What a Journey, Part 1

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This week a mama sent us her own beautiful homeschooling autobiography. I asked her if I could share it with you. I have edited it here and there to shield her identity. I didn’t do that because she is famous. I simply want to protect her identity for the safety of her family.

I have never met this mama, but her story makes me want to meet her. She sent this story to us because she thought it might help someone. I believe it will. I have divided her story into parts. Today, I share part one of her homeschooling autobiography:

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What a Journey, Part 1
By: A Homeschooling Mama

I heard a saying one time that I feel is fitting as my opening line of this story. The saying went something like “Everyone has a book in them.” Well, not me…or so I have always thought. I am not a writer by any stretch of the imagination and have no aspirations to become one. My writing has been limited to a couple Easter and Christmas plays I wrote for my local assembly to perform, and the occasional quiz over specific material my children have been studying. Other than that, none.

Something I feel is very needful here is to capture the essence of the person writing to you (on a free month trial of Microsoft Office which I will cancel). I am pretty ordinary. I never felt that I had accomplished enough in my 37 years to be interesting enough to write an entire book. Maybe a small leaflet, a pamphlet perhaps, but an entire book…naw, not me! And who would read it? With the colorful social medias and channels and whatever else is out there to allure the eye and captivate the mind…really…me, write about me?

Speaking of me, I am a 37-year-old homeschooling momma of 3. [My daughter] is 14, [my son] is 7, and [my baby] is 23 months. My children are precious in every sense of the word, seriously! I am married to one of the sweetest men God ever breathed life into. [He] and I have been married for 16 blessed years. We live in a little community in [well, I’m not saying 🙂, Charlene]. We live in my husband’s childhood home; it is our little fixer-upper, and it suits all our needs.

I am a stay-at-home momma, which means I wear about 40+ different hats on any given day! My husband works for the City of [her town] Gas Department. He has worked there for 18 years. He loves his hometown and loves working for the city. Being a stay-at-home momma, it is a blessing to know that [my husband] loves what he does. It is not a dread or a burden for him to get up and put his uniform on and go to work. He has seen a lot in his 18 years, but the good has far outnumbered the bad with his job and we are grateful.

I appreciate the people who keep utilities going for all of the rest of us. Gas has come a long way since folks were selling gas water heaters like these. Courtesy Library of Congress, c. 1910.

We are a one income family—literally. We do not earn money from other outside sources. That is really one reason I sit here now typing. I love to read articles in magazines and other sources about homeschooling families and their struggles and triumphs, I love them. Good, honest, heartfelt stories are like a good ‘ol shot in the arm to me and my soul. But lately, I have noticed a trend. I will see articles like “How to homeschool the frugal way” or “Pinching pennies while homeschooling” and something like that will immediately earn you my attention! I will look so forward to sitting down and reading that article only to discover the author is very wealthy, or renowned—simply stated not me.

I will give them the benefit of the doubt and go ahead and skim the article only to see pictures of the family in another country on vacation, and the caption will read: “Our frugal trip to Europe.” Are you for real? If I wrote that article, I would have my children stand in front of the local Dollar General® with a caption that said “This, folks, is a frugal trip.”

The single number one reason . . . or excuse—whatever you want to call it that I get most often from people who desire to homeschool is: “We cannot afford it.” In my mind, I am thinking, “You can’t afford not to.”

So, as I sit here typing like 8 words per minute, I realize I am really not as ordinary as I have always thought I was. Well, I am actually ordinary according to the world’s standards, but I have an extraordinary story to tell. I had a bit of a revelation lately. I realized that more people are searching for the ordinary, the common. If that is you, then lend me your ear. I will tell you my story, as seen thru my eyes and told by me!

So I could really start a number of places and really it would fit right into where I plan to go with my story. I could begin at the very, very beginning and talk about my daddy’s alcoholism and my momma’s very unhappy, unproductive life. Or I could skip forward to my early years and talk about my obsession with working, climbing the corporate ladder, making money, getting educated, etc.…I get tired just thinking about it really. Or I could (and will someday) go to September 2005 when I realized I was hopeless and had no vision. It was then a lady I worked with invited me to church, and I gave my all to Jesus. That is when I found hope, and I gained a whole new vision… but, really that is a whole story in itself, one I want to write very soon!

I want to share my homeschooling journey with you—from start to current day. I can’t write “from start to finish,” because really, do we ever finish? I feel like the Lord has given me a second shot at an education. I did not have parents who invested anything in me. Now to be fair, both my parents worked hard—they tried—they really did. And when I really get down to the grit of it all, my parents are why I am the mother I am today. It wasn’t their parenting skills; it wasn’t their work ethic. I just remember how I always longed to have a momma who would help me with my homework, a dad who would ask me how my day was, parents who took a general interest in my interests, who had dreams of what I could become and shared those with me. But, I did not have that.

So today, I strive wholeheartedly to be that momma I always wanted. I am sure I get on my 14 year old daughter’s nerves, but she understands and is very accommodating. God bless [my daughter]!

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Look forward to more tomorrow. Until then . . .

Therefore humble yourselves
under the mighty hand of God,
so that He may exalt you at the proper time,
having cast all your anxiety on Him,
because He cares about you.
1 Peter 5:6-7

Read Part 2




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