I rarely air my grievances anywhere I write online, but today I'm sharing a story with you because I think you may be experiencing the same thing I have, and I want you to know that you, homeschooling mom, are remarkable, even if no one ever tells you so.
I homeschooled our two oldest sons entirely. Yes, they took community college courses, online AP courses, and one did a year in Classical Conversations, but from preschool to high school graduation, it was all me guiding their education.
I taught them to read, and they were both above "grade level" from the moment they read their first Pathway readers. One graduated high school with a semester of college already under his belt. The other is a self-proclaimed non-academic whose college scholarship money just went up last month because his freshman year grades at his university were so good. They are curious, intelligent young men, but the fact is, their teacher from preschool all the way through to high school graduation was me.
Our third son entered a homeschool hybrid charter high school in his junior year. He's played basketball and baseball, taken art classes, trudged through chemistry, made the honor roll, and generally thrived. It's been a great fit. From preschool to his junior year of high school, it was all me, guiding, teaching, coaching.
Our fourth child, a daughter, is also at the charter homeschool hybrid high school, and last semester she hit the highest honor roll level because of her 4.0 GPA. She also plays basketball and softball, and she sings in a children's choir that performs with the symphony, touring Broadway stars, and the opera company. From preschool through her freshman year of high school, it was all me, too.
About an hour after the awards ceremony held this past January in which both she and her older brother were awarded for their honor roll status and athletic participation, a homeschooling friend who was there texted me and said, "Congratulations to your kids tonight! Great job, mom!"
Friends, I cried. No one, save my husband who is the world's best cheerleader, has ever told me, "Good job!" No one has acknowledged the work, the hours, the sacrifices, or the successes. Instead, I've had family members question my methods, hint about socialization (all the while really enjoying my kids - irony), and inspect their high school diplomas to see if they were "real". What an insult.
I'm passionate about homeschooling because I know it works. My adult kids have had terrific job opportunities born out of their hard work and keen personalities (socialization - don't get me started) and my high schoolers are sought after in both friendships and activities. They're not perfect; they have struggles with faith and relationships and the stuff that trips up all of us in real life. I'll keep doing what I know to be a terrific way of life and education, regardless of whether anyone ever acknowledges anything, but here's what I want you to hear:
Good job, mom! Good job! I am so amazed by your ability to do all you've done - to raise lovely children, to maintain a household, to choose curriculum that suits your family and create routines that make all the plates spin, to teach and coach and encourage, to carve out time to love people well, and to be faithful, hard-working, and brave. Good job!
(If no one ever realizes what a massive thing you are doing and cheers you on, return to this post.)