversation with a stranger on a plane, and what I learned from it about sharing my faith (Chapter 8: On Connecting with God as an Introvert)
- the story of a neighbor who told me I was a horrible mother, and how that awful moment led to an unexpected breakthrough (Chapter 10: On Cultivating Calm Wherever You Are)
Also, I have to give a a quick shout-out to my extroverted readers: I see you, too! You carry your own superpowers and add so much to your families that I am in awe. Thanks for all you bring to our community.
It’s meant a lot to hear from several extroverted moms who have loved my book, too. Many have noted that motherhood is such an “extroverted” endeavor that they feel the need to connect with their introverted side more than ever before. This book is perfect for moms feeling that way.
Do you know what your personality is? Let us know your superpower!