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!