Owning Our Decision to Homeschool

I’m smart. But I’m not very brave.

I’m smart enough to know that for my family, homeschooling makes sense.

That the freedom to cultivate a lifelong love of learning unmarred by drills and testing and inappropriate standards is something I am lucky to be able to take advantage of.

That I may not have a crystal ball to see into our educational future, but we’ll take each year as it comes, and it will all work out just fine.

That I, as their Mother, am the person most well-equipped with the knowledge to make this decision on behalf of my children.

Flower invitation

I’m typically full of anxiety and second-thoughts when it comes to big (and small) decisions. I should be terrified about embarking down this path. But all I feel is a quiet resolve and a deep confidence that this is right for us.

So why, until now, have I been hesitant to shout our decision from the rooftops?

A few weeks ago, a parent at the co-op asked me where I was enrolling the twins for their last year of preschool since we were leaving. “Actually, we’re going to be homeschooling,” I said, somewhat sheepishly. “You know, Brady travels so much that we’d like to be able to go with him, and I think it would be a great experience for the twins. And I feel like I missed out on a whole year with them already. And I know it’s not right for everyone, but its a good fit for our family, and we can always change our minds later on if it’s not working out…”

Wait a minute. Was I APOLOGIZING for daring to homeschool my own children to this poor, unsuspecting person who was just trying to make small talk with a fellow mom? Yep. I definitely was. My need for approval, my fear about what other people might think about me or say behind my back, my desire not to make anyone uncomfortable because of my unconventional views led me to rush to defend my choice before anyone could even raise an eyebrow. I needed to get to the bottom of this reaction.

I needed to OWN my decision.

So here it is, world: We’re homeschooling, and we are proud to say so! I will gladly answer any questions you have about our decision if I feel like it…but I don’t have to. And just because we’re choosing this path for our children doesn’t mean I will look down on you if you happen to be choosing a different one for yours. We’re all following our hearts to do what’s right for our families, and that should be good enough, don’t you think?

Wow, I feel braver already 😉

Have you ever been hesitant to own a decision you made? I’d love to hear about it in the comments.

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Comments

  1. This resonates with me SO perfectly. I’m finding, that as with any other parenting decision (or just parenting in general) I will find my community on this (and I’m thrilled that you are in it)! I (and you) will gain my footing and my words and my confidence to follow my heart on this so soon instead of feeling like I’m defending it (which I still do) I’ll be passionately proclaiming it.

    • Stephanie says:

      Hi Devany! I agree with you wholeheartedly and am so happy to have the support and community of friends all over the world, including you, on this path. Blogging has certainly opened lots of doors!

  2. Know that you are the envy of many of us who wish that we could, who know it is a good choice and the best choice for others. Public school has rarely been what it was supposed to be and now it is even worse in some areas of this still great country. Point? So happy and proud of your decision!

    • Stephanie says:

      Thank you! I definitely don’t take for granted the fact that I am in fact able to homeschool the twins- I feel incredibly lucky to be in the situation where I can. I appreciate your kind comment and your support- thanks for reading!

  3. Congrats on your decision. I am (not so) secretly jealous that you took the plunge. I love our public school, but I think there is such a neat opportunity to see the world and explore the community based on kids’ specific interests and paces, and homeschooling fills that void. I really applaud you. Stand tall; your kids are so lucky to have such an engaged, confident, creative roll model in you.

    • Stephanie says:

      Thank you so much- the freedom to travel and explore is one of the main reasons we are going the homeschooling route. I appreciate your comment and thanks for reading!

  4. We home ed our two boys and I vividly remember talking to another mum I didn’t know very well about why our eldest wasn’t going to school. I waffled on so awkwardly that she ended up trying to make me feel better about our decision. I was so nervous of people’s reactions in the beginning and would be constantly anticipating questions about school and how I would answer them. But two years later and it’s the most normal thing to me now. I think because we love it so much it’s made me grow in confidence when talking to other people about it and ultimately I’m not really bothered what other people think anyway.
    You’ve made a great choice for your family and you will all grow and learn together.
    I’ve missed you’re posts too so I’m glad you’re back!

    • Stephanie says:

      Isn’t it crazy how fear of what others may think leads us to go to such lengths to appease them? I actually have to remind myself what a confident person acts like and then try to “fake it till I make it.” It’s already getting better though, thank goodness! I’m so glad you commented and thanks so much for reading!

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