Challenge. Something that really made you grow this year. That made you go to your edge and then some. What made it the best challenge of the year for you?
I'm comfortable inside my own head. I'm uncomfortable trying to share what's in there with others. It has taken me so many years, decades even, of active thinking and reading and doing to integrate my body of knowledge and experience into my personal epistemology and teleology that I feel that I would typically need a thousand pages to adequately answer people when they ask seemingly basic questions. I mean, it took Bertrand Russell approximately 400 pages in Principia Mathematica (volume 1) to say that 1+1=2 and the proof of it is not completed until a hundred pages into volume 2.
So what am I to think, much less do, when some asks me what "unschooling" means to me? That's a concept which is a bit more complex than 1+1=2, after all. To respond adequately is a Herculean challenge; but about a year ago I gave in and composed my very first unschooling-specific post here, after being prodded by Jon Gold.
Since then, I've written two other unschooling-specific posts but both of those were defensive reactions to, and criticisms of, people who were claiming the mantle of unschooling for unpleasant, and in one case, vile, behavior.
The two critical posts were not so difficult to compose. That type of writing comes to me readily. However, writing that first one, giving my take on something important to me, was terribly challenging and scary as hell. Of course, that alone was a valuable lesson for me, to accept that fear was a significant part of my resistance to writing about unschooling. And that makes it the best challenge for me because I pushed through my fear into the place beyond. And that "place beyond" is, as Ronnie once wrote, a wide-sky life.