Friday, August 7, 2009

Never say never

You know, its almost like when you utter the word never, you're tempting fate or the universe or whatever to mess with you. As if she perks up her ear and says "Really? Are you sure you meant never?"

Look at what happens when you say "Oh, I would never say that (or do that) to my child."

Yeah. Exactly.

This whole never business has a history of messin' with me. It was me, after all, who said she would never date a cop, fireman, or military man...and then ended up marrying someone who is two of the three.

You think I would learn.

Alas, dear friends of the blogosphere, I don't learn. And so I come to you today with yet another never that has been shot right out of the water. This time, it pertains to homeschooling.

Yup. I joined a co-op.

Gasp. Whisper. Whisper some more.

A few years ago, my knowledge of co-ops was limited, and the ones I had been exposed to through friends were pretty strict. And expensive. And strict. Did I mention expensive? I think I might have already said strict. Obviously, not something anywhere near my alley, let alone "up" it.

Although homeschooled kids together is a lovely thing (cue angelic choir) I just couldn't see how I would ever find a group of adults that would be open to the different ways that we do things here . Not that everyone has to agree all the time (in fact, that would be horrible!) but sometimes its hard to find in peace in something that is a) such a huge commitment and b) you spend more of your time caving in for the sake of smooth waters than truly agreeing with anything that is said.

Except for that one smallish sorta hidden co-op. You know, the one that always does the wicked cool things for the community that you always seem to end up at? The one with some members that you don't know incredibly well, but whenever you bump into them and chat, there seems to be a connection? That really different one that you've always thought I'm never going to join a co-op...but if I ever did, which I won't, would be something like that one?

Yeah. That one.
The one that conveniently happens to have some openings?

So I called the phone number and talked to one of the women who started it. Have you ever had a conversation with someone and you feel like you don't have to explain yourself, because they get it? Have you ever found the things you disagree on aren't met with a gasp-whisper-you-horrible-mother, but more of a hey, whatever works for you? And then, as the person talks on, you wonder if she's been reading your blog and studying up on your fitting in posts...because you really feel like you're on the same wavelength...

And then you happen to reconnect with a friend (over something completely different) and remember she's in that same co-op, and when you ask her for the dirt, she gushes about how fabulous the co-op is, even though she (like your former co-op loathing self) fully expected to abhor it?

This all came just as the fitting in posts were being written and commented on...and the people concerned with this co-op I met and talked to just seemed to...for lack of a better phrase..."fit in" to everything I was talking about. What I was looking for. What I wanted.

Who knew I would find them in a co-op?

I'm excited as all heck for it to start up. Call me weird...or whatever, but I think this just might end up totally kicking ass. :)


mamak said...

Kewl! Co-Ops are a biggish thing here. There are lots of unschooly ones with cool classes, but my kids don't want them yet, but i'd be willing to bet that I would meet all sorts of great folks there. Have fun, that's what it all about!

Anonymous said...

Excited for you...jealous for me...yep. that about sums it up! (If the group has a website, send it to me at SecularHomeschool and I'll add it to our resource!)

Green Mamma said...

Hmmm . . . I'm curious as to why you had these feelings about co-ops; we have several large homeschooling and preschool co-ops here in Northern Virginia and they seem all the rage (with homeschooly type folks who I meet at API meetings and holistic moms type stuff). I get what you say about meeting and talking with someone and you find you don't have to explain yourself so much because they just get it . . . so rare, so valuable. Yay for you! Hooray for your boys! I'm psyched to hear how everything unfolds; it sounds like you're up for fun this fall.

s t a c y said...

I'd love to hear more -- like especially how often do you all meet?

I have been toying with the idea of starting a coop. A very mellow, small coop, but I haven't gotten serious about it at all.

Beth Balmanno said...

Well said, my dear. Well said. And you know, of course, that I couldn't agree more...... ;D

jessamyn said...

so funny~ i too never thought i would join a homeschooling group for reasons that seemed to revolve around the thought that i always seem to feel "different". but the universe constructed this random group of women out of a less-than-ideal experience with a different group of home schoolers and something really beautiful was created. we are all so incredibly different, in our lifestyles, our approaches to homeschooling, etc. but somehow when we get together~ it works and it flows and it is really something wonderful.

have fun exploring this new terrain! ;)