This afternoon as we were outside the kids started chatting with a lady that was walking a dog past our house. Dogs and little children are always fascinated when they walk past our house because our front yard looks like so much fun with all the kids scattered around. The lady asked the kids if they had had a half day of school today. Hannah told her no and the lady was kind of puzzled. She asked where the kids went to school and Hannah told her that she was homeschooled. That always makes me nervous. Any other homeschool mom would probably understand that nervous feeling I get in my gut wondering what the reaction will be to that information. How many questions am I going to be drilled with? What other homeschooled kids has this person been in contact with so is their response going to be extremely negative or positive? I suppose most people who are told that we homeschool are pretty unfazed by the information but some people get very upset. I always have this fear in my heart that I am going to be attacked because I homeschool. (I know, I shouldn't be a people-pleaser. Homeschooling is what God has called me to do for His purposes and I shouldn't worry what people think but I do not like being attacked.)
Thankfully this lady has had pleasant experiences with homeschooled kids before, some relative of hers homeschooled their children who are now young adults and they are wonderful kids. I got asked a few of the normal questions: "Do you get together with other homeschool moms and do things?" "Do you go to the conferences and stuff?" (she mentioned LEAH so I'm assuming her relative had gone to the LEAH conference before) and "Do you homeschool all of these kids?" (the answer to that one was "No, that little boy lives upstairs and did have a half day today because he goes to Ed Smith. I only homeschool my 4.") It was actually a pleasant conversation and she mentioned many benefits of homeschooling that a kid that went to regular school doesn't have. I'm thankful for conversations that go like that, where I am not attacked and questioned to no end. As the lady was walking away she said, "You know, one thing I always hear that people worry about with homeschooled kids is that they are socialized. I think that your kids are doing just fine. They socialize very well." Well - at least they've got one thing right. ;)
I got props from the little girl who lives upstairs too. She was sitting with Hannah while Hannah was working on her grammar for today, waiting for her to get done so that she could play and she started asking me questions about homeschooling. Kids ask different questions than adults do. I can't remember what she asked but she seemed intrigued with the idea and told me that I was doing a good job teaching my kids.
So, I got props from a random stranger and the 10 year old girl from upstairs. I guess it did my people pleasing heart good. The real question though is: Am I glorifying God in how I am homeschooling? I really don't know the answer to that one. I never know if I am doing enough, teaching the right things, requiring enough, preparing them for the right things. I do know that I am being more faithful to my calling this year but I am growing weary and am really looking forward to break soon for Thanksgiving. This year, more than ever before, I am feeling the brunt of the full time job I have educating my kids and the other full time job I have in doing everything else I am responsible for around here. I am so thankful for our God who gives me all that I need for life and godliness. I know that I am needing to spend more time with Him so that I can know Him more so that I will become more like Him and represent Him well everywhere I go.