We need to attend to our dashed homeschool expectations.
No question, the parenting experience isn’t entirely as we imagined it would before we birthed our first children. Neither is homeschooling after our first year.
In both camps, I have had far more frustration and confounding moments than I conceived were possible. And in both camps, I have had far deeper satisfaction and happiness than I imagined I could experience regularly. A messy mixture.
Both parenting and homeschooling have required me to continually evaluate what I want for this part of my life and my children’s lives.
What memories do I hope to create? Since I only have them for a short time, what kind of fun do I want to experience with them?
What daily activities are important for them to learn? Like life habits: brushing their teeth or reading regularly. How much time should we spend in social activities or extracurriculars?
Be realistic: you can’t do everything. But you can do plenty. Focus on the plenty.
How am I choosing to influence my children?
Whatever things I think I can mold, there are so many things about my children I can’t mold, like who they were born into the world to be. In fact, the essence of who they were born to be is influencing me, my experience of life, and propels me and my life into directions unforeseen.
What do I hope the messages of my life will send (never mind the ones I’m unaware that I’m sending?) Because more is caught than taught.
All this to say, the homeschool path is only loosely determinable. You gotta roll with reality.
Celebrate the whole thing. The mess, the memories, the moments.
I celebrate the magical unknown, and more importantly, the beauty of the ones that theoretically came from me (I remember how they arrived), but who they are as persons I didn’t actually have any influence on creating, really.
Combine their personal growth story with mine: you get a lot of mess.
Combine their beauty and aptitude with mine: you get a whole lotta lovely.