I expected that homeschooling would make me militant. After all, I get asked all the time, “Why do you homeschool?” And the only reasonable answer is that I think school is bad/stupid/useless/dishonest/whatever so I took my kids out.

Invariably the person asking questions has kids, and their kids are in school, so I end up saying that the kids in school are wasting their time.

I thought I that I would feel confrontational saying that, but I don’t. Not nearly as confrontational as I felt when my kids were in school.

When they were in school, I constantly asked for customized lesson plans that never materialized.

When they were in school, I constantly battled the idea that my kids should spend all evening doing their homework instead of being a family.

And when they were in school, I was constantly defending my kids against the ubiquitous Christian slant in their schooling. I think you know that I am not a Christian. But maybe you don’t know that the Christian bias in rural America is so extreme that no one even considers that there might be someone in the school that is not Christian. And in fact, schools can do all the Christian stuff they want, because it falls in the category of cultural learning.

It’s almost Christmas Eve, and I realize that I don’t feel angry that Santa came to the classroom. I don’t feel defensive that my kids made me Christmas gifts in art class. I feel only calmness from playing in the snow, and my husband chopped wood and we are warm and cozy and hunkered down for winter.

Christmas is not much different from all other days because I control our calendar, not the school. And I decide what’s important to our family, not the school. Christmas is not something I feel like I need to push back against. It was actually the school that was pushing Christmas on my family. Once we left school, I don’t feel militant at all. I’m simply grateful to have my family back.