I'm a redeemed child of God and the momma to four vivacious daughters. I'm passionate about finding hidden blessings in the trials of life, living it out in an honest and open way, while encouraging those around me to believe in better.


no child left behind {tuesdays unwrapped}

My sweet girl.  This is Taylor starting 2nd grade … yesterday eight years ago.  Life was simple then … easier.  Small worries, small hurts, small fears.

But she grew.

And now we have big worries, big hurts, and big fears.

Taylor had been in the same school since kindergarten, but in 8th grade she started having problems.  It’s a long post, but you can read more about it here.  Her freshman year, we decided to send her to a new school and you can read about that here.  And while she liked her new school, she definitely had her ups and downs.  Overall, she had an okay year and made a couple of new friends.

So why have I decided to homeschool her?  So many thoughts and emotions, that I’m actually going to put this into two posts.  Today’ll be about Taylor and why I feel it’s best for her.  Next week’ll be about CJ and how God is in the miracle business.

Bottom line :: I want to offer Taylor the chance to succeed.  And I don’t think that can happen {for her} in a regular school environment.

Another bottom line :: It’s so important to understand who your children are and meet them there.  I’m not jumping on a homeschooling bandwagon here.  I’m just recognizing that Taylor needs more and I want to give her that opportunity.

Academically, Taylor didn’t have a super great year … in fact, I don’t think she got over 2.0 until the 4th quarter.  In March we had her go through a series of tests with a counselor.  We found she has ADD and some minor learning disabilities … one of which is an auditory issue.  In a classroom environment, she has a hard time hearing and processing information … given her ADD issues on top of that, she’s got some challenges in a standard classroom.

Socially, Taylor doesn’t have much self-esteem, she’s not super outgoing and quite honestly, has a hard time making friends.  No one was mean and bullying her … but they didn’t go out of their way to include her either.  And seriously, not the end of the world and something she could definitely get through and deal with.

But when her counselor met with me in May and asked me to, “think outside of the box in educating Taylor.”  Because she’s currently, “just getting by.”  It really spoke to my heart.  Actually, it tore my heart apart.

What I’ve learned is that girls are quick to believe bad things about themselves.  Seriously … think about us as women … when someone compliments you, do you say “thank you” or do you shrug it off and end up saying something negative about yourself?

Anyway … when young girls think negative things about themselves and say these negative things, they become strongholds in their lives.  Taylor has many, many, many negative strongholds she believes about herself … and while she’s sitting in a classroom 8 hours a day hearing from teachers, “You could do better if you tried.  You need to apply yourself more.  You just need to get motivated.”  And then socially, she’s “feeling” no one wants to be her friend …

These strongholds grip her even more.

My goal for this year?  Through intentional parenting, prayer, faith, encouragement, and love … we are going to break these strongholds.  Of course we’ll educate her too and I strongly believe she’ll start seeing success in her academics, which in turn will help feed and change the way she views herself.

Children are not a one size fits all.  And I just can’t stress enough, how important it is to know each one of them as individuals.  Open your eyes, your ears, your heart … to understand what each of them need as individuals.

Parenting takes sacrifice.  Love is sacrifice.  This isn’t going to be easy … for any of us, Taylor included.  But I love my girl enough that I don’t want to look back someday knowing, that because I couldn’t make a hard decision, a sacrifice, a risk … that I ended up leaving a child behind.

This post is linked up with Emily at Chatting at the Sky

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Posted in homeschooling, parenting, taylor, tuesdays unwrapped

25 Responses to “no child left behind {tuesdays unwrapped}”

  1. oh honey – I love you! It will be difficult, you will get frustrated, you will have fun – and you will learn something you never knew before. You will create moments you’ll treasure and then the next day question what on earth you were thinking. But most importantly – you put your daughter’s needs above your own. That friend – is beautiful sacrifice God smiles upon!! HUGS

  2. Terry says:

    I am so happy that you will be able to follow your heart on this one and have the support you so dearly need. I know this will be tough at times but I really think at the end of the day you and Taylor will find success and isn’t that what we truly hope to have for our children….at any age? Good-luck!

