As I sat in my house on Friday, alone but for the dog, I began to think about the time when Keilee is no longer here 24/7. In a few years, this will be my life, life without her talking all the time and dancing and singing and asking questions and laughing and scattering projects and yarn and pieces of her wherever she goes.
I try to tell myself that she is barely 13 and I have many years but then I remember how quickly time passes.
She came home from the Animal Clinic full of stories, and kept remembering more and more as the days went by. And I thought to myself how eternally grateful I am; grateful that I have had the opportunity to home educate her. That I didn’t have to hear about things hours after they happened or not at all if she chose not to tell me. That all those firsts were with me. That I didn’t miss one.single.thing.
Homeschooling is not always sunshine and bonding and happy. Some days I want to scream [and occasionally do], some days we get so frustrated with each other; this child growing into a young woman and I; some days I threaten the dreaded words “Public School” and I know she knows I would never. Some days I worry myself sick over this Interest Led/unschooling way we have adopted. The “What Ifs” consume me.
Most days I am 100% sure that this is OUR perfect life. These days, mostly calm and stress free, that ebb and flow. There are few alarm clocks and deadlines and rushing. There is learning, always learning. We do not learn 100 new things each day, but we do learn every day. It may not look like the school down the road but that was never my intention. I never ever wanted to recreate school. There are no schedules and 1 hour blocks for Science or Math. There are no lines or lockers or mean kids or teachers who simply do not care anymore. Our days have laughter and wonder and discovery and knowledge and amazement and moving and flitting to one thing and another.
Her interests, her passions, the things that consume her. Animals for 4 hours? Why not? A day of history documentaries? Well of course you can. Playing on Webkinz or Eden or the iPad for 4 hours? Be my guest. Read all day? Yes please.
Time is so fleeting, it passes in an instant. I pray to cherish each one, to live in ‘this’ moment, to say “Yes” as often as I can, to walk away from the computer to play a game, or dance in the kitchen or snuggle on the couch.
This poem I wrote on April 27, 2009. We were in our 2nd year of homeschooling. Almost 4 years later I still feel exactly the same way.
I could send her to school,
And from 8:00-3:00 have no clue
How many times she laughed,
How many times she learned,
How many times she questioned,
How many times she understood,
How many times she wanted more information,
How many times she bounced in her chair from excitement,
How many times she was proud of something she did.
I could send her to school and she could get her exercise and sunshine,
In 20 minute doses, if she had on the right shoes, and no one misbehaved and everyone was quiet.
I could send her to school
And let her eat the processed high fat, low nutrition fare they feed millions of children a day,
if she had enough time to eat and didn’t talk too loud and if no one grabbed her food.
I could homeschool her.
Yes indeed, Homeschooling DOES rock,
“You can teach a student a lesson for a day; but if you can teach him to learn by creating curiosity, he will continue the learning process as long as he lives.” ~ Clay P. Bedford
“Let us rise up and be thankful, for if we didn’t learn a lot today, at least we learned a little, and if we didn’t learn a little, at least we didn’t get sick, and if we got sick, at least we didn’t die; so, let us all be thankful.” ~ Buddha