Wednesday, April 21, 2010

THE HOMESCHOOL POST AND THE PRACTICE OF LETTING GO



I don't feel obligated to explain myself to anyone about the educational choices I make for my children.  But I have wanted to address homeschooling on my blog for a while now.  There is a wonderful community of homeschoolers online who are honest about the joys and struggles of home education and I have been so inspired over the years by these wonderful families.

I homeschool my children.  It is wonderful and difficult.
I homeschool my children... but next year they will be in a school building.
I am torn about this.

I know there are people reading this who are firmly in the homeschool camp who will be disappointed in my decision.  I know there are people reading this who are glad my children will finally be attending a traditional school.
The truth is I am both relieved and saddened by our decision.

The truth is I will mourn the loss of lingering over the breakfast table together with a good book.  I will miss listening to them incorporating their history lessons into their playtime and taking nature walks in every season.  I regret that I will not be the one to see the lightbulb go off when they master a concept.  I taught my children to read.  I baked bread on a rainy Wednesday at 1:00 and shared it hot from the oven after completing grammar.  I taught fractions while baking cookies.  I took my children to the nursing home on Tuesdays at 10a.m.  We took our lessons outside on sunny days and took school on the road when daddy had to travel for work.

The truth is also, that I am relieved to release the burden of taskmaster every hour of everyday.  That I spent too many hours overwhelmed by how much there was to accomplish and too much time resenting how needy my children are.  That some personalities just needed a break from each other.  I am looking forward to sending them out into the world and welcoming them home at the end of their day with loving arms. I will have time in the day to accomplish the tasks needed to care for my family by providing good meals, a clean home, and a calm mother. My husband can come home after a week of business travel to find his wife still has her sanity. 

Part of me feels like I have been a failure. There is pride in this. I am disappointed that I couldn't make it work.  I carry on my keychain the scripture "I can do everything through Him who gives me strength." Philippians 4:13  I believe this is true. However I have learned that God does not give us strength to do EVERYTHING.  That the everything I want to do, may not be the plan he has for my family.   

I know there will be new challenges ahead for my children and for us as parents but I can only go confidently in the direction that I believe God is leading us.  This heading out on a new path is terrifying and exciting.  Letting go of our plans can be one of the toughest spiritual practices to undertake but I am reminded over and over again that there is peace in letting go and following the One who directs our paths.

Holy Experience offers the sharing of spiritual practices today.  I am always inspired there.

4 comments:

J said...

Misty...as I read this, I relate in so many ways. Praise God for the direction He gives each family--unique and custom for each of us. I thank you for your humble admittance and the love you obviously have for your family. You are a talented photographer! I needed these beautiful images today.

JoAnn said...

There is peace in letting go! All things work for the good, so this new journey is for the good. Thank you for being honest and willing to let God lead you. This is a very encouraging post.

D and A said...

May God lead and guide you all along the way!

Amy

Nancy said...

Be encouraged! The best advice I ever got about homeschooling was to make the best decision each year based on each child and the resources God provided for that year. Children are different. Things change. There is no one perfect way. There is only wisdom, grace, and repentance. I homeschooled my daughter all the way through high school and my son through tenth grade. There are wonderful blessings associated with homeschooling. There are also things I regret and things that I missed. I didn't know my son needed glasses because I didn't use a blackboard. It took transitioning to a classroom setting to realize he had a learning style issue. Seek the Lord and His wisdom. He promises His sheep will hear His voice (amidst all the other wisdom offered). Blessings to you.