Monday, March 31, 2008

Home Education Week Post #2

I haven't announced this formally over here on my blog, but I am now a monthly contributor over at Heart of The Matter Online's magazine. (There is a button on my sidebar.) My newest post will come out on the 8th of every month. The name of my column is "Because Life Happens."

So what does this announcement have to do with the question for Home Education Week, day 2:

Describe yourself, your family or one of your children. What is it like to be home educated in your family? What is “normal” for you?

It's that we are constantly searching for normal. Every time we reach a level of normal, it gets adjusted. Why? Because life happens. And life, as I said yesterday, is what homeschooling is all about.

As I type this, the two year old is handing me a stack of books. And she stinks. A minute ago she was improperly shutting down the computer. I was busy trying to ignore her because I was typing my blog. My husband has not left for work yet, the 11 yo is home from school sick (yes, some of ours go to school but that is a post for another time), he and the five yo are watching "Inspector Gadget," a maid is here cleaning our house because my realtor offers this service and I am not too proud to take her up on it, and I am laid up with a broken foot. That's our life. For today. Tomorrow it will be different.

When I first started homeschooling I struggled against the forces of nature trying to make every day go a certain way. I wanted things to be "just so." I mapped out beautiful schedules and posted them on the wall. The kids would laugh and poke each other, telling their dad, "Mom's got a new schedule. Let's see how long this one lasts." It took awhile (and several more children) for me to understand I had to let some things go.

And so, there are absolutes every day: you will do your assigned work, the house will get picked up to some degree and maybe even cleaned. But there are varying degrees of how that will play out. And I get that now. I let things go and I trust that God will fill in my gaps. I embrace His will (most days), and I don't get all caught up in what the future holds. Because I can't control tomorrow anymore than I can control today.

That has been a long lesson in coming, but I am letting it settle in a little more every day. What is a normal homeschooler? I haven't found out yet-- and I am realizing I never will.

Want to see more answers to this question? Go here.
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jennifer said...

I need to be reminded about letting some things go. I can relate to the schedules - and then life happens - and if you refuse to let go of your schedule, you may have a nervous breakdown! Nice post!

acceptancewithjoy said...

[It's that we are constantly searching for normal] I don't think there is such thing as normal, it is a paradigm, Plato's form... right now our normal is messed up by a snow storm. :o(

Digging for Pearls said...

Hi MaryBeth,
I could use your help. If you have a few minutes, I would love your input on my blog in regards to the ten struggles that Christian women face. Thank you!

Mrs. Darling said...

I dont homeschool all of mine either. Normal does not exist really does it? We all just do our best.

Morning Rose said...

We take our homeschooling day by day also. I tried to control more in the beginning, but have learned to be more flexible and relaxed in my approach.