A conversation with two of my coworkers yesterday made me realize how grateful I am that my parents decided to homeschool my sisters and I for our high school years. When the Catholic school I was attending during middle school closed after I finished the 7th grade (due to lack of students), there were two choices: attend another Catholic school in the area (that was overcrowded) where most of my classmates were going, or homeschool, like my older sister Jenny was. After much consideration, my sister Ana and I, who was in the same class as me, chose to be homeschooled. And it was one the best decisions of my life. The first year, 8th grade, was the most difficult. Getting into the swing of things took some time. Actually, it took the entire year! By the time we started high school though, we were already adjusted and used to it. Long story short, 5 years later we were a part of the graduation ceremony in Virginia held by the program we studied through. Its been three years since we graduated in May of 2010. A lot has happened since then, of course, and definitely a lot that I never planned.
However, all through high school and even now, whenever I tell someone that I was homeschooled, almost everyone says the same thing: “Really? You don’t seem like you were home schooled” What? Why? What does that even mean?! I guess this is because of the stereotypes that exists about homeschoolers, which I should point out are completely ridiculous. Sure, there are probably some homeschooled kids who actually really do live up to the stereotype, but not all of us do!
Another famous question my sisters and I were asked was, “Do you have any friends?” Yes! Plenty! Friends from youth group, most of which are still my best friends to this day. And last but not least, my favorite question of them all “Don’t you feel like you’re missing out on the real high school experience?” Drum roll please…No, I don’t feel like I missed out on the real high school experience. What did I miss out on? Heartbreak? Betrayal from close friends? I don’t mean all high school is the same for everyone. I’m sure for some people, its a wonderful time, but personally, I don’t think I missed out on much.
Homeschooling isn’t for everyone, of course. It takes determination and lots of discipline. I’m grateful I did it though. How else would I have been able to live in Puerto Rico for two months while continuing my high school education at the same time?