Marriage, Family, & Homeschooling in the Military {Part 1}

In light of tomorrow, June 10, 2011, being our 11th wedding anniversary, I wanted to share how homeschooling, our marriage, and family life are intertwined. 

If you told me 11 years ago that I would be a homeschooling stay-at-home mother, I would have laughed. Laughed again. Then laughed some more. To be honest, I might have even said a few “choice” words about what my idea of homeschooling was. And tell you that it was NEVER for me. That was then. This is now.

I started “homeschooling” Princess from day 1. I was always reading to her (in the womb and out), speaking to her as an adult. Showing her letters and numbers. Singing to and with her. Sharing life with her. Loving her. She was my first baby and all my time outside of my marriage and alone time with God – was with her. At first my husband thought it was a little strange that I would spend so much time reading to an infant that seemingly was paying no attention. Don’t get me wrong, daddy read the Bible to his little girl every night since we knew she was conceived, but he did it while she lay asleep. He didn’t really see the point of reading to an infant and would begin to talk at times while I was reading to her – as if she was not getting anything out of it. But soon, he saw that something very special was happening. There was no denying it. 

By the time Princess was 1-year-old, she was speaking in complete sentences (I have LOTS of home video showing it), writing her name and demanding that I read to her for HOURS (and I MEAN HOURS) at at time. Because I was at home, I could do this – and I wanted to do it. Thus began her obsession and LOVE for reading. I know some of you reading this might think, “That’s great, but my child is not like that.” Well, you are right. No two children are the same. No two children learn alike. But ALL children DO respond when time and love is sown into their hearts. It provides them with the assurance that they CAN do anything they put their hearts and minds to. 

Michael really did not have too much to do with Princess’ love for learning at first because he worked hard long hours during the day and sometimes well into the night. But that was okay with me. I understood that our roles in her life at this time were very different. I was her mother, her comfort, her confidence, and her teacher. Her daddy played a role that I could never play – he was and always has been her heart. Daddy has always modeled what it means to love God to her (and all of our family) by quietly and consistently “walking” out his faith in Jesus. Daddy has always prayed and spoken the Word of Truth (the Bible) over all of his children and wife. Daddy has kept our family bonded through the love of Jesus – the only real love that exists in this world. 

I must admit, after September 11, 2001, our lives were forever changed. My husband felt a call to duty – he wanted to join the US Army to help defend his country. At this point, Princess was only 5-months-old, and unbeknownst to her, her life was about to drastically change. Her daddy was going away to train for a year and then off to a war that he would return to time and time again. And so it was, on January 29, 2003, daddy was shipped off to boot camp and training and we wouldn’t see him for 11 months.

After his training was complete, we were reunited with Michael at our first duty station in Fort Drum, NY. One thing I knew is that I wanted him to become more involved in Princess’ education. By this time she was already 2 and was well along in her preschool curriculum. But this was something that did not happen quickly. I had to realize that although he never stopped loving his daughter, he had been alone – apart from her for the last 11 months – and being a father was not on the itinerary for his training. It was hard. It was hard on him, hard on Princess, and hard on our marriage. But with God’s help we got through it.

It took Michael some time to regain his daughters trust, but that time came and it was a joyous thing to see to say the least. Princess and Michael were like peas in a pod, just like it was before he want away. But unfortunately the orders came, and daddy was gone again, this time to war in Iraq for year.

TO BE CONTINUED…..

Daddy and Princess on her 10th birthday April 2011
Read the complete story:

Marriage, Family, and Homeschooling Part 1
Marriage, Family, and Homeschooling Part 2
Marriage, Family, and Homeschooling Part 3
Marriage, Family, and Homeschooling Part 4
Marriage, Family, and Homeschooling Part 5

Comments

  1. says

    Hi, there, fellow writer. We were posting right next to each other in the Homeschool Lounge's Writer's Group so I thought I would check out your blog. It looks wonderful and your story is marvelous. Unfortunately for me, I have to go sell my priceless heirlooms, er – worthless junk – at my yard sale, so I will come back later and read some more.
    Melyssa from http://www.thedazeofus.blogspot.com

  2. says

    I can't believe I homeschool and have always homeschooled my children. I remember when I first heard about it, how crazy I thought it was. "I would never want to stay home all day like that," I told myself.

    Now I find myself doing things and I think," So I call myself a homeschooler?"

    Glad to have found you.

  3. says

    Thanks for sharing your story! I can't imagine the challenges you all have faced over the years. Praise God for his work in marriages and in our children's hearts. I love hearing stories of how other families started homeschooling. Thanks for sharing!

  4. says

    We are a military family as well and it is always so encouraging to hear from other military families that are homeschooling. Thanks for sharing your experiences here and encouraging all of us other homeschoolers on this crazy, fun, exciting (and sometimes scary) journey.

  5. says

    Wow, loving this story, can't wait to read more. I so identify with your first 3 sentences. Funny how God can change a heart and a mind, just when you don't see it coming. He pulled me out of the muck and mire and set my foot upon a Rock. I was 31 and living life for me, which was no life at all. He is faithful! Now I am married with 3 boys and I homeschool. Thanks for sharing.

  6. says

    I relate with Mrs. O. Also, I am pleased to follow Carlie. Look her up on Pinterest–that’s where I initially found her. Then I found her on Facebook–she’s like God’s art. They say that the test of quality for a piece of artwork is that feeling of wanting to get closer to it to examine it. So, seeing her on Pinterest, I looked for her on FB. Then I find her on the Facebook homeschool blogger account…so, I follow the art :). Not stalking, :), just seeking.

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