This week I have been in eager anticipation of the AmblesideOnline Camp Meeting retreat that is taking place this weekend. Even though the retreat is taking place a mere 30 minutes from my house, I am eager for this opportunity to get away from the normal routine of daily life. Being the first time I have ever left my kids overnight since becoming a mom, I do feel a little bit giddy and yet anxious at the same time. I know they will be fine with their dad here manning the ship, but it is still a big first for this momma! It has been a long time since I was on a “girls’ trip” and slept in a bunk room, but I think it is going to be such fun! And goodness knows, I need a little more fun in my life right now!
As a homeschooling mom, I feel a pretty heavy responsibility for the well-being of my children. After all, I think, who else is to blame but me if they don’t turn out okay? I know I shouldn’t carry around all that weight, since I am not the Holy Spirit, and my kids do have free will, no matter how perfectly I might parents and teach. But the point is, I know I need a break and a chance to be refreshed and to regroup now that we are a few years into our homeschool journey. It will be so good to spend some quality time with other moms who understand each other and have similar goals and passions.
The part I am most looking forward to (besides not having to cook or clean for two whole days!) is gleaning wisdom from older homeschool moms who have the perspective I do not. These women have the long view, and I need them to remind me that this is a journey, not a quick walk around the block. I might not see the fruit today or tomorrow, but someday I will be able to look back and see that despite my imperfections, I have been exactly the mother my children needed. And God will use even my mistakes and missteps for His purposes.
So, here I am on the eve of retreat, going over my packing list again, trying to decide how many books I really ought to take, pondering whether to make a batch of flourless brownies or peanut butter cookies (or both!), and wondering what knitting project I want to start and take along to work on during talks. And I am looking forward to this gift of time to retreat, refresh and regroup. I will be back here next week to give you a report on how it all goes!