Hold those plans loosely, girls! I cannot say it often enough, especially when I’m talking to myself.
I was cruising along, enjoying the end of August, thinking about the beginning of September and the fact that Will will be starting high school this year. No worries. We switched to using a boxed curriculum about three years ago, and I knew that meant that all the planning and ordering and figuring out of his freshman year was taken care of, all neat and clean and housed in a big, blue binder. Yep, that’s what I thought. Ahem.
Will and I had a terrific “back to school” talk on Monday. I thought we were going to discuss refining our daily school schedule a bit and talk about the possibility of adding a couple of co-op type classes. That’s what I thought.
It turns out, Will would very much like to go back to homeschooling “the way we used to do it”, which is a mom designed, planned and hobbled together curriculum. He tells me this….in late August!
Well. Alrighty then.
The truth of the matter is that I have missed homeschooling “the way we used to do it”. I’ve missed the planning. I’ve missed being the one to choose, with my kids’ input, what they’d be studying for the year. I’ve missed the hours spent writing a particular course of study, searching for just the right books and other resources to make the study complete. I’ve missed
stalking waiting for the mailman and UPS driver, knowing exactly what they had on their truck for me every day.
In many ways, these last few years of homeschooling from a box have been good for us. If that’s the best method for your family, and it is for many families, then I’m happy for you. For me, though, it took all the joy of homeschooling right out of my very heart. There was nothing for me to do but oversee the work being done. If that was the best for my son, though, then that was good. I am so very thankful and blessed that, at least for now, we will be pursuing high school the same way we’ve tackled homeschooling for most of Will’s school career.
Blessed. Thankful. And buried under a stack of high school handbooks, books pulled from my shelves, multiple browser windows open on the computer, multiple text documents open on that same computer, my phone close at hand for communications with my family, and my debit card doing some serious business on line.
It’s been a ton of work. But you know what? It’s been wonderful! I’m very, very hopeful that everything we’ll be ready, or at least ready enough, for a September 9 start date.
This will be my twenty-fifth year as a homeschool mom. There have been years of just rolling with the punches. There have been years of tremendous success, and years of seemingly dismal failure. But those years I thought were failures? God used those years to grow my kids in non-academic ways that never could have happened otherwise. He redeemed even what I thought was a failure! I’ve prayed a lot. I’ve sought God’s help tons. There’s no way that I could, or would, have done this for the past quarter century without Him!
If there is one, simple truth that I can tell newer, younger, or maybe just burned out moms, you are not in this alone! We’re all familiar with Philippians 4:13, “ I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”. (NKJ)
I kind of like the way The Message says it,
Whatever I have, wherever I am, I can make it through anything in the One who makes me who I am.
So, to all the moms out there, whether you’re putting your little one on the school bus for the very first time, sending a child off to college, or pursuing yet another year of educating your kids at home, look for your strength and worth in Jesus and in nothing else. With His help,
You’ve got this!