Monday, May 7, 2012

Delayed Reality

This week several people I know have graduated from college. Considering I am 32 years old and some of these people are younger than I am and some are older I got to thinking about my own degree and how I have not yet used it and how I am not sure how or when I will.
When I graduated I was pregnant with my son and getting divorced. I feel that getting my degree is one of the things I am most proud of in my life. It was not easy and I could not have done it on my own. I have a very supportive family. Emotionally, financially, with child care, everything you could think of they were there to help me achieve my goal of graduating. The 3.8 cumulative GPA was all me.
The problem is I got my degree in political science, I minored in literature and I have a family to support. I would love to go to grad school but at this point that means more debt and really no more job prospects. I just love school. I love reading and learning. I could deal with an office job, I could probably even like it, but I love my kids and I do not want someone else to raise them. What is a mom to do?
The plan right now is to stay home through the summer with the boyfriend working and then in the fall when the kids go to school I will find a job and only the baby will have to be in some sort of daycare. My girl never had to go to daycare because I was in school and my mom and my now ex-husband were able to watch her when I was in class. But this is my life now and I cannot put off working for four years and stay home with Joey until he is in school. And that breaks my heart every time I think about it. When I think about someone else spending their days with his smiling face it makes me want to cry. I know this is a dilemma every mother faces when she has to return to work, but that does not make it any easier for me. I should be grateful for the year and a half I will have had at home with him.
Sometimes I think about how my life would have been if I had done college the "right" way. If I had just gone and finished right out of high school. But that is a waste of time. My life is the way it is because this is how it is supposed to be. I never would have gone back to school if I hadn't had my daughter. She was my inspiration to do better in my life and I have. Now the baby just adds to that inspiration and he has made me raise my standards even higher. I am constantly trying to become a better person for them. My college degree is one of my proudest accomplishments, but it is a distant third to being the mother of those two.
I am not the other two's mom but they live with us and I do take them into consideration when I think about my life and I also want to set an example for them and I want them to know that I am here for them too. The lines are blurred but the need for stability is there for all the kids, not just mine. I guess for now I will just enjoy the little time I have left home with the kids and then I will suck it up and join the real world, like every one else.

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