Wednesday, January 15, 2014

College - Been There Done That

Mom’s post last week might have taken you by surprise.  And clearly, someone found it interesting because almost 1,600 people have read it. And many commented that they could not wait to read my post. Which is a lot of pressure. Thanks everyone. Here goes.

Coming home was one of the hardest decisions I’ve ever had to make and honestly, I’m still working through some things, mostly my own feelings and expectations. Some days I feel like shouting for joy and some days I think “what have I done, I have passed the point of no return and I'm defying gravity.” (Incorporating the musicals Les Mis, Phantom of the Opera and Wicked into my melodramatic lament.)

I do want to thank you for your kind comments on mom’s post.  I was not sure what to expect and had braced myself for some harsh, unkind words. Reading all of your sweet comments on the blog and Facebook made me cry – not one person had anything negative to say (and if you did, thank you for keeping it to yourself). I was blessed by your stories.

There were a lot of factors that played in my decision, and all of them rolled around my head for weeks.
Where did God want me? What did my parents want me to do? What did I want to do? I had friends and a job that I loved.  I didn’t want to be “giving up,” and I didn’t want others to think I was giving up.  I felt that either way I chose, I could not win. (more Phantom lines. Go figure) Either way, I had to give something up.

But, I came home. Because this is where my family is and, for now, this is where God wants me.
So you might be wondering what I’m doing now.

And you might be thinking that I am going to sit around doing nothing. Which is tempting. Actually it isn’t. I can’t sit around doing nothing for very long before I have to go organize something, or at least knit something. So I have plans. In case you were concerned.

On Monday, I started four online classes at Arlington Baptist College. By taking online classes, I’m able to save money both on room and board and living expenses. I also might get to graduate a semester early, which would be a huge blessing. And I’m starting up my sewing business again, doing things like hemming pants, planning/working on three quilts, draping a formal dress, sewing on patches for my dad and brother, etc. This week my sister and I are in charge of food – planning, shopping on a budget, and cooking.  (mom's idea, I think it was a trick!)  I’m working on my photography and my web design/HTML skills. I’m also working on making some friends here, and getting involved with my church.

So I am busy. And very happy to be home. But it is an adjustment. This week and next week will be the hardest because my friends are back in school and I started classes. It is a little painful to see them post about being back, but at the same time, I am so glad I do not have to leave home!

I want to leave you with two things.

The first is that I just want you to know that those of us who are/were homeschooled can succeed at college. In fact, the homeschooled kids I met at college were the students who were excelling. Not only did they excel at school, they excelled at other things, like sewing, flying planes, playing instruments, conversing with adults, public speaking, etc. There are those who might take my story as a story of failure. I want you to know that it is not - as far as my parents and I are concerned, mine is a success story, not one of failure.

Second, my favorite quote. “Never say never, when God is writing your story.” –Steve Saint
I keep coming back to that quote because God keeps doing things in my life that I looked at and said “never.” Don’t say “never” to God. Let Him write your story. It works much better that way.

Blessings, Ashton

If you have any questions, please leave a comment and I would be happy to try to answer them. 

Happy to be linking up with these wonderful women-  visit their sites and be blessed!

Welcome Home Wednesdays
Hearts for Home Blog Hop

Missional Women
Womanhood With Purpose


  1. I am so glad you took the time to post this. It is so important for parents and students to both realize that there is more than one path to take in this world, and God will bring His glory to our choices if they are in alignment with His will. May God bless you greatly in the next season of your life!

  2. Thank you, Ashton for sharing your side.

  3. Thank you Ashton. That was beautifully written with such respect, love and honor for God and your family. God bless you as you make new friends and get acclimated to the North Dakota weather ... was it that cold in Wisconsin ... probably colder!

    Love Beverly Blake NRBC friend

    1. Beautifully said Ashton. Wishing you much success and happiness in all your endeavors. With love Aunt Susan and Uncle Kenny xo

  4. It has been a pleasure to read your story (from both your point of view and Michele's). It takes a lot of courage to go against the grain, and many times there is no "right" and "wrong" path, but just two different paths either of which can be wrong or right for you, and you have to determine which is the better to go on (which could change 6 months down the road). I'm glad you have loving and supportive parents that realize the importance of family and doing what is best for you over achieving our culture's expectations. You have an awesome family and I'm glad to know you guys!

  5. Hi! Thanks for sharing your story! I, too, have done college at home and find that it is the greatest blessing. :) I truly believe it is the Lord's will to have daughters stay under their father's protection, until the Lord brings their husbands (if that is His plan) and find it so encouraging when others embrace this vision! May the Lord lead you in the days ahead... Many blessings from a fellow stay-at-home daughter!


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