Archive for the ‘mother’ Tag

The Baby Bird Bond   Leave a comment

Saying goodbye to your high school graduate is difficult for anyone.  I found that out three years ago.

But I wonder if it may be more difficult to release a child into adulthood when you homeschool.

There is no way to take a scientific angle on this, because who can compare the grief and joy different mothers feel?  It doesn’t matter how your child was educated: home, public, private, Montessori, special ed, traditional school, un-schooling, child-led-learning, Catholic, alternative.  You’re going to miss him terribly.  It cannot be avoided.

At the same time, the transition, it seems, must be different when the child has been educated at home.

For one thing, you’ve spent so much time with him.

For another, the process of fledging probably takes place earlier and over a longer period of time if you’re not the primary educator.  I don’t know this, of course, since I never had a child in a school.  I would think that earlier opportunities for the bond to be stretched, and stretched more often, would be common with public school.  If he were getting on a bus every day, it would have been different.

As it was, there were piano lessons and co-op, where he both learned and taught.  Later on in high school there were entomology camp, a summer college class, and volunteering.  But none of these took him away from his siblings and his parents for 8 or more hours a day.

So, we had years of time together.  We watched Monty Python together, listened to classical music on the way to piano.  We sat around in the living room talking.  We went camping for two weeks at a time in a pop-up camper, after the early local experiments with tent camping generated some great stories that I wouldn’t want to actually repeat.

And the same is now true with the younger siblings.  We have a lot of time together.  Sure, it is full and it goes by quickly.  There are activities, therapies and appointments.  But it’s being spent more or less together, which is something you don’t get to experience if the kids are going to school somewhere else.

So it follows that when your bird flies the nest for college or work or the Peace Corps, you’re going to feel it.  The gap.  The missing piece of your life.

Your friend and companion.

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Posted June 6, 2016 by swanatbagend in homeschooling, motherhood

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I don’t know how it happened   Leave a comment

But–I. Am. So. Blessed.

At night when he is ready for bed and has been read to by his dad, my going-on-12-year-old son comes into my daughter’s room and tells her goodnight.  They touch noses by way of friendly greeting.

Sure, he only remembers to knock first intermittently but he’s trying–and that he wants to come in and touch base with everyone in the family before he goes to bed is worth celebrating.

I’m usually there with my daughter talking before I say goodnight to her, and so we both get the benefit of his usually cheerful goodnight.

I don’t remember doing this with my brother.

My mother usually tucked me in at that age; I also have many memories of moments spent together at bedtime with my father when I was little.  But I don’t think I have any memories at all of saying good night to my brother.  I guess we were too inclined to get on each other’s nerves throughout the day to have any wish to wrap the day’s annoyance up with a friendly greeting.  I regret that.

So I am grateful for children who do more than tolerate each other most of the time.  Makes it incredibly pleasant to get to the end of the day and go off to sleep in harmony.

 

Posted December 12, 2015 by swanatbagend in gratitude

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Not as Old as I Thought She Was   Leave a comment

So I realized a few days ago that I am now the same age that my mother was at the time I got married.

I was already aware that my oldest child is close to the age I was when I got married, so I knew in a general vague way that I was technically old enough to have a child doing suchlike adult things as getting married or having children.  I have friends who are grandmothers so there’s no reason I wouldn’t be at that point myself.

However, for some reason, looking back in time twenty-seven years at who my mother seemed to be at the time I got married, is different from realizing that I have a child who is old enough to become married.

I think it’s because your mother is always old and wise.

It’s just that once you become old and wise yourself, you realize that old ain’t old any more.  Wise, sure, but trust me, my age is not old!

But wait a minute–I sure thought of my mother as old and wise when I got married.  I didn’t even really think about it.  I guess I just assumed it.  She knew everything there was to know about being an adult, she was a functioning adult with a thriving career and many interests, who knew how to fix every problem.

But I’m fairly certain I have not gotten there yet.

Which I guess is what makes this so strange to think about.

Posted November 19, 2015 by swanatbagend in identity

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