How We started Homeschooling (MeMe)
I was tagged by Donna Young.
Wow…my first tag. Thank you Donna….:)
When our daughter was a year away from starting school, I brought up the idea of homeschooling. My husband wasn’t too fond of that idea. We just found the church we were attending and we were finally in a place where he would be doing a lot of spiritual growing over the next few years. He did agree to putting her into the Christian school run by our church. At first, he was only leaning towards her being there for kindergarten. As the year went by, he decided he didn’t want her or any other children we were subsequently to have, to attend public school.
The local elementary school she would have attended had gone to a non-graded progressive system. As he puts it…”It didn’t give him any warm fuzzy feelings.”
Fast forward to the addition of two more children. We are now the proud parents of three, 1 girl, 2 boys. All three are enrolled in our Christian school. I am working at the school to cover tuition. I was the janitor. It was the job the Lord provided to meet the tuition and it was a blessing to us. Unfortunately, we did not know at the time that I was so chemical sensitive. Over the period of two years I started to become progressively ill. It got to the point that the children were having to help me clean after school. They would walk around the classrooms and gather the trash bags for me, while my daughter who was in the 5th grade would vacuum the hallways. I was off cleaning the 6 bathrooms.
Let me just pause here for a moment and say that you have never cleaned a bathroom until you’ve had to clean an elementary boys bathroom and a high school girls locker room. They are absolutely disgusting. You have to mop the walls in the boys bathroom….the little guys don’t aim well at school either. I am going to remain silent on the girls locker room.
My husband would get off work and meet me at the school to help finish. We did this for a year. I was getting worse, having reactions to the latex gloves, the various cleaners, the chronic fatigue and much more.
It was during that year that my husband was helping me, he was observing behavior in the after-school students that he thought was alarming. If you know my husband…..He holds things closely to his chest. Unless he is seeking advice you will not know that something is bothering him.
I would also like to take a moment and say that the school is a good school. Academically it is outstanding. It is not perfect…there is no such beast. The school has one of the most wonderful teaching staffs I have ever seen. These teachers are truly dedicated to God’s call on their lives.
Fifth grade year for my daughter and my sons were in Second and First grades…..It is time for enrollment for the following school year. I brought the paperwork home and am sitting at the table filling it out…..That was when my husband dropped the bomb on me that the kids would not be going back next year that we would be homeschooling. He had been praying about this for several months he told me and apparently done all the research on our states requirements. To say I was dumbfounded would be putting it mildly.
I looked up at him and said, “Ooookaaayyyy?!” All the while thinking…..”Did I miss some message from God?” I was out of the loop on that one. I had never seen my husband so strongly convicted about something and would have never guessed that homeschooling would have been “it”. I started praying about whether or not this was right for me to be doing…..to say that I didn’t have doubts about me doing this would be like trying to put out an atomic explosion with a bucket of water. I had some doubts and they were some big red flag waving doubts.
We still had 2 months of school left and we had been dealing with some issues with the kids the entire school year that I just didn’t know how to handle. If anyone mentions socialization….well that just gets my goat. We were spending at least an hour a day if not more….De-socializing the kids from the “stuff” they were bringing home from other kids at school. When you sit down and think about it…..most parents honest enough will say that more arguments ensue over the fact that some kids get to do things yours are not allowed. There is generally some level of deprogramming done each night.
We attended our first HEAV conference. One of the first seminars we went to was on why to homeschool. I could probably tell you if I went back and looked, who the speaker was (guessing Yvonne Brunn). It was the Thursday seminars, which are free and open to anyone who is new or considering hoomeschooling. We thought we would check it out this way first before we decided to register for the rest of the convention.
The one thing that convinced me and was an answer to my prayer was the one statement that was continuously mentioned all thru the convention during those three days. ( Paraphrased by me now…..)
“Homeschooling is not just about academics. Homeschooling is also an issue of the heart. It’s those precious moments that we as parents miss out on when our children are in some classroom expecting a teacher to have the time to handle those heart issues. We all know what they are….that moment when their heart is open to a lesson that transcends academics. Those precious teachable moments when we can reach our children. Those heart issues are usually the life lessons that stick with our kids the most.”
That was basically the thought that I came away with…….especially with every issue we had been dealing with crashing into my thoughts. I knew that my husband was right, and more importantly, it was what we were being lead to do…..not every persons choice to homeschool is a religious choice. I was dealing with three children who had all ready come to me and said they felt the Lord calling them into some type of full time Christian ministry. One son had all ready given his heart over to God to be a preacher/evangelist one day. My husband was feeling the weight of the responsibility of “training a child up in the ways of the Lord.” It was his opinion that we were relying on people who did not KNOW our children’s hearts or the issues that needed to be addressed with each of them. We were relying on people who hopefully would be able to spare a minute if need be to help our children over some of life’s important lessons and these people were not the ones commanded to teach our children.
We have been on this journey now for three years. It has been one of the most difficult journeys I have ever had to face and that is saying alot!! (You would have to know me to understand this statement) I go thru the usual doubts of am I cheating my kids but then I ask, “What am I cheating them out of…..the worlds idea of what it has to offer?” They are not missing out on anything the world has to offer…but are growing in ways the world could never fathom.
Well….I guess that is about it……I guess I am supposed to tag someone after this…..but I am sure they are taken all ready. Soooo…if you didn’t get tagged by any of the others…….after reading this……..
“TAAAAAGGGGGGG You’re IT !!!” 🙂