And all thy children shall be taught of the Lord; and great shall be the peace of thy children. Isaiah 54:13 KJV

Friday, April 26, 2013

How Do You Do It?

Tonight we ran into a family we've recently met and chatted with them for a few minutes. It was a chance encounter at a local fast food restaurant (*GASP* yes we occasionally eat fast food because it's FAST). As we talked over the roar of the kids Hubby threw me under the bus. He told them we home school. 

Honestly we never try to hide the fact that we home school but if it hasn't naturally come up in conversation then I tend not to mention it. The reason I don't mention it isn't because I'm ashamed or embarrassed. I don't mention it because of the questions. Questions, questions, questions. We live in a city with a LARGE home school population, home school is slowly becoming more familiar to the general public, and my kids don't present themselves as aliens so I'm always surprised at the QUESTIONS.

This family wasn't rude or judgemental (well there was that one thing they said) but they were curious. THE QUESTION was "How DO you do it?" I tried to polite gloss over it the first time. Then she asked again. I tried to shrug it off. Then she asked again. I took a deep breath. It wasn't the time or the place to delve into our story (although I'm 95% sure she will ask about it more in the future). We know the family is a church going family so maybe this woman is so curious because she's considered it. Maybe she has never known a home school family. Maybe she thinks we're crazy. Either way I took some more deep breaths and tried to condense 4 years of home school into 2 sentences.

"Well home school takes less time than traditional school so we are typically finished around lunchtime. It also works great with Hubby's rotating schedule."

Her husband was kind and said it must be like a full time job. "Well yeah it is." Then she commented that it was a good thing we keep our kids in sports so they can be around other kids (see note above). I don't think she was trying to judge though. That's just the one thing most people think about home school. Oh ya gotta socialize them!

When I get asked this question my snarky inner voice wants to say "How DO you send your kids to public school everyday?" but I don't because I know home school isn't for everyone and I know that isn't a fair question. I know public school is a blessing for some families. I don't expect everyone to follow our model. And I don't want them to expect us to follow theirs.

In the car on the way home I thanked Hubby for throwing me under the bus. He smiled and said that's the only way to get people to stop questioning him about police work. :) Bless him.

So if I had all the time in the world to answer the question here are some of the things I'd want to say:

How do you do it?

* With God's grace
* Because my kids are awesome
* With a super strong support system
* With some amazing curriculum
* With loads of Bible verses floating in my head to keep me from losing my mind
* Some days I can't, we just muddle through
* With buckets of coffee
* Facebook chats with other home school moms to keep me from pulling my hair out
* With lots of healthy recess time which requires my children to go outside
* Because I can laugh at things like this:
A Banana Playing a Trumpet (obviously)

* Prayer, prayer, prayer
* And last but not least with some great friends who don't home school and don't judge us for homeschooling

This verse came to mind earlier so I posted it to my personal Facebook page but I feel I should share it here to:

I Pet 3:15 But in your hearts revere Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, 16 keeping a clear conscience, so that those who speak maliciously against your good behavior in Christ may be ashamed of their slander. 17 For it is better, if it is God’s will, to suffer for doing good than for doing evil.

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