guilt and grief.

OK...back to some real posting.  I am done with hoho's for a bit...I made 64 this last batch...what was I thinking?  My poor little nubby sewing fingers...

In response to my post about homeschool vs. going to school:

Man...you guys gave me a lot to think about...if I could, I would live where one commenter mentioned that she can homeschool two days a week and the other three days a week her kids go to a private school.  Yes, please...where do you live?  We will start looking for a place there. 

One comment early on struck me the most...it said something about not making a choice according to the guilt I am feeling.  And sure enough...guilt is smacking me around all over the place.  On both sides of the fence.  Let me try to explain this...

Growing up...I was not protected from a whole lot of anything.  I feel like this started me down a path that has taken YEARS of my adult life to walk back through and repair. And I do NOT want to make the same mistake with my kids.  Are my kids sheltered from the "world"?   You bet they are. They are 3 and 1...and they should be as sheltered as newborn baby.  We pretty strictly limit what they can watch and how much...we don't do Halloween...Doug and I never argue in front of them (not that we hardly ever argue in the first place)...they are never exposed to violence, fowl language, vulgarity of any kind...common sense things that kids SHOULD be protected from as long as possible.  At least common to us.  This is where guilt comes in...two fold. 

Guilt #1-sending my child into a public school where I can no longer control what they learn and protect them.  You cannot convince me that all is well in public schools.  The things that I read that are being taught to our kids these days in hopes of raising "tolerant" kids...makes me sick to my stomach.  I can only imagine all of the unlearning we will have to do once our kids are in school.  Do I want loving and kind kids?  Yes.  Tolerant?  No. 

  Guilt #2-I honestly and truly and down to the core of who I am know that I do not have what it takes to give my kids the best education possible.  It hurts to write that out...my eyes well up a bit just to think it.  I cannot do the best for them here.  I know that.  

Grief #1.  Directed at Guilt #2.  Not being that kind of parent.  The kind that is nurturing and awesome and CAN do it...can teach their kids beautifully and well roundedly.  I mourn for the fact that I am certain that I cannot do it. 

I have to hold onto the hope that God has something better in store for my boys.

I do not think that kids NEED to go to public school to be "normal".  I don't want "normal" kids.  I want my kids to be loud for the Lord, loving and compassionate because of Jesus.  I don't want them to be a peg that fits in a hole.  I want people to know that there is something good and different about them.  I don't want them to be "tolerant" of sin...I want them to stand for what is right. 

Another comment that struck was about our kids being a light in the schools...be it public or private (which if I have to make 100's of hoho's to afford...I will).  What if all Christian kids were home-schooled?  Where would the lights be then? Hmmm...that got me thinking, too.

Guilt #3 (please don't throw things at me)  I think that maybe, just maybe, I may end up being a better parent to a child that was at school during the day.  I am kind of terrified to have just written that.  

Grief #2-I am not the kind of mom who loves to be with her kids every. second. of. the. day.  I love to get away for a bit...even a small bit is good for me.  I don't leave them for days...but a small break is refreshing to me...I feel like a better parent afterward.  Do I love my kids with ALL my heart? Yes I DO! 

Guilt #4- I am kind of looking forward to being able to focus a little more on my business and have day dates with my husband.  

Earlier this week I asked Doug "Do you expect me to get a job once both boys are in school?"

He said "Yes".  My. heart. dropped.  I almost cried.  Then he said "Just kidding".  Which I think I knew...I just needed to hear to make sure that I wasn't thinking home-school just to get out of getting a "real" job...

PUHLEASE tell me that I am not the only one who feels this way...and please don't read any of this as anything negative about home-schoolers...those of you who are doing it right have my utmost respect and I am envious of you...

I guess what I am trying to say...is that I am leaning towards sending the boys to school...public or private will likely depend on where we live then...and if neither is an option where we are...then I know God will equip us for what we have to do. 

I know I had more floating around in my head...but I have had a long week of late nights and early mornings...so my brain is not quite functioning at 100%.


Plus...the bat came back!!!!!!!  Those of you who bought hoho's recently have unknowingly paid for a chimney sweep to come and clean our chimney and make it bat proof.  This time was much less exciting...Doug spotted him between the glass and the screen of the fireplace...we called animal control and they sent a FIRETRUCK FULL of firemen.  They got rid of the bat in about 3minutes...with no screaming.  And we all lived to tell about it.  AAAaaand our fireplace is currently sporting a coating of duct tape until the sweep comes to do his thing. :) 

Feel free to leave feedback about the whole school thing...I am SO thankful for all of the comment and emails I got from you all...you have given me a lot to think about and ponder for some time. 

Thank you and goodnight!!
xo
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42 comments:

Megan said...

