Tis the season for fall planning. In the world of education, that is. Yes, we are busy planting vegetables and flowers, retrieving outdoor toys from the garage attic and prepping for backyard barbecues... however, spring is also a time of curriculum planning and in the public and private schools, the push for kindergarten round-up.
My daughter would start kindergarten by public school standards this fall. Two years ago when we were exploring our options and touring the schools, we also were able to visit the classrooms in action aside from the designated “open houses.” One charter school, in particular, we loved, even if the drive (half hour one way) would have added up considerably.
Regardless, we took this plunge into home education nearly a year and a half ago, with the knowledge that we would reevaluate our decision each year as our needs evolve or change. We have had a wonderful, adventurous year in the world of homeschooling, and we will continue next year.
That being said, I’d be lying if there weren’t times, especially in the last three months, when I have felt considerably overwhelmed, useless or downright defiant about our journey. Kindergarten Round-up schedules were penned into my planner with determination as I would, on some days, try to convince myself that we would attend. Kindergarten Round-up. It's tempting beyond belief! It sounds wonderful at times. My life would be ten times easier if I sent her to kindergarten next year. And I don’t mean that to imply public school is a cop out, at all. Just that, homeschooling is hard: day in and day out, on top of chores and activities and appointments. Kindergarten? Indeed, round-them-up! Send them off! Let someone else handle circle time, phonics and messy art projects. That big yellow school bus would be a welcome relief on more days than one. “After all,” I tell myself, “they wouldn't be damaged if I put them in public school. We all made it out all right! They’d love it there! I don't need to be doing all this!”
I sit with these festering forethoughts on occasion, and they are almost always spurred from a place of aggravation.
Then, when my rebellious feelings quiet down, I hear the still, small reassuring voice inside me. "Sarah. Now, Sarah. You know what I am calling you to do. It is still your choice whether to answer that call or disregard it, but you can no longer deny what I have placed on your heart to do."
It is true. As much as this is not a road I ever imagined for myself, it is one I feel called to walk. And, while no path is perfect, for our family it seems the one that is ultimately in the best interest of our children. Everyone has a life’s calling. By the grace of God, even on days when I want to subsist off the hook, I am answering as many in this lifetime as I hear ring.
“Trust in the LORD with all your heart; and lean not upon your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct your path.” -Proverbs 3:5-6
C.S. Lewis: “To trust Him means, of course, trying to do all that He says. There would be no sense in saying you trusted a person if you would not take his advice. Thus if you have really handed yourself over to Him, it must follow that you are trying to obey Him. But trying in a new way, a less worried way.”
A new way, a less worried way. Can I worry less and trust more? As I round-up and plan for our next homeschool year, Lord knows, I am trying.