Tuesday, June 12, 2018

The End of Homeschooling ~ Part 1



life changes, graduation, homeschooling, future plans


Suddenly it hits you, and for the first time ever you realize that homeschooling is coming to an end. 

Not for the entire world - but for you! Homeschooling ends. Occasionally this happens because of a life change. Maybe Dad was injured at work and Mom now needs to get an outside income to keep the household running. Not just temporarily, but maybe forever. Or maybe your family has decided that the children will attend a private High School after eight years of home education. 

Or maybe - just maybe - you are like us. You are running out of kids to homeschool and the truth has finally hit home that there is an end to your homeschooling adventure. It does not mean that your adventures are over - far from it - but it means you are about to hang up your Mom/teacher hat and take on a different role. 

Perhaps this fills you with a bit of dread, simply because this is what you have been doing for the past 5, 10, 15, or even 20 years. Or maybe you are filled with joyful anticipation. Wherever you fall along that spectrum, there are a few things to think about as you reach the end of your homeschooling years. This short series of posts is designed to help you think through the steps and travel them with joy, not fear.

But first, let me tell you about when I realized the end was approaching. A few years ago I was at work. Yes, I've worked outside the home the entire 15 years of this journey. It has not been easy - it was often really difficult - but it was necessary, and God's grace is sufficient, and sleep is a wonderful thing - don't take it for granted. Anyway, I was at work and I reminded one of the store managers that I would be gone the rest of the week. He asked where I was going and when I told him to a homeschool convention his comment was: "It won't be too much longer you'll need to do that will you? Your girls are almost grown up."

WHAT?!?

I had seriously never thought about getting to the END of the journey. Not that I had not thought about quitting, because there are always some days when you just want to stop doing everything and just sit still - for a really long time. This whole homeschooling adventure can be overwhelming at times. That's why you need friends - praying friends! Friends who stand beside you, who encourage you, and lift you up when you stumble.

Once I realized that he was right, I really started thinking about what I wanted the girls to MOST remember about the end of their high school years. Emily only had a couple years left, and while Arlene had a few left, I knew the time was limited - so I wanted us all to make the best of it! I also realized it was time to get on the ball about changing those pen and paper notes about Emily's classes into a transcript.

When your children are little, you may never think about the day when they will be grown up. It seems too foreign of an idea to entertain even for a minute. But, I am here to tell you it happens! My little giggle box has grown into a 20 year old young woman. She owns her own car, drives herself to work and to college, and goes out with her friends. Sometimes, she even takes her little younger sister with her.

Our other daughter just turned 18. How did my little munchkin get so big? When did she surpass me in baking skills and how does she know so much about textiles? It happens one day at a time. With all that you and your friends pour into them, some of it sticks!

So, whether or not you are at the realization stage yet - know this - one day there will be and end to your homeschooling. God knows when the perfect timing for that is. He knows what will come afterwards - for both you and your children. But that is a post for another day!

In the meantime. Enjoy the days. Even when they seem really long. 
The days are long, but the years are short!

Do not be afraid of the end. Know that it is coming, and remember that God will be right there beside you the entire journey! Find the joy in the journey - it is shorter than you think!





2 comments:

  1. I'm going to need this series. My youngest is a rising senior and I really don't know what I will do with myself once she graduates. We're ready - and we're not, at the same time. One of my best friends just graduated her youngest and another bestie has a rising senior as well. So glad I have friends who know exactly the mixed bag of emotions this brings!

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    1. On of my local friends just started an "Empty-nesters" club for those of us whose children are grown, or almost grown, and who need a place to get together and just discover this next phase of life with friends.

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