We hold up this idea of ‘escaping the rat race’ as the pinnacle of freedom for adults. No more daily constraints, no more wasted time spent doing work that has no meaning to us, no more grinding ourselves into the dirt for hours on end every day serving someone else’s interests, more time with family, more time to explore what we love, more time to serve others in meaningful ways…
I find this interesting, because there’s a pretty common perception out there that homeschooled kids are missing out. That they’re all, to a greater or lesser extent, sheltered from valuable life experiences and opportunities to develop socially.
But if we pause there for a moment and step back…aren’t the 13 years most of us spend at school just the childhood leg of the rat race? A place we’re required to spend the majority of our time, week after week and year after year, whether we like it or not? A place where we’re asked to follow someone else’s guidelines, schedules and expectations? A hierarchical environment where most decisions are made by a small few, and where the vast majority have little to no say or autonomy? A place we sometimes use sick days to avoid? A place that continually asks us to take our work home?
A place we can’t, no matter how much we want out, just not show up to tomorrow.
If someone breaks free from a daily working grind they’re not thriving in we celebrate it. They have, after all, made a brave decision and taken back control over their life. And no one ever asks them where they’ll now get their life experiences, social interactions, personal growth opportunities or exposure to the real world from.
It’s time we got this very, very clear: home educated kids aren’t sheltered, isolated or deprived.