I love all of your thoughts. They are thoughts that I haven't allowed myself to think, yet, but I will. Or have. That doesn't make sense. haha

I am mom to an almost-2-year-old boy and may or may not have another child in the future. I have 4 years to think about this (his birthday is past the cut-off here), but I already do think about it. I am nowhere near being 100%, but this has actually helped. You are not the only one thinking all of these things (and many more). Thanks for the post.

Mormishmom said...

Amen. That's what I have to say to all your Guilt and Grief. They are the same things I struggle with. I am TERRIFIED to send my little ones to public school where I can't control who and what they come in contact with. I also want kind and loving children - not tolerant children. It seems today that tolerant means you have to accept every bit of madness that comes your way and I'm just not buying that. However, I want them to a Light to the world - for Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house. But do I think that kids need to go to public school to be a Light to the world? I'm not sure. I also think I am the kind of parent that would be a better parent if my kids do go to school. So, maybe private is the answer. ::sigh:: I think all you can do is take your concerns to the Lord and ask for guidance.

Randi said...

I'm really new to your blog but I'm so touched by all of your thoughts about schooling and I think they show what an amazing parent you are ... you're completely candid and your love for your kids shines through.

I have five kids, from age 12 down to age 10 months, and if I could say one thing, it's this: take it a step at a time. We've done homeschool, charter school, public school, and private Christian school. You can change year to year, and you can change mid-year if you feel the need. Just let God direct you and be open to where He leads.

Your desire to protect and shelter your kids is awesome and never needs to be defended. Everyone wants to shelter their children to some degree - it's why we don't let our babies crawl in the middle of a road. God has entrusted you with children and will equip you to care for them.

Thanks for sharing your heart ... it was so encouraging.

Ky said...

Oh Crystal, I do love to read the words from your heart.I have no opinion for you either way because that really is your decision. God will surely lead you.
I know for me though, there was/is no way I would home school. I just couldn't do it. I'm not motivated or patient enough, aaannnnd like you, I REALLY need my space from my little treasures. I just adore them, but I have to have time out.
My two are very outgoing kids too and I think it would be cruel for me to keep them away from other kids. They are like their father in that way. He was homeschooled for half of his life and he hated it.
Anyway, I really just wanted to say that I really love following you and want you to know how much I appreciate reading your words.

Lauren said...

A firetruck with firemen? I always just throw a towel over them, and pick them up that way and bring them outside. Or once I put all my kids in a room with the door shut (they were sleeping anyway) turned out all the lights except for the hallway, and left the door open eventually it flew out the door. Then there's putting a tennis racquet over them (or in some cases whacking it when it flies by... my neighbor and I got one out of another neighbor's house that way). I wonder how much your bat cost the taxpayers! My boyfriend will get a laugh out of that one, he's a fireman and he just HATES bats.

LibraryGirl62 said...

That's Hoho with MY hoho!!!!! I am so excited :)

My 2 cents: I have a public kid and a private kid and know kids who attend Christian schools-they all face the same issues. When I moved to this (then) small town at 19, I was told the best drugs came from the Christian schools and the easiest girls were at the Catholic schools. My daughter attends "That ghetto high school" and has never been approached to purchase drugs, never been attacked, intimidated or had anything stolen. My son's friend had his baseball equipment stolen by a player from the Christian school they were playing. The WORST sportsmanship in this town come from a Christian school my son's private school plays-cursing, bad mouthing the other team-and that is just the parents in the stands. Even tho I am an educator, I could not home-school my kids. I personally feel that my job is to prepare them to face the world and disarm it with Faith and Love. As with all things child related-Do what makes your heart happy and at peace. Know and Trust that you make your choices from a place of love and then go with it. God will protect and guide and all will work out.

Sara said...

I really enjoyed your post as well, and as a grandma, I can say I feel these same things for my grandchildren. In my own mind I hoped my girls would say they'd homeschool just because I so want to protect them and not see them hurt. But as it has already been put so well, we're not to keep to ourselves as believers, but are to spread the good news. How do we teach our children this if we shelter them from the world.
So, great thoughts and I certainly appreciated reading the comments as well...gave me courage as a grandma too to let go and let God! :)

maribeth said...

i completely understand all of your griefs and your guilts. in fact, i would dare to believe that any mother who doesn't is fooling herself. i wrote an extremely long comment to your previous post explaining why and how we have chosen the path of public school for the first of our children which will begin next week, but it didn't post for some reason and i didn't have it in me to rewrite it. but, i do agree that we (and our children) are suppose to be in the world, not of the world. and, public school is a very effective way to reach other families not like us. i also understand that not every public school is equal and because of that, we moved to place our children in the school that we believed was the right fit. we truly believe God orchestrated the ability for us to make that move, but i know it may not be an option for everyone. and, like you, i can admit that i may be a better mother if my child went to school. but, i will tell you that as the clock is ticking here, i wonder if i have done enough. if the last five and a half years have prepared her well enough to make the right decisions, to know the truth and to know we will always be here for her. no matter what, i think you will know when you have made the best decision for your family and no one will be able to judge that.

