A Big Decision!
Well, after many months of discussion with each other, prayer, talking to friends and praying some more, my hubby and I have decided to keep our girls home next year and give home schooling a shot.
Believe me, I'm just as surprised as you.
We thought before our oldest started school that we would go that route, but as she got closer to Kindergarten, we felt a nudge to go a different route, so we did. I have no regrets for the experience she had in her little charter school down the road. Sure, it's imperfect and there were things I did not like, but I did not expect them to meet all my expectations so I was not upset when they did not. Our decisions to go this route is not a reaction to any particular thing, it's just a prompting that I first felt, then my husband felt later. The neat thing is that I brought it up to my husband early in the school year but when he didn't seem really into the idea, I let it go and decided to trust his judgement.
I mean I really let it go.
That in itself is a HUGE accomplishment for me. I didn't stress over it, nag my hubby about it, or worry at all. I just decided to trust my husband and more importantly, the Lord. I actually remember whispering a prayer that went something like, "It's all in your hands, Jesus." Then, I moved on as if nothing was going to change. (I even enrolled my little one in Kindergarten for next year)
Well, wouldn't you know it, a couple months back, my hubby came to me with the idea again. He asked if I had thought anymore about it to which I said, "Uuuuhhh...no, actually." (I was surprised that I had not thought more about it!) So, with that we opened the door to the possibility and started doing research. Thankfully, I married the king of research and analysis. *grin* So, he did all the research, I talked with friends who home school, and then we looked at our options. We have made a decision which I will share in a bit but I first wanted to share where my heart is on the whole thing.
First of all, I'm a mixture of excited and scared. I have zero expectation because I don't know what to expect, so I am just resting in the truth that I can trust in Jesus to lead me. It's not like he can't handle this one, right? :) I have worried over whether I will be doing my kids a disservice by depriving them of the classroom setting. Believe me, I've made lists of pro's and con's. I've asked for input from friends who don't like the idea and friends that do. Truly, I've left no stone unturned. The bottom line is this: my husband and I both have peace about the decision, so we are trusting God to lead us.
Second, I am not opposed to our public school system because I have chosen this. You will not hear me bash the system, bash the teachers or bash the schools. I get that there is some rough stuff out there. I get that there are even some teachers out there that aren't so great. I also get that the system is a little to controlled by the powers that be. However, there are plenty of schools and teachers that genuinely care about our kids and are doing the best they can to manage around thirty kids to a class everyday. I applaud their bravery. For us, this is simply an act of obedience to the little whisper inside. Oh, and while I'm on the topic, how blessed are we to live in a land that allows parents this choice? It's not this way all over the world. I am fortunate to have this choice and I don't take the responsibility lightly.
Finally, (at least for now) I've come to realize that God doesn't follow the plans I lay out but the plans he lays out. This will always mean walking with only a little flashlight in hand, on the path he is currently illuminating. He has illuminated a path for us, one that was unexpected, and we will trust him and follow. This might only be for a year, it might be for more than that. Whatever God has planned, we are going to trust him.
We have decided to go with the K-12 program offered through the state. Not every state offers it for free, but we happen to live in one that does. No, it's not traditional homeschooling. I will have to log test scores and school hours so there is accountability, but we will have all the flexibility of the traditional home-school setting and I will have complete control over what is being taught. Will I love it? I have no idea. I'll let you know. ;-) I will receive two or three boxes for each of my girls with everything we need to do a year of school. I'm sure on the day those boxes show up I may need chocolate to soothe my anxiety. ;)
I've been constantly begging my God to be strong in my weakness. Well, he is going to definitely have to deliver on this one. I know I am so weak. I know I will not have all I need for my girls, but have I ever been all they need? Well, no. I am constantly needing God to fill me with his strength to be their mommy. This is just another place for him to shine through. And you know, I'm kind of looking forward to that. I will know, when we finish a successful year, that he worked through my weakness and was strong. I may be tempted to identify myself as a "home-school mom" but I won't do that. I am a follower of Jesus that just wants to obey his voice and this happens to be what he is whispering to me in this season. So, if you would like to offer encouragement, I will gladly take it! If you would like to offer negativity, I will most likely delete it. *grin* My stand is still the same. We are all in this together and our stories all look different. The key is to bloom where we are planted! Who can know the plans of God?! I certainly can't...and I'm okay with that.
I know his plan for now, and that is enough for me...