It's official. My 16 year old princess, who has homeschooled since kindergarten is a freshman in college. Her books arrived in the mail today. Melody is working toward a bachelor's degree in business administration. I am so proud right now that I can hardly stand to be around myself.
For the benefit of my homeschooling friends, I would like to share a few things that I have learned from over 10 years of homeschooling my first born princess.
1. In the early years, even I thought that I may have lost my mind when I withdrew Melody from school, I knew in my heart that this was right, even if it didn't make sense at the time.
2. Purchasing curriculum has been a non issue. The Lord has provided richly, and we have always managed to have what we need at any given time.
3. There are people in our lives that have made their best efforts to make me angry, and have tried to shame me into throwing in the towel. Guess what? I learned that I am tougher than I thought, and can forge ahead, even through my own tears.
4. Even homeschooled kids don't always do what they are told, but discipline is part of the educational experience.
5. A social life is important, but I'm still not convinced that "socialization" is the correct word, simply because it is a word that is often thrown around by some very uncouth people. Sure, they miss out on some things by being homeschooled, but public schooled kids also miss out on some things by being public schooled. We took the road less traveled, and it led to great things.
6. A mother absolutely can create a high school transcript. If she can fill in the blanks, then she can manage quite well. After all, if said mother was public schooled, then she has had lots of practice in the art of filling in blanks.
7. I have two more princesses on this journey. Can I handle another 15 years or so of this? The truth is that it gets easier with practice.
8. If you are new to homeschooling, be prepared to be told by people that have no jobs that you are too lazy to send the kids to school and get a real job. Be prepared to be told by people that have dropped out of high school that your kids HAVE to go to school like everybody else. Don't be surprised when people who have never been to college tell you that online college isn't "real". Learn to hold yourself back when parents of pregnant teens, mini alcoholics and drug addicts tell you that your kids are missing out on the real world.
9. ANYTHING THAT IS WORTH DOING IS HARD.
10. I wouldn't trade this experience for anything, and am very grateful to God, and to all of our friends and family that have climbed this uphill battle with us.