For the past 4 years, I have greeted the school year in different ways.
Some years I have tearfully said good-bye at a public school or a private school.
And, I have also faced my children as "their teacher," armed with trepidation and forced optimism.
I have done it all in my short time as a Mom of 4 kids...
Public, Private, and Home School.
And each year I have been faced with unique challenges that are not any less demanding.
At the risk of sounding melodramatic, I don't mind telling you that I have worried about which educational model will serve our children well, and give us peace as we raise them to (hopefully) be great human beings.
No matter which mode of education you are choosing for your children this year, may I offer you some encouragement and a little advice?
Do your best.
I know that if you are anything like me, you may be second guessing your decisions, and worrying that where your children go to school this year will scar them for life. (I get it).
However, we must not second guess the powerful voice we possess in raising our children with purpose and intention.
When you send your children to public school, you know that your involvement is highly important.
When you send your children to private school, you know that your involvement is highly important.
When you send your children to the dining room table for school, you definitely know that your involvement in highly important!
As parents we must allow the weight of responsibility to settle in on us.
When we brought these children into the world, we knew we would take great care in their upbringing.
For some of us, that will mean carefully planning their lessons, their meals, and their recess.
For others of us, that will mean sending them into a well-manicured, private school where scholastic excellence is a top priority.
And for others of us, that will mean saying goodbye to a big yellow bus that will carry
our children to the public school nearby.
Each of those options are good ones, and our desires for our kids are the same.
We care about our children.
We want them to be safe.
We want them to be well-educated and adjusted.
I can assure you that I have had great experiences in each of the ways my children have been schooled.
I have loved different parts about each of them, and this year will be no exception.
I resolve to parent them to the best of my ability, and encourage a great scholastic experience.
The weight of responsibility remains on my shoulders.
I will tuck them in at night, kiss their foreheads, and pray over their precious little faces.
I will wake them each morning, feed them breakfast and teach them a lesson on why we don't "act grumpy, even when we feel grumpy."
I will christen each school day with a hug and a prayer.
I will sit beside them at the kitchen table and help them understand their math paper.
I will tell them to clear that table and help me set it, because that's what responsible human beings do...they help even when they don't want to.
I will savor moments around the dinner table as we talk about important things like why good friendships matter, and why we help people who are in need.
I will teach them hard lessons about life, love and sacrificial giving.
I will model respect, honor, and hard work in front of them.
I will speak kindly of others, and will encourage them to do the same.
I will make mistakes in front of them, and will say I'm sorry.
And, most of all, I will love them with everything I have within me.
Because at the end of the school day, no matter where most of it was spent, our children are looking at us...
May we encourage each other to be the best parents we can be.
May we model grace and understanding with parents,teachers, and kids.
May we teach our kids to walk with courage and kindness no matter what form of schooling they have enjoyed.