  3. Jane F says:

    A very big decision, a very brave decision… Thank you for doing what is best for her. I fought all year to get the best education for my oldest; his school failed him miserably. I wish I had followed my gut instinct and my heart and taken him out. Thankfully, he will be somewhere different in the Fall. I wish you both great success and joy in this journey

  4. Lauren N says:

    i am glad that you published this. i was really having a hard time with the idea that my best friend wasnt coming back to my school. but i read this and i realised that this was the best for her. I really hope that you and taylor do well this year and i hope that we still get to see each other a lot. Good luck, God bless. <3

  5. Sherry says:

    Praying your homeschool year goes well! So true that no child is the same. I homeschool both my children and they are totally different in thinking and learning.

  6. Trish says:

    Bravo Mama, bravo!!! You’re definitely doing the right thing! Praying for a great school year for Taylor and all of your kiddos!

  7. wow! love your post. this is my life quote and i have it on the bottom of my blog too:
    Understand your children’s hearts. Shepherd those hearts toward the Kingdom of God. Impress upon them the commandment to love the Lord with all their heart, mind, soul & strength. Teach them importance is not in worldly things of this life time and guide them in The Truth to prepare their little souls for eternity…for we are only in this world, not of it.{it comes from me, but it’s a combo of 3 of my fave verses: Luke 6:45, Deuteronomy 6:5, 3 John 4} I’ll be praying for Taylor. I want to see her at the top!

  8. cyndi says:

    Oh Tracie, if only more people could be like you and realize we need to put our kids first! This will most certainly be hard, potentially even harder than you imagined, but your love for Taylor will ensure that both of you succeed. I’ve seen you move mountains with your positive spirit & faith in God and I’m 100% positive that you WILL make this work. Huge kudos to you for making this sacrifice & taking this risk. Yet again, you are an inspiration to mothers (& stepmothers!) all around the world.

  9. Kimberly says:

    I couldn’t agree more. Each child is so unique, and it’s our job as parents to help steward that. What a great mama you are!

  10. Dawn says:

    oh my heart is breaking, and i’m going to have to go and read those posts…
    what a big thing you are doing for your daughter, for her life. the only times i have ever let homeschooling barge through my thoughts is when one of my kids was struggling so much and school just wasn’t bending to what they needed, so i kinda get it. thankfully, things changed for cam, and he is succeeding beyond our wildest dreams. i want that for you, for taylor. becuase i know how good that breakthrough feels… so i will pray for that breakthrough for the both of you.

    (and i can.not. wait to hear about God’s miracle!)

  11. heather says:

    Praying for success for Taylor (for her education, for her confidence, so she can love the wonderful girl that she is) and patience/strength/guidance for you as you both start this new journey!

  12. momofthreeboyz says:

    Tracie – I really commend you for ‘thinking outside of the box’ re: Taylor’s education. Our oldest son wasn’t diagnosed with ADD until the 10th grade, and by that time his self esteem was as low as it could possibly get. He just thought he was ‘dumb and/or incapable’. We kep hearing the same thing “You have to focus more, you have to pay attention more, you have to work harder, studier harder, APPLY YOURSELF; Finally after I broke down and called us a ‘family in crisis’, he came to me in tears and said “Mom, I just can’t do it. I try and try and try and can’t’ Then my very astute 10th grader went on to explain what was going on in his mind, I read a couple of great books, went to the Dr. and he got on a low dose med. The results were instantaneous, and he went from flunking out, to honors at 3.48 It isn’t just girls that can suffer. Good for you, have confidence in yourself

  13. Donna says:

    bravo for you! This is a question we should ask about each of our children…we seriously considered homeschooling this year! Nothing more important than those children!!!!

  14. Abbie says:

    Last night, in our prenatal class, the instructor mentioned that there is no “right way”. She was speaking to natural vs medicated birth and how to parent, but I think it’s in line with what you’re saying. There is no “right way”, and I think if we all remember that, then we’d be a lot more open to how to resolve issues that come up… and help each other become better people in the process. I’m glad that you have found an alternative that will help her become a “better” her– even if it means doing something outside of what others see as the norm.