Jessica B said...

Wow, I don't usually comment (though I love your work and have bought a couple of things from your shop) but I just had to comment on this post. Your honesty was wonderful to hear. I know without a doubt that you will make the right decision for your two little ones. You have put so much thought into your decision. The fact that you can recognize what you are good at and what your areas of growth are is amazing. It shows that you are not making this decision selfishly or for the wrong reasons. Good luck with your decision. No matter which way you go, know you are an amazing mom and your kids are lucky to have you.

Heather at Blessed Little Nest said...

i feel the same way about wishing i was a mom that could home school, but i know in my heart i can't. tonight we went to my son's very first meet the teacher and met his kindergarten teacher. the journey to getting to this point was not easy. i wrote about it on my blog today. in the end i realized i won't have control over his education, but i trust that He is.

The Hensley Family said...

You're so not alone in your guilt for needing time away. I have a 2 1/2 yr old and an 11 month old. I've never wanted to be a stay at home mom - but when I was prego with #2 I got laid off from my job. I took that as a blessing and spent time with my babies. I stayed home a year. Almost 6 months with just my daughter and then had my second and stayed home until he was almost 6 months. I cherished the time at home with them - but I am not a good stay at home mom. I felt guilty that I cleaned house and ran errands and had to drag them along...but if I didn't do those things I felt guilty for that too. I'm working again now and my kids are in a daycare run by a church. They LOVE school and I am a much better weekend and night time mommy. Do I feel guilty for the time I'm away from them - Yes. But I know that they are learning so much every day and meeting kids and having so much fun - the type of fun that I would not be able to provide for them staying home. Whatever decision you make - there is guilt. I think that guilt is called being a parent. It will all work out!

The Hensley Family said...

You're so not alone in your guilt for needing time away. I have a 2 1/2 yr old and an 11 month old. I've never wanted to be a stay at home mom - but when I was prego with #2 I got laid off from my job. I took that as a blessing and spent time with my babies. I stayed home a year. Almost 6 months with just my daughter and then had my second and stayed home until he was almost 6 months. I cherished the time at home with them - but I am not a good stay at home mom. I felt guilty that I cleaned house and ran errands and had to drag them along...but if I didn't do those things I felt guilty for that too. I'm working again now and my kids are in a daycare run by a church. They LOVE school and I am a much better weekend and night time mommy. Do I feel guilty for the time I'm away from them - Yes. But I know that they are learning so much every day and meeting kids and having so much fun - the type of fun that I would not be able to provide for them staying home. Whatever decision you make - there is guilt. I think that guilt is called being a parent. It will all work out!

Andrea said...

I meant to comment on your other post regarding homeschooling, but time ran away from me.

I am a teacher. I have two girls - ages 8 and 10. I would not homeschool them, even though I have the perfect college degree for it. I have several reasons for this.

I teach 2nd grade. At the time when each of my kids were about to be in 2nd grade they begged to be in my class. The reason I told them no is one of the reasons I don't think I could ever homeschool. The voice they hear all day would be mine. All.day.long. Then we'd go home and they'd hear my voice. All.night.long. While I know they love me more than anything, I think it would be just too much for them. One person telling them what to do in school and at home - pretty soon they'd tire of that and stop listening, I'm sure.

Now that my kids are older than yours, I can tell you that the "break" you are talking about during the day will do wonders for you and your children. They will miss you (just enough) and will be glad to be with you after school. You will miss them (just a little more than they miss you) and you will be glad to be with them after school as well.

I know you are concerned about what your kids might be exposed to. But with the kind of active parenting you already practice, I think you can turn those experiences into meaningful discussions and lessons. Does that make sense?

Also, I think that the more people (teachers and other role models in the school) that my kids have chances to have interactions with is beneficial for them. Their circle of loving and caring people is widened. I realize that my kids have had the luxury of always having who I consider to be the best teachers. But I would venture to say that most of your teacher experiences will be positive.

I think doing a preschool homeschool is an awesome idea. You can have fun with it and give your kids a solid foundation to go to school with. As teachers, we are continually amazed at how much kids come to school NOT knowing.

These are my opinions, so take them for what they are worth. :)

Nancy said...

