Oh friends (all 25 of you still reading this sporadic blog), I have so many posts in the draft queue. Posts that I have begun and then thought, No, too personal/negative/whiny/earnest/controversial. And so the blog sits looking unloved and untended, when really the gardener is indoors with the seedlings, which may move to the garden when they are ready.
Speaking of gardening metaphors, I am preparing to put down roots. I think I have chosen a parish, coincidentally the first Catholic church I attended when we lived here long ago and I was pregnant with Violet. I only went a few times, but it was a wonderful place, and I think it still is. So I think we will fill out the forms and check out the kids’ formation programs and choirs and plant ourselves there for a while. But I’m not volunteering for Anything yet.
I’ve also finally started reaching out to local homeschool groups, trying to find some nearby friends. What I find difficult with some homeschool groups is that everyone wants to caucus with others just like them: Christian (which means a particular kind of Christian), secular (which means you can be Christian if you keep your trap shut), unschooling (which means . . . I have no idea anymore), progressive (ditto).
Today when I requested to join a local e-mail list for a unschooling/relaxed homeschooling group, I couldn’t quite get the words out. I don’t believe in unschooling — not that I’m opposed to it, but I don’t believe it exists except as an idea. So even though we do less formal curriculum than some who call themselves unschoolers, I couldn’t claim that title.
And relaxed? I’m not a relaxed anything.
What could I tell them to let them know I could be one of them? We aren’t vegetarians anymore, so that’s not helpful. I’m Catholic, which really doesn’t go over well in any group, including with other Catholics! We were Attachment Parents, but once we were done with family bed and breastfeeding that label didn’t mean much anymore either. How ’bout, I voted for Obama and I don’t shave my legs?
And so, in my 200-character description of why I wanted to join the group, I said “No Labels” and “We like hanging out with interesting people.” And if the group is too committed to the purity of the unschool/”very relaxed homeschool” label to let us in, how interesting could they be?