If you’ve homeschooled for more than a week, you’re well aware of the concern that children be properly socialized. Everyone from your Aunt Barbara to the mailman wants to know that your kids are spending time with their peers, getting out of the house, and otherwise having the chance to interact in outside of an academic setting.
Moms Need Socializing, Too
Even if you roll your eyes at the concern for adequate socialization as your scurry from art lessons to soccer practice to a playdate to Bible quizzing, there might be one part of the idea you’re missing. Moms need socializing, too, and not just as they usher their brood from one co-op class to another.
It’s easy to forget, as we invest our days in the character and education of our children, that we are social beings, too. And while the most introverted among us may revel in the thought of not leaving the house for a solid week, the truth is that we were created for fellowship.
Our souls crave the intimacy of friendship, and our cups were made to be filled by the kind of encouragement that only comes by being known. And how can you be known? By stepping out and being face to face with others.
But Who’s Got Time for Socialization as a Mom?
Looking at your daily schedule, it’s probably hard to imagine where you could possibly carve out time to invest in simply conversing with other women. So many other needs are vying for your limited time and attention.
Surely homeschool mom socialization is something optional that we can push to the bottom of the schedule as we do the truly important tasks of motherhood.
How important is it, really, to grab coffee on a Saturday morning with a group of friends when you can hardly manage a date night with your husband four times a year?
Actually, it’s very important. Homeschool moms live their calling day in and day out, in a way few jobs demand. They never clock out, and rarely call in backup. Even worse, they are deeply emotionally invested in the outcome of their labors—meaning every perceived failure is personal, and every hard day is a blow to the heart. And while husbands sympathize and assist in the workload when and where they can, they can never fully empathize… and that’s where friends come in.
Filling Your Cup, Mom
A small group of like-minded sojourners on the homeschooling path can bring levity to the task of homeschooling. Sharing struggles gives perspective; hearing victories brings hope. Simply knowing that you’re not alone is one of the key benefits of true socialization—and one that a homeschool mom needs desperately!
But isn’t it enough to share a coffee while waiting on your kids’ piano lessons to be over? While these little snippets of time might be enough to keep topping off the well of fellowship in your heart, from time to time you need a deeper dip. It might be an hour alone with that same piano lesson mom, or maybe a dinner with the ladies from church. Co-op friends, neighbors, anyone who sees you as more than the mom who teaches her kids are all good candidates for building the kind of friendships that enrich the life and encourage the passions of the homeschooling mom.
How do you find time to socialize? And what kind of activities do you invest in with your friends?
While a Facebook group can never substitute for face-to-face friends, it can provide a place of support! Join us there.