Friday, May 27, 2016



First of all, let me just start off by saying that I agree with you!!  It really isn't possible for me to be the mother of a high school graduate at the young ole age of just 29!!  Ha!  And yes, I also agree ~ I don't look old enough to have an adult child who is out of high school already!!

You guys are flattering me with the undeserved compliments!  {keep 'em coming}

Yes, it is true - I am now the mother of a HIGH SCHOOL GRADUATE!  Wow!  Just how did that happen?!?!  I still have not fully comprehended the magnitude of it all.

In case you are unfamiliar with our story, we are a homeschooling family.  Yep!  We are "those people" and we LOVE it.  Our children have never been to a public or private institution of learning.  All of their education has been done right here at home with me.

Although homeschooling certainly is not for everyone, it has worked very well for us.  As a matter of fact, my kids recently shared their story on my YouTube channel and talked about how they felt being at home all these years. { receiving the finest education money can buy ;) }  They told about how wonderful of a teacher they have had and how they learned way more than their contemporaries...  {okay, maybe i am putting a few words in their mouths}

The reality is that homeschooling is not always easy.  There are challenging days, indeed.  There are days when, as a mom, you feel so frustrated in your feeble attempts to teach them basic skills that they will need to function in life.  There are days when it takes all you can muster and every ounce of creativity you have just to ensure that they will be able to at a least spell their name or add 2 + 2.  There are days where both teacher and student are cranky.  There are days of frustration that seem as if everything is going wrong.  And there are days - MANY DAYS - of fear and trepidation as you wonder endless thoughts of whether or not you are capable of preparing your child for life in the real world.

On top of all that, there are the constant questions and criticism from those who believe they know what is best for your family even though they have never walked a day in your shoes!  You know the ones I'm talking about.  Those ever-nosey buttinskies that just ain't happy unless they are trying to run everyone's life but their own!  {if you just got offended you probably are one}  The constant barrage of innuendos and snide remarks that would make even the holiest of saints want to walk in the anointing of "laying on of hands" {and not in a prayerful way, if you know what i mean} can be overwhelmingly weighty if you allow them to be.

Now, before you take away the idea that homeschooling is awful and begin feeling sorry for our misguided journey, let me assure you that the good days and positive aspects of homeschooling FAR outweigh the bad!  The satisfaction you feel when your child reads his first word, the joy that fills your heart as you hear her divide how many cookies each member of the family will get after dinner, and the elation that overtakes you as you see their little faces light up when they "get it" cannot even be adequately put into words.  It is such a rewarding feeling knowing the you had a hand in all the "ah ha" moments, and the numerous kisses and hugs are way way better than any paycheck you can bring home from an employer.  {i would have said 'job' but being a full-time mom and teacher IS a job}

All that being said, watching my daughter walk the stage to receive her diploma has a deep and special significance for me. {if you are wondering how she could 'graduate' homeschool, watch their story on YouTube}  Her accomplishment and finalization of high school signifies that, not only did SHE do it, WE did it!  TOGETHER we accomplished what some days felt would be impossible.  WE did it!

Sitting through a high school graduation ceremony is super special for each and every mom. {and dad}  No doubt about it!  All the hours spent helping with homework, trekking back and forth to sporting events, and sitting through poignant parent/teacher meetings keep a parent very involved in their child's educational experience.  However, none of that can even come close to the experience a homeschooling mom (or dad) has in the educational experience of her child(ren) or the emotion she feels as she watches her child receive her diploma.  There is a realization that every single moment of her child's learning has been contingent upon her diligence to provide a well-rounded education that has been true preparation for LIFE.  There was no one else to depend on for her child's development.  There was no one else to blame when things weren't going well.  There was no one to relinquish responsibility to when she was tired and out of ideas.  It's was all on her.  And it felt good!!  

Watching my child achieve such a great accomplishment has brought a plethora of emotions.  Okay, let's be real.  OVERWHELMING emotions!  The realization that my life as a homeschooling mom is changing has hit me like a ton of bricks.  For the past thirteen years, my life has consisted of vowels, consonants, and ALGEBRA!  {okay, so whose bright ideas was that}  Every day my responsibility was tutoring my child.  NOW WHAT?  Life is changing!!  Yes, I do still have one more child to go, so, life as I know it won't cease to exist just yet.  But, my daughter's graduation just means that I am ever closer to changing life-rolls.  I don't know that I am prepared for that! {i am confident i have prepared them for that, but who was preparing me}

My emotions have been all over the place.  I am so proud of what my daughter has accomplished.  I am proud of her diligence to study.  I am proud of her desire to know more and her desire to step out into the big bright world known as THE FUTURE.  I am proud that she is ready.  I am proud that she is capable.  But, I am also sad.  I am sad to send her away to college - not because it will be education she didn't receive from me, but because it means I won't see her everyday.  I won't see those little eyes light up when she "gets it".  I won't be in on those "ah ha" moments.  I will only hear them over the phone and experience them from a distance.  LIFE IS CHANGING!  

So, if you ask me what it is like being the mother of a high school graduate I would say:  IT IS WONDERFULLY FULFILLING YET BITTERSWEET.

I know there are many more memories to make and many more life experiences to share together.  And I also know that every time something big happens in her life I will have had a part in it.

So, baby girl ~ go rock life!  Be all you can be.  Fulfill your destiny.  Obey God and walk in the center of His will.  He has big things for you and YOU CAN DO IT!

A huge thank you to all of you if you made it this far.  Thank you for sitting with me this evening (or afternoon) and allowing me to share my heart with you.   I want you all to remember that you were created for purpose!!  So go be all you can be!!

With Love,
Deena <3 xoxo

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