This is the time of year when many homeschool conferences and conventions begin nationwide. Weeks before these events, there are moms who come down with a peculiar illness called the homeschool convention virus. Could you be one of those moms who suffer from this malady? The symptoms of the virus come on gradually and are as follows:
|Eye strain||Studied many homeschool catalogs and internet sites looking for the right curriculum.|
|Insomnia||Lays awake at night wondering if making the right curriculum choices.|
|Exhaustion||Because of all the research completed and lack of sleep.|
|Anxiety||Waits impatiently for the confirmed convention registration to arrive.|
|Fixation||Confirms hotel reservations and childcare arrangements multiple times.|
|Giddiness||Arranges for meet ups with online friends to occur the day before the convention.|
|Dizziness||Thinking of all the books and supplies available in one room.|
If you have more than two of these symptoms, you may be experiencing the homeschool convention virus. I am sorry to say there is no medication specifically for this virus. The only cure is to attend the homeschool convention and even then, the symptoms may worsen.
Are you a friend of a homeschool mom who suffers from this malady? There are ways for you to help her. Provide your friend with assurance that everything will be fine. Let her know you will help her through this by attending the convention with her and by rooming with her at the hotel. You will also want to provide her husband with support. Let him know you will confiscate her credit card at the convention if needed.
Your friend will need you the most at the convention. First and foremost, do not give her caffeine. It will cause her to be fidgety. Be sure she eats properly and stays well hydrated. If she refuses, let her know you will have to restrict her shopping times. You will also want to take care of yourself. Eat well and rest when you can. Wear comfortable shoes. Keep Tylenol in your purse in case you need it.
Be firm when she attempts to attend all the convention classes. Tell her she may purchase the recorded tapes of the necessary classes. Again be firm. She does not need every tape.
Allow her time to map out her strategy for shopping in the exhibit hall. This will help to calm her nerves. Do not allow her out of your sight when you do go into the exhibit hall. She will attempt to make unnecessary purchases. She will not need the advanced biology course and its supplies if she has children at the elementary level. You may need to remind her of staying within her budget or you will have to confiscate her credit card.
Of course, you will want to do your own shopping. I know you are concerned about leaving your friend alone. The best course of action is to arrange for another person to sit with your friend until you have made your purchases. Oh, do not forget to take a gift to the sitter. Chocolate or Starbucks coffee might be just the thing to say thank you.
It is best you do the driving on the way home after the convention is over. Your friend will be exhausted and will need to sleep. In fact, she may need extra sleep for the next few nights.
Please be aware there are some cases when the homeschool convention virus becomes extreme. This occurs when the patient must attend a larger convention the next year and tries to register for it before the registration is open.
All kidding aside, there are strategies for preparing for a homeschool convention such as:
- Register for the convention and make hotel reservations in advance. A few weeks ahead is fine.
- Research products in advance but do not become obsessive.
- Eat well, stay hydrated, and take rest periods while at the convention.
- Wear comfortable shoes.
- Select pertinent classes to attend. Purchase tapes if needed.
- Select the booths you want to visit by looking at the exhibit hall map in advance.
- Set a budget in advance and stick to it.
- Have fun.