Sometimes It’s Ok To Quit

If you follow me on Pinterest or Instagram you’ve probably seen some hints of our homeschooling kick off. But wait, doesn’t Jemma attend preschool? Is Gretchen in some super school mode juggling both preschool and homeschool in the New Year? Nope. Jemma quit preschool.

Let me explain …

At first I felt somewhat guilty about my decision to withdraw Jemma from her school. She loves it. She walks in with a smile and leaves with a smile. She anticipates her school days and has grown so much in her short time in her three year old class. She has little friends and adores her teachers. But still, I felt that tug; that maybe it wasn’t what we should be doing right now. I sat down and whipped out a little pro/con list and did some soul searching to get to the bottom of why I was being tugged in that direction.

And then, I systematically made a choice to quit. It’s different than giving up, we don’t aim to do that around here. But quitting, that’s a logical decision. It’s ok to change your mind. In the fall, preschool fit well into our life. I was just coming out of my motherhood fog (that first year with a baby and 2 year old really did a number on me), Max needed some mama time and Jemma deserved something fun that was just for her. Things are different now though. I guess that goes to show how much life can change in a few months. Seasons come and go. Sunrise, sunset, as they say.
For so many reasons, it’s best that Jemma is at home with Max and I now. Honestly, I missed her when she was away. I want to experience her learning and excitement WITH her. We need some focused time, consecutive days to really hone in on potty learning too. And, she’s still napping and breaking up the week with afternoon preschool ain’t doin’ nobody any good.
Most of all, our long term goal is to homeschool. Dominic and I want to be the primary guides in our children’s learning. We want the freedom for them to follow their passions while receiving one on one attention. It’s our hope to widen their world with a multitude of hands-on experiences and freeing up some tuition dollars and daylight hours will allow for us to begin those adventures now.
I’m sure there will be days where I feel overwhelmed with this decision, but those emotions will be fleeting. I know I’ll always cherish the days I spend with my children, even the difficult, trying ones. And the memories we make, the lessons I teach, the books we read – those will mark our days and make for a full, rich school experience. 
I’m hesitantly excited for this journey to begin and as I learn how to fill this role of “homeschool mom”, I’ll be sure to share any bits of wisdom I come across. For now, want to pass on yours? Links, books, resources, other homeschool mama blogs … comment away!

So far, I’ve loved Matt Walsh’s post on why he and his family are planning to homeschool and The Busy Mom is another favorite of mine for homeschooling tips and motherhood inspiration.

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  1. says

    Congratulations on your decision Gretchen! We aren't quite there yet with Abigail(planning to start homeschool preschool in the fall), but my husband and I were both homeschooled and have nothing but fond memories and feelings about it :) You'll be great.

  2. says

    Awe I am soooo happy you did that! I don't down parents that send their child to public school but I was a homeschool girl at heart. I was allowed for a year but my dad forced me back in. I hated public school. I love the reasons that you want to let her soar. This is just awesome. You rock on mom.

  3. Catherine says

    My best piece of advice is do what works for you. You will find so many opinions about teaching/learning styles, curriculum, timelines, standards, etc. It can be overwhelming. Nobody knows your family better than your family…and what teacher out there can have the time & love for them that you do?Best wishes! I pulled my 3 year old son out of preschool five years ago and don't regret our time together at all.

  4. says

    Good for you. Preschool is so rigid today. Babies need time to play. The preschools I have seen recently have a curriculum like kindergarten, and the kindergarteners I have seen are no more prepared when they go to preschool as when they have attentive parents.

  5. says

    Nice! We pulled my daughter out of second grade over Christmas break and are now homeschooling her too. Bonus: my just turned 5 year old insists on doing school right along with us and in just a few weeks has already learned to write all his letters and numbers and is adding! We have been working toward this goal since the day she started kindergarten and it feels so good to finally be able to follow through. Congratulations to you and your family as well. :)

  6. ThatMamaGretchen says

    It must be something about Christmas break that makes us mamas think "what if there was no school and we were always home" :) Happy to know another mama who made the transition mid-year like us! I totally see Max learning alongside Jemma – right now he's just kind of messy, but he is VERY interested in exactly what she is doing.

  7. says

    Congratulations on your decision. My husband and I recently decided to start preschool homeschooling in the upcoming months, as well. We are still uncertain of whether I will continue homeschooling them once they reach the conventional kindgergarden age- I suppose I have a lot of time to research and work on homeschooling before we have to come to that decision. After all, Elliot only JUST turned three last month, right? I look forward to reading your homeschool posts/tips/etc.

  8. ThatMamaGretchen says

    You do have lots of time to decide! I'm definitely taking it one week/month/year at a time :)