The most noteworthy event of last week was going to see Papa in the hospital, where he is rehabilitating from a stroke. We drove up with Gramma (my mom). Nate volunteered to push her in the wheelchair since long hallways and breathing difficulty (COPD) do not mesh. He leaned into it, all fifty-five pounds of him. Then those two kids of mine did something that near-astonished me. They sat in a small hospital room and occupied themselves for over an hour with one small McDonald's toy (Madelyn) and tinkering with the wheelchair (Nate).
When the boredom finally overcame them, Papa turned on the TV and treated them to half an hour of cartoons we don't get at home. Then we loaded up the wheelchair with Gramma and Papa's laundry, and Nate insisted on making the return trip, pushing all the way back to the entrance.
When we parked the chair, the security guard greeted us, then asked, "Shouldn't they be in school?" This was the first time anyone had made this remark to me. It took a beat for me to respond with "No. We homeschool."
"Really?" he replied. "You do it?"
"Yep. We do the basics of reading and math and all, but when the kids get interested in something, we can check it out. Rather than doing a unit and hoping it's interesting, we use what they like already."
He nodded, seeming to approve. I felt compelled to elaborate.
I gestured: "This one (Madelyn) knows about Vikings and Japan because those are what interest her."
Madelyn complied by echoing, "I like Viking and Japan."
Then we waved off and boarded the elevator for the parking garage. The kids had never been in a hospital until this day and it was my first experience "defending" our apparent truancy. How fitting that it was a security guard--a man of enforcement--who had to be put right about where my kids "should" be.
- ► 2012 (37)
- ▼ February (5)