Friday, May 6, 2011

Hot Dogs During Lent or Second Guessing as an Art Form

Quite a bizarre title, huh?  What in the world could eating hot dogs have to due with an education/homeschooling blog?  Funny you should wonder... take a journey into the scary world of my guilt ridden conscience.

I started thinking about the old joke about eating a hot dog at a ballgame on a Friday during Lent.  My friends and I always enjoyed joking about the number of sins you could tally up on this event.  Here is the scenario:  You purchase a hot dog at a ballgame on a Friday during Lent.  As you are about to take the first bite... you remember that no meat is allowed on Fridays during Lent. Thus the sin tally total begins... To even think about eating a hot dog on a Friday during Lent was one.  You forgot it was Lent, ignoring God, Jesus's suffering etc. was a staggering number of sins that became difficult to count. If you throw away the hot dog, you are wasting food while there are starving people in the world... SIN.  If you figure that you have already amassed so many sins, you might as well just eat it, SIN.  If you eat it anyhow, SIN.  Who knew that you would be burning in hell for all eaternity (little pun for you) just from one hot dog?

So where does the hot dog melodrama fit in to my life?  I am racked with the same guilt over homeschooling.  Each day that passes brings the school year closer to an end, thereby producing more panic.  Just as Lent is the countdown until Easter.  The school year countdown brings me closer to the ultimate responsibility for my children's education.  YIKES!!!

I have amassed quite a collection of educational materials, blogs to read, websites to peruse etc. to try and become prepared for the homeschooling adventure.  There is such a abundance of information out there that one could literally spend every moment of every day and never finish it all.  So I have stopped the frantic approach of spending all my time reading about homeschooling.  Ahh, so nice when I attempt to be rational.  Except for... the GUILT!  What if I am not ready?  What if I miss a key piece of information that will make everything run smoothly?  If I had only read the mysterious, miraculous Article "X," I would have all the tools to ensure that I will have the abundance of patience I will need to homeschool my children.  [For those of you who know me well, please go find a tissue to wipe the tears of laughter that are now pouring down your cheeks.  Me?  Patient???  I know, it really is funny.]

When the Borders by us was going out of business, we hit the final day perfectly.  All books were 90% off and if you bought 4, you got 2 free.  Doesn't get any better than that!  Yes, they were all picked over and there wasn't much left.  But at $0.80 a book or so, who cares what drivel you bought?  I did buy a lot of drivel--historical fiction, cheesy romance and other drek.  I have been enjoying reading my drivel.

Gasp!  I have been reading drivel instead of educational stuff.  I have been hiding like an ostrich burying its head in the sand to avoid the reality of the ever-looming homeschooling.  Do I feel guilty?  Is the Pope Catholic?  You bet I do!  Frantic, panic-ridden, heart-pounding terror, etc. would also be apt descriptions.

I am taking second guessing to an art form.  Is this the right decision?  Am I prepared?  How will it work?  What if they don't learn?  What if I can't teach them?  Who am I kidding, I can't do this?  Yes I can!  No I can't!  I believe you see the pattern.

Breathe.  Inhale.  Exhale.  (Now please envision Kevin Bacon screaming during the parade scene during the movie Animal House.)  "Remain Calm.  All is well.  ALL IS WELLLLLLL!!!!"

To get back to the hot dog analogy, if the whole point of Easter is the redemption of the world.  I guess I should try to remember that He will pick me up during my inevitable falls.  The trick will be to remember that during the key moments.  I will need to remember His promise of forgiveness and I will need to remember most especially, to ask the forgiveness of my children for when I loose it completely.  'Cause I know it is going to happen...

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