I have been down this guilt/grief scenario about 3 years ago and the little voice in my head sounded very similiar to yours. Many ideas circulated through my head: homeschool (very briefly), Christian school or public. We ended with the public and I believe that HE is in control like Heather stated and that I will equip my girls with the biblical/christian foundation to be a light around them. This road is not easy. Trust me! But I felt it was real and realistic spiritual training for their future. You will be ok. Throw that guilt out the door. Tell it to take a hike. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi! My name is Gevay. I live in So. Florida. I am new to your blog and appreciate your honesty. I was a teacher in the county I live in for 12.5 years. Now I am a stay at home mom. If you asked me a few years ago if I would homeschool I would have emphatically told you no! However, my heart has been changed after one year at a christian pre-school/school. My now four year old was way more influenced by the children he went to school with than him influencing them. He had amazing teacher who planned biblical, fun, hands-on lessons every week. He rarely talked about her or what he was learning, but came home asking about vampires, guns, shooting, bad guys and jail. In my humble opinion, until your children are fully prepared to defend their faith, they will be more influenced by the "world" than you would hope. A family friend explains it this way: "When you put a clean, white shirt in a mud puddle the puddle doesn't get shirty, the shirt gets muddy." I am not suggesting that you homeschool if you do not feel called, but just know that 85% of homeschool parents were never teachers. There are many support groups, classes and programs that your kids can attend in order to give you the "break" you (and myself too!) need. Your state probably has a homeschool convention every year and a homeschool organization. And just because you make a decision one way or another doesn't mean you can't change your mind. I am not intending to make you feel guilty or cause more grief. You have to do what you are led to do for your family. I pray HE leads you there gently.

Gram said...

When my children were school age (they are 29 and 31 now) home schooling was not an option I had ever heard of. I am sure I would have gone through all the agony you are going through now if it I had it as an option. I can totally relate to your feelings of thinking this is not something you would be great at - because I know I am not a great teacher - I am a pretty darn good back up to a great teacher though. I also understand the feelings of not being with your children every minute. I believe my opportunities to have time away from them made me a better mother. Just keep praying!

Gram said...

When my children were school age (they are 29 and 31 now) home schooling was not an option I had ever heard of. I am sure I would have gone through all the agony you are going through now if it I had it as an option. I can totally relate to your feelings of thinking this is not something you would be great at - because I know I am not a great teacher - I am a pretty darn good back up to a great teacher though. I also understand the feelings of not being with your children every minute. I believe my opportunities to have time away from them made me a better mother. Just keep praying!

Ellen - SkoMomma said...

I can never thank my parents enough for putting my sisters and I through Christian day-school and high-school. They had to work hard to pay for it, but my mom always tells me she knew it was the right decision when every time they had to pay the bill, somehow the money was there for it.
My oldest is in 4th grade this year at a Christian school and my second oldest will be starting preschool there as well. We are all ready saving for Christian high school. I'm convinced it's one of the best gifts I can give my children.

P.S. I want a hoho! I hope you'll make some more soon...they are especially special now that I know that those little guys might be helping your little guys educations!

Ben and Taryn said...

I totally know what you mean when you say that you are a better mom after a "break" from your kids. I feel like it helps me still know me. And I know for a fact that I don't have the patience to teach my own kids all the school things they need to know as well as all the other values and manners I'm already trying to teach them. I think like it's been said before, your best bet is trusting in the Lord.

Tiffany said...

Hi. I don't ever comment on peoples blogs I don't personally know, but you tugged at my heart....I have taught for 8 years in public school - middle school math, actually.

The first 4 years were at a school in the "perfect" neighborhood where kids were from great families. The next 4 years were at what people where I'm from call the "ghetto". Some came from broken homes, where drugs were everday topics, and I have even taught kids who were responsible for murder and drive-by shootings.

This said,I feel like I have taught at the best public school has to offer and the worst public school has to offer. And you know what, it's ok. Kids may hear and see stuff you want to shelter them from. But what I know from interacting with 12, 13, and 14 year olds is this - they stick with their friends. They stick with people they are like. So, if your boys love the Lord with all in them, they will find other kids that love the Lord as much as they do.

It's hard. And I grapple with sending our 3 year old to private school as well. But I dont think public school is bad. Find out what your states "ranking" system is and search for houses in neighborhoods with that system. In Texas, I will only live in a neighborhood with "Exemplary" schools.

And my husband went to private school along with all of his cousins. Did you know that if you work at most of them, your child goes for free? And I don't mean you have to be a teacher - you could be a cafeteria lady, a 2 day a week preschool worker, a secretary, or even an aide. Just a thought....

