Two years ago I am pretty sure homeschooling was completely out of the question. We knew many people who did it but really that was good for them but not for us. Little did we know God had other plans. And while I think about the same attitude we had previously while praying for friends going through the adoption process, God transformed our hearts on that topic too so be careful what you say is impossible. God has a way of asking you to surrender all of your "no way" areas of life to Him.
As you know, we prayed about it and God confirmed in both our hearts that he wanted us to homeschool. Now what? I was doing some activities with Brother at home when he was interested and when I was motivated but really there were more gaps in my consistency than anything else. Brother got older. Sister got older. He started getting bored and thus chose to entertain himself by terrorizing Babydoll and driving me crazy. Rather than spending my entire day dealing with discipline issues (which I still seem to do), I decided to buckle down and start "researching" curriculum based on a few that people had mentioned to me. Once again, God confirmed in both of us which to pursue (note: I hope it happens that easily in the future) and it was like Christmas morning for me when the school stuff arrived in the mail. Now I was going to get really organized. We started the introduction unit before our trip back to visit family and I brought two units of course work to do while on the road which we didn't get to :). Once back home we hit the proverbial books and got us some structure. Brother LOVES it. It is fun and smart and he thrives just knowing that school comes after breakfast and then the rest of the day is a mystery.
The funny thing is though that Satan is not loving it. He slithers his way into my mornings some days and places doubt and fear into what we have chosen to obey God in. I do not think homeschooling is for every parent or child. I do know that God has directed us down this path for our family and he is walking in it with us. But there are days when I completely lose it. I get frustrated and annoyed and question if I am going to totally give my kid a complex because he thinks he has to "do it right" so I can be self-controlled. He is four. We spend an hour or less a day doing "school" that is fun for him just so he can have some structure. He loves to learn and does so quicker than I do. I am not putting pressure on him or myself to move at any pace. But some days Satan makes me dream of a life spent with kid-free time and school buses and a clean house. I do not worry about socialization. I don't even question my ability to teach them well. I am excited about it really. I do believe that Babydoll will be a different kind of student than Bundle Boy but I am choosing not to worry about what that will look like now. She is two. She plays. When she helps glue the letter of the week on an envelope, Babydoll feels like she is doing school too and that is enough for me/her.
Yesterday Brother was fidgeting with something in his desk while I was trying to give him instructions. His attention was repeatedly distracted. I had to keep repeating myself. I totally lost it and threw everything out of his desk (which contained blank papers, coloring books, and some little toy he was playing with). He was stunned. I was too. This little voice in my head said, "How can you do this? You aren't even technically homeschooling yet and you are losing control. You can't do this. He deserves better than you." Of course that was not the voice of truth. And although I still get very heartbroken WHENEVER I model a lack of self-control as a way to deal with the inconvenient, God continues to provide an opportunity for me to model something else(and to convict my heart). Several times a week I seek forgiveness from my children and we pray about it together. We all need a Savior. I am not a perfect parent, people. But God always shows up.
Amongst the flying papers and feelings of frustration he continues to confirm that we are doing exactly what he wants us to be doing. I am not kidding. Today has been particularly supernatural. I think we are in unit five of the year. Every single week God has brought up the topic of our study in some other area of my life. While studying the sun and moon I heard countless songs and read in scripture references to the concepts. It caused me to further marvel at his creation. During leaf and apple weeks, I kept reading imagery about trees and vines in studies and while at the convention two out of the three sessions I sat in on brought up apples (which we were studying at the time). That is when I really started noticing God speaking to repeat himself. This week we are learning about nests. Last night during week two of our women's Bible study, the speaker shared how Eagles toss their eaglets out of their nests repeatedly so they can swoop down and catch them on their backs until one day they learn to fly (with scripture referenced). Two blog posts (which included scripture references as well) that I read today talked about birds and nests. A friend on facebook posted a photo of a robin's nest that they found under their deck. And while watching a Little Einstein's animated cartoon from the library during pizza night, they talked about eagles and their nests again. I laughed out loud when I heard it and I saw My Love smile from under his layers of blankets (he was out sick today hence the blogging). It doesn't make me feel like we chose the right curriculum really. It just confirms in our hearts that we are doing the right thing by obediently schooling our kids at home because that is what he has called for our particular family at this time. "Just keep doing what you are doing!" is how My Love interpreted it. It gives me confidence. It makes me cast out all doubt. Brother might be having fun and learning some new things here and there but I feel like God is revealing himself to me in a whole new way. Is it possible that homeschooling could be just as much about God's plan for my life as it is for my kids? We are moving forward not doing anything perfectly but trusting that God will continue to guide us as we put our trust in Him. Pray for me.