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I never thought we would one day be homeschooling through cancer.
We never understand God’s plans for us until we see His plans unfolding. We love to make our own plans.
When we planned to have kids we kind of thought we had their whole life figured out.
We just wonder how they are going to look like, we also move to the right place to they can attend the right school, have the right friends, we planned out their activities, and all of that is great but the truth is that God has bigger and greater plans you.
When you let go and give in into His plan you may think sometimes that lives just turn upside down, but what you are living at that moment is just the behind the scenes of something greater being prepared for you and your family on the ‘STAGE’, and that’s what kind of happened to me and my family.
God’s Plans Are Above Our Plans
When my husband and I decided to have kids, we decided to focus on the area we were going to live and not so much in the house, so our son could benefit from the school district.
It was a struggle from the beginning, my son would not get used to the idea, since the age of 3, to be still in a chair for more than 20 minutes and for us when it happened it was a milestone. He had other issues of transitions like moving from an activity to the other; even in preschool, they expect 3-year-old kids to stop a book they are interested in and jump into another activity, just because the time is up.
Issues like these were causing us to attend a lot of meetings in school when he was just in Kindergarten. As a concerned mom, I did everything that they suggested. I took him to an OT, speech therapy, and instead of giving me or my son tools to accommodate him in his classroom, I would go to endless meetings talking about the same issues over and over again, with no other solutions presented but medication.
The last drop was when a special ed teacher hit my son in the head to redirect him to his work.
I moved him from a magnet school to another school but I knew deep down that wherever he would go we will face the same problem because the school public system is not prepared to handle ”active’ kids like him.
God’s Plans Are Timely
Then my husband decided He wanted us to move to Houston, Texas but both of our families were in Florida, we knew only a couple of people in Houston and it was a very difficult decision to make but then I remember a part of the Scripture that says ”wherever you go, I will go; wherever you live, I will live. Your people will be my people and your God will be my God” Ruth 1:16.
We could never imagine that moving to Houston later on, was going to save my husband’s life.
Following my a husband’s dream to a better future for our family, we moved and once again we focused on finding a good location in a good school district, so our son could benefit from it.
We placed our son in a great school with lots of awards thinking that enabled them to know how to deal with my son, but once again, the issues were the same and their only solution offered to us was medication.
I have nothing against medication. I understand that lots of families benefit from it but I just didn’t want to give up on him just yet, there are a lot of things that I love about his personality.
Tiago is so happy, always in a great mood, opinionated , curious, active, always ready for an adventure, a helper, stubborn, he will never give up, when he thinks he is right or even when he is not, those things makes him who he is and that I don’t want him to change.
All he needed was redirection and one-on-one time and this, of course, the public school couldn’t offer, instead, they only wanted to medicate him so he could blend in and follow the system.
After much prayer, my sister-in-law talked to me about homeschooling and what a game changer was for my nephew Ben, how great he was doing with the one-on-one system.
I was scared but I read about it and learned how much help and support there is out there, then I thought ”my son comes home with all his classwork undone, he is not finishing his work anyways, and all the subjects that he succeeds at are the ones that we practiced together at home”.
Then I gave birth to my second child, after 6 years trying to conceive and around that time, the following week to be more exact, my husband was diagnosed with cancer.
It was a hard time for all of us, the darkest time that we have been through.
I didn’t have time to go to meetings and sit there to listen to how my son was this and that and me asking them “well we already know how he is, what you are telling me is not new to me, we are in a table full of professionals, what is the plan?
I would always leave the school upset and to tell you the truth it would not only make me upset but it would make my son anxious too. All of this while we were going through enough with my husband so I listened to my heart, gave it a try and it was the best decision for all of us!!!
God’s Plans Are Better Than Mine
I told you I followed my husband’s dream to move to Houston and it wasn’t an easy decision for me, in fact, my first year in Houston was very difficult. I had a very difficult pregnancy and being away from my parents and siblings was the hardest thing for me.
What I did not know at that time, was that God had a huge plan for us to move here!
We could not have predicted what was about to happen in our lives. My 38-year-old husband was diagnosed with a stage 4 very rare NK T-Cell lymphoma cancer.
Guess what? Moving to Houston saved his life! This type of cancer is so rare that very few hospitals in the United States could treat it and one of them was the Houston Methodist Hospital!
God has a reason and a purpose for everything that happens in our lives, even when we don’t understand.
So, in our first year of homeschooling, I went through a post c-section recovery while my husband spent most of his days at the hospital doing chemo and radiation, I had sleepless nights, two-hour trips to the hospital daily and I couldn’t be more grateful that I had Tiago, my son, with me the whole time.
I could not even imagine what would have been like if he was still going to public school during those months! We would have barely seen him, and his dad, who needed his hugs the most, wouldn’t have had them!
Nothing was easy for us, but at the same time, moving to Houston and start homeschooling were in God’s perfect plan and perfect timing for our family.
Early this year my husband had a bone marrow transplant and he had to stay at the hospital in isolation for a month – these were the hardest days for us. At least, when we can see each other, hug, kiss, hold hands and pray together, there is an amazing comfort in our hearts.
Our life has turned upside down in this past year, we were already a family living on one income only and only our faith and trust in God kept us from panicking when the thousands of dollars hospital bills made to our mailbox almost daily.
We saw God raising up people up from all over the world to pray and support us.
My son’s faith has increased, we prayed together a lot and he saw God’s healing his dad and providing for our family.
My husband is cancer free today, thank God! And the days we have together as a family homeschooling are nothing short of a miracle and filled with joy!
Life is short and full of surprises, we don’t want to take for granted the precious time we have to spend together as a family. Homeschooling has allowed us that in a whole new level.
Homeschooling has given me so much.
It gave us the chance to be there for my husband when he needed us. My son was with his dad giving him a hug when they both needed one.
At the beginning, it wasn’t easy to homeschool in the midst of all that was happening. I had to learn to get to know my son in a different level but it was a beautiful thing!
It took us time to find our groove but we are getting there, there are good days and some not so good days but I’ve seen him flourish, his self-esteem is great, he has no one to be compared with, there are no more stress about grades, if he is struggling in one area we just spend time there until he gets it.
We find different ways to learn things, we look for other resources even if we need to change our Language Arts curriculum in the middle of the year, it’s all about his own pace to learn and not how fast he gets it.
Homeschooling has taught me a lot .
I had to learn to be patient, to respect his time to learn things, to find ways to direct him and always remember not to make the same mistakes the teachers were making because then, what is the point of pulling him out of school if I am making the same mistakes.
I could sit here and tell you a million reasons why I love homeschooling, but my main one is the great feeling of accomplishment when my son finally gets it , the feeling that he doesn’t feel behind because for the first time his school is here to serve him , not him to serve the school and its idea of how a kid should sit still and behave to be successful. He is successful already! We are!
We stay on the subject until he masters it so there is no getting behind, behind what?
We are moving forward in so many ways and moving on to the next chapter in our lives.
God had much bigger and much better plans for us through this all.I’m guilty in the past of not feeling proud of my son, but homeschooling has given me the chances to see his strengths, not his weakness and right now I’m his biggest fan.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths. – Proverbs 3:5-6