It's not an easy decision, but I understand...

angelina said...

i have been subscribing to your blog for some time now, but have never commented, so, hello! I am a brand new mommy (my baby is 12 weeks) but I also work in family ministries at my church so I have actually thought about these things a lot. There is a book out there called Spiritual Parenting by Michelle Anthony that has been super influential in our families as well as my own little family. Look it up...check it out. if you want I can even send you a copy. It's a great book about parenting our kids in a way that will help them to fall in love with Jesus and live out a vibrant faith while being dependent on the Spirit. It has helped put to rest some of my fears and given me hope for raising kids in this falen world and it just might be a good read for you also!

Jennifer said...

My daughter is 2 and I think daily about the school decision. Worries and guilt of sending her, worries and guilt of not sending her. I was a public school teacher before having her. I always hear people say that if they are homeschooled they aren't socialized. Well, school is actually for learning not socializing, and I'm not sure that some of the students/staff are who I would want her socializing with. I can still expose her to different people by activities and experiences outside of a school building. It is a hard choice. There is some peace in knowing that nothing is permanent. If she starts out homeschooled and it doesn't work for me or her, she can start school. Good luck with your decisions.

chinaorbust2004 said...

crystal,
you're right. you don't have what you need to homeschool your kids. but the Lord does & He will supply your every need if you ask.
amy

Tanna said...

I have two boys, 5 and 3. They are the love of my life. I have no desire and don't think I have the skills to home school them. I never wanted to send my kids to daycare because I didn't want someone else raising my kids. But life turned out a little different and they go to daycare 3 days a week, while I work outside the home. It has been wonderful for me, for them. They learn so much about treating others in ways I am not sure I could have shown them. You are doing a good job and being the best Mom to Moses and Aaron just by analyzing these things long before the time comes to make a decision.

I also believe that public school is not the greatest. But being involved with their class, homework, and extra curricular activities is what makes their experience with public school the best. My parents may not have been to every one of my activities but I sure don't remember them NOT being there. That is what counts.

I am resigning from my PT job to stay at home with my boys, and by doing so I am ensuring I won't be able to send them to private school, but I am giving them more time with me and they are giving me more them with them. Look far off to 50 years from now. Will they be shockingly different boys if you home school vs. public school? Probably not, their home life will be stable and full of good example. That is what will really stick with them. They learn their morals and values from you. They have a good example.

Stepheny said...

The one thing I really truly hate about my daughter being in a public school (daycare) setting is the nastiness she gets from other kids. We teach her to be kind, polite, and friendly. There are certain kinds who are not that in any ounce of their being. I realize I can't protect her forever, and that she will eventually need to stand up for herself and have the self-confidence to withstand such nonsense, but it bugs me. We just remind her the things they say aren't true, that she is beautiful, loving, smart, etc. One little girl called her an ugly brat yesterday. The saddest part is that my child doesn't even know what "ugly" means. Totally broke my heart. The one thing I don't want to deal with.... meanness.

Karen said...

I have just started to think about the decisions we have to make when B gets ready to start school. You have echoed some of the very thoughts I have had, and given me even more to ponder! I know there is a possibility (probability?) that you won't be living around here when you have to ultimately make the decision for Moses, but in case you are I'd be happy to give you some insight into our area's public schools if you'd like. When I was in high school I had a friend who was homeschooled, but rather than her mom doing the teaching, she went to a group home school. I'm not sure of the details, but she and a small group (less than a dozen) met daily for homeschooling. The person (or multiple people? I don't remember) who led the classes had some sort of state certification. So...she got the benefits of socializing with a small group, but without her parents having to worry about the things she would be exposed to in a public school. And in regards to the needing some time away from your kids...erase your guilt of that. You NEED to have time away from you little ones...they need occasional time away from you just as much as you need it from them. No guilt allowed. Thank you for sharing all your guilts and greifs! And whatever you decide to do will work out the way it's meant to.

Jami said...

Hi Crystal,
I read your blog and enjoy the glimpses into your life. I think maybe my comment will offend some but that is not my intention-just a different point of view-from the flip side of the coin.
We live in a Southern state (for 2 years now). My son is half Jewish. After 2 years in public school we have decided to home school for a similar and yet very different reason. We live in a very Christian community. I have no problems with religion but I believe that religion should not be part of the school day. It is a very personal thing and we do not want other people's religious views imposed on our son. I do not want him to be made to feel inferior because we do not actively practice the same religion as the majority of our community. I am referring to adults now, not children. I am shielding my son from some ignorant, biased and very ungodlike people that make snide and unkind comments. Thankfully, so far he is too young to understand what is going on so we have decided to home school until we can move away. My husband has a teaching degree and will home school my son. He will do a fantastic job as he is a very devoted dad. I think for us everything will work out.
Jami

Amber said...

