The Homeschool Mom: an honest rambling on a social life
The following is a bit of a non-creative ramble, but my head is swimming with thoughts and aches and the overwhelming successes of being a Christian homeschool mom.
When I decided to homeschool Isaac, it surprised me as much as anything ever has.
Homeschooling can feel like your house turns into a boat. You turn in your Intent to Homeschool, and then they shove you out into the ocean.
Many days I do feel shoved-off in a boat or ship-wrecked on an island, but I know that our small lives right now are simple for a beautiful reason, and it isn’t to be turned inward to make ourselves feel holier than the rest of ’em. We don’t homeschool because we’re afraid the world will teach our children the words to Katy Perry songs.
I’m actually just as likely to walk around singing, “Baby, you’re a firework” as any kindergartener is.
I homeschool because I want our family to be together. I want to be my childrens’ teacher. I want to hold fast with them, to grow in faith with them, and to lead them into their maturity. I believe that I am best suited for that job. I also believe it will be a year-to-year and child-to-child decision for us.
But there are some things about it that I don’t want to admit. They do as we do, so they reveal every ounce of my anxiety, my stubbornness, my lack of discipline, and my rebellion against authority. I’m forced to suffer or either correct myself before they can be taught.
They do as we do, so they also take cues from us in social settings.
That is the problem. Our social settings have reduced considerably. Friends whose children went on to public school are in sight and in mind. As a homeschool mom, I tend to be out-of-sight and then so are my children. We just don’t get out much! I’m learning that I must make room in my schedule and thinking for other moms and children, who are all mostly out of sight from my little apartment.
I’m learning that in this phase of life, having deep, meaningful friendships takes true intentionality and time. It doesn’t just happen anymore. I’m sure, too, this can be true for those of you with public school kids.
My desire for my children to play with others does not supercede how wonderful it is to cuddle on the couch with a pile of books or to tell my children daily about the Scarlet Thread that runs through the Bible. I do think the time any child spends with his parents will greatly influence the way he treats others.
What’s your take? We can have a respectable conversation here, can’t we? What about the social aspect of homeschooling? What honest social negatives and positives have you experienced in home education and public education? Why is it even important?