Things that scare me

by Kay Rob

There are a lot of things that scare me, but every day, something different and ugly rears its head inside my mind. I was having a conversation with a co-worker today about daycare and school. My kiddo is not yet 3, so public school is a long way off. She’s a January baby, so if we skip pre-K, she will be almost 6 when kindergarten begins.

I was confiding in this co-worker how scared I was about my kid going to public school. I was raised in a strict religious environment, and was homeschooled by a co-op of parents at our church. I say homeschooled because that’s what the state thought we were. It was never revealed that we were attending classes at church. I suppose that if there were ever an investigation into it, nothing untoward could have been proven, since my parents did teach some of my classes and homeschool co-ops are actually quite common.

This church “school” began the year I started kindergarten. My older brother was able to attend kindergarten in public school and first grade in a private Christian school, but when my turn to learn came around, our minister already had our own private school in the works.

I knew how to read and write before starting kindergarten, thanks to my eagerness to learn, and a grandmother who had the time to teach me while I stayed with her. I got an excellent education for the most part, especially when it came to English and Math. I have issues with the white-washed history texts and creationist science courses, but those issues came about after I integrated myself into society outside the church in which I was raised.

We took standardized tests every year, and I always scored far above my grade level. I even scored high on the ACT, although I was discouraged from attending college by our minister.

So, I say all of this to really say, I am really, really scared about putting my kid into a school system that I know nothing about. I never was in a public school, and there were never more than 2 people in my class. It scares me to think that I won’t be able to relate to my kid’s school experience or help her navigate any murky waters that may come about.

Of course, I do have my husband, who successfully navigated public school and who has a college degree, but it really fucking scares me that I won’t be able to help my kid out at all when the time for school comes.

I know that I won’t be able to homeschool her, but part of me thinks that I should because that’s the only thing I know. The other part of me wants her to have the best education, and based on our financial situation and the wonderful school district we live in, public school will really be our only option for her.

I tend to be an over-sharer, so I can imagine myself immediately spilling my guts to all her teachers about how scared I am because I know nothing about public school. Then I get scared because what if these hypothetical teachers in the future use that knowledge to take advantage of me or my kid’s situation?

Basically, this post is just a scared mom typing furiously about something that makes her very, very anxious.

Can anyone else out there relate?