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Tuesday February 25th 2020

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Homeschooling: Like a Breath of Fresh Air

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Homeschooling: Like a Breath of Fresh Air

 By Linda Dobson

At the beach homeschoolingIt was late afternoon, and I had to step out back for a couple of minutes, subconsciously bracing for the wall of humidity that, on its worst days, hits like a sudden stop at a brick wall. Today was one of those worst days. Contrary to the popular wisdom of moving slowly as a coping mechanism, the mountain girl in me scurried to get done. I was eager to return to the confines of the artificial comfort that awaited me inside.

But then, just as I finished my chore and stood prepared to enjoy the relief that would greet me upon sliding open the glass door, I felt it. Or did I hear it? Or both? It was a welcome gust of wind from the Gulf, a rarity at this time of year, strong enough to survive the three mile-or-so trip to my backyard. I paused, savoring the momentary experience of what I have come to call “feeling normal outside.” I closed my eyes, breathed deeply, and could almost remember what it was like to have a breath of the fresh air I now realize that, like many others, I take for granted when the proper season bestows them day after day.

Homeschooling: Like a Breath of Fresh Air

There it was again. Another gust and, sure enough, the palm fronds both in my yard and in the distance danced in delight. While tropical storms and hurricanes can also produce this wondrous sight, this gentler rendition was too rare an occurrence at this time of year to miss it. I stepped inside just long enough to grab a cold bottle of water and something to read, then settled into the cushioned chair on the patio to enjoy.

Measured in water terms, it took probably five sips. Measured in reading terms, probably two paragraphs, and it was over – as quickly and quietly as it began. In the stillness of air that ensued, within a few brief minutes I again sought the man-made relief of air conditioning. But, oh, how wonderful that breeze, those sips, the paragraphs, the comfort of those glorious moments. Had I not been in the right place, with the right knowledge, at the exact right time, I wouldn’t even know I had missed the chance for a breath of fresh air.

As I sat down to dinner, it struck me. That all-too-brief, incredibly enjoyable feeling was representative of what you, dear homeschooling parent, have available to you each and every day, measured not in water or reading terms, but in lifestyle terms. First, you are in the right place with the right knowledge at the exact right time – at home, aware that there is a better way to educate your children, while they are still young.

Enjoy Homeschooling Paradise Moments

You know, in many circles, if one complains aloud about Florida’s summer weather, it’s greeted with a reply along the lines of, “Hey, it’s the price you pay – and a small one at that – to live in paradise.”  In the same way, that “perfect homeschooling moment,” often elusive even if repeatedly glorified in homeschool writings, exists between many more moments of less-than-perfect moments. But compared to other educational lifestyles you might be living, you are in paradise. There are still too many families who, lacking knowledge, don’t have the foggiest notion that they are missing the chance for a breath of educational and family fresh air.  Less-than-perfect moments grow much more tolerable when you possess the knowledge that, if not for being in the place where, by default, they must occur, you would never experience paradise at all. After all, when homeschooling is good, it is oh, so very good. What are a few tropical storms or inevitable hurricanes when you know that, just around the corner, homeschooling’s sunny skies, perfect temperatures, and the ability to revel in nature’s glory await you and your growing children?

You daily have the opportunity for a rejuvenating breath of fresh air in lifestyle paradise. That opportunity won’t last forever.

Close your eyes.

Breathe deeply.

Enjoy.

Originally appeared as one of Linda’s “Road Less Traveled” columns in Home Education Magazine. For more of Linda’s writing on homeschooling, please visit Linda’s Books.

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