Moms, it’s HARD to step back from homeschooling your child.
We made the homeschool journey to college and now I’m passing off the baton.
Being replaced (well - replaced in the educational facilitator role at least) is an odd feeling.
For the past 18 years I’ve had a front row seat to everything in her life. Now it’s time to start moving to the balcony.
So many times in the past few months I’ve had BIG revelations (which I’m also considering affirmations) about how homeschooling high school has prepared my child for this next step in her life.
When your homeschooler goes to college it is difficult on a mama’s heart - but also wonderful at the same time.
While I grieve the daily presence of my daughter, my heart rejoices at the young woman she is becoming, and I absolutely love watching her tackle this next phase of her life. As I watch her fly I KNOW we made the best educational choices for her.
When your homeschooler goes to college you will watch any homeschool doubts you had vanish into the past.
Hard Times in the Rearview Mirror
I was always very honest with you about some of the hard times we had throughout homeschooling.
In my daughter’s homeschooling years we watched my mother battle cancer and pass away. We moved my father into an Assisted Living center. We watched my father-in-law decline and pass away.
These things are HARD when you are a teenager. (They are hard when you are in your forties and raising a teenager.) We kept going with homeschool and stuck together as a family. We found comfort in being TOGETHER each day and not apart.
Many days I just wished I could enroll my children in school. We actually toured private schools when my daughter was at the end of seventh grade. It took me a while to understand that I had to follow my child through high school - let her take the lead.
Guess what? Those times are behind us now.
I look in the rearview mirror and see experiences that grew and changed us. As my daughter and I have been talking about these things she agrees. Do you know how much good that does a mama’s heart?
Confidence for the Future
Homeschooling gave my daughter some very specific skills that I am hopeful will serve her well in college:
organization (the child uses a bullet journal to keep herself incredibly organized - much more organized than me!)
communication skills (She knows how to speak to and email with adults - this is coming in very handy with her professors and advisor even before classes begin)
social skills (ironic, huh? Because of her involvement with multiple age groups in high school, she is great at walking into new situations and meeting new people)
money management (We made learning about money skills a priority - she has had her own checking account since the 9th grade and pays for everything on her own at this point. She understands how to transfer money, save money, and budget money. This is HUGE.)
time management (She’s been managing her own schedule for two full years. I think this will help her transition to the “freedom” college will offer.)
Mom Begins A New Journey
As a child leaves the nest you will still be mothering. You will obviously, however, have more time.
This article spoke to my heart. Motherhood (being a homeschooling mom) is not my defining role.
I still have another child at home to educate, but he will be leaving home soon, too. My identity is in Christ - not in how or who I homeschool.d
(Plus, now I will be spending much more time on my SQUILT Music Appreciation Curriculum, which brings me great joy!)
And let me recommend the book Release My Grip - it has been a wonderful source of encouragement for me.
A New Relationship Begins
I am enjoying a new relationship with my daughter - one where I am NOT her teacher.
(Can you hear me rejoicing in that?)
I have loved homeschooling her, but now it’s just great to be her MOM. And even more wonderful is the development of a friendship.
My own mother and I shared a beautiful relationship, and I can see this taking place now with my daughter. I am so thankful.
Pay it Forward
I feel strongly about this.
I now have a responsibility to encourage and assist other homeschool moms in the trenches.
We need each other. We need the emotional support. We need the nitty gritty sharing of details on how to get to graduation with our homeschoolers.
If you have graduated a homeschooler, help someone else behind you. If you haven’t graduated someone yet, ask someone older than you for help.
(Have you joined my private Facebook group, Equipping Homegrown Learners? This is where I love to encourage people.)
The next time I write to you I will have delivered Anna to college. I can’t promise I won’t cry, but I will try and hold it together until we are in the car and making the drive home to Atlanta.
I remember my dad telling me that my mom cried the whole way home after they took me to college. I thought that was so silly.
I wish she was alive now so I could tell her I understand.