The baby wails. The two year old just took off her poop filled diaper. The 4 year old jumps off the couch and runs around with his power ranger sword stabbing people. The 6 year old refuses to do his math and the 9 year old cartwheels in the living room instead of reading. The 15 year old is probably texting on his iPhone in his room rather than doing Algebra. And I wonder why?
Why am I doing this? Why do I even bother??? The public schools around here aren’t so bad. I graduated from public school and I’m not so bad. I turned out fine, right? I want to hide in the bathroom and zone out on Facebook. Oh Lord, give me strength. Help me remember why!! Why we started this homeschooling journey ten long years ago.
We started because 1st grade wasn’t working for our kid. He was in a “bad” class. He wasn’t getting the attention he deserved. So, why not try homeschooling? All the homeschoolers we knew were frankly, a little weird. But we weren’t weird and it was just for half a year, right? How badly could I screw up 1st grade?
I remember my husband asking, “What will you do with him ALL DAY?”. Good question! ….
I don’t know. We’ll figure it out.
And so we began. He didn’t go back after Thanksgiving break. And I started reading and reading and reading. And then buying and buying. And then I still had to work. So we switched off. My husband worked a couple days a week and I worked a couple days. And somehow we made it that first semester and we liked it. A lot. And he hasn’t gone back.
Fast forward and today we have 6 kids. And it’s so hard. The hardest thing I have EVER DONE! And I’ve done hard things. I was a single parent for 4 years. I gave birth without drugs to 3 kids. I had my stomach cut open for another who was then whisked away to NICU. I know hard. And this is on a whole other level of hard.
But somehow over these 10 years, “homeschooling mom” has become part of me. Part of who I am. I can’t imagine not doing it. I can’t imagine putting my kids on that yellow bus and sending them away for 8+ hours a day. I don’t want to miss these years. The snuggles on the couch with an amazing book series. Walking in the woods taking pictures of lichen and wildflowers. Learning about Abraham Lincoln, Louis Zamperini, and Claude Monet. I don’t want to miss this and so much more.
It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever done but it’s also the best thing I’ve ever done. And I know it’s what I’m supposed to do. What God has called me to do. So I press on.
“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 3:13–14 NIV
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