Your Homeschooling Stories: Looking Back

Today I have Michelle from Cotton Tree Homestead sharing with us today. I am so grateful for her wisdom and for her story.

As I sit in the quietness of my room and the darkness around me, I remember back to when my kids were young.  When they ran through the house, chasing each other or the dogs, laughing at the moment.  I remember when I was SO anger the doors were slammed, words were screamed, and my kids were afraid.  So many memories, so much time.  You might say if the walls could talk what would they say.

Would the walls say I am a angry mean mom?  Would they say I have loved passionately?  My kids are older now.  They are adults preparing to launch out on their own.  As I watch them prepare and plan there are thoughts, memories you might say, flood my mind.  What will my kids remember?

I remember back to one year right after we started homeschooling, it was probably my third year of homeschooling.  Jacob, my second to oldest, wanted to see the Harry Potter movies.  Well, that was not going to happen at his age, especially for the younger two.  But then I had an idea.  Why not read the books?  We have the time, and why not?!  For almost a full year the kids and I would sat for hours in our family room reading the Harry Potter books.  Actually I read to them, and they listened.  After each book we would make a huge deal about it and buy the movie.  It was an event!  We would all sit around the tv with our popcorn and drinks to enjoy the climax of reading the book… Seeing it in live action.  It was memories in the making.

I also remember, unfortunately, the days I would get frustrated and angry.  There were times I did not have the patience my kids needed from me.  I was overwhelmed, tired and just plain done.  I did not want to find, or could not find, the release I needed to do the job well.  There are moments I walk through my house remembering yelling because one did not do their homework, instead watched tv or just plain out did not want to do it.   Yet I continued on, and we survived.  My family learned to survive.

At one point I started to develop migraines.  At the time I did not know why.  All I knew was  there were days I could do nothing.  My kids being the survivors they are and were, did what needed to be done.  Jacob, my ever leader, would make lunch.  Grace, my planner, found the shows to watch.  And well, Micheal has always been my youngest and just followed along.  They did and still do call those days Discovery channel days.  Those were days my kids would spend hours, unfortunately, watching shows like Shark week or Planet Earth.  It was a definite moment.

I guess as I look back that’s what I can say.  We had moments.  No they were not all good.  No they were not all bad.  But the one thing I can take away from this is I loved and do love my kids.  I wanted to create a bond with them so they would feel like they could come to me.  I wanted to create a home they felt loved in and welcomed in at all times.  Did I do that?  I hope so… Actually I pray so.  

Someone asked me the other day, would I do it all over again?  Homeschool my kids?  Yes, I would in a heartbeat.  Would I do things differently?  Of course, as we live and grow we learn how to do things differently.  But the one thing stays the same I would want to have the lasting memories of laughing, loving, and crying together.  Of learning to live together, sharing moments whether good or bad together.  

Our life was interesting to say the least, you might even say it was hard.  But the one thing stands for sure I love my kids, I would not change a moment of it, and I am grateful every day that my kids honored me in teaching them and myself about life.

My name is Michelle.  I am first and foremost a child of God.  I am a wife of 20+ years.  I am a mother of    4  adultish children.  Most of all I am a person who wants to learn and grow in God's word. Come visit us at Cotton Tree Homestead.