You can’t have it all. At least not at the same time. I’m not sure who first started selling us the lie that we could have it all… but in modern society, the lie is all around us. Pictures of smiling fathers traveling all over the world for their jobs – no sign of the fact that they are desperately missing their families back at home. Facebook photos of the beautifully decorated interiors of our homes – even though they only look like that briefly before company arrives. Pinterest recipes of delicious meals we serve our families – regardless of the fact that most nights we are shoveling food down our kids’ throats as fast as possible so we can get them to soccer practice on time.
Let’s be brutally honest for a moment. None of us can have it all. There are choices to make in life. Period. And no matter what choices we make in life, whether good or bad, there are different sets of issues that we will face as a consequence.
I know without a shadow of a doubt that leaving my career as a network administrator in order to stay at home and raise our boys was a good one. With that good decision, however, my husband and I have had to face some less than savory consequences. Along with all of the wonderful benefits of being a stay-at-home mom, there are also some hard things we have had to face. Money is much, much tighter on one income. Utility bills are higher since the house is occupied all day long. It’s difficult for me to have alone time. And the list goes on…
When moms choose to have a career outside of the home, there are also many pros and cons. Their family may have more money to work with – but they have to give up precious time with their children. Decisions have consequences, good and bad, no matter how we choose to live our lives.
Choosing to homeschool your children also has a set of consequences that go along with it.
Most of the resulting items are wonderful benefits such as getting to spend more time with your children, being able to teach them about God throughout the day, not having them bombarded by peer pressure, no worries about bullying or school violence, being able to save money on clothes (we all know that the homeschool uniform is pajamas and/or athletic pants, right?!?), being able to teach them in whatever way is best for them, etc.
Even though the decision to homeschool your children is a wonderful one to make, it also has some harder issues that you will need to overcome. Living on one income can be very challenging. There’s no way to escape your children – you are together all day every day. Your house is guaranteed to be messier because people are home using the rooms all day long. There is also a lot of guilt associated with being a homeschool mom. You can’t blame the teacher or the other kids when your child is acting up or when they are struggling to learn something. Much of your free time is spent making lesson plans, researching curriculum, and reading things so that we can better teach our children.
Homeschooling is such a blessing!
I have never regretted our decision for me to quit my job and homeschool our boys. There are days when I wish we had more money or I wish I could sit around for a few hours in the afternoon sipping my mint tea and reading a book for pleasure. It isn’t always easy to homeschool – but nothing worthwhile in life is ever easy.
Homeschooling is hard!
You will have to give up some things in order to homeschool. You can’t have it all. But when it comes down to it, choosing to homeschool is a wonderful decision. It means giving up some things in this life in order to impact your children for eternity.
When you’re having a rough day – or a rough year – and you think about throwing in the towel, remember why you chose homeschooling in the first place. Yes, it is a sacrifice. But it’s the kind of sacrifice you will never regret having made. If you can’t have it all, be sure you are choosing to hang onto what is truly important in this life.
Question: What have you gained by homeschooling your children? What have you lost? If you have any thoughts to share with other parents please leave a comment below.