Wednesday, February 24, 2016

They Are Lying

Recently I asked a friend if she would speak about our local homeschooling conference on Catholic radio, and this was part of our text exchange:
HER: I just don't know if I'm qualified! I'm still learning the ropes! I feel weird, when I don't have my act together! I've done it before and I'm not intimidated, just not as much a veteran I would like to hear on the air. I know it's all good, I just see so many moms out there that make it look easy and I struggle all the time!
ME: Those who make it look easy are lying. There's a difference in saying it's easy and saying I have peace despite the insanity.

Homeschooling is not easy. Why in the world would anyone say that? Being an away-school parent is not easy. Heck! Being a parent is not easy!

I am going to say that again. Homeschooling. Is. Not. Easy.

If you see someone who makes it look easy, there are two possibilities. Either they are lying to themselves by sheer willpower to insist that it is easy (when it is not) or they are lying by omission to you by not sharing the reality of their daily life. And both are wrong.

Now, I am not talking about those parents who say they are homeschooling and are actually just letting their kids run wild or sit in front of screens all day. This applies only to parents who are actually doing their best to provide a well-rounded education for their children.

I am going to assume by the above quoted conversation that I might be one of those moms making it look easy. For that, I am sorry, and I repent. Truly. Sincerely.

But I do have peace, and to others, that might look like ease. I know in my heart that this is the best schooling option for our family right now. (I adamantly believe that homeschooling is not the best choice for every family in every season of life.) I know that I am putting in the effort to craft an effective education for each of my children. Mostly, I know, as Sarah says, that I am presenting my loaves and fishes and trusting God to do the rest.

Because I could (and do sometimes) sit here and worry if I am covering enough material, using the right methods, challenging my children appropriately, instilling a love of learning, and choosing the right books. My anxiety rises when I wonder if they will be ready for high school/college/careers, be men and women of faith, make meaningful contributions to the world, live virtuous lives, and still love their mama!

Instead, when nobody can find a pencil, the daily math tantrum begins, the toddler screams over every read aloud, nobody remembers what they read, they whine and complain, they dilly-dally and doodle, the kindergartner refuses to do anything, and mom can't figure out the science experiment or when that war started or who it was between...usually...I just keep going. All that worry and chaos is not what I would call easy.

Homeschooling is the choice we have made for now, and because I have it written down, I know why we do it. And when things are tough, which is daily, I just keep going. After all, Jesus said:
I have said this to you, that in my you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world. John 16:33

What is the most difficult part of homeschooling for you?

No comments: