I saw a post on Facebook recently of a sweet friend of mine who was having a rough homeschool day. She was asking questions about what curriculum to use, what schedule they should have, just how to do this thing called homeschooling successfully. My heart immediately went out to her because I SO remember those same questions driving me insane the first few years of homeschooling my kids. And then it hit me that I have somehow, without even realizing it, become one of the (gasp!) "older" moms who is now a seasoned veteran and can actually offer some words of wisdom.
I remember desperately clinging to advice from every other homeschooler, thinking that at some point I would find some very obvious, black and white, right and wrong of homeschooling, some curriculum we could use or schedule we could stick to or style of learning we could passionately embrace that would ensure that each of my children knew everything they needed to know when they needed to know it and would definitely graduate Rodgers University as these impressive, super smart scholars. I was sure there was some secret out there and if I found it, everything would run smoothly, everyone would love learning, we would all have the Bible memorized from Genesis to Revelation, and I would be the confident teacher who always knows what she's doing. But the black and white answers seemed to elude me. Everyone I asked was using a different kind of curriculum, each family had a different kind of schedule. Where were my definite answers??? I wrote in my prayer journal one morning that I wish I had a fly on the wall who could watch my homeschool day and then offer pointers about what I was doing right, what I was doing wrong, and what all I needed to change. Almost immediately I heard God say, "I AM the fly on the wall!! I see your day!! Ask ME!" Duh. And as I began asking Him each day, He finally began to reveal the "secret" to me.
Sweet Momma, there really is no secret. There is no perfect curriculum, perfect schedule, perfect plan. Just when you find that something works, your children will move into different stages or something new will happen in your life and what works will change. Try to be okay with that. Try to be accepting of the fact that life evolves and is ever changing. So are your kids. It is okay to use Abeka this year and Apologia next year. It is okay to try unschooling for awhile and see if that fits. It is okay to join a Classical Conversations group and memorize facts if that's what works. It is okay to use a Charlotte Mason approach with one child and a classical approach with another. The God who formed each of those children in your womb (Psalm 139- and don't miss the fact that He chose YOUR womb in which to form THAT child- and He always knows exactly what He is doing), wants to help you each day. Your family is unique from every other homeschool family on the planet. Trying to look like any other family will only be exhausting and a waste of time. Ask the God of Heaven what He wants YOUR family to look like, and you won't go wrong. James says that we can ask Him for wisdom and He will give it! "The Lord says, 'I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.'"-Psalm 32:8 "The Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives!. . . He holds them by the hand." -Psalm 37: 23, 24b. Each day His goodness and mercy follow you and your sweet babies (Psalm 23), and each day He pours out His unfailing love upon you and your babies (Psalm 42:8a). He is faithful. Trust Him!