  15. wow.
    and yes.
    you’re right on the nose with this.
    i ran into a situation in my youth where i was constantly told i wasn’t giving my all. and even though i was, i never believed it. as a direct result i push & push & push myself. to the point of physical & emotional break-downs. there are even times where i see myself putting unrealistic expectations in place for my daughter. it’s a vicious cycle i’m trying to rid my family’s life of. so, i’m proud of you with this hard decision.
    i’ve met MANY homeschool families with kids as different as night & day. you’re right, for some it is not. for others, they thrive in this type of learning environment. our job as mother’s is to determine, as you’ve said, based on knowing each child & through lots of prayer, which is best and then offering the best to them.
    you rock!

  16. karen says:

    i am definitely looking forward to some updates on this beautiful girl of yours. i can’t tell you how important i think your goal is for this year…& i know, with you being the amazing woman that you are, that she will be so much better off after this experience.

  17. stacey says:

    Oh girl, tears, wiping them away and just smiling with you! I will be praying for you as take this journey with Taylor! So very proud. Can’t wait to read next week! (or you could just email me because I am dying to know).

  18. ann says:

    Kudos for you and Taylor! What a beautiful post, she and you will do great things. I whole heartedly believe also that each child is unique in so many ways, are not “one size fits all” so why should their education be? We had a heck of a time with our son, same thing, the school did nothing, the teacher was literally putting him down (in a Christian setting I might add) it was so sad that not only was he not happy or getting the most out of school, but that we were paying good money and this was going on…not the point..but none the less. A year into the public junior high he is like a new person. Not to say that he does not still struggle with ADD issues, but his self esteem is better and he can be himself. You both will do great.. it will be a transition…but it will be so beneficial you are definately making the right decision even if you and Taylor are still leary….take a leap of faith!

  19. Amy T says:

    Hey Tracie – I too was diagnosed with ADD – but not until age 30. We’ve come a long way in understanding ADD in GIRLS finally, and I’m so glad that you’re taking the necessary steps in getting Taylor the educational style she needs. As you probably already know, ADD can not only hinder learning, but can cause social problems, anxiety, and even depression. On the flip side – it makes for a really interesting personality! ; ) I know with a mom like you, Taylor is going to do great things! You’re in my prayers….

  20. Sue says:

    I know you will do nothing short of an amazing job!

  21. Emilia says:

    I can imagine how she feels. I’ve changed school so many times because of friendsproblems. I’m not very outgoing. I don’t like to talk to new people, talk infront of a whole class etc.
    I would love to be a “mailfriend” with Taylor :)
    / Emilia 16 years old


  22. oh wow… this post just makes me heart hurt— thinking about what a difficult time shes had… BUT what a blessing that she has YOU as a mom. Education is not a one-size-fits all thing. I believe you must be doing the right thing following your heart and following GOD! I can’t wait to hear about the miracles. :):)

  23. marie says:

    This is a subject that is very close to my heart, my granddaughter was diagnosed with ADD a few years ago and once we did our homework , we, just like you are doing, made changes. We learned all we could but also listened to our inner voice, because every child is an individual. One thing I do know , that it is very important for her to feel good about herself……I know you know that and this is a wise step in helping her……and just think of all the fun the two of you will have….

  24. Katie H. says:

    Wow, reading this sounds a lot like me. I’ve struggled with school my whole life. My mom homeschooled me in 5 and 6th grade. This spring, I found out that I have ADD and I’ll be a junior in college this year. Growing up being told that I need to be more motivated (and not understanding why I couldn’t make myself work) got to me and, honestly, it still does. Even now, somedays I just feel like a failure… with school, relationships, and concentrating on anything.

    It’s such a blessing that you were able to find out about Taylor’s ADD now and that you are able to homeschool her. Thank you for having the courage to do whatever it takes to help her improve and grow!
    If you find any any books, learning methods, etc. that help Taylor, I would love to hear about them!

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