“How do you do what you do?”
The question took me aback. I didn’t know what he meant… “Oh…you mean how do I homeschool?”
“Yes,” he said, as he looked at me in amazement.
My chiropractor had just commented on how I should sleep at night, and when he mentioned my “husband” I had to tell him I wasn’t married. I had forgotten I had told him that my son, who had been a patient of his for a month, was homeschooled. I also had forgotten how strange my life must seem to others.
I told him that I work from home and have an internet business. He was impressed. I left that day with the memories of our seven years of homeschooling swimming around in my head and began wondering myself how I do what I do.
It’s pretty simple, really. I take one day at a time. But of course, what people really want to know is how I can afford to. After all, married couples with two incomes “can’t do it,” so how could a single mom?
I’m very fortunate to have started an internet business when I really didn’t need to. As a matter of fact, at the time I did not know why I was doing it. I just knew I should, and so I did. So by the time I needed it for income, the income was there. It now supports us, but God provides. Sometimes I receive child support, but when I don’t, God increases my business. It all just works out, just as it always has, as far as I can think back.
If I had not started my internet business, I would still find a way. There are so many things you can do, such as tutoring, cleaning houses, babysitting, or if you have a career skill like programming, accounting, or copywriting; these are all things you can do from home. For a time, I took in two other homeschoolers and received a small amount of money for teaching them, and I also babysat two others daily in order to make ends meet. For one year, we lived in a two bedroom duplex that looked like it would collapse with the next heavy rain. Strangely, that was one of my favorite years!
Since we do not have any family in the area, it is also my responsibility to drive two children to activities almost daily. We have participated in swim team, baseball/softball, basketball, football, cheerleading, dance, gymnastics, Taekwondo, musical theatre, soccer, and don’t forget the homeschool co-op! Our schedule is crazy, and it’s all on me to get kids SOMEwhere, sometimes at the same time. (Did I mention I also coach soccer and softball?)
In about ten years, both of my children will be on their own career paths. They may be out of my home. Those ten years are going to fly by even faster than my past forty-one have. So while I have them in my care, I feel it is my job to allow them to spread their wings, try new things, and explore God’s world and all it has to offer. They are hindered from this if they are in school all day.
How do I do it? I just do.
I’ll have time to rest later.
This composition was sitting on my desktop, waiting to be edited for over a week. I read it over and laughed and cried at the same time. A few days after writing this, my children's father called to say he had quit his job. In one fell swoop my income dropped tremendously. I had been here before, but I had gotten comfortable at our income level and forgot to watch the pennies and nickels for just this scenario. I have been in a panic for the past week. Will things work out? How will they? What will we have to give up? All I know is that we will carry on and God will sustain us UNTIL. And that's all I really need to know...