I totally understand all your feelings of guilt and grief. I'm a teacher but I don't know if I could handle homeschooling my kids. I am impressed by those that do it well. I'm actually taking this next school year off so I can be at home with my kids. But I'm happy to have my 3 year old go to pre-school 2x a week. You need those little breaks. :)

I think you will know what is best for you and your kids when the time comes. As Tanna said above, whatever your decision, the most important things are taught in the home. And it seems to me that you do a great job of teaching your boys morals & values.

jac said...

Hi, I'm from Holland and here we have (according to my dictionary it's called) a compulsory education law so we can't choose to home school, but what we can choose, is the school we want our kids to go to. My husband and I choose a Christian school where they start (and end) the day with prayer etc. Don't you have something like that where you live?And about you being afraid you should get a job: I thought you had a job: your little business !! I think that's a job too, only one you do from home! I can tell you that I envy you a little. Because if I could, I would do the same !!

Momma Roar said...

Didn't see the first post (was away all last week) but hope you don't mind me commenting on this one.

You are an awesome mom - that you would spend this much time thinking on what is best for them.

2 things: Never say never and just take everything one year at a time.

I was a PE teacher in a public elem school before kids. And now we are starting our 5th year of homeschool. Sometimes I look back and wonder how we got here ... but I know God has led us here.

Don't try to figure out their entire educational future in one sitting - you'll have smoke coming out of your ears! ;)

Just focus on the year ahead and what you can do for them. As long as you are praying about it and seeking God's Will, he will guide you! Trust me! Our plan was to just homeschool for pre-school, and um, here were are, getting ready to start 3rd grade! ;)

Blessings to you as you raise your precious little ones!

(PS - love the cheater quilt. My mom quilts and I have no desire, but I do enjoy piecing. My favorite things to make are toys and purses/bags. Just might have to try out this technique!!!!)

Leigh Ann

5mcintyres said...

Hey Crystal, Love your blog, as usual. I totally hear and feel you. I love my kids but do feel I am such a better mom when I get a break. And, I think moms who can homeschool ROCK but that isn't in our deck of cards. I am no where near qualified or patient enough. Your honesty and courage to speak your mind gives me strength to do the same. Thank you! Hope you are doing well in Cville! Sherry

Neisha said...

Don't feel guilty...I need breaks from my kids too. I feel that with these breaks, it helps me be a better parent. It builds my patience back up..which by the way, I don't have much of.

Anonymous said...

You said it all, the guilt and grief that not only you put on yourself, but others put on you. On the other side of home schooling - many years now. The time that my children and I spent together was absolutely priceless. One of my children finished public school and did well. The other three and I shared memories and special learning experiences that we would have missed. Was I the best teacher - no! They are all happily married, working hard to support their families in good productive jobs. They are all very social and interact very well with both public and private settings. They love the Lord with all their hearts. All of them. I am thanking the Lord for that special time He gave us. A friend spurred me on during that time of doubt - "you do the small and let God fill in the gaps". He was and is faithful. Looking back on the years, would not have changed a thing. May you and your husband hear His voice clearly, step out and train up those children. One step at a time. You can do it! By the way, I don't have a blog, am no one important, just stopped by. Loved visiting with you.

Emma Kay said...

I have alot of things running through my head with this post, but it would be too much for me to write and you to read, so all I will say is that I want to comment on an issue someone else already bought up. In my town which is neither big nor small, the private schools are the best for drugs. I was in public schools, and I didn't even KNOW anyone who did any drugs until I came here and there was a guy at my church who went to the top private Christian school and he had a lot to teach me about that world! I'm not saying there was NO-ONE in my school who did drugs, but we never heard or saw any of it at school or the functions associated with school. I could keep going, but I will refrain and just remind you that the "good Christian" schools are more often than not what they seem to be. 1 more point - my sister works at a big Christian school and knows about the behind the scene issues and one that comes to my mind is the hard-core porn sessions discovered at school camp - and these are PRIMARY school kids!

Also, I would love to read more about what you mean by you don't want tolerant children? Doesn't the Bible tell us it's not our place to judge others? Just very curious to your thinking behind that comment.

Good luck with your decision making and don't ever feel guilty for wanting what's best for your kids!!!

Jill @ Live Laugh Blog said...

When we're pregnant we stress about breastfeeding and then we stress about weaning and then we stress about getting rid of the paci, then potty training and then schooling...
And we stress about it because we let ourselves stress over it.

God will give you what you need when you need it.

I teach preschool and we're going to supplement this year with a little Kindergarten homeschooling for my soon to be 5 year old (we're waiting to send her to public school next year).

God will get you through it all.

pondering said...

