single mom homeschooling

I picture her the same way you do: homeschooling momma driving a 15 passenger van, wearing handmade jean skirts and grinding her own wheat to bake bread. Her husband arrives home from a long day at work and leads the family in Bible reading and prayer time as they finish up a home cooked meal. Together the whole family cleans the kitchen as they sing praise songs. Once the baby’s cloth diaper has been changed, momma plans school for the next day before she settles in with a good Bible study.

Lovely isn’t it? It’s a perfect picture, but it isn’t reality. These things are good things. Things that are certainly beautiful and treasured. But they aren’t always real life. When we picture homeschooling families this way, we are focusing on their ideal best day, not their everyday. Real life is messy… even when you love Jesus. Even when you homeschool. Even when your family gathers round the table with a Bible in hand. The truth is, all siblings fight, mommas burn bread, and even christian homeschooling families walk through tragedies.

When my oldest child was just a few months old, my husband told me that we would homeschool her. Being a former classroom teacher, I wasn’t initially sold on the idea. I wasn’t against it. I just wasn’t for sure that it was the best option. My husband, however, was convinced. So, I followed his lead. I began teaching her casually at age 3 and was in full swing by kindergarten. Our second child followed just 13 months behind her and was usually a part of any lesson that we embarked upon. I started following blogs of large homeschooling families, reading books and attending conventions. I started DOING things that I thought made me a good homeschooler.

By the middle of first grade, the enemy attacked our home and everything came crashing down. Within a few months, he left and I was suddenly a single mom: a single homeschooling mom with a 1st grader, kindergartener, 2 year old, and baby on the way.

I bought the lie that homeschooling families were perfect. I tried hard to “make” our family fit this perfect mold and now I had no idea where to turn. It was such a crazy lie and so far from the reality of life.

It took me a long time to accept this reality. Somewhere in there, I was forcing homeschooling into a box. One that closed the lid and said- “Keep Out: imperfect families and single moms.” I bought the lie that I wasn’t enough, so I kept quiet. In God’s merciful grace, I didn’t quit homeschooling, but I did hide.

For so long I prayed that our family would be reconciled and once again fit into that perfect homeschooling family mold. I still pray a part of that prayer, but God has gently taught me that the perfect homeschooling family doesn’t exist. He’s taught me that I can still homeschool in the broken world because we are all broken, even those who aren’t showing it. Once I began to believe Him, he brought the Teach Them Diligently convention alongside me. TTD has encouraged me, prayed for me, and provided resources for me like no other convention. With TTD, I find no judgement or funny looks, only love and grace.

Homeschooling as a single mom is certainly a sacrifice. But if my eyes are fixed on Jesus, I remember that my purpose is to glorify Him. Teaching my children to love Him and enjoy Him forever is my calling. For now, that is done in my home. I pray that I will always be awarded this opportunity, but rest firmly in the protection and provision of our gracious God. Yes, this momma doesn’t see a lot of quiet time and rarely goes the bathroom without an audience. But in the end, I hope that this tiny sacrifice of my life agenda will enable my children to one day give up their lives for the ONE who gave it all up for us.

 

If you are homeschooling single mom, please consider joining our group, Home{schooling} Alone, where you will find encouragement for the everyday!


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Comments

  1. Hi there! I am so touched your post. I am humbled by your determination to complete the task the Lord has assigned to you. May the Lord continue to give you the grace moment by moment as you follow Him.

    You are a blessing!

  2. Once again, your honesty and sincere love for the Lord is a great blessing to me and will be to many others. Thank you for allowing God to use you through even the most difficult of times.

  3. Kimberly, this life isn’t perfect. I pray that God will heal your heart and your children’s…..as a child who grew up in a divorced home…and my own husband and I divorced and remarried…it truly hits the heart… I love you so much and am blessed by you and your faith to step out, and share God’s word…even in the midst of hurt and pain.

  4. Thank you for sharing your story. I never thought that I would be homeschooling especially as a single mom. Not many understand the struggles and lack of resources especially when there’s little family support. I know that real life is hard even when there are 2 parents, but it is hard not to be consumed when you are trying to do both roles…Only Jesus…so thankful for Him partnering with me to be my husband and leader of our home. We have not gotten into a homeschool rhythm yet with my crazy work schedule but we are praying and asking God to make the path straight and to raise up the support that we need to make learning fun again. May God bless you with everything that you need…including the desires of your heart.

  5. Beautiful post! Thank you for sharing your story.

  6. I had to chuckle reading your first paragraph… because that is so not my home. I agree it sounds great… and maybe is a reality for a few… but not even most married homeschoolers look like that. ;-)

    Thank you for sharing your experience with others. You are a great encourager to many! And hearing of many single homeschooling families out there… I’m sure they are glad to hear that they are not alone!

