Everyone has graduated…. So, why can’t I?!

It’s Graduation Season!! And while I’m always happy and proud for those around me who are walking across the stage, deep down I’m crying because I haven’t graduated from college…. this has been a 16 year journey for me to complete my degree and I’m still not done!! Y’all pray for me.

Anyone who knows me knows that I’ve been wanting to complete my degree FOREVER! It’s been a long and tenuous process where I’ve encountered various roadblocks and sometimes my own self sabotage but, I do want to finish. My husband recently graduated with his Masters degree and that once again sparked my interest to complete my degree. Plus, we decided when we originally moved to Florida that I was supposed to go to school full-time and stay at home with my son but, life happened and (including me FAILING as a stay at home mom, which is a story for another day) I ended up going back to work full-time so I stopped taking classes.

But with my newfound inspiration, I decided to follow the yellow brick road once again to complete my degree…. So, let me tell you where it all began. I graduated from high school in 2003, I come from a family where NO ONE has graduated from college yet so, I can honestly say we knew much of NOTHING about the process of applying to school, getting scholarships, or financial aid. So, my mom and I went on this journey together, exploring the unknown of college. My father died the summer before my Junior year so, it was just her and I at this point. My older siblings had already moved out, they’re 14 and 15 years older than I am. So… I ended up attending Carlow College in Pittsburgh, PA. It was like the one application that I completed because we didn’t have much money for college applications and if I recall correctly, it was FREE to apply to this school.

While I did get financial aid and some scholarship money for school, no one explained to me that the costs of going to an out of state PRIVATE college would be WAY more than what it would’ve been if I had just stayed local and maybe did a community college or state school. So, I was there for my freshman year and fall semester of my Sophomore year and then I had to go home. My mom had been trying to pay the balances leftover from each semester and we just didn’t have enough money. So, I went back home, started working and put school to the side. It hurt and quite honestly SUCKED to see friends who were only home for summer or spring breaks and then would skip off to college while I stayed behind to work and help my mom take care of our household.

Eventually I made the decision that I was ready to go back to school for about 2 years after being home. So I enrolled and took a few classes. And this cycle of taking classes and then taking breaks went on and on for years. I’d have to take breaks from school for different reasons, but mainly because sometimes I’d have to get a part-time job in addition to my full-time job to help out when needed at home… and I look up 16 years later and here I am. 34, DEGREE-less and trying to figure out the next steps for my career and life in general….

Well, I’ve enrolled in college again. I’m scheduled to graduate in 2020. I have 8 classes to complete and… for added pressure my husband decided to delay walking at graduation to 2020 so we can walk next year at the same time (romantic, right)… lol more like stressful because now I really have to graduate! Lol.

So… what’s today’s lesson? Be the “little engine that could” and eventually you’ll achieve your goals… whatever they may be…

Now if you’ll excuse me I have some college algebra to finish! Lol

~ Peace, Love & Light….