Worried about getting your kid to college?
Join the club.
You’re definitely not alone. Lots of parents worry about that, too. After all that work, you want some guarantee your kid’ll be rewarded. Sheesh, you worked hard, right?
I felt exactly the same way.
In my brain, I knew it was possible, cause everybody said it was. But, in my heart, I couldn’t help worrying something might go wrong. Would I forget something terribly important? Would I do something seriously wrong?
Me: “I can see it now. The one thing I forget will be the exact thing that costs my kid a college education.”
The truth is, it wasn’t until after I got a kid into college, that I started to feel better. And by the time another one got in, I was feeling pretty good.
What I’m saying is, I think we all feel like that to varying degrees. But, since homeschooling really does work, your kid will get to college, too.
Now for that dose of realism I promised.
Just because your kid gets in to college, doesn’t mean it’ll be easy. The road to college can be pretty hard work.
Your kid is doing the actual school work, but you’ll have a lot to juggle. Even more to keep track of. Your printer will smoke. Your files will bulge. Most days, your brain will hurt a little. Some days, it’ll hurt a lot.
Your kid’s work gets harder, so you can forget trying to understand everything he’s doing. Plus, since he’s doing so much on his own anyway, you never get the chance to witness it all. This leaves you puzzled some days wondering if anything got done at all, or if anything was done well.
At some point, you’ll realize your kid just got smarter than you, and suddenly it’s much harder to figure out how he’s doing in school. You’ll hold on to those answer keys to save your life, because they are, and at times, you’ll feel even more inadequate than you already do.
You’ll doubt yourself pretty much the whole way. By the time they reach graduation, you might even feel like the oldest and possibly lame-est parent there ever was. You’ll reach the finish line out of breath and exhausted.
And then you’ll celebrate. Because it’s over. And then you’ll cry. Because it’s over.
And by the way, you will forget something. It might be important, too. Which will result in some major back-peddling for a while. Maybe a lost opportunity or two. But, you’ll recover, and so will your student. And there will be plenty of other opportunities, and plenty of other things you didn’t mess up, which miraculously work to balance out the ones you did.
And you won’t be perfect. At least not for your first born. So, you’ll correct those mistakes for your second child, still feeling sorry for what-you-did-to-the-first. But you’ll survive that, too. And your kid will still appreciate everything you did to get him there. He’ll understand the reasons for the omissions and the mix ups. Cause he’s been living with you for a long time. So, he already knows you have his back, and always will.
Through it all, the important lesson here is that the system is big enough, and colleges are (usually) forgiving enough, and opportunities are plentiful enough, that there will still be room for your kid somewhere. Somewhere he’s happy with. Doing pretty much what he wanted to do there.
And it will all work out.
Dr. Marie-Claire Moreau is a college professor who traded in her tenure to become a homeschool mom 20+ years ago. The founder of many homeschool groups and organizations, she works to advance home education, and is an outspoken supporter of education reform coast to coast. Her book, Suddenly Homeschooling: A Quick Start Guide to Legally Homeschool in Two Weeks, is industry-acclaimed as it illustrates how homeschooling can rescue children and families from the system, and how anyone can begin homeschooling within a limited time-frame, or with no educational background whatsoever. A liaison for regional school-to-home organizations and a homeschool leader in Florida, Marie-Claire also mentors homeschool families nationwide. A conference speaker, she has appeared at FPEA, H.E.R.I., Home Education Council of America, and many other events. She currently writes for audiences at Quick Start Homeschool, which she founded in 2010, and as a guest writer on other sites as often as she can. Her articles have appeared in CONNECT magazine, on Homefires, at Circle of Moms, and she has contributed to hundreds of other blogs nationwide. Dr. Moreau can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.