Throughout high school and college, my teachers and professors tried to drill in me the importance of networking. Meeting new people, swapping contact information, and then actually keeping in touch periodically. But as an extremely shy and introverted person, I just couldn't bring myself to step out of my comfort zone. I had a very small group of friends, and found it difficult to introduce myself to new people.
All that changed when I had children, and began my home-schooling adventures.
Not long after I made the final decision to home-school, I put myself out there in a way I had never done before. I joined a home-school group thru meetup.com. I knew no-one in the group, and would be purposefully surrounding myself with strangers. I just kept telling myself "I'm doing this for the boys.", and forced myself to go.
Suddenly things blossomed. I met mothers who were also just beginning their home-school adventures. I met veteran home-schoolers who were willing to take the time to answer my questions, and quell my fears and uncertainties. I made friends, my boys made friends, and it opened our world to opportunities I didn't even know existed.
This past year my boys have attended plays and festivals; gone on field trips to places like a grocery store, fire station, post office and bowling alley. We've had holiday parties and field days. All made possible because I reached out to the home-school community, and others were there to reach back.