I can’t believe tomorrow is here. It’s really happening. My oldest son starts Challenge A, known as 7th grade to most people.
For years, I’ve watched other people send their kids off to this junior high/middle school thing, but now – it’s my turn. And I’m not sure I’m ready. Momentous is quite the appropriate word to describe the situation. After all, he is blazing new territory for our family. Not only are our children first generation homeschoolers, they are first generation classical homeschoolers.
Deciding I should share some of this with him, I wrote this letter.
It’s hard to believe today is here. Challenge A. You’re blazing a trail as the first in our family to experience homeschool (and classically at that) at this level. Up until now, you and your brother have been able to relate to each other with your school work, but now you’re stepping out without him. While you’ve spent the last few years doing things together, now you will move ahead. Know in all you do, that he will be watching you to see what this Challenge thing is. I pray he learns from you how to do it well.
Sitting across the table from you tonight as we walked through what I have set up to help you stay organized, I wanted to cry. Your appearance is changing physically. Your face is becoming older, and you “look” less like my little boy.
I want you to know today how proud I am of who you are becoming. Yes, I know I remind you every day of things to work on, but I still remind myself everyday of what I need to work on. That doesn’t ever go away.
Today, I am praying for your first day – the first of many to come without me by your side. My heart wants to race in there and sit with you, but today is your day – not mine. I am praying you make new friends while enjoying time with old friends as well. I am praying you will listen intently to your director/tutor, learning to discern things like when to write something down, when to just listen, when to look at the board, when to look at your paper or text, when it’s okay to speak to your neighbor, when it’s time to be completely quiet, and when to ask a question to make sure you understand what is being said.
As your mom, I want you to be so many things – an expectant learner, a kind friend, an encourager, a glass half full kind of guy, a diligent worker, a quiet listener, a respectful student, polite, generous, compassionate, a servant to others, and a testimony to the love and power of Jesus Christ.
Know you will make mistakes, miss assignments and feel like you have failed at things. Guess what? As your mom, I’ve failed you many times, and there will be more. What is important is to not quit, Never Ever Give Up!
Remember what I used to tell you when we worked on your papers and you would say you couldn’t do it? I’d tell you, “Even if you don’t believe in yourself, that’s ok. I believe in you enough for the both of us.”
I believe in you today, and I’ll believe in you tomorrow. You CAN do this! And you can do it as unto the Lord.
When your day is done today, I’l be here to pick you up. I’ll give you a hug and ask how your day went. I’ll pepper you with questions like What did you learn? What notes did you take in your book? What decision are you going to write about? Who did you talk to? Who did you eat lunch with? and all those things moms want to know after your first day. We’ll plan your assignments for the week, and you’ll practice piano. We’ll eat dinner and celebrate-
-celebrate your new adventure – our new adventure. Because even though you will be in class without me most days, I’m still your teacher, and you’re still my student. We’re in this together – to learn alongside each other. It’s just now – sometimes you’ll get to be my teacher.
I love you more than you can possibly know. I will love you the same at the end of the today and at the end of this year. Thank you for the privilege or being your teacher!
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