My Deep Dark Secret

Back in January I wrote a post about eating crow, and how I'm good at it.  It comes with lots of practice.  "I'll never do this.  I'll never do that."  (Moral of the story:  Don't say "never", folks.) 

Which brings me rapidly to the thesis statement of the blog post.  (I feel like there should be a drum roll...)

Sam and I have decided to homeschool next year.

This may not be earth-shattering news to you.  Or, it may make the hair on your neck stand on end.  If you'd have mentioned it to me in December, I personally would have fallen into the latter category.

We moved here in 2006 because of the public schools.  They're top-notch.  Our experience has confirmed the reputation.  I have nothing but praise for the school that Ben and Abby attend.  Abby's pre-k teacher is phenomenal.  Ben just got accepted into the FOCUS program.  These kids are rockin' and rollin'...so why the heck would I pull them out?

It's kind of a long story.

Right after New Year's, Sam and I were talking about something, I don't even know what - when the conversation shifted to homeschooling.  Naturally, I scoffed, as I always have.  "I could never homeschool."  Sam looked at me and said as seriously as I've ever seen him say something, "I think you should consider it."

I was confused, resistant, and steadfast.  But I humored him.  I checked out a copy of the book The Well-Trained Mind, and I read it.  In two days.  All 864 pages.  It opened my mind.  A teeny, tiny bit.  I went back to the library and checked out every book about homeschooling I could find.  Turns out, even Blair from the Facts of Life has written a biographical homeschooling book.  I read that one too. 

As I chipped away at the wall I had built against homeschooling, I started considering how my life has taken some unexpected turns in the past couple of years.  It seems as if things have been lining up just so that I can take this next leap of faith.  I got laid off from my job as a civil engineer nearly 18 months ago.  Shortly after that, I found out that I had earned my professional license.  It's been sitting in a drawer since then.  I searched for a year, but there are *no* civil/environmental engineering jobs available around here right now.  A friend suggested I look into the possibility of teaching.  I laughed and said, "Never!"  Then I became certified to teach middle & high school math and science.  At this point, if I went back to work it would be as a teacher - and given the fact that my income is not critical, I have a hard time wrapping my brain and heart around leaving my kids so I can teach other children and so other people can teach mine.  Just a personal issue of mine.

So, next, I did what I do best.  I made a pair of side-by-side lists -

Reasons TO Homeschool and Reasons NOT to Homeschool

The smarter part of me thinks I should keep these to myself.  The other part of me (the part that asks for trouble and demands full-disclosure) wants to share them, if for no other reason so you can see my bias against homeschooling and what I had to overcome to get the point where I am today.  

I will share them...just not on this post.  It's already 420,000 words and I'm sure you quit reading a long time ago.  To make an already long story shorter, let's just say the reasons on the "TO" side were far more compelling than the arguments against. 

I'll wrap it up here.  My answer for "Why are you doing this?" is this:  I feel called to homeschool.  Whether you believe in God or not, I suspect you can understand the deep nagging feeling in your soul.  I tried and tried to get away from it.  And since I couldn't, now I'm saying, "Okay.  Let's do it."  I believe this is God's will for us.  More than anything, I'm afraid of offending someone, anyone - my public school teacher friends, my public school attending friends, my family, my family members who teach public school.  This is not about them.  This is not about the experience we've had in school here.  This is about me and my family and doing what we feel is right...for us. 

Believe me, there is plenty more where this is coming from.  

God will make this happen, for he who calls you is faithful. 
-1 Thessalonians 5:24


Debbie said...

I am sitting here amazed at the fact that I watched (via this blog) this whole thing unfolding before my eyes. I knew in my heart that there was a "thing" going on when you lost the job, but I didn't really realize where it was going.

Sometimes I just say to the Mr., "God is freaking me out."

It applies.
This intricate plan of the Father is so utterly perfect that He's freaking me out.

Suz B said...

I say more power to you. The religious aspect of my children's education is very important to me and so we are paying a small fortune to send our kids to private school, for now, and Sofia is only in Pre-K 3. But I see and hear the things she comes home taking away from school and it warms my heart. I am lucky enough to afford that for now, but if we ever could not, despite all of my husband's biases against it, and my sheer terror, I would seriously considering home-schooling. Plus, I happen to know that there is a pretty awesome home-schooling network in your state, and some great resources available to you, as my sister home-schools her kids in the same great state. And she is pregnant with child number 5. I say in public she is crazy, but personally she is one of the bravest people I know taking that on.
God always has a plan for us, and as long as we open our hearts and listen, he will lead us where we are meant to go. I too have become a very different person, doing very different things, than I once expected. Part of that is the profound and I start effect of motherhood, but the rest is opening up to what God is asking of me and believing that if I feel the call, all I have to do is answer "YES" and he will take care of the rest. And wouldn't you know, he always does!
Good luck and God Bless. And if you need any resources there, let me know and I can get you in touch with my sister and all her home-schooling peeps :)

Sharon said...

WOW! What a huge decision! I think you're going to love doing this - and everyone will really be blessed by it.

I know two people that might be good resources for you (and their blogs might help you network to others who are also homeschooling):


Please keep us posted on how things go - I'm excited for this new "leap of faith" - and I can't wait to see how God blesses the whole thing!


amy said...

So excited for you! Use me as a resource, please, I'm 100% here for you, with almost a decade of Georgia homeschooling experience to share. =)

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