Written by Jamie Martin, editor of Simple Homeschool and writer at Steady Mom
Dear Trishna, Jonathan, and Elijah:
I’ve watched the school bus go by for years now–sometimes with envy, longing for a bit of extra “me” time and a bit less responsibility.
Lately, though, I watch it through the early morning fog–with a deep sense of rejoicing.
You mean, we get to do this…together? The learning, the living, the loving–all of it?
It’s almost too good to be true.
You spend your inspired work time each day writing and illustrating books, always the same characters. You read with such expertise now–a book in hand or nearby often.
You learned to tell time recently, combining your newfound confidence in counting by fives with the bedside clock your dad and I gave you for your last birthday. The rest of math doesn’t come quite so naturally yet, but never fear.
There are more important lessons to learn right now–your four years spent in an orphanage have gifted us with perspective. We know what really matters. You’ve started learning, much later than most, the basics of love and family. We step forward and back again in this dance of knowing (and trusting) each other. I don’t have to tell you that I often have no clue what I’m doing, but that’s okay.
The important thing is that we are doing it–together.
I see myself so strongly in you, little yet-wanting-to-be-big one. You astound me with your confidence, your compassion, your loyalty. You’re a visionary in the body of an eight-year-old boy, and that’s hard sometimes, but it’s mostly beautiful.
You have grown in maturity lately, and are desperate for responsibility. I’m reminded again how you live up to your name, “God’s gift,” as I watch you grab the vacuum and clean without being asked. You have a voracious appetite–for food, for knowledge, for books, for life.
Often I don’t know how to answer all your questions or how to nurture your many ideas. You’re used to me saying, “I’m not sure, but I’ll think and pray about it.” And though it’s tough to keep up with you, I’m thankful that you have all these hours to come up with ideas…this time to dream.
So thankful that we get to do live our dreams–together.
You’re on the cusp of reading now, and I watch as you slowly string sounds and words together. It’s painful at times, for both of us, but we praise and high-five over your progress.
You are all boy–physical, strong, energetic–and have just recently become interested in sitting down to focus. Your new passion for all things airplane motivates you to pore over books, pictures, and facts. It’s fun to have a front-row seat at this transformation.
I love that you’ve been able to choose–that you haven’t been rushed, you haven’t been labelled. The thought of attempting to teach you all you need to learn is scary, but I wouldn’t have it any other way.
We’re traveling life’s bumpy roads–together.
I see all three of you from the kitchen window now, climbing the grassy hill behind the house. All of you trying to sit on the tiny tree swing at once–always together, for better or for worse.
I’m amazed at this unfolding path God has us on, wonder what He thinks as He sees the eclectic group we make as a family. Nothing but faith in the impossible could have launched us on this educational path.
But the thing you’ve already realized, sweet children of mine, is that your mother is an impossible-believing optimist.
And in spite of the challenges, the fears, and the messes, my heart beats proudly about the rightness of who we are…the rightness of the ways in which we live and learn–together.
You are loved, wanted, appreciated, and cherished–forever.
How has homeschooling brought your family together?
This post originally published on September 17, 2012.