We finished up our first year of homeschooling this week, and guess what? We all survived. Leila is reading like a champ, Joe is killing it in math, both kids still have their social skills intact (ahem), and I have learned to lighten up. Way up, in fact.
My computer was screaming at me this week (Low disk space! Clean out your hard drive!), so I went searching for files to delete and came upon some journaling I did at the beginning of the school year. It was my attempt to do morning pages, and I lasted a whole five days (fail). Every post spelled out my anxiety about homeschooling. What if I screw up my kids? What if they don’t listen to me? What if they hate homeschool? What if I forget to teach them something critical and they are SCARRED FOR LIFE?
Apparently I was putting a teeny bit of pressure on myself in those first five days.
However, what I learned throughout the school year was that I would screw up sometimes, but my kids would be fine. They wouldn’t listen to me all the time, but for the most part we got along great. They loved homeschool, even though they needed a break every once in a while. (And let’s face it, so did I.)
I learned to lighten up and trust the process.
When we needed a break, we took a break. When we needed a few days off, we took a few days off. When we needed extra creative time, we spent the whole day painting and riding our bikes.
Not only did we survive, but I would say we thrived. Without the hurry-up crazy commute in the morning, our days began peacefully. Without the evening homework shuffle, we had more time to read and play. And whenever I started to doubt myself, I remembered why we do this in the first place.
So with Year 1 behind us, we are looking ahead to another summer in Montana. We plan to take our nature journals with us, a telescope and star charts, and story prompts for summer writing. Weekly visits to the local library will keep us up on our reading, and we will spend the rest of our time splashing in the river and cheering at baseball games.
We did it. We survived.
Let summer begin.