homeschooling through tough times (part 1)

About a year ago, I received a speaking invitation from a homeschool Moms group.

The leader asked I share around homeschooling during difficulty. I felt connected enough to her and the topic to consider, but declined.

The next week held an important court meeting, part of a lengthy custody trial. I anticipated facing a tough cross-examination and it felt important to prepare my heart and mind.

So I jotted the group some thoughts and sent via email.

Those thoughts came to mind recently. Today (and next week), I’d like to share those practical tools with you.

circa 2011

circa 2013

Moving forward, writing homeschool posts will slip into the background.

One reason is my children are older, so this impacts what I share about their education.

The upcoming new website won’t include this aspect of my life or theirs.  That said, I LOVE writing homeschool product reviews and will continue at The Curriculum Choice — and don’t forget Instagram!  I’ll share a peek of our days here and there.

Ah…Homeschooling.

It’s been our way of life for over 15 years. Long-time readers hopefully understand this, but I’ll state it again:

I am convinced there are multiple options for educating children well.

Homeschooling is simply one of those and can work beautifully!  But it’s not a good fit for every family, every child, every season of their lives.  As parents we must discern with wisdom.

But for our family?

This lifestyle has grown into who we are, not simply what we do.

And while I’ve homeschooled through difficult pregnancies or family issues, 2017 and 2018 definitely held the toughest years for this Mama.

I moved my children and myself twice within five months. We could not return home in a way which addressed my concerns for our safety.

I faced court hearings and proceedings on average every four to six weeks for over a year. Some proved quite taxing as I repeatedly defended myself.

Yes, I am competent to parent.

Yes, I am mentally and  emotionally stable.

Yes, I am still homeschooling the kids. Yes, I’m doing this legally.

Yes, I’ve been a stay-at-home Mom for over 18+ years.

And on and on. Oh goodness, it was the toughest of times.

Homeschooling continued because in the midst of so many losses, it felt important for something to stay consistent.  From my perspective, steady schooling routines eased the difficult transitions.

circa 2012

Want to know the number one thought I offered the homeschool Moms group?

We cannot do this alone.

There was no way I could walk my journey solo, and very grateful I didn’t have to.

Whatever you face homeschool Mom — job loss, death, physical difficulties, financial strain, or any other pain — it’s important we all have a tribe. Companions on the journey. Soul friends.

You and I need community.

We need others to point us to truth, to God when circumstances threaten to blind our faith.  We need people to cry with, grieve with, figure things out with, and others to carry our story alongside us.

And if you need to delegate this community building to someone else? DO IT.

Allow one person (or a few people) to coordinate what you need for wellness: physical, emotional or spiritual. With humility, accept help.

circa 2012

circa 2009

Next week I’ll share practical details — seeking financial assistance for homeschooling, ideas for rearranging routines, school subjects, home life and more during your time of need.

It will most likely be the last homeschool post of my personal blogging journey [insert muffled sob from me embracing change].

But for TODAY I wanted to share this:

You are seen. You are cared for. Your story and journey matters.

I may never meet you. But I can relate to painful circumstances turning upside down every area of life. While not easy or simplistic, we can survive our darkest seasons…even thrive through them. There is HOPE.

I have prayed for us friend.

And I encourage you to carry on, sister (whatever this means for you, whatever it looks like).

Carry on!

 

 

Want to share your thoughts? Click here to send me an email.