When we began homeschooling several years ago I started calling it our homeschool journey. I knew that it was a trip that we would be on for a long, long time. I knew it would be one with twists, curves, and ups and downs. The homeschool journey ends at graduation; when your child has to choose their own path in life. It sounds scary, right? I mean you are looking at at least 12 years of dedicated teaching, instructing, and parenting. It can be daunting. I think that is why some people look at you like you have a third eye-ball when you say “We homeschool.” to the “Where does your child attend school?” question.
The last time I took a literal journey, my husband and I traveled from our home in TN to a work training session in FL. It was a very long trip. It took over 18 hours to get there. I thought it would never end. What is funny about this trip when I look back is that there is a lot about it I don’t remember. I remember the time in the car. I remember singing (loudly) as we rode down the road. I remember holding hands and just being together. I don’t remember what I was wearing, where we ate, or how many times we had to stop for fuel. I realize now, over ten years later, that the joy was not in the things that we spent hours planning. The joy came during our journey. The time that we spent together. Having fun, singing, laughing, and being real.
Homeschooling is similar to that journey. We make plans… big plans. We buy the newest and best curriculum we can afford. We make schedules, adopt routines, and print out shiny new work sheets. I dare say we spend nearly as much time prepping for the teaching as we do putting those plans in practice. The big day comes and we set out. We go through the entire school year. Once the year is over, if you are like me, you look back on the year to see just what you have accomplished. Do you remember pg. 71 of the math curriculum you poured hours over when purchasing? Do you remember reading chapter 7 of that required book for literature? No?! I am betting you remember curling up on the couch and reading the entire book and laughing as you take turns making the voices of the characters. (what you don’t do that too? You are missing out!) I am betting you remember packing up your books and going outside and ditching your lessons to watch clouds, listen to birds sing, and enjoy the creation God made for us.
You see, we get so caught up in the plans and the details of homeschooling that we forget that the journey is the most important part. Enjoying our children as we grow and learn together is what matters. You won’t remember what science you used for third grade as they receive their diploma, but you will remember spending time finishing that science project.
So, enjoy it mama! Soak in the journey. Make new memories. For one day this journey will end and you will miss it desperately.