Reflections from a homeschool graduate: don’t give up

homeschool graduateHere we go again.

The endless search for the perfect curriculum.

Still catching up on grading from last…fall.

Weighing the pros and cons of yet another extra-curricular activity.

Yes, school is about to start again.

Do you ever start to wonder if it’s really worth it? If the ideals you had when you began this journey are truly achievable? If your parents, co-workers, and neighbors are all right when they say you should just put the kids in school?

I haven’t been exactly where you are. But my mom has. I’ve watched her persevere, when plans fell through, life was crazy, and my sister and I were stubborn. And I believe I’m living proof that homeschooling really is worth it. I’d like to share with you a view from “the other side”.

There were many days when I cried over my math. Not exaggerating. It was the norm, not the exception. And yet, I’ve been tutoring elementary math for a year and I’ll be moving on to tutoring Algebra II this year. 

In my first year of speech and debate competition, I couldn’t give an impromptu speech without bursting into tears. Notice a theme here? But then, my senior year I placed in the top 1% of the nation in that category. 

As a child, I had bad attitudes and pouted and disrespected authority. Even so, I now consider my mom one of my closest friends and most loved mentor.

I struggled with peer pressure and body image throughout middle school and high school, but I know it would have been so much worse if I had been surrounded by peers for 75% of the day.

I used to have to miss activities because I couldn’t schedule my school efficiently and didn’t have the self-control to make the best use of my time. For the past year, I have been juggling multiple jobs and training to be a labor doula. As well as planning a wedding. Mostly successfully.

I was by no means a model student, nor am I a model homeschool graduate. That’s not the point. The point is that, by God’s grace, he has used homeschooling to grow me into a better, stronger, wiser woman.

Homeschooling was hard.

But it was so, so worth it. I am beyond thankful that I had the opportunity to be a homeschool graduate. As I am getting married and moving to a different city, I am excited to be able to teach as part of a homeschool group there. That’s just the beginning of what I hope will be a long and fruitful homeschool journey of my own.

My prayer is that in the middle of the chaos, the mess, the hum drum, and the weariness, you will find encouragement in these reflections. Homeschooling will not ruin your children. They will learn. You will cultivate stronger relationships with them. They will appreciate the blood, sweat, tears, and prayers you have poured into them.

Even when it seems like an exercise in futility, God is good, and he will redeem the time. You can trust him to lead and guide your children when you aren’t capable. He will never leave you—or them.

This journey is worth it!

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