I am reading a lot these days because I can. I cannot do many things as a homeschooling mom, but reading I can do. Learning about one’s limitations is a fundamental lesson in life. Understanding your boundaries and communicating them to others is an extension of knowing your own limits. So many lives would be changed for the better if we only understood our own limits.
Homeschooling moms are busy creatures. A career is pretty much out of the question unless you are a force of nature like Susan Wise Bauer or Ann Voskamp. Going back to school cannot really happen unless your children are older and more independent in their study habits. Traveling solo (or with the family) is limited by time and space equations which have everything to do with hubby’s career.
What’s a homeschooling mom to do?
I read. While the kids play or take lessons outside the home, I read.
The library saves me thousands of dollars every year, but I also like to invest in my own titles. Books help me lose myself in order to find myself. I travel and discover new destinations without having to pack a suitcase. Then I return and prepare another meal for my children or teach them another class or drive them to another class outside the home. Because I can.
After reading one more page, I am different. I have renewed myself. I have heard of people who read one book a day (Seth Godin, Tai Lopez). University professors and researchers read two or three books a week. They probably don’t homeschool or prepare three meals a day for their children. I know they don’t. Homeschooling and homemaking remain my main vocation or calling. But God gave me an active brain and it needs stimulation.
So I read books. Because I can. I have discovered I can read a book a month. Then, it turns out, I can read a book a week. The latest discovery is that I can finish a 530-page book in 2 1/2 days if it is as good as Anthony Doerr’s “All The Light We Cannot See.” That’s when the kids were on a mini-break from homeschool. But, on average, it takes me a week. That’s 52 books a year. If I give myself a two-week break, and to make math easier, that’s 50 books a year.
Mortimer Adler wrote that the best books of Western Civilization can be put on a list that numbers about 100 titles. In two years of reading one of these “best books of the Western Civilization” per week, I can read them all. You can, too.