Three Prayers to Calm Back-to-School Worry

As I closed the door behind my new 3rd grader, the last one to leave the house today, I breathed a simple prayer, “God be near.” The worry was thick last night as I tucked her and her siblings into bed. Some were familiar like not being able to open the lock on their locker, being the only sibling on the bus this year, and juggling school and sports schedules. But there were other worries, too. Questions about masks, vaccines, and how long this whole thing was going to last.

This morning I find myself vacillating between “They are going to be OK. It’s all going to be OK,” and “What if it’s not OK. Then what?” Unfortunately, we know better. Sometimes it’s not OK and the whole world changes in an instant. And I’m not alone in my worry. When I googled “back to school worries” there was 150 million results. Some anxious parent, caregiver, teacher, or student is asking Google for ways to calm their worry every .53 seconds.

Oh man. What’s a mom to do with all this back-to-school worry?

Especially a mom who knows that worry is mental torture (Here’s an article I wrote about worry!) and that she must get on top of her anxious thoughts asap before they turn into an ugly spiral. That’s when I remembered that the simple prayer I prayed as I closed the door was the key. For me, the opposite of worry is faith. What I know for certain is their Creator loves them even more than I do, and I can trust Him with my worries and their school year.

A few years ago, I wrote a little eBook called, 30 Back to School Prayers for Your Children. It was a way for me to help other parents struggling with back-to-school worries.  As I sat down at my laptop today to start work, I pulled that old PDF document out and read through the prayers I created years ago. They blessed my soul and calmed my worry as I read. And I want to bless you the same way. I hand picked a few of my favorites for you to have in your back pocket. Pray over your child in the morning when they leave, or throughout the day when worry comes up.

Prayer #1 to Calm Back to School Worry: Based on 3 John 1:2

Dear God,

Thank you for my child’s health. I pray you continue to bless them with a healthy body and a strong spirit. When they get sick, I pray for quick healing. Give me wisdom to make the right choices for our family to have a healthy mind, body, and spirit. Help them to not be afraid but continue to make good choices to protect their health this school year.

Amen

Prayer #2 to Calm Back to School Worry: Based on 1 Thessalonians 5:11

Dear God,

I pray my child would be an encourager today. I pray they would build others up instead of being mean or unkind. Give them a heart for others. Help them to stand up for the kids who are being picked on and ignored. And loving to another child who is afraid or unsure. Develop a gift of encouragement in my child and open their eyes to see others as you see them.

Amen

Prayer #3 to Calm Back to School Worry: Based on Philippians 4:13

Dear God,

I pray for my child today. I pray that as they leave home today, they would be filled with bravery. When they are scared, I pray they would remember that they can do all things through You, God! I pray against all worry, fear, and anxiety that might be tormenting my child today. Help them accept failure as part of the learning process- instead of giving up. May they walk boldly in the confidence that you are the source of their strength. In your name I pray.


Whether it’s today, next Tuesday, or six months from now, my hope is these prayers bolster your faith when back to school worry happens. We know it can be a scary world out there and much is unknown this school year. But trusting the God who loves them more than we do is our anchor in the storm. We made it through last year. We will make it through last year. One day at a time.

With grace & grit,

~Raychel

Raychel Perman is a Certified Life & Business Coach, Speaker, Author, and Co-Founder of RAYMA Team, LLC. She is the Co-host of the She Who Overcomes™ Podcast and is funny, wise, and tells it like it is. Raychel shares her story of overcoming trauma and living with mental health challenges to inspire others to believe that the broken pieces of their past can lead to beauty, strength, and new beginnings. She is the author of UNBROKEN and co-author of She Cultivates Resilience.

Learn more about Raychel here.

Home Schooling During the Coronavirus Crisis

I’m going to make a safe bet and say that you were not prepared to tackle home school, working from home, social distancing, and self-quarantining all at the same time. I wasn’t either. But here we all are. Just trying to figure out how to survive home schooling during the coronavirus crisis.

Believe it or not, this isn’t my first rodeo with homeschooling.

When our oldest was in 2nd grade we removed her right before Christmas and home schooled for the rest of the school year. We were working with an OT to help her with some anxiety issues and sensory processing delays; and, not being in a traditional classroom helped her so much.

But let’s be real for a minute. You are not used to having them home AND teaching AND working at the same time. It’s enough to make you want to hide in your closet and cry. Or run away. But everything is closed so we must stay and survive the best we can. Here are some tips that can help: 

How to survive homeschooling during the coronavirus crises.

#1- Create a schedule but don’t reinvent the wheel

I did create a daily schedule for my kiddos because I need it so I know when I can work uninterrupted (hopefully!) and take clients and schedule virtual meetings. You probably need one as well. But don’t reinvent the wheel. I can guarantee your child already has a schedule they follow every week in school. If your teacher hasn’t sent it to you already, ask for it.

Base your home school schedule on their school schedule. Take out the times for recess, lunch, and extracurricular activities and you will notice the actual learning time is easy to replicate at home. If they have math in the morning at school. They have math in the morning at home. Most teachers have probably sent all kinds of links for you to find online education sites, and ideas for offline education.

#2- Do only what is necessary and possible

Now is not the time to let overwhelm get the best of you. Do only what is necessary and possible each day. One day at a time. You are not a superhero and we are all in uncharted territory. When you are feeling overwhelmed, slow down and take a moment to breathe and think about what is necessary and possible in that moment. Nothing more. Nothing less. Only what is necessary and possible.

#3- Make time for rest to survive home schooling during the Coronavirus

Fear and fatigue go hand in hand. Fatigue is real right now and it causes you to be short-tempered, impatient, and mean. It will make you to do things and say things that in your right mind you would never do, or say. Make sure you are making sleep a priority during this time. Having enough sleep will have a huge impact on how you survive home schooling during the coronavirus.

#4- Don’t forget the fun

This time is a gift. I will admit it’s in a pretty crappy package. But a global pandemic can still be a gift if we choose to look at it that way. An invitation to slow down and connect in real time with our family. Build forts, make cookies, go on walks, play games, listen to a book together, have movie marathons, do spa nights, take long drives, work on a puzzle together, sleep in, connect with family members over Face time, stay in your jammies all day, and have dance parties. We will only survive this time if we remember to have fun and make memories with our families.

#5- Reach out for help

When you are feeling overwhelmed to the point of hurting yourself, or your child, reach out for help. There is ZERO shame in reaching out. The pressure is intense right now and it’s OK if you don’t know how to navigate it all. Put a movie on for the kids, put the baby in their crib, find a quiet spot in the house, garage or yard, and just breathe for a few minutes. Call a friend, call a national hotline, or connect in an online group for support.

  • National Domestic Violence hotline: 1-800-799-7233         1-800-787-3224 (TTY)
  • EveryMind hotline: 301-738-2255 (EveryMind’s trained staff and volunteers provide supportive listening, information and resource referrals, and crisis intervention (including suicide assessments) through telephone, text, and chat services.
  • National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800.273.8255

If you are going to survive home schooling during the coronavirus you must reach out for help when it becomes too much. This is uncharted waters. And it can be scary to be in a crisis. But, one day at a time we will all get through this.  Do only what is necessary and possible. And, don’t forget to rest and have fun.

With Grace & Grit,

~Raychel


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