Friday, March 28, 2014

{Theme Thursday} Hear {7QTs}

Linking up - a day late - with Cari over at Clan Donaldson for Theme Thursday and Jen over at Conversion Diary for 7 Quick Takes.

I was all on-board with Cari when she said the prompt for Thursday was "word" over at the #holylens project.  I have no excuses of influenza either, I just have a hard time keeping track of the much so that I write the Mondays on my Creighton chart and then am gently chastised that there's not supposed to be anything "unnecessary" on the chart.

Well, thinking about "word" got me thinking about my word of the year.  I never really picked one in January.  I was in some serious grieving, and I thought perhaps the word should be "good-bye", but after this week, I think the word I needed to hear (see what I did there, oh yes you did, you're so witty you caught my not-so-subtle play) was "detachment".

I never would have gotten to this word without homeschooling.  Why?  I'll tell you, in 7 Quick Takes about why we homeschool:

{1}  For our family life. 

Hubby works a Tuesday-Saturday week.  When Little Bean was in 2nd grade and I had two babies under 1 in the house, we sent her to the local Catholic school.  Hubby and Little Bean rarely had any meaningful time together.  Sunday is a day we go to Mass together and visit extended family.

We either had to give up our visits with our extended family or homeschool so Little Bean could spend more time with Hubby (and we could all spend time as a family).  We chose to homeschool (again).

Ashley Jane Photography

{2}  For Little Bean's childhood.

She went to 3 y/o preschool and I was shocked by how fast the other kids were growing up.  No little girls should be having cat fights and complaining about their appearance in preschool.  Seriously.  No.

Others have found different solutions to the drama of small children together, we chose to bring Little Bean back home for 4 y/o preschool to "test out" homeschooling.  We love it.

I believe we are providing a solid education (LB's year of school confirmed that she's ahead of the curve) and our daughters have friends both within our neighborhood and within our homeschool community.  I am confident in my ability to advocate for my children and seek out their best education and path in life.  My goal is to get my children to Heaven.  They might also go to Harvard, but that's not the priority.  Good, kind, considerate people with a strong work ethic and strong morality...that's my definition of success.

Ashley Jane Photography

{3}  For Sibling Relationships.

Little Bean and Sweet Pea are very close.  They're also separated by 7 years.  Their relationship is beautiful, and while it would still be sweet and lovely were LB gone all day, the amount of time they spend together brings out qualities that might not otherwise be there.  Patience and compassion are stretched to new limits when SP is being a turkey, and SP is one of the most verbal toddlers I've ever been around.  It benefits both of them.

(4}  For Friends.

Weekday playdates - during the middle of the school day.  My favorites.  I love meeting my friends at the local children's museum, or visiting at each others houses for lunch and visiting.  Not only are SP and LB getting some great play time and building friendships, I am getting some great talk time and building/strengthening friendships as well.

{5}  For Community.

Our homeschool community is amazing.  I homeschool within this cocoon of sweet, wonderful families.  Families who brought me meals and celebrated with me when SP was born.  Families who brought me meals and mourned with me when we lost Mara.  And again when we lost Sweet Baby.

We go to Mass together, we celebrate holidays together, we learn together.  In my homeschool community, I've found beautiful pieces of past generations, where women mentored each other, brought each other meals and sharpened and inspired each others faith.  It's still happening today.  Just never where I would have found it without homeschooling.

{6}  For Me. 

I like being around my children.  I like being around them all day.  Sometimes I seek some alone time or time with friends when Hubby is home, but, I don't feel burdened by the presence of my children.  (Although I'm really looking forward to a couple years from now when LB can hold down the fort while I make a quick milk run!!)

I'm the kill-joy who is upset by those back-to-school commercials showing the happy parents dancing at the bus stops.  I know it's supposed to be an exaggerated joke, but I don't really think it's funny.  They're going to be gone so soon.  LB is already halfway out the door this summer when she turns 9.  I am so grateful that I have the option and ability to homeschool so that more of those hours between now and then can be accounted for in my presence.  I just love being with them.  They're some of the coolest people on the face of the planet, and someday, they're going to be living out on their own, and my turn will be up.  

{7}  For Faith.

Over the years, I've attended some women's studies in our homeschool group.  They have been so inspirational in how I live my daily life, interact with my husband and children, and express my faith to the world at large.

One of the things that has been profoundly impactful of late is practicing a spirit of detachment.  To let go of my own fears and anxieties to go out and be gift to the world.  The Holy Spirit is working in me through homeschooling, and the community we've built through it.  My ears have been opened so I could hear that word that I needed.  Especially this year.  We're still reeling in some ways over our grief, in others, we're moving forward.

I believe detachment will be a key piece in that puzzle this year.  Practicing a firm trust in God's will and laying down my wailing and gnashing of teeth over each bump in the roller coaster of finding a way to build back up a relationship with Sweet Baby and her new family.  Detachment.  That was the word I needed to hear.  The practice I need for the next steps in my journey.  A word I found through prayerful reflection with other holy women.  A gift of homeschooling.  Just one of the many gifts.

That beautiful, restful little ear, ready to hear God's word

I know not everyone is able to homeschool.  I know not everyone wants to homeschool.  I know not every family is called to homeschool.  I am so grateful that our family is able.  I feel called to raise my children this way.  Some days, I'd definitely like to send them all out the door.  We take that decision one year at a time, and we're open to that answer changing.  We're open to our children having different schooling needs.  In every day though, I feel the decision for me to work less and be present more has served our children better than the bigger house and nicer clothes we've had to pass up.

Thanks for stopping by and reading how homeschooling has blessed our lives.

And a bonus take - happy 36th birthday today to Hubby!

1 comment:

  1. I love this!! Those are all the reasons why I love homeschooling as well. Espeically #5. I always say that I can't stop homeschooling because I would miss my community so much. LOL


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