Thought I’d baby-step my way back with a tiny little blog post….it turns out there’s a really steep learning curve when you’ve been gone three years lol. So this might be even briefer than I anticipated.
I stumbled onto a previous post last week, looking for something else, and I could have cried at the memory; realizing what our life used to be like compared to how it is now. I think, though, that we’re edging back towards calm(er).
In fall of 2020 my second-born was due to start high school. She’d expressed an interest in doing more “real” school, and maybe even going ahead and attending the local high school. I looked into what it would take to transfer her in; it was simple, and I told her so. Then I pulled up a page on the school’s website that included the daily schedule. She took one look at it and went, “Uuuchhh! That’s RIDICULOUS!” Thus ended any thoughts of public high school. (Side note: not quite sure how to spell a noise that sounds a little like coughing up phlegm and a little like “ugh,” but I did my best. 😉 )
Instead, we opted to (deep breath) join a “Homeschool Academy,” which is a little like a co-op except parents don’t have to participate. It offered classes a la carte; she could take as many or as few as she wanted, money permitting. She would be taking pre-algebra and choir: math, because no way am I going to teach high school math, and choir, because she needed something fun to balance out the math. Monday and Wednesday afternoons, from 1:25-3:40, she would be in a Real Classroom.
That sounds so simple, but it really was the beginning of the end for my writing. Brighton Academy had (sneakily lol) moved since we’d looked into it last, and it now involved a 20 minute drive up I-35 to get there. I-35 is possibly my least favorite thing in the world, (in my world, at least), and now I was doing it eight times a week (there and back, there and back, twice a week). My deep anxiety about highway driving rose up to take me down, and I was absolutely exhausted from what looked like the relatively simple task of just driving my kid to class.
In addition to her classes, my youngest was doing more things: Tuesday was a Wild + Free group that met each week (somehow always 30 minutes away), and Thursday was a co-op with friends. By the time Friday rolled around, I was barely willing to get out of pajamas–but wait! When am I going to go to the grocery store? What about a Target run? Doctors’ appointments?? By the end of the second year of classes I was allowing myself time to just sit in the rocking chair in our kitchen and…..Just Sit.
My oldest came to the rescue by burning CD’s of all my favorite songs for what we began to refer to as “The Brighton Drive.” Then they got really creative and did a bunch, catering to the tastes of each one of us (and attempting to introduce us to new songs and bands, with mixed results lol).
Time passes…….my driving anxiety improves, because I’m essentially doing exposure therapy almost EVERY DAY for three years. The co-op with friends comes to a close. The Wild + Free group ends, not very prettily (homeschool moms can be catty, too, y’all). Both the bigs get their driver’s licenses. I have a VERY brief fling with working outside the home. And now, here we are…
In a way, Monday and Wednesdays still look crazy on paper:
- 10:15 Leave for Brighton (I still drive, as my kiddo isn’t keen on highway driving, either)
- 10:40 17-year-old’s geometry class/9-year-old and I go to the library
- 11:40 Leave for home, for lunch at noon
- 1:00 Leave for Brighton again
- 1:25 9-year-old to choir/17-year-old to library
- 2:30 17-year-old to choir/9-year-old to an adventure; usually the park
- 3:40 Heading home
I’m learning, though, two important things: if the rest of the week remains quiet, I can handle this (and by “quiet,” I mean no more than one appointment or outside event–though that doesn’t count any of my girls’ regular theater or dance classes!). And two: if we don’t have to HURRY, school days can almost seem peaceful. Leaving lots of margin in our schedule is vital, but sitting and reading or doing some school work in the library is actually a pleasant, quiet way to pass the time. And three big cheers for a good library and great park being so close by.
Will I be able to keep up blogging? Who knows. We’ll see. But that’s a (not so brief!) explanation of where I’ve been.