Last week, I was exchanging messages with a few close friends and sharing with them my current situation particularly, parenting stage. Updating them, rather, as I try to keep myself together after I started doing a countdown to September 7. These are my friends who know that our eldest, Arielle, will already be in college, but she will not be going to any of the local universities here in Manila. She has her eyes set on pursuing Animation and Mike and I fully support her in sending her to a college abroad that seems to be a perfect fit to her creative personality and homeschooled lifestyle and kind of learning. SCAD Hong Kong will be her home for the next 9 months, at the very least.
Anyway, my chat with a few of my friends was lightbulb moment of some sort. I can’t seem to think of a one-word to describe that moment when I was in the zone of processing my thoughts and the parenting stage that I am in and at the same time, also understanding the honest feedback and reaction of my friends. But the mere update and chat we had HIT ME. HARD. And that’s why I’m writing this.
When I tell my friends and even acquaintances that Arielle will be leaving in a few weeks for Hong Kong to start her college life, most , if not all of them, give me the same reaction.
“Are you ready???”
“Di ko kaya ‘yan! (I won’t be able to handle or take that! OR “I can’t!!!)
“No! I want to keep my babies forever!”
Like, do you really want to keep your children forever?!! To be honest with you, that reaction did cross my mind and made me pause a bit. But I can’t wait to see them happily and successfully settled down with a job or career that pays for their rent, utilities, and food!
Thinking deeper after receiving those reactions and comments with the same tone, a quick flashback of our decision to homeschool flashed in my mind (in just like minutes!). I suddenly began to ask myself “Isn’t it more logical to have your children around and with you when they are babies, toddlers, in their growing up years, when they are tweens and teens, and release them and let them go when they reach the age of 17 or 18 years old, after you’ve trained them well enough and have given them roots then wings? Then, a followup thought immediately came, “Why are you keeping them in the house when they should be in school?” It was one of those popular questions I was often asked by people who wonder why we are homeschooling our girls. One of those most asked questions where I didn’t want to sound exasperated every time I would give an answer. Thinking about these questions and reactions indeed showed me that there many things, beliefs, principles that go against the majority and the world. Education, learning, parenting are a few of them.
Well, of course, I am speaking as a homeschool mom who’s currently on our 10th year to homeschool. Call it defensive, but I’d like this post to come across as a statement of who we are and what we believe in. I am merely sharing a decision we’ve made 10 years ago and that lifestyle choice we continue to make. I am not putting down anyone who do not agree with me and our unpopular decision. Rather, I am hoping that this written piece will just give everyone a chance to really pause and think about the different choices they’ve made and where those choices have brought them.
Everyone in our family loves homeschooling and are happy with it! We continue to reap and enjoy the many advantages and blessings it brings.
I honestly do pray that wherever you are right now, you are happy and at peace for making those choices.