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The Homeschool We Never Thought We'd Have

The Homeschool We Never Thought We’d Have…A Year Later

A year ago, we were thrust into a homeschool we never thought we would experience — learning how to deal with the loss of a child. It has been a tremendously painful education; one we would not have willingly chosen. But, like all education, it has also put us into a better position to be able to understand and navigate this thing called life — and has shaped who we are… for the better.

And isn’t that what homeschooling is about? Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom: Learning Grief

Learning Grief, Part 2

“Mom, am I going to die, like Dominic did?” The question knocked the wind out of me. You’d think that months after losing our newborn baby, just 4 days after he was born, I’d be ready for all of these things by now. Nope. It’s just one of the many things I’m learning in our new homeschool of grief — that just when I think I’m doing ok, and that I’ve experienced all of the emotions tragedy can bring… I get knocked a new one. These children I have left, my sweet girls, have taught me so much about grieving. Whereas before I was always the teacher, we’re definitely learning together in this new classroom of grief. And I’m so thankful to be doing it as a family. Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom: Giving Thanks (When you least feel like it)

A New Perspective on Thanksgiving

How does anyone give thanks in seasons seemingly defined not by what has been enjoyed, but by what has been lost? It is a lesson we are learning this year. Probably the most important one of our entire homeschool. For us, Thanksgiving this year will, ironically, be sweeter. It will be deeper, it will have more meaning. In past years, giving thanks became routine, expected. It was a nice ritual to do with the kids, and a perfunctory process that I knew helped to stave off self-sufficiency and selfishness. Thankful for home, thankful for health, thankful for family… I could rattle off the list without much thought or emotion. Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom: Learning Grief

Learning Grief, Part 1

In this new normal, we’ve gone back to homeschooling. And it has been a tremendous blessing. Homeschooling affords us the time to be together, and to focus on ourselves. It gives us the freedom to have a bad day, or change around our schedule to accommodate wherever we are in our grieving process. Instead of rushing to get out to school each day, or hustling to finish homework before dinnertime, we are able to find comfort in each other and in the haven of home. We’ve had to put aside reading time more than once in order to answer questions about what Dominic looks like in heaven, or why he had to die in the first place. And upon finding out, during art time, that my youngest drew “an angel. He’s taking Dominic away. And he’s mean”, we decided to take some time to process that. Because, honestly, how is one supposed to focus on Math or English or History with those kinds of things going on inside? Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom: My new homeschool rules

My New Homeschool Rules

I tend to be a hyper-responsible, perfectionistic, stressed-most-of-the-time-about-something, uber disciplined homeschool mom. Yes, one of those. The ones for whom field trip days aren’t looked forward to as exciting opportunities for real world learning and fun bonding, but are dreaded as deviations from the schedule that must be accommodated so that in a few years our kids don’t feel like they’ve graduated from military school. OK, maybe I’m not quite that bad. But…close. Continue reading »

TheHomeSchoolMom: The homeschool we never thought we'd have

The Homeschool We Never Thought We’d Have

I had the best of plans. We’d spent the whole summer preparing for the baby. I’d even prepared the girls for what would happen during the labor and delivery, because, in true homeschooling style, their baby brother was going to be born at home. And they were right there, in the midst of it all, as our long-awaited little man came into the world, in a surprise breech birth, on July 31, 2012. Dominic James Capuano: 7 lbs. 0 oz., with a huge head of dark spiky hair, and the most beautiful, perfect lips and his Daddy’s button nose. It was all crying and smiling and praising and enjoying the miracle of new life. And then, concern. Continue reading »