Today I looked down at my kitchen floor and saw a dust bunny. And in that glimpse, I was taken back over a year ago to the fall of 2011. I was a brand-new to homeschooling Mama. Still hurt by people's rebuffs and snarky comments about our homeschooling choice. Still very much insecure in my ability as a mother to also be a teacher.
I was visiting with another homeschooling mother, one who was a veteran in her field. She'd been at this gig for years. She'd found her groove, and her confidence in her educational choices wasn't shaken by mere passing remarks. I needed her imput, and I thrived on her support. It was a visit that would benefit only me, of that I was sure we were both aware.
What she was not aware of was my judgemental spirit that day. Being in her house, I saw unkept corners, a few cobwebs, and some dust bunnies under the couch.( Now, as I was so early in my homeschool experience, I was still trying to do it ALL. Clean, cook, laundry, child maintenance, education, marital attention, zero me-time. I was headed pell-mell for burn out; if I would have only acknowledged it!) I was glad this mother did NOT have it all together; she couldn't even keep her house pristine. 'I wouldn't be this messy; at least my house is cleaner, even if I am afraid of homeschooling!' I thought to myself rather pridefully. I judged her based on DUST, which has no lasting affect on a child's education, anyway! What a foolish woman I was in that moment. Foolish for letting pride grab me, foolish for not letting grace dismiss something so trivial.
I went on in my homeschooling career... growing, changing, finding my way and gaining crumbs of confidence as I went. I gradually blossomed from "this is too big for me" into " we can and ARE doing this, and it is amazing". Its been over a year and a grade and a half later.... along the way I have learned to let go the trivial and embrace the important. To sieze the moments of learning opportunity. To be there in comfort for tears of frustration and glory in "lightbulb moments" where learning really clicks. We are finding our way; we are growing, changing, learning- all of us together.
When I looked down today and saw that dust bunny, I smiled to myself. Silly, foolish girl who knew so little of where this journey would lead. My house is dusty, but my kids are learning. My dishes are rarely all the way done, and we sometimes live the whole week from the laundry basket of clean clothes, but my preschooler is beginning to read- of her own desire. This Mama has learned in the last 15 months; dust can be a sign of concentrated effort, and a focus on the things in life that really matter. I'm learning to be proud of my dust, not ashamed by it!