Hello, you don't know me. I stumbled your blog. I read only a few posts. I didn't read the comments on this post. Hope what I say isn't a repeat, but it needs to be said just in case. Sorry for filling your comments up, I have some things I want to express, it's long. I will post in sections. :-)
I'm a single mom of 3 teen girls. I know the struggle of raising kids & all the gut wrenching decisions. Some so important & laden with guilt it seems every choice is possibly the wrong one & could severely screw up your children with one wrong turn. I want to encourage you; your blessed children have an obviously conscientious, loving, caring mom! It seems their dad too. At the end of it all, some choices we make for our kids, others we don't get to. Some choices we 2nd guess, question our judgment, and afterward wonder if we harmed our kids. Often we are frustrated with not having a choice, wondering if our kids are damaged. I can tell you know the Lord & want the best for your kids walk with Him. They are in the hands of God, & while you are choosing for them, God loves them. He put a heart of love in you. I know you know all that, but sometimes we need reminders, yes?
I wish I could give you uber great advice about what schooling would be best. I can't. Public, private, home school, I remember tossing all those same crucial choices around in my heart when my kids were little. I got lots & lots of agenda driven advice from others who felt they knew best. I don't have any agenda except to tell you that I know you are putting a lot of prayer into this. You seem to have support from your husband, such a good thing! I do understand your fear of them ending up in public school, your insecurity with being ill equipped for home school, & your dilemma in coming up with the finances for private school. Whatever you end up deciding, walk with the Lord before them each day, pray with them, teach them in the the Lord. Be honest, loving, & an example to them. Parents have more influence on their children than the school IF they are attentive to their kids (as you are) throughout their lives. God will keep your children.
Mine are teenagers now. I wrestled with all this & other aspects of parenting when they were little. But God had a plan I didn't imagine nor wrote down on any of my lists of choices; single parenting. Yeah, not on my radar. This led to.one.TINY.income, me working 60 hours a week, my young children in daycare, attending public school, all against my ideas of what was good for them. But those choices were not given to me. But you know, GOD was faithful to us! He worked in & through all of that. I was shaking in fear over the years, but God just held us up. It's amazing. Today my kids are amazing teens who love Jesus Christ, & make me proud every day. It was hard work raising 3 kids alone & still directing their eyes to the Lord, being out of the house so much & still battling exhaustion to be an attentive mom. God put the ability in me, He put the strength in me, He provided for our every need. My 18 year old graduated high school this year, in my 10th year of single parenting. I was so proud of her I thought I would bust open watching her walk in that arena to the tune of Pomp & Circumstance. I wept all over my dress! She graduated from a public high school that I didn't much like. But we did ok, God was with us, even there! She loves the Lord, walks with Him daily, makes good choices for Him. She was an example to the other kids in her school. Had it been up to me, I wouldn't have raised her that way. But God knew what He was doing. My other girls are doing equally well, still younger & a few years of schooling left.

pondering said...

Hello, you don't know me. I stumbled your blog. I read only a few posts. I didn't read the comments on this post. Hope what I say isn't a repeat, but it needs to be said just in case. Sorry for filling your comments up, I have some things I want to express, it's long. I will post in sections. :-)
I'm a single mom of 3 teen girls. I know the struggle of raising kids & all the gut wrenching decisions. Some so important & laden with guilt it seems every choice is possibly the wrong one & could severely screw up your children with one wrong turn. I want to encourage you; your blessed children have an obviously conscientious, loving, caring mom! It seems their dad too. At the end of it all, some choices we make for our kids, others we don't get to. Some choices we 2nd guess, question our judgment, and afterward wonder if we harmed our kids. Often we are frustrated with not having a choice, wondering if our kids are damaged. I can tell you know the Lord & want the best for your kids walk with Him. They are in the hands of God, & while you are choosing for them, God loves them. He put a heart of love in you. I know you know all that, but sometimes we need reminders, yes?
I wish I could give you uber great advice about what schooling would be best. I can't. Public, private, home school, I remember tossing all those same crucial choices around in my heart when my kids were little. I got lots & lots of agenda driven advice from others who felt they knew best. I don't have any agenda except to tell you that I know you are putting a lot of prayer into this. You seem to have support from your husband, such a good thing! I do understand your fear of them ending up in public school, your insecurity with being ill equipped for home school, & your dilemma in coming up with the finances for private school. Whatever you end up deciding, walk with the Lord before them each day, pray with them, teach them in the the Lord. Be honest, loving, & an example to them. Parents have more influence on their children than the school IF they are attentive to their kids (as you are) throughout their lives. God will keep your children. (see next post)

pondering said...

