Those first months in his new school, his asthma flared. Several hospital visits and trips to his pediatrician had us thinking, "We need to fix this." We were informed his lungs needed at least a year without even a common cold to improve his breathing functions. That same night, my husband and I prayed for help and direction. The image of our son, his bright healthy glow had been replaced with a pale color worsened by the deep blue circles under his eyes from struggling to get enough oxygen. The 'elephant' mask from his nebulizer couldn't remove the fear we had for our son's long-term healing. We had heard about homeschooling only in spurts, but, that night- our prayers were clear, "If you want us to homeschool, show us how."
My first impression of homeschooling brought images of goat husbandry, soap makers, homesteaders - at the time, it seemed a very unnatural fit for us. While talking over the idea with my husband, we could hear our son's asthmatic cough and we both knew we had to act. I agreed to ask around and research it, while he would strive to keep an open mind. We prayed.
The very next day, I had an early gymnastics class with our two younger daughters. At this point, we had taken over 3 months of classes and one particular mother always sat next to me as we shared our joys watching our girls tumble and giggle. I opened up to her my quest for any knowledge of homeschooling and asked if she knew of any homeschoolers in our community. She smiled and informed me that she homeschooled her son and daughter. How had I shared over 40 hours of chit-chat with this wonderful lady and not realized she homeschooled? She said she was always hesitant to divulge that information because she's had mixed responses and she usually found herself on the defensive. Good to know.
Once she knew my interest was sincere, she shared with me 5 books that had helped her start her journey just two years before. Already our prayers were being answered! I was spurred to head straight to the library after gymnastics. I call this the day of epiphany in our journey. At the library, fumbling to find the section with books on homeschooling, I came across 4 families sitting and pouring over many books. You guessed it, all homeschoolers. After gaining wonderful direction and support from them, they told me of a local park I had not found that was a great spot to take my girls. I checked out 3/5 of the books my friend recommended and headed to the park so I could get a jump on these materials. Wouldn't you know it, the park happened to have a homeschool gathering of over 30 parents and children. We had been in TN over 3 months, visited at least a half dozen parks, and never noticed homeschoolers. In this one day, I've met over 15 families! Sometimes God is very direct in answering our prayers.
This was the day my husband and I decided to take the leap..our plan was to homeschool for one year and then reassess his health. That one year, turned into 12 more for him and 15 total for all three of our children.
The three books I checked out that day:
The Well Trained Mind by Susan Wise Bauer
Honey for a Child's Heart by Gladys Hunt
A Charlotte Mason Companion by Karen Andreola
They all three have been loaned out many times and still sit on my bookshelves today.