  7. Simply beautiful, Kim. God is using your words and experiences to bless the lives of many. Congratulations on choosing to follow your calling and keeping your eyes fixed on Jesus even when it seemed like everything was falling apart. You are a beautiful, brave, courageous young woman and your children will surely be blessed because of you. (Hugs!)

  8. I found myself nodding in agreement many times. As a single ammo who homeschools this touched my heart. Beautifully written.

  9. Tracy Parris says:

    I was in your shoes for many many years. I was pregnant as well with 3 older children and continuing alone on my homeschooling quest. God stayed with us, God guided us, God is getting us through it. My two older boys are now in college and high school, my two younger I continue to homeschool. It is a precious calling and the rewards are tremendous. I am so proud of each and every one of my kids and how they have handled what they had to go through. I prayed as well for reconciliation…as did they. But God revealed to me years later that He was protecting us, He was our provider, He was the head of our household. Who would be better than Him? God’s heart is with the fatherless, and when the dad leaves the home, it is a fatherless home. What a wonderful FATHER God is, to step in and love us taking care of us every step of the way. Looking back now, I miss those days having all four with me at all times. Cherish this time with your children. Cherish it even more being a single mom. God bless you!

  10. I am so glad you posted this Kim, and grateful to find it on TTD fb. Your words were an encouragement. I’ve been single for about 15 years now. I understand the “hiding” part. If it weren’t for my Lord and Savior we would have been undone. I’ve not really met other single homeschooling moms and still have a hard time when asked about my husband (he left when our 5th child was only 5 days old). People do mean well, but it makes them uncomfortable, too. We are very blessed to be in a solid, loving church body with brothers and sisters in Christ who love and mentor our family. We are in our 19th year of homeschooling. By God’s grace and mercy we know Him, are protected by Him (have seen this so much), are provided for, ministered to and loved immensely and eternally. He has directed our home, our hearts, and challenged our faith… in that, even when it seems so dark in front of us and our future unknown, we seek His face, hear His voice and step out (sometimes timidly) in faith and obedience in what He, our Lord and our God, has called us to do… by faith…. and HE is faithful, HE is radiant, HE is strong and a shield to those that put their trust in Him. The enemy is cunning… BUT CHRIST IS SUPREME AND REIGNS FOREVER.
    We have been able to homeschool for the all these years…by God’s grace and mercy and because it was HIS will. I’ve not had to, as of yet, work outside the home which has allowed me to be home with the children all this time. That is a miracle in todays world. My oldest is 25 and youngest is 15 (do miss those little kiddos who are now big kiddos) :)
    I would love a chance to meet other single parent homeschoolers. Maybe at the next TTD conf? We live in SC. Please contact me if you are able. God Bless and will be praying for you and your family :)

    • Kim Sorgius says:

      Hi Whitney,
      We were just talking about doing something for single moms at the TTD conference this year. I will certainly be at the one in SC. :-) Are you on Facebook? We’d love for you to join our group! If not, please email me so we can chat!

  11. I’ve read two of your blog posts so far…Wow! It seems as though you are my long lost sister! So many things you wrote about ring so true in my life too, (not to the “T”, but they do ring the bell!).
    The Lord spoke to me through your words, specifically some words from a post I read on Holy Spirit-Led Homeschooling, “I roamed the halls searching for someone that was wearing a giant t-shirt that read- I’m a single mom and I homeschool!”.
    I’ve had the picture in my head of what our homeschooling should “look” like or be, and it’s nothing like what it “is”. Which has helped in me feeling lost, in the dark, inadequate, etc. I realized how selfish I have been, by allowing myself to be in such self pity, when I read those words. I need to (figuratively) wear that shirt and be reaching out, exposing myself, so other moms schooling on their own, (even if they are married and maybe don’t have a supportive husband, or have a husband in the military whom is often not around, etc.), can know that there is a mom that can relate.
    Thank you for listening to our AMAZING Father and doing what He has called you to do!

  12. Thank you, thank you, THANK YOU for this post! I have been a single homeschooling mom for three years now after our family went through very similar circumstances to yours. I love being reminded that I am not alone in this journey. I’m sharing this with my other single homeschooling mom friends on Facebook (https://www.facebook.com/groups/hssmom/) and with our local homeschool support group.

  13. Loved reading your post, but can’t help but feel not only jealous but that you fail to address the fact that a LARGE majority of single moms CAN’T homeschool, even if they were doing so before. I can only assume that those of you who do are lucky enough to receive enough child support & possibly alimony to allow you to continue to stay home with your children and still keep a roof over your heads. Sadly, this is not the case in the majority of divorces, including mine. We must work and provide for our children. There is a lot of (possibly just perceived) derision toward us mom’s who HAVE to send our kids to regular school, even if we would prefer not to.

