My name is Becky Piotrowski. I have been married to Dan for over 29 years and plan to stay that way for many years to come. We have two boys, Andrew and Aaron, and we are in our 19th, and last, year of homeschooling.
Our homeschool journey started with a lot of resistance from me. Andrew had been in public school for four years, and while the first two seemed to go by rather smoothly, second grade presented some behavior problems. That, along with a teacher who was only counting down the days to retirement, made for a bad year. By the next year, he had been labeled the “bad kid” that the teachers were hoping they didn’t have. I know these things because I was very involved with his school. I had many sessions with the principal and counselor without any willingness from them for real help. By the end of third grade, we knew there needed to be a school change. By that point, God was placing people, one after another, in my path who were already homeschooling and encouraged me to do so as well. I fought it with all I had.
During this time I was working in a bank, first as a teller, then as a loan officer. I really enjoyed this work, but I was also pregnant with our second child. Dan and I had decided that I would stay home after Aaron was born. Another opening in the path to homeschooling, although I was still vehemently denying my ability to do so. But when God says so, no matter how much we fight it, that’s what needs to be done. So we did. It was harder than I even imagined.
No matter how hard it was and how much I fought it, God gave me the grace and strength to make it through each day, many with tears. But the joy of getting to know my kids on a level I never would have otherwise was amazing. Seeing the light go on when they finally understood a concept I had been teaching, sometimes for days, was priceless. Being able to do school in the evening when Dan worked second shift so that we could spend the morning with him was great for our whole family. Knowing that their biggest influences came from us and people who had the same values we have was life-altering. And as for socialization, some of my kids' best friends and my best friends have come from this journey called “home” schooling which didn’t always involve a lot of time at home. We have had the best field trips any child could ever take. We have had the best and hardest life lessons. This calling has been the hardest and most rewarding journey of my life.