You normally read this blog and things are happy and bright.
Today, however, something is bothering me.
Let me set the stage:
Now that I've been homeschooling several years, people come to me with questions.
LOTS of questions.
I am happy to talk about homeschooling and answer legitmate questions.
I am happy to share our story and encourage you on your journey.
People I randomly meet (or actually already know well) also feel very free, however, to tell me why they CAN'T homeschool.
I think they tell me these things because they assume some things about me.
Let's talk about those.
Common Assumptions About Me:
I Must Have A Lot of Patience
This one is actually laughable. In fact, someone we met at lunch the other day told me she could never homeschool because she doesn't have nearly the patience I do.
I think my eleven year old daughter just about spit her drink out at that one.
I am a very IMPATIENT person. I regularly lose my cool with my kids. I get frustrated when something isn't done on time. I get frustrated if things don't go my way.
But guess what? Homeschooling is teaching me patience, and I think perhaps God called me to homeschool because I am so wretchedly impatient!
Actually, it's easier for people to think I'm some patient sort of saint, because then they can say,
"Well, I'm not nearly as patient as SHE is. There's no way I could homeschool my kids."
That's just a load of junk.
Sorry, but it is.
Please stop telling me you don't have any patience.
I Must Be Incredibly Religious
I would say about 90% of people I encounter think our family homeschools for religious reasons.
That was a motivating factor in our decision, but not THE biggest one.
I just KNEW in my heart I could do it better myself (educate my children).
When the children at my daughter's school were herded into the cafeteria to watch the president address the school children and pump them full of government speak, that was it for us.
I grew up going to public school. I taught in public school.
Public school is a beautiful IDEAL.
I cannot, however, sacrifice my children for an IDEAL.
I've found all of our faiths growing deeper because we are able to spend more time together, spend time appreciating and studying God's word and creation, and just realizing our God given potentials at our own pace.
Therefore, while we don't say we homeschool for religious reasons, we homeschool because we feel this is the path God has chosen for our family.
Please stop telling me you would be the only person homeschooling in your church or family. (I have been in both of those positions, by the way.)
I Want to Shelter My Children
This is another laughable assumption.
I actually want my children to experience MORE of life and that's why I keep them out of school.
I do, however, want to protect them from drugs, sex, bullies, and ideas that promote a radical agenda.
My husband and I feel that in our home we are equipping them (through lots of conversation, faith experiences, and healthy friendships) to stand on their own two feet when they leave our home.
Hopefully our children will be able to defend their faith, make proper choices, and stand up to the evils of this world.
I'm sure they will make mistakes, but they make lots of mistakes right now.
Please stop telling me you don't want to shelter your children.
It's Easy for Me To Homeschool Because I Was a Teacher
This is another funny one.
I was an elementary MUSIC teacher.
I never learned to teach a child to read, do long division, or write an essay.
I am really good at singing silly songs, learning about composers, and large crowd control.
The only qualification I have to teach my own children is that they BELONG TO ME!
Please stop telling me you aren't qualified to teach your children (this just makes me sad).
You Must Have Enough Money To Stay At Home
Ok. This one cracks me up, too.
It's all about choices.
We made the choice 11 years ago to live solely on one income.
We may not be driving the latest and greatest cars and we don't have a huge house payment.
When my first precious child was born we KNEW we would sacrifice whatever it took for me to be home with her full time. I tried going back to work and that lasted for three days. Three.
We have learned to live well within our means and budget for the things we feel are truly important.
PLEASE stop telling me you don't homeschool because you don't have the money.
Now that we've debunked the myths about me, you don't have any more excuses.
Please stop telling me why you CAN'T homeschool.
You and I are more alike than you would think, and I think THAT is what scares you.
Because, if I homeschool my kids, then maybe you can, too.