When people inevitably ask “Why do you homeschool?” I am unusually slow with my answer. Not because I am avoiding the question but because there are SO MANY reasons. The person asking is (generally) just curious, and not asking for my counsel or my preaching (which I try to avoid as a matter of principle. It is such a turn-off in every subject, isn’t it? Besides that’s why we have BLOGS, right?!) The questioner’s time is precious and one innocent question shouldn’t take away 3 hours of their afternoon while I verbally explore our family priorities, each child’s academic needs, society’s moral standards, etc. So I mentally run down my “list”. Which one, or three, do I give them? Which are most important, when “important” varies in our house by the hour? And which will the person who is asking, most readily understand and accept? It’s mentally exhausting!
It’s like someone asking why I love John. Ummm, okay-I guess at 14 years old I just wanted to date like a “real teenager” and he’s the first boy my Dad would agree to. (and blue eyes, that helped!). At 18, I was looking for stability, a family, a husband. At around 20 I loved him badly, and then only out of stumbling obedience to God. Later I fell in love with the man I saw parenting our new sons. Over the next decade I finally began to see how we were such a custom fit and his strong yet tender self I finally started to appreciate…but see? It changes, it grows, it gets added to by daily experience. That is how homeschooling is to me, now. A part of our life that began and over the years got added to, and now is integral to how our family works. It’s not for everyone and I resist the self-righteous homeschool mentality some of us get, that acts as if God only works “this” way, and cannot be glorified in other academic choices… He is BIG, and no box of ours will hold Him. When He tells a fellow believer to walk a different path, I would not dare to speak against His calling on their life. Oswald Chambers said “Never make a principle out of your experience. Let God be as original with other people as He is with you.”
(Amen. Preach it, brother Oswald)
Anyway I am on a tear this afternoon, aren’t I? too much caffeine, I fear. Really, all I meant to do was show you this funny picture of Sammy. He is still half awake, wrapped in a blanket, mumbling and protesting against starting the day. You see the clock behind him? Yup, that’s right. Almost 9:30 in the morning. He has been this way since infant hood and no matter what time we put him to bed at night, this is how he wakes up each day…yes, even on Christmas mornings, birthdays, and the first day of Walt Disney World! We haven’t yet found a level of excitement which can penetrate his morning drag. It’s just how he’s wired (and my brother Brian is the same way).
So…when I see that yellow bus rumble past our house, I think of my Samshine all curled up in his warm quilts and thank God that I do not have to have him dressed, fed, clean and walking a straight line at 6:45 A.M.
And therefore, the list gets longer…