As Brendan and Ryan grew, they both went to a wonderful preschool and I felt led to send Brendan to a private Christian school once he started kindergarten. Again, God provided the means for us to send Brendan to his school and he flourished. As Ryan turned five, we decided to send him to the same school for junior kindergarten due to his late birthday. He also flourished and enjoyed school.
Now we were paying for two private school tuitions and it was not cheap! I had several friends who homeschooled their children. Occasionally one of them would mention homeschooling to me, but I just brushed them off…I was doing the “right” thing in my mind by sending the boys to a Christian school. Besides, there was NO WAY that I could (or even wanted to) teach my kids all day, every day! I needed “my” time and had things that I wanted to do!
Eventually, an opportunity arose at work where I was able to work 20-25 hours per week and send the boys to an afterschool program (at their school). We decided that it would be helpful to have some extra income. I enjoyed being back in the workplace. I felt fulfilled and “professional”. The only downside was that I didn’t get to spend much time with my kids. By the time I picked them up from aftercare, fed them dinner, and helped with homework, it was time to get ready for bed. We stuck with this schedule for a year, but when Ryan finished kindergarten and Brendan finished third grade, Justin felt that the tuition was just too costly. Reluctantly, I agreed to try public school but only if I quit my 25 hours a week. I wanted to be home to get the kids off the bus, help them with their homework, volunteer as room mother, etc. We adjusted to the new schedule and I stayed very involved with the school. We never had any major issues with the teachers or anything and the boys were doing fine, but something still didn’t feel right.
As Brendan entered the fifth grade, I couldn’t get the idea of homeschooling out of my head. I started researching the different options, philosophies, benefits, and curriculum choices. I began to talk to Justin about the possibility of teaching Brendan at home and he was very supportive. I began attending a local Christian homeschool support group and they encouraged me, prayed for our family, and answered my MANY questions. I read lots of books about homeschooling and with every book that I read, it began to dawn on me that maybe God really was calling me to bring Brendan home. The more I studied scripture, the more my eyes were opened to the possibility.
to be continued…