Hello, you don't know me. I stumbled your blog. I read only a few posts. I didn't read the comments on this post. Hope what I say isn't a repeat, but it needs to be said just in case. Sorry for filling your comments up, I have some things I want to express, it's long. I will post in sections. :-)
I'm a single mom of 3 teen girls. I know the struggle of raising kids & all the gut wrenching decisions. Some so important & laden with guilt it seems every choice is possibly the wrong one & could severely screw up your children with one wrong turn. I want to encourage you; your blessed children have an obviously conscientious, loving, caring mom! It seems their dad too. At the end of it all, some choices we make for our kids, others we don't get to. Some choices we 2nd guess, question our judgment, and afterward wonder if we harmed our kids. Often we are frustrated with not having a choice, wondering if our kids are damaged. I can tell you know the Lord & want the best for your kids walk with Him. They are in the hands of God, & while you are choosing for them, God loves them. He put a heart of love in you. I know you know all that, but sometimes we need reminders, yes? (see next post)

pondering said...

(continued) Mine are teenagers now. I wrestled with all this & other aspects of parenting when they were little. But God had a plan I didn't imagine nor wrote down on any of my lists of choices; single parenting. Yeah, not on my radar. This led to.one.TINY.income, me working 60 hours a week, my young children in daycare, attending public school, all against my ideas of what was good for them. But those choices were not given to me. But you know, GOD was faithful to us! He worked in & through all of that. I was shaking in fear over the years, but God just held us up. It's amazing. Today my kids are amazing teens who love Jesus Christ, & make me proud every day. It was hard work raising 3 kids alone & still directing their eyes to the Lord, being out of the house so much & still battling exhaustion to be an attentive mom. God put the ability in me, He put the strength in me, He provided for our every need. My 18 year old graduated high school this year, in my 10th year of single parenting. I was so proud of her I thought I would bust open watching her walk in that arena to the tune of Pomp & Circumstance. I wept all over my dress! She graduated from a public high school that I didn't much like. But we did ok, God was with us, even there! She loves the Lord, walks with Him daily, makes good choices for Him. She was an example to the other kids in her school. Had it been up to me, I wouldn't have raised her that way. But God knew what He was doing. My other girls are doing equally well, still younger & a few years of schooling left.
I hope, after reading this, you are encouraged. I will pray for you while you wrestle with this choice. I know you will hear from the Lord & make the right choice for your kids. Seek God & He will bless you in parenting. Also, no schooling choice is permanent, you can make changes over the years. I'm excited to read about a whole & healthy family in the Lord! I know you are thankful for this in your life! It's a rare thing in this messed up world. I know we can trust our faithful God. I have experienced it myself!
Thanks for your patience to read all this. :-) The End!

pondering said...

(continued) Mine are teenagers now. I wrestled with all this & other aspects of parenting when they were little. But God had a plan I didn't imagine nor wrote down on any of my lists of choices; single parenting. Yeah, not on my radar. This led to.one.TINY.income, me working 60 hours a week, my young children in daycare, attending public school, all against my ideas of what was good for them. But those choices were not given to me. But you know, GOD was faithful to us! He worked in & through all of that. I was shaking in fear over the years, but God just held us up. It's amazing. Today my kids are amazing teens who love Jesus Christ, & make me proud every day. It was hard work raising 3 kids alone & still directing their eyes to the Lord, being out of the house so much & still battling exhaustion to be an attentive mom. God put the ability in me, He put the strength in me, He provided for our every need. My 18 year old graduated high school this year, in my 10th year of single parenting. I was so proud of her I thought I would bust open watching her walk in that arena to the tune of Pomp & Circumstance. I wept all over my dress! She graduated from a public high school that I didn't much like. But we did ok, God was with us, even there! She loves the Lord, walks with Him daily, makes good choices for Him. She was an example to the other kids in her school. Had it been up to me, I wouldn't have raised her that way. But God knew what He was doing. My other girls are doing equally well, still younger & a few years of schooling left. (See next)

pondering said...

(last one) I hope, after reading these, you are encouraged. I will pray for you while you wrestle with this choice. I know you will hear from the Lord & make the right choice for your kids. Seek God & He will bless you in parenting. Also, no schooling choice is permanent, you can make changes over the years. I'm excited to read about a whole & healthy family in the Lord! I know you are thankful for this in your life! It's a rare thing in this messed up world. I know we can trust our faithful God. I have experienced it myself!
Thanks for your patience to read all this. Good Bless you! The End! :-)

pondering said...

Wow, sorry about the mess above, ok, that's confusing, I had some trouble posting, got error messages and things. I didn't realize what a mess I was making with my multiple attempts. haha! The whole thing got on there, but wow, good luck weeding through that to make any sense of it huh? It's 5 total paragraphs if that helps.

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