    • Kim Sorgius says:

      I hear your heart, Deborah and I am so sorry that you feel like you can’t homeschool even though you desire to. However, I think you are making an incorrect assumption here. I DO work. And so do the other 165 plus women that I’ve met that homeschool as single moms. Some outside the home. Some in. Some of us work from 9pm till 2am figuring the sacrifice of homeschooling will far outweigh the lack of sleep.

      Most of us receive little to no alimony and sadly, many don’t even receive child support. There is hope…it can be done, but it does require a LOT of thinking outside the traditional box.

      Thank you for stopping by today.

    • that’s exactly where I am at – would love to and don’t want to turn my daughter loose to the worlds system every day but I don’t have the means by which to do it. I can’t stay home and still keep a place for us to live and all, even working it’s difficult to afford to get by. As it is our life has been so transient without a permanent home- which is what I pray most for.

      • I am a single stay at home, sole parent, homeschooling Mom in Houston Texas. I managed to buy a new home a year ago. This has been a rough year. I have a 9 year old son. Here is to Kim and the other ladies on this blog for “homeschooling, singleparenting”, I just want you to know, you are like angels to me this evening. If any of you are in Houston please contact me at tammy key reh at a o l dot c o m. God bless you and Happy 2014 New Year.

        Tammy

  14. I admire your determined spirit to pursue what you feel is best for your family even when it isn’t the easy choice. Thanks for sharing with WIP!

  15. Kim,
    This needs to be heard by some hurting young moms! Just Excellent! I would like to feature your post on ‘EOA’ Wednesday tomorrow. Thank you!!

  16. but how do you manage to homeschool as a single mom and still make an income to pay rent, bills and expenses? I would so very much love to do that but I don’t see a way to do it because I would most likely have to go and work a job so that makes it pretty impossible especially since my daughter and I don’t have anyone else, no family or anything close by and certainly no one we can count on and my ex husband just makes our life as much of a nightmare as he can manage. So I am at the mercy apparently of the public school system which I completely dislike on all levels.

  17. Dawn Roberts says:

    Hi,
    I stumbled onto your blog two weeks ago when searching for Christian iPad apps to pass along to the pre-teen group at the church my husband pastors. I was quite touched by your authenticity and words of encouragement to others and I spent a huge chunk of time perusing your posts. One post that I can’t currently find about clothing really caught my attention. Being the type that likes to help in anyway, I thought I wonder if she knows about TeacherspayTeachers.com. First it’s an awesome place to find resources, and there is a homeschool contingency on the site. But really I thought you would be a great candidate to post your stuff on TeacherspayTeachers for others to potentially buy. You are a trained educator and you have years of homeschooling experience. You also have a blog where to advertise. Warning: While others have made significant pocket change through this site, I have not. I’ve made a whopping $1.20 and we won’t talk about what I’ve spent. I’m however working a full-time job (teaching high school Algebra), taking two masters classes, being a pastor’s wife, and trying to raise my two children (although I could learn something from your blog!) — so I haven’t spent the energy to do better and I don’t have a public platform to advertise. This can also be a time consumer to put together something quality to post, but hey you already know all about that as you post quality blogs frequently.
    I’m hoping this will be a lead.

  18. Michelle says:

    Reading this was so eerie to me. It’s like I wrote it, down to the circumstances, ages of kids and when my ex left. It was such a blessing to see someone else walk the same road. I don’t receive any alimony and rarely receive any support. Most weeks I’m lucky if my ex has them for a few hours so I can plan for the next week . Thanks for your honesty and encouragement.

  19. Thank you for being so transparent! I’m a single mom and I think about homeschooling constantly. My children are 10 and 8 in public school and I don’t know how they would handle the transition or even want to explore homeschooling. Any suggestions?
    Golda Smith recently posted…3 Tips to Feel Energized and to Simplify Your LifeMy Profile

  20. Hi there! I had a question for you about us possibly collaborating on something and was hoping you could email me back to discuss? Thanks so much!

    - Shaye

    shayewalsh1 (@) gmail (.) com

Trackbacks

  1. [...] in mind…training children to be ambassadors for Christ. I didn’t feel judged for my circumstances. In fact, I felt loved. I left more encouraged about homeschooling than I had been in years. You [...]

  2. [...] are other families that do this, but I have yet to meet singles parents who are juggling these responsibilities. Yes, it’s different when you are the sole bread-winner and caretaker of the [...]

  3. [...] Single Mom Homeschooling, for instance, tells her story as mom suddenly faced with single parenting and homeschooling alone.  The three moms featured on Homeschool Oasis share how they do it, too.  Homeschool Mom offers single parent homeschooling tips, and Homeschool Diner offers advice, too. [...]

  4. […] KIM: Kim Sorgius is a single mother of 4, a passionate homeschooler and life-long student. After teaching 8 years in public school, she traded her M.A. in Early […]

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