Starting right after I finished first grade at my school in Portland, Oregon, I began homeschooling. My mom had picked me up from school one day and asked me out of the blue if I wanted to, and of course, I said yes.

Even as a little kid, the sound of sleeping in a little more every day wasn't something I was going to pass up, and so my new adventure began.

There were multiple other reasons I was ecstatic to begin homeschooling. One of the major ones was my dad. He was an airline pilot, so he would be gone most of the week. Occasionally he would be able to come home for a few hours before heading back to work, and almost every time that happened I was at school. Whenever I came home and heard I had missed an opportunity to see him, it broke my heart, so obviously when I realized I could see him more often, I jumped at the opportunity.

I was also happy to be able to spend more time with the rest of my family as well, in other words, my amazing, talented mom, and my hilarious, genius little sister who also happened to be my best friend.

Homeschooling also provided more adventurous opportunities.

Not long after beginning homeschooling, my family and I sold our house in Oregon and moved onto a 49ft sailboat in Washington. Because both my sister and I did everything school related at home, we were able to go out sailing to the San Juan Islands, or just some islands in the area during any time of the year. We would do our homework while sailing to an island that may have been 3 or more hours away.

Along with the shorter trips, it provided us the chance to go on our year-long trip to Mexico when I was still in "middle school." We got to see what humpback whales, sea turtles, dolphins, sea lions, and many other animals looked like in person instead of having to look them up on google or in a textbook of some sort. Once a little squid washed up on our boat and died before we noticed it, so we brought it into the cockpit and my little sister and I dissected it for science.

Like many other situations, there were a few negative effects as well. One of these happened to be that I didn't get much interaction with other kids besides my sister. When you live at a marina, there often aren't many around.

I got to talk to a lot of adults, leading to me finding it very easy to act professionally and maturely, but I had a very difficult time keeping up conversations with other children. I had some form of anxiety since before I can remember, so I would have been shy and awkward no matter what, but a lack of experience made it a little more difficult.

When looking back at everything I gained from my time as a homeschooler, I would never take back my choice, even if I did struggle more in certain situations. I got to get so much closer to my family, went on life-changing adventures, and got a little more sleeping and free time.

Some of my best memories were made in that time, and it helped develop the person I am today. I'm proud of who I've been able to become, and so I'm proud of the choice I made those many years ago.