Friday, February 26, 2010

Snow day and selfish

It's a snow day today. The first snow day this winter. Yes, and we've had 90 inches this winter. So the snow plows and road crews know what they are doing. But today, we have a day to enjoy being home together. My husband even has the day home...rare, indeed! We've got the three kids of our own plus a buddy of my 7 yr old son's. We were all out playing and building a massive snow fort in the backyard, made with recycling bin-packed snow. Pretty cool. Maybe I'll try to snap a pic. (And here you go.)

I've got to start lunch for the crew soon. Maybe left over soup. I made a delicious soup last night. I love soup and crusty bread, especially in the winter. The soup is curried roast butternut squash with coconut milk and ginger. If that doesn't sound good to you, there's something not right with your taste buds.

It's pretty cool that I have gotten a few comments on this blog of mine. I got an interesting comment regarding homeschooling. The comment was referring to a post I wrote about freaking out that my kids wouldn't be able to get through high school with this FS life. At least not traditional high school. I wrote that (essentially) I couldn't imagine sending my kids off to boarding school, sending my husband off to Iraq or homeschooling my kids.
The comment reads:
"In my opinion, homeschooling isn't that scary of an option. Your kids won't turn into booger-eating weirdos, just weirdos (I was homeschooled for 8 years, and I don't eat my boogers). Seems like most people have strange perceptions of what it involves and who does it. I just know that personally I felt like it was the best education I ever got and also allowed me to develop a better relationship with my mother."

That's funny. The boogers part. I'm 38 and booger comments still make me laugh.

I appreciate the comment. I appreciate the sentiment. I have great respect for homeschoolers. I mean it. And I would and could homeschool if necessary. The thing is, I don't want to. I don't want to *have* to. Maybe I'm selfish. Is it selfish to want a career, activities and interests of my own? Am I selfish because it doesn't really thrill me, intellectually speaking, to do the laundry, cooking (other than that rockin' soup!), cleaning and managing of the household? Is it selfish that I don't want to teach the three kids full-time on top of everything else?

Don't get me wrong.
I love my children and husband. I have been home for nine years taking care of the family. And I wouldn't trade it for anything. It was my choice. I decided this was what I wanted to do. But now, my daughter (the youngest of the three kiddos) is 5 and in kindergarten for half the day. I am enjoying the longer stretches of quiet, of having solitude and time to be me, alone. Ah, just me and the laundry. sigh.

Before having kids I was a teacher. An art teacher. But the teaching part was more to pay the bills. To be honest, I didn't *love* teaching kids in the public schools. All that constant challenging of my authority was exhausting. It was more management of kids and less art. I've taught adults too, and that's fun. But my love is art. Making art. Seeing art. Talking to people about art. But mostly making art. I have undergrad and graduate fine art degrees. I'm good at art. I used to be anyway.

I know women aren't supposed to say this, but, I'm looking forward to having something besides my family to keep me busy. I'll homeschool if I have to. But I really would rather be an artist, and maybe even an art teacher, just not teaching all the subjects, all the time. Is that selfish?


Brian... said...

I would say that is totally fair. And actually, I would have to be in just the right situation to do it with my kids. Luckily I have at least seven or eight years before that even becomes an issue. Even then, it would need to be a joint decision (something that is also foreign to this young man).

I just wanted you to know I'd definitely rank it ahead of "sending them away." Although maybe after three kids I would put "sending them far away, just for the school year" at the top of the list.

I'm sure that no matter where your kids go to school you will teach them not to pick their nose (in public). And hey, if you get them to brush their teeth and shower once in a while your kids will be the creme of the crop. Good luck!

Shannon said...

OK first I have to say I really thought I was loosing it, I was reading the first edition of this post on Wednesday and tried to comment and it vanished. I am relieved it is back and I am not crazy.

Second this post really touched me. I too am a former teacher (elementary with a science specialization) I have four boys the oldest is graduating high school this year and the youngest starting Kindergarten next year, although I did put him in a preschool program this year in the name of my sanity. We are going to Malawi this summer where I will have more household help than I am sure what to do with. I am really looking froward to having the opportunity to follow my own interests. No I don't think it is selfish to take advantage of this chance. It is an opportunity that too few people have. Run with it, and I am looking forward to seeing some of your art on the blog in the future.

Shannon said...

Oh I forgot to say I want that recipe! Sounds just wonderful.

Denise said...

I put up a post just the other day about rediscovering me. As a parent, sometimes you are too busy to remember you. It's not selfish to want "you" time and in the long run, it makes everyone happier

Anonymous said...

NOT selfish! Happy, wee-adjusted kids are the product of parents making thoughtful decisions about not only what's good for the kids, but what's good for the parents. You have to be happy, too. If you're not, your kids will know no matter how much you try to hide it, and any benefit they may get from you making a choice solely based on them without a thought to your own happiness will be outweighed by the shadow of a mom with regrets they can feel. Indulge your passion-everyone will be richer for it.

FS, here we come! said...

Thank you everyone. Such supportive comments. :-)