The dreaded question this week.
Taking the kids to doctors appointments or to run errands during normal school hours is always fun when facing this question.
On Monday the girls had doctor appointments. Farrah is still having breathing problems and Faith has to get her adenoids and tonsils taken out.
As I handed the two little ones suckers and books in their stroller and begged the two older ones to remain quiet until the doctor came in the room. I tried to take control as we all squeezed in the little 3x3 room. In the mean time I was on my hands and knees trying to clean up all the gold fish crumbs off the floor Landen had smashed. That's when Dr. McDreamy came in. Me on my all fours. What a sight!
Dr. McDreamy: Oh, Wow looks like we got the whole crew today?
Me: Yes were all here, Sorry I will get all these crumbs picked up.
Dr. McDreamy: So, no school today kids?
The room gets silent. No one knows what to say. I was to embarrassed by the mess and the way the kids were acting to admit I homeschooled. I so badly wanted to just lie and say it was in service day at school or something but what kind of example would I be to the kids if I lied.
Faith finally answered, "We don't go to school, my mom teaches us at home."
Dr. McDreamy: Oh really!
Me: still trying to get my big pregnant self up off the floor, yep that's me the teacher (feeling like an idiot)
Then yesterday we went to the orthodontist for Austin. He needs braces and surgery to remove his frenum under his upper lip. What's one more surgery right?
As the hygienist peered into Austin's mouth, she made friendly conversation with him. To most others, her line of questioning would be nothing other than small talk, but I stood in the doorway listening, palms sweating and heart thumping, waiting for the conversation to take its usual course.
"So, don't you have school today?" she finally asked. I gripped the doorframe as my son shot me a scared glance and mumbled under his breath, "I don't go to school. My mom teaches me at home."
"Oh, my," she replied and crammed the mirror back between his molars.
My heart skipped a beat as I wondered if all my intentions to give my children the very best in life and education was counterproductive because of the self-esteem they would suffer in explaining it.
Standing there, it struck me that the explanations my children and I have to make about homeschooling are the most difficult part of the whole venture--often harder than the actual schooling itself.
On our way home I asked the kids "Do you know why I teach you at home?" They both looked into my rear view mirror and said, "Because you love us." I said that's right! We continued our conversation by talking about how next time the doctor or grocery store clerk asks the question, "No school today?" We need to simply say proud with a big smile, We Homeschool!