This post is strictly my opinion and my experience.
The truth is I never wanted to homeschool. It was never something I thought about, not even once. When people would ask me if I was going to homeschool I would ALWAYS say I don’t plan to, but if God calls me to I will. Did I realize what I was saying at the time? No! Maybe I NEVER really thought He would call me, that is until He told me I was already called.
I’ve shared my story here
We are wrapping up our fourth year of homeschool. I don’t have a long-term plan for this and MANY people ask how long I plan to do this? This? Like it is some sort of phase I’m going through. Some in the homeschool world say you HAVE TO be committed to this for the long haul and I’m not there yet. I still take this year by year and honestly lately I want to put my kids in school EVERYDAY. Why, you ask? It is hard. Not the homeschooling part, but everything else.
Judah has been sick with ear infections for six months and wants and needs more from me than I have to give in any given day. Kaira is dealing with some issues right now, that I do not feel equipped to deal with. The atmosphere in the house because of marital issues is less than pleasant and that affects everyone. Sometimes I feel I do not have anything left to give to the two I'm supposed to be teaching. We are working on getting along with siblings, but my husband and I don't get along...I feel a little hypocritical.
I am with my kids 24 hours a day seven days a week. My house is used as a primary residence, it houses a small business and triples as a one room schoolhouse, so you can imagine the activity here. Sometimes ALL the activity becomes overwhelming and I just want a break, but there is no where to run (so to speak) and no where to hide. This is my life. I’m not unhappy with it, just overwhelmed. There are no mornings to clean the house or grocery shop. I wipe a counter while I wait for toast to pop-up or throw a load of laundry in when everyone is sitting at the table for lunch. Then my husband will ask days later how long ago did you start the washer and the answer is always the same, “I don’t know.” When my husband gets home it’s dinner time and then I usually work if I don’t pass out before I hit the computer.
Homeschooling is hard! It is not hard to teach the kids they WANT to learn and LOVE to learn. It is not hard to teach different ages at the same time. It is hard because it stretches me in ways I never imagined. It brings my character flaws, imperfections, personality idiosyncrasies and all that other stuff to light EVERY SINGLE DAY. Even writing this I want to cry and probably will before I’m done.
I am aware how much easier I have it than the homeschool moms before me and I am not minimizing their sacrifice in any way. I am just being honest. These are MY struggles right now. With four kids eight and under I am in a constant state of motion and sometimes I just want to be still. Even when I can get away for the occasional few hours by myself I am still doing something for my family or working. It is like being on a merry-go-round and not being able to stop.
My husband does not understand my inner struggle. He either thinks I’m double minded or just plain crazy. He thinks homeschooling is the best for the kids, but that is where his involvement ends. My kids thrive on being at home and have excelled in ways at early ages I never thought possible. I do not run a rigid homeschool and we are not work, work, work - they have a natural love for learning and an environment in which to do so. I have also been able to see so many milestones reached that I would have missed if they were not here.
The TRUTH is I love it, not every minute of it, but for the most part. I love to teach, I get to use my creativity and be productive. Just last week we made corn syrup paintings, they were AWESOME until Kaira put hers upside down on the carpet and stepped on them, on purpose. The fun was OVER at that point and I unraveled quickly.
I’m considering preschool in the fall for the two littlest ones (I hear the gasps from the homeschool community), good thing I’m not out to win a homeschool mom of the year award. Right now I basically just want to make it through another homeschool day. If Mother’s Morning Out helps me do that with a little less stress than so be it.
I do not know what next year holds for us, let alone tomorrow. We have less than a month and a half before we finish this year and I am counting the days. I’m praying God will give me insight and wisdom on how to proceed with this High and Holy calling.