Friday, December 14, 2012

I am a College Graduate!!

School is done!
I have completed my degree program as of today.. that's it, I'm done! I did it!

I will be mailed my certificate. There will be a graduation ceremony during the summer that I will most likely attend. For now I am proud to say I have my Associate's Degree.

This is a big accomplishment for me. I've never graduated before. I did not graduate high school. I had my first child during my junior year. I ended up dropping out and getting my GED before the end of senior year.
I didn't think about going to college back then. I wasn't really sure how. I didn't know what I wanted to do or anything. Besides, I needed to work to raise my child since I was doing it all on my own. His father was never in the picture.

Years passed, I met my husband and had more children. I put everything else on hold while raising the kids. Just thinking about trying to work was hard with babies in the house. First it was twins, and there was no way I could afford child care for twins. They were 3 when the next was born, and he was only 18 months when #5 was born. I stayed home for 8 years raising my kids. I don't regret it at all, but money was always tight. We've always had financial trouble, and my husband works very long hours trying to provide for us, but it just wasn't enough.

Two years ago I decided it was time I helped out. I found a part-time job, and enrolled in school finally. That's been my life for 2 years now. Working, doing school work, and taking care of the kids.

Today is a major accomplishment. I'm a college graduate! I didn't give up, even though it was hard. I wanted to quit so many times.. even within the past few weeks as this last class was really hard. But I stuck with it, did the work, and now I'm done! I am finishing with a 3.9 GPA.

I'm still only working part-time though right now. That has been tough. Most of my paycheck goes towards childcare for my youngest who isn't in full day school yet. Once this school year is over it will get easier. My oldest is now 15, will be 16 in May. He'll watch the younger ones over the summer, saving me childcare fees. Then next year the youngest will be in full-day school and the oldest will watch him after school.

In the meantime I'm working on trying to find my career. I've already been looking for quite some time. I was not just going to sit and wait until graduation. I've already been trying to find something that would give me the experience I need, but it hasn't been easy. So far I've only been offered less hours, less pay, and less benefits than I currently get. I can live without the benefits, but while paying for child care I need more hours and more pay!

But job or no job, I will forever be a college graduate! That is something to be proud of!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Update..

Where does the time go? This year has just flown by and here it is nearly Thanksgiving time and Christmas is right around the corner. I'm already getting tired of hearing Christmas music on the radio.. sheesh!

I am about a month away from graduating college, yipee! I'm taking my final class, it's called a Capstone class. I don't really know how to explain it, it's supposed to prepare me for the working world like an internship, but really it's just quizzing me on what I've learned over the past 2 years (as if I can remember any of it) and helping me create a professional portfolio (do people really use those?). This class is probably the hardest class I've taken thus far, and I'm only just beginning. I'll be happy when it's over and I can say I'm a college graduate!

Considering I will soon be graduating, I am looking for a new job. I'm still at the bank, been there just a bit over a year now. But I am seeing that I don't have much of a future there. In fact the future at this bank is pretty bleak. I don't know from one week to the next where I'm going to be or what I"m going to be doing. My bank lost a position, so people had to be rearranged, and I was told 2 weeks ago I'd be transferring to a different location. It actually seemed like a good thing because the other location is a little closer to me and a lot busier. However, they don't know when I'll be transferring yet. I was supposed to start at the new bank this week, but they told me just a few days ago that I won't be going until next month now!

In the meantime I'm getting very few hours. I was hired for 20 hours, but I haven't worked 20 hours in weeks! This means our financial state is not doing very well. We're behind on bills, cutting back where we can but still not coming out even.

I've spent the past month looking for something else.. either a part time job in addition to the one I have, or a different full-time job. So far no luck on either front. I did have an interview on Saturday, but it's hard to say how that went. You know the routine, they always say they have other people to talk to and will call if they're interested in you. So now it's just a waiting game to see if they are interested or not.

Because of these developments I've been feeling like I'm under a huge amount of stress. But I recently rejoined a gym and have been getting back in the habit of working out and trying to eat better. I'm super ticked at myself for gaining back all the weight I lost a couple years ago.. but something tells me it needed to happen. This time if I'm able to lose the weight again, I'll know the importance of trying to keep it off. It's really much easier to keep it off than to try to lose it all again!

I always say everything happens for a reason!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

They were right!

When my kids were younger, things were definitely hectic, chaotic, and stressful. My youngest is currently 4 years old and he's still a major handful. He has a stubborn, defiant personality, and always has. He can be very testing sometimes.

Over the years people always told me, "Just wait until they become teenagers". I laughed at those people. What could be so hard about raising teenagers? They can make their own food, clean up their own messes, bathe themselves, brush their own hair and teeth, wipe their own butts, and you don't have to chase them around all day or wake up with them or sing/rock them to sleep. You can leave them home alone without too much worry, or let them go outside or off to a friend's house by themselves. What's so hard about raising teenagers?

Well.. my oldest will be 15 in a couple of months. Because of him, I've banned my other children from aging. He's the only one who's allowed to get any older, and I'd prefer it if he'd hurry up and get past this teenager stage!

I won't say for certain that teenagers are more difficult than littler kids. They do have some advantages which I mentioned above (aside from cleaning up their own messes.. they are capable of doing this but usually don't unless they want something from you, and arguing with them to get them to clean the mess is usually more difficult than doing it yourself).

But the attitude and moodiness and need for space and privacy.. holy cow! It makes you stop and wonder where did my sweet little boy go? What happened to the days when I used to bring him to school and knew the names of every single child in his class, and most of their parent's names also? Now all of a sudden he's running off with new friends I've never met and never even heard of. What happened to the days when I would secretly pray he'd run out of things to talk about so my ears could get a break? Now I have to pry information out of him, and even then it's rarely ever the full truth. And what happened to that sweet, loving child I raised? This teenage boy in my home is a hateful monster!

On top of all of this, my teenage son told me the other day that he flat out "hates" pretty much every single one of his siblings, especially his only sister, because they are so annoying. He yells at them, picks on them, calls them names like "stupid", and yeah, they do annoy him on purpose because for some strange reason they like to see him get mad, which is far too easy to do these days.

It has gone so far that I actually brought him to see a counselor to try to help him through these emotions and the confusion he feels, though he's certainly not happy about having to speak to the counselor at all.

It is certainly worrying me. He's not even 15 yet. In the back of my mind I just keep thinking.. he's still got to get through being 15,16 and 17.. and I honestly don't know when teenage boys start calming down and acting more like grown men. I don't think that usually happens until sometime in their 20's, maybe 30's. But at least once he's out of high school I can send him off to college or perhaps the military!
Either way, I'm not letting these younger kids become teenagers! Nope, they're going to be my sweet, innocent little babies forever!