Friday, April 16, 2010

The Drive Factor

If there is one negative to our homeschooling experience it is the fact that if we want to do anything we have to get in the car and drive to it. Most of the time it isn't even a quick drive but at least a 30 minute drive. Our homeschool group, and thus the majority of the families that we are friends with, encompasses a very wide geographic area.

I bring this up, not to complain, but because I've noticed more and more of my friends dropping out of things and pulling back because they are too tired of being in their cars. I have to agree. We want our kids to have ample opportunities at friendships and activities, just like any other parent does, but it becomes so burdensome when everything they want to do or we choose to be involved in is over 1/2 hour away, if not farther.

I've been a part of a number of conversations lately where us mom's have dreamed of all living in the same town (and even neighborhood) so that we could do more things together and participate in more activities. Everything sounds so wonderful, from theatre groups to singing and dancing lessons to religious-centered activities, that we could literally be considered car-schoolers if we don't watch out.

So I'm seeing more and more families pull out of things because they are burnt out - not from the activities themselves but from all the driving. Maybe it's a necessity to go through that type of cycle - be involved and drive, pull out for awhile and regroup, start getting involved again until you realize that you're spending a lot of time in the car again. It is a constant struggle for balance, is it not?

Right now we're okay because we've just moved 20 minutes closer to most everything we do. Now instead of a 50 + minute drive, we only have 30 + minutes. That is like a breath of fresh air :) We'll see how long it lasts!

Oh well, I have to go now because it is almost time to get in the car and make the one hour drive to the orthodontist (trust me, this drive is worth the money it has saved us :) and then come home and drive 40 minutes up to our monthly Evening of Recollection! Oh well...