Thursday, June 12, 2008

Trails...

Oftentimes i'll start cooking one thing and end up with something a little bit different...its just the way i cook, i find recipes to be more like a trail map...those who choose to get off the trail really have all the fun. This post could be not much different...i have something in mind but i'm not really sure where i might end up...

Some time ago, someone made a very covert, veiled comment to me (or at least i certainly interpreted it that way) that what i do, as a stay-at-home dad, was slightly inferior to their world view. My initial response, which i didn't give directly, was a shrug and "hey...your opinion" and i thought i was done with it. Apparently not. I wouldn't go so far to say that it has been eating at me...i really do have much more important things to consider, but on occasion my thoughts do drift back to that inference.

Now, with that in mind...i really, REALLY enjoy what i'm doing right now, being at home with our kids. I've talked to alot of guys that look at me and say, "Dude, i have NO idea how you do it." Well, it's not too hard when you enjoy it as much as i do. This is not to say that this season in our lives is exactly what we as a husband and wife want, but we do recognize it as a season, and are working towards reversing the rolls of who is working outside and who is working inside our home.

It all is rooted in a very elemental de facto tenet that The Queen and i established from the very beginning of our lives together...No one else is going to raise our children. < and that is a very big period. Not that i think that parents who place their children in some type of day care are complete losers...some families have no other choice due to financial constraints or whatnot. Most of those are, in my opinion, single parent families having no other way to earn a living without daycare. Though families that do have a two parent household, i do wonder... how could they streamline their lifestyle so that one parent could stay home and fulfill their obligation to their children?

In our current situation, it would be so easy for us as a couple to be pulling a cool six figures if i would go out and get into the work-a-day world...and our kids would be with someone else, for 10 hours a day, or more. We are absolutely not willing to do that, and as i said before, we are taking steps to reverse the current roles.

Then there's the whole issue of homeschooling. I would venture to say (unless i'm way off on my readership estimates) that a majority of you are in the homeschool being great camp. There are those who have their doubts, and all i can say to you is...just watch. Now, with both of us working, its obvious homeschooling couldn't be an option. We are actually in the best elementary school district in the city...but honestly, we just can't. As i stated earlier, the basic tenets within us are just too strong. We're not trying to make some "statement" by homeschooling our children. We simply realize that it is our responsibility as parents to instill within them the best possible education that we can...and for us, that is instructing and training them at home. Homeschooling IS NOT for everyone, but for us, it is.

Do i think that we are better than those who choose to send their children to daycare and public schools? Let me answer that this way...if one has the means and the ability and still chooses to put their children in those situations...then yes, i do think that we have chosen a better way. But wait, you ask...Are you saying that you are superior to someone who does that? That's a bit elitist don't you think?

No, i don't think that at all.

What i am saying is that our convictions have lead us to realize our responsibility to our children is to provide every possible opportunity for them to attain to a fullness that no one else, except God working in and through us, their parents, can provide and equip them sufficiently for this pilgrimmage called life. That is what we believe and that is why we are doing what we do, and no one by their differing world view will dissuade us from that journey with the precious treasures the Lord has given us.

Tonight, a friend came by and showed us this...i think it gives a small perspective of another reason why...

10 comments:

Junk Diva said...

Don't be listening to that stuff Jay. I love watching you interact with your children. You are doing a great job, and making the right choices. Your a rebel. LOL More than once your blogs about you and your kids has warmed my heart. Hey where is Noah????? I am waiting!!!!!!!!!

Buck said...

The very best thing about America is our ability to choose the path that's right for us, as WE define it (now that the home-schoolers "won" the War of Independence, Part Deux).

It's a small person, indeed, who would DARE to be critical or dismissive of your choices, Jay.

As for this post... Well Said.

Inquiries said...

I agree with Buck, well said. You and the Queen are doing a wonderful job with your children.

Rave said...

The Hubby and I decided the same thing a long time ago. One of us would be at home with them...even when we both worked, we worked opposite shifts just so that could be accomplished.

I didn't homeschool...hades, I didn't even know about home-schooling until my kids were older. But I did think about it.

So I compromised...the school can teach them, and I will correct them...because outcome-based education is not the best thing in the world. Nosiree.

As for the comment eating at you about being a stay-at-home-dad....yeah, well, Ever since women's rights and independence and the masses went to work, us stay-at-home-PARENTS get the emotional crap beat out of us on a regular basis.
"Oh and what do you do?"
'I'm a stay at home mom.'
"Oh- you don't have a job?"

Screw the people who say that! Being at home is tougher than working outside the home on numerous levels. And it's also easier on some levels.
Either way, it is usually more rewarding.

It's not better or worse. It's just different.

Bag Blog said...

The world sees things so differently. They criticize men for staying home - they criticize women for staying home – go figure! They will criticize you for disciplining your children; they will criticize you for not – they are double-minded. Do not listen to their voices. Know that you are doing your good for your children.

Raising children goes extremely fast. I have heard people say, “I don’t know how you can stand to be with your children all day long” or “I could never teach my children.” And I wonder why these people ever had children if they do not like them. Each moment, each stage of our childrens' lives is so amazing! How could anyone want to miss those moments?

The Friendly Neighborhood Piper said...

As i read over these comments, it is a good reminder to consider what eagles do when aggravated by smaller birds. Interestingly enough, the eagle flies higher and higher until the contrarions can no longer maintain offensive.

Thus endeth the lesson for me.

RJ said...

I have listened to that song for the past couple of months on KLOVE here in OKC, Jay. I, just today, learned it was Steven Curtis Chapman who sang this song. My heart was so saddened but at the same moment glad that he came to realize that he needed to cherish those moments. I guess you do know that his little girl, Marie, was killed last month when his son was backing up in their driveway. He said in the piece that his girls were three at the time. That gave him only two more years with Marie. So heartbreaking.

RJ

Sea-gal said...

Before we had kids, Tony's aunt was a babysitter. It got to the point with her that one of the little girls she kept every day, neary all day, started called HER "Mommy" and didnt' want to leave with her "real" mommy. This "real" mother missed her little girl's first step, first word, first everything. I don't know what her personal situation was, but I knew that it would break my heart to hear those 1sts from someone else. This was WAY before I knew about homeschooling and I believe the Lord was directing our hearts in that direction even then. You're right-it's not for everyone but what a blessing it is for those that choose it. We get to see the wonder and enlightenment in their eyes and face when they "get it" and are privileged to continually instruct them in the ways of the Lord in every subject matter. Be encouraged and enjoy this time - you're doing a great job.

Doc said...

Yeah. Thanks Jay.

Bou said...

I will reiterate what some of your other commenters have said... its all stay at home parents that get the shaft. I stayed home until my youngest went to Kindergarten and I did find naysayers, but mostly, I found, in particular my folks' generation, people to be pretty supportive of my staying home. Most said they wish more people had a parent staying home.

One of my best buddies from HS is a stay at home Dad. And I'm so happy he did it because it was the best thing for his family! Someone needed to be home!

Now I work ONLY when they're in school and I take off when someone is sick or I can chaperone on a field trip or anything else... and I have a hard time thinking of myself as an engineer. I still think of myself as a stay at home Mom.