Diary of a homeschooler who was never home

Diary of a homeschooler who was never home

It should be called car schooling.

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After attending kindergarten, my parents made the decision to homeschool me. Many events lead them to choose this lifestyle for my siblings and I. Having a little brother who was often in the hospital and certain situations at school, such as physical encounters and shootings nearby, made homeschooling the best option for us.

I'll be honest, my education was far from the 7 or so hours in some classroom 5 days a week. Most of my school books were brought along with me and finished in the car on the way to field trips, volunteer events, and seeing family. Yes, my handwriting was awful due to being in a car.

During the time I was homeschooled, I slightly despised it because I felt like I was missing so many of the things other kids were experiencing; however, after shadowing a student at a private school for only a day I realized sitting in a classroom and working on their schedule would be miserable for me.

I've had many adventures through this lifestyle that I wouldn't have gotten from a public/private school. By the age of 12, I was teaching entire school groups about science at a local camp which I volunteered at for 6 years. My love for people has been sparked by being around all age groups, instead of just my own age. It was my fault for never feeling a belonging with other homeschoolers and tearing myself down about my education. I consider myself to be motivated and hard hardworking because that was my best option for being homeschooled. If I wasn't fitting my school work into my schedule (if you can even call it a schedule) every day was immensely different from the day before.

The main struggles were the treatment received from other people. It's baffling how you can immediately be judged based on where you were educated. Even adults would make snarky comments about it. I remember going to a career expo for 8th graders with my homeschool group while tons of other public-school groups were there also. Each career table had freebies for everyone except one table, who after finding out we were homeschooled put her supplies under the table, critiqued us for being homeschooled, and said her stuff was for school groups only.

It was moments like these when the blood rushed to my face as I had to take a deep breath and fight off tears because adults were making me feel inferior and dumb compared to others.

Despite the few negatives about homeschooling, I can at least say I've had numerous life experiences from it. Wherever you were educated let the story be yours and never let anyone make you feel ashamed of where you come from. Although I'm done with homeschooling and attend a university, it's still a big part of what shaped my personality.

Cover Image Credit:

@jacimariesmith/Instagram

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To All Incoming Freshmen, When You Get To College, Please Don't Be THAT Freshman

I am pretty sure we all know who I'm talking about.

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As we are all counting down the days to return to campus, students are looking forward to meeting new people and reuniting with old friends. And then, there is the freshman.

We have all been there. The eagerness and excitement have been slowly building up through months of summer vacation, all waiting for this moment. I understand the anxiousness, enthusiasm, and insecurities. The opportunity to meet new people and explore a new area is very intriguing. But let's be real, you are here to make memories and get an education. So here are a few pieces of advice from a former college freshman.

1. Don't be that freshman who follows their significant other to college

This is the boy or girl who simply can not think for themselves. The 17-year-old puts their own personal goals and interests aside to sacrifice for a six-month high school relationship. This will more than likely end at an end of semester transfer after the relationship has been tested for a month or two in college life. So if you want to really enjoy your freshman year, make your own decisions and do what is best for you.

2. Don't be that freshman who lets their parents pick their major

"You are not going to school just to waste my money."

This is a statement you might have heard from your parents. As true as it might seem, this is definitely not a good way to start your college years. If you are not majoring in something you can see yourself doing, you are wasting your time. You can major in biology, go to medical school, and make the best grades. But if deep down you don't want to be a doctor, you will NOT end up being a good doctor. When it comes to picking your major, you really have to follow your heart.

3. Don't be that freshman who gets overwhelmed with the first taste of freedom

Yes. It is all very exciting. You don't have a curfew, you don't have rules, you don't have anyone constantly nagging you, but let's not get carried away. Don't be the freshman who gets a tattoo on the first night of living on your own. Don't be the freshman who tries to drink every liquor behind the bar. Don't be the freshman who gets caught up being someone that they aren't. My best advice would be to take things slow.

4. Don't be that freshman who starts school isolated in a relationship

I'm not telling you not to date anyone during your freshman year. I am saying to not cut yourself off from the rest of the world while you date someone. Your first year on campus is such an amazing opportunity to meet people, but people are constantly eager to start dating someone and then only spend time with that person.

Be the freshman who can manage time between friends and relationships.

5. Don't be that freshman who can't handle things on their own

It is your first year on your own. Yes, you still need help from your parents. But at this point, they should not be ordering your textbooks or buying your parking pass. If you need something for a club or for class, YOU should handle it. If you're having roommate problems, YOU should handle it, not your parents. This is the real world and college is a great time for you to start building up to be the person you want to be in the future, but you can't successfully do that if your parents still deal with every minor inconvenience for you.

6. Don't be that freshman who only talks to their high school friends

I know your high school was probably amazing, and you probably had the coolest people go there. However, I believe that college is a great time to be on your own and experience new things. Meeting new people and going to new places will allow you to grow into a more mature person. There is a way to balance meeting new friends and maintaining friendships with childhood friends, and I am sure you will find that balance.

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