I was literally speechless when recently my thirteen year old told me if we were to stop homeschooling that I would have nothing to do with my life. He said my whole life is homeschooling and my whole life is my kids.
This is blatantly false.
My husband was there when this was said. We both laughed but I said I was horrified. My husband explained there is a lot I would like to be doing but am not, and a lot I will do once he flies the coop. For now my life is homeschooling and being a wife and a woman and a volunteer. For my own self I learn by reading and listening to lectures in person and online. I do things with my hands such as garden and make soap and make art and take photographs. I do things with my mind like think and talk and discuss and write.
I am an extrovert and spend time doing social things. About once a week my husband and I entertain guests in our home for a big home cooked meal. About two other nights a week we dine at friend's houses or go out to a restaurant for dinner together. There are at least three big parties we attend a month. I do things with friends like attend lectures and go shopping for garden plants or shop for fresh food to make into dinner together that night (men do the cooking most times so they shop with me). If I was not homeschooling I would have even more close female friends that I would pal around with doing errands and having lunch or going places and doing whatever else we wanted. We already travel with friends, and although the friendships may have been made at a child's extra-curricular activity our time together is now apart from that. A couple asked us last night to take a weekend trip to New Orleans (adults only). I would be even more social with in real life friends if I were not homeschooling. I would spend less time online researching and learning about homeschooling and college admissions and I would spend more time focused on whatever I wanted to do for my own self.
My time during the day would be freed up. Guess what would be added immediately? Regular intentional exercise with a related boost in wellness and with weight loss sure to accompany it. Quitting homeschooling would make me a physically healthier person.
Besides starting a cottage business selling things I craft or make I could get a regular job if I were available to work. I told my son I'd probably get a job when he goes to college. My husband protested and said that after all the work I did to raise our kids I deserve to just relax and do whatever I want, even if that included eating bonbons in front of the TV all day.
I shudder to think that my younger son thinks my whole life revolves around him, or his brother. After that my older son has said a couple of things like if I was not the one doing the dishes then what else could I do with my time? I don't know where this is coming from. I think we need to get back to the routines like we had in Connecticut where the kids did the laundry and helped do the dishes and empty the dishwasher and other such things. Since moving to Texas I somehow wound up taking those chores over.
I blog here about homeschooling and parenting but believe me people, I do a lot more in my real life than gets revealed here on the blog.
I understand that kids will not appreciate the parenting or mothering they received until they have their own kids. But at the same time I do not appreciate being looked down upon or as some kind of peon loser. This mothering thing was a temporary gig from day one. I mourned the ending of my career when I left my job and I celebrated the joyous days of early mothering but this parenting teens thing is nothing but a hassle, it's thankless. I will not accept being looked down upon by my own children or being disrespected or (at times) being the victim or verbal abuse. No way.