Friday, October 22, 2010

My Experience as a Working Adult/Student

I must be CRAZY!  Here I am...a wife, a mother, a grandmother...and I have gone back to school. I had made a promise to my mother on her deathbed that I would get my degree.  Of coarse back then I was going to school for computer engineering. I had even been accepted to OU's College of Engineering. But life happens and I dropped school for a semester. And the semester somehow turned in to many years. Actually, twenty-eight years except for the year I put in at Oklahoma City Community College picking up an associates degree in math.

I was never the normal college student.  Even when I had first started college, I was already married and had 3 sons.  I never got to experience the college life that so many others had but it didn't matter. I was there to learn how to make a comfortable living. I was there as a role model to my boys. Now all these years later, I'm doing it again, but this time to finish with a degree in business, and as a role model to my grandchldren.

As a working (and a little older) adult, I find it very hard to go to work every day and go to school 2 or 3 nights. When I am not at work or school, I am almost always at home doing homework or studying, or reading for the next class. I can remember how I used to be able to stay up nearly all night and still take care of my family and home, and go to school or work. Now all these years later, I can barely stay awake until 10:30 p.m. and my house is in dire need of a housekeeper. But time is running out and I still have a promise to keep.

Truthfully though, I love it. I have always enjoyed school except for a short time during my rebellious years in high school. If I could afford it, I would quit work and become a professional student. What I have noticed is that while life goes on,  change is inevitable, and yet, some things remain the same. For instance, the girls still talk about their boyfriends, the boys still talk about their cars, and now I'm more than a little older than many of my classmates.

For the most part, it has been good. I mainly have classes with others who are also working adults. I was taught long ago that nothing is free, you have to work for what you want, and what you want, might not be what you get. And that is still so true.

 I get up around 5:00 every morning, have coffee and get off to work. I put in an 8 hour day and then go to school at least 2 nights a week. It has been a real struggle for me and yet compared to some of the others, I really don't have much to complain about. When I feel like it is about to get the best of me, I sit and think about the young lady who has 4 children (one of which has severe medical problems), or the young man whose time has been spent in the war and has probably seen more sadness and horrible things than I will ever see. I count my blessings and look up to them and so many others, and realize that they have so much more to deal with and if they can handle it all, then who am I to complain?  I will be graduating in May 2011 ( if all goes as planned) and I can honestly say that I earned my degree, thanks to those around me who have shown me that while it can be a struggle, it can be done if you really want it. And I can't help but think that my mother would be proud.

1 comment:

  1. Carol,

    You tell quite a story; it is indeed encouraging. I commend you not only for your steadfast, positive, go-get-it attitude, but I also commend you for your humility. Humility seems to be a rare quality to find in people these days. Your posting offers a refreshing perspective.

    Another thing—way to keep your promise. I'm sure your mother would be proud. You and I definitely agree on a lot of issues when it comes down to education and the road it takes getting there. I'll tell you what, though, your hands are full as well! And believe me, there's probably someone else, besides me, thinking “holy smokes”… she does that every day? Wow! LOL!

    The last thing I'd like to add is that role models are a must! In today's world, kids really do need that positive image to look up to. I like the fact that you've taken on this responsibility on multiple levels. My hat's off to you ;-)