Friday, October 14, 2011

Big Decisions

Lately it seems like I keep having to tell people that I'm not a flake.  However, if it looks like a duck and quacks like a duck... right?

Well, maybe.  Several weeks ago I told you guys that we were going to put Kelsey back in public school, which we did about 4 weeks ago.  All week I have really been struggling with trying to decide whether to leave her in or take her out and homeschool again.  I have been really stressing out because she was struggling with some of the work and I felt like we must be way behind because we hadn't covered some of that stuff yet.  I felt like I had failed her in some way as a homeschool mom, and questioned my ability to homeschool at all.

On top of all that, I felt like Kelsey's going to school was creating more stress in our lives than before.  She was bouncing off the walls all night, begging for play-dates every day when she got home from school, and I was just as overwhelmed with the kids and house as I had been before she went.

Tuesday night I reached out to my homeschool support group for some advice on how to handle this situation, and got back some great responses - not one of which were trying to convince me to homeschool Kelsey again.  However, there was one response that really struck me and was exactly what I needed to hear.  It said this:
"Now that you are faced with standards that you didn't create, it's inevitable that you will have some fears of inadequacy.  Try not to let those fears rule your decision making process.  I truly believe that where fear resides- all other forms of grace, peace and love CANNOT abide as well.  Take a deep breath and know that you are doing the best you can- and that is all you can do."

This gave me the awareness I needed to stop letting my fears "rule my decision making process".  Since then I have spent some time crying and talking and crying and talking.  I'm sure Ben was really, really tired of both.  But being the awesome husband he is, he just listened and tried not to let his eyes glaze over too much.  And I got to the point where I could just take it a day at a time.

Today I had an epiphany.  It happened when I saw this:

We had decided to keep Kelsey out of school for a few days to teach her the material she had not yet covered so she wouldn't feel so behind in class.  While we were taking a break, Kelsey asked me if she could dig up some dirt because she wanted to see what was in it.  I gave her permission and told her where to dig.  A few minutes later, I saw her and Connor outside.  That's when I remembered the biggest reason I'm homeschooling in the first place.  Kelsey is exploring her environment.  She's teaching her brother to explore.  The reading and math?  It's important.  And she's going to do it all - even if it's not on the Edmond Schools schedule.  We are, after all, following the Oklahoma State PASS skills.

But exploring?  Digging?  Creating? 

That's why we started in the first place.  And although we are still going to just take it a year at a time... we're going back to being crazy homeschoolers.  All of us.  Even if it makes me look like a flake.  Quack.

1 comment:

Amberdawn said...

Craziness! I admire you. Seriously, I can imagine how difficult of a decision that was. You can't be a flake when you are dealing with family. Sometimes we try things and they don't work. Live and learn and them homeschool! :) You gotta do what's best for your family! I wish I were patient enough/social enough/smart enough to homeschool. I HATE Bud's school!