I’ve said it.
I never thought I would — not in a million years — but there it is.
I always thought homeschooling was too much work and that I could never do it. That the pressure would drive me insane, and the lack of personal time and space would drive me to DYFS. I felt unqualified and stifled by the possibility. The mere thought made me nervous, like a thousand little ants crawling beneath my clothes.
But I was wrong. I can do it. And I did do it. And I actually really liked it. In fact, I can now admit that homeschooling is easier.
The truth is that I hate being at the mercy of not one, but multiple teachers’ schedules and agendas. I hate being responsible to someone else for my kids’ presence at all times. I hate having to explain myself to others and submit to their policies and requirements. (Seriously? My kids can’t have cupcakes at a birthday party any more?) I hate knowing that the public school works for me and is paid by me yet believes they know better than I what’s best for my children.
I hate forcing my kids to do homework that I know is too easy for them. It takes hours — I kid you not. — of cajoling, bribery and raw frustration to get them to finish their boring assignments. And I don’t blame them. The poor kids have been stuck in an institutional brick building for six hours after which I immediately ask them to sit down and do more work. It’s torture for them, but perhaps more for me. I don’t blame the teachers, either! They’re doing their jobs and I’m thankful for it.
This is just so much stinkin’ work for me.
It was easier when I knew exactly what they were learning and discussing each day. I didn’t have to hover or pry or correct negative influences.
It was easier when we could get the work done in a few short hours each morning and use the rest of the day for life. I could coordinate their lessons so that, while clearly differentiated in skill level, they were still on the same thematic page each day.
It was easier when I didn’t have to listen to them every night complain that they are so tired and they never get to play anymore. It was easier when I didn’t have to drag them out of bed every morning. Or pack lunches. Or attend a hundred birthday parties for people I don’t know.
It was easier when I didn’t have to schedule PT and doctor appointments at the same time as every other parent in the tri-state area. (Can I just tell you what a zoo that waiting room is at 4pm every afternoon? Oh. My.)
Homeschooling was easier. It really was.
Oh, but when have I ever been known to take the easy path?