Like Starting Over

Last month I posted an article, Season of Change, which discussed the issue of major changes or moves that can occur during your homeschool career, and how to weather them and build a new life in your new home.

Since then, our family completed a major transition three weeks ago, and I find myself weighing the advantages and disadvantages of our out-of-state, city-to-country move almost daily, all the while trying to maintain a sense of humor.

Disadvantage: I have no idea where I am. Everything looks the same to me. Even the cows and horses. Sometimes the GPS is right, sometimes it isn’t.

Advantage: A change of scenery now and then is good. Getting lost really helps to get to know a place.


Disadvantage: Thinking about everything we left behind, including close friends and a well-established homeschool support group, keeps me awake at night and sometimes feeling quite sad and sorry for myself.

Advantage: I am less committed and distracted by outside activities during the day. My kids and I sit around the kitchen table together and talk about things. I’ve been doing more read-alouds which I’ve discovered my boys seem to enjoy much more than I realized. I’m reminded again about that word “home” in homeschooling, or home education (whichever you prefer).

Disadvantage: I feel a little bored, a little isolated. Reaching out to local homeschool groups on-line has been met with silence, which I find strange.

Advantage: I’ve been able to re-evaluate how I want to spend my time outside of homeschooling my children. I can go back to the things I once loved to do or explore new aspirations: writing, pursuing an on-line teaching opportunity, photography, maintaining a close relationship with our former homeschool community and continuing to work with our support group to develop curricula for the fall semester — maybe even co-leading a class BY taking advantage of modern technology.

Disadvantage: I think about the friends my boys had to leave behind, particularly my 13 year old, and I have moments where I am overwhelmed with guilt, even sorrow.

Advantage: Great friendships last forever. I have experienced this is my own life. You might have to take the responsibility initially for maintaining close contact, but those relationships that you value will continue to bring joy to your life. Besides, it’s a great opportunity to hone those writing skills. I have gained strength from watching my children smile and adapt quickly to their new environment.

Disadvantage: I think everyone sounds and acts differently from what I am used to and that I will never fit in — I have to remind myself not to “judge a book by its cover.”

Advantage: When we first moved to the Northeast part of the United States, I had the exact same reaction. I was proven woefully wrong in the end.

Disadvantage: When I go to bed every night I feel daunted. I feel like I’m starting over.

Advantage: When I wake up every morning, I think, “I get to start over. I will use today to find out what I should be doing differently and celebrate the goodness and rightness of what I did before.”

Now that’s a gift.

Have you moved recently and made it to the other side? What was your journey like? Please share your experiences in the comment section. I’d love to hear more.


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  1. Julie says

    The past few years have been very overwhelming for us as a homeschooling family, and hopefully this next school year will bring us some calm, routine. We lived in Japan for the 9.0 earthquake, came back to the states to live in a hotel for a month during the evacuation, then went back to Japan, then 9 months later moved to a new state here in the US, then this year moved again, just to a different house 10 minutes away. It has really thrown us for a loop, and many times I wanted to give up homeschooling. (Trying to homeschool in a hotel with 4 kids and no car has its challenges!) But hopefully, God willing, this next year we can finally settle into and spend some time enjoying our time together!!! :)

    • Angela says

      Thank you for sharing your story, Julie. In addition to the frequent moves, I’m sure the Japan earthquake was an incredibly stressful event. Good for you for sticking with homeschooling! I hope the next year brings you much peace and tranquility. :>)

  2. says

    I am so thankful I happened upon this post today. My family moved out of state to a VERY rural area four months ago, and your post mirrored many of my feelings. I especially identify with feeling down at nighttime over having to start over and excited the next morning about getting to start over. Joy comes in the morning! Hang in there, and keep trying to contact the local homeschoolers. I find that our best connections have come from talking to neighbors at the Donut Hole, Barber Shop, Library, etc. :)

  3. says

    Thank you for reading, Aima! There is comfort knowing we are not alone when we make these transitions. Many families, especially in today’s changing economy, must move around from place to place. Homeschooling actually works well under these conditions, but that doesn’t mean we don’t have the same obstacles and concerns as families who do not. Thanks for the advice and best of luck to you. :>)

  4. Sherri says

    I’d love to be in your shoes. I was raised in the country, but my hubbie is a city boy and now both of us are getting older, where it would be hard to keep up a lot of property. Also one of our younger kiddos was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes last year, so I’m glad we’re in town for that. The doctors/hospital, stores/mall, job, even the lake to camp at, etc. are within 5 miles of our home, so that’s convenient, but I still miss the country.

    And yeah, what’s up with local online groups being silent…nobody…I mean NOBODY wants to discuss homeschooling these days?


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