Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Things I have Learned Since Becoming a College Student as an Adult/Parent

So wow. I am back in college officially. I have been for awhile now, since this past August. But it is all starting to sink in. I actually really do love it so far. I have enjoyed my classes, teachers, and even meeting a few new people now and then. I like feeling studious and smart again. I pretty much was made for reading, writing, and the like. I am pretty book smart, but not so much with the "common sense" a lot of the time-- just ask my poor husband!! ;)

Anyway, I put together this list of things I have learned since becoming a college student as an adult/parent.

1. I feel old driving around the school in my minivan. It screams "mom," especially with my "family" sticker on the back window :) And you really feel old when the youngins in your class are talking about the latest iPhone or the party you went to last night, and all you can think of is what you are making for dinner that night, and trying to diagnose why your 5 year old's stomach hurts (has she pooped lately?!)

2. They don't seem to be very serious about checking for parking tags in your mirror.. or at least not lately. I have gotten away with not having one for 6 months now (shhhh.)

3. It is fun to shop for school supplies again! I hit up the stores when the kids did, and picked out notebooks, pencils, and stuff like that. I even started decorating the front of my notebook one day, and then remembered I wasn't an 8 year old girl anymore!

4. College books are EXPENSIVE! If you can rent, buy used or buy from a friend, do it.

5. Online classes are nice. They are convenient. You can do the work whenever you want to. You can do the work in your pajamas or naked for all they care. Just get your work in on time. And you have to be motivated. Don't wait until 11pm in the evening to do an exam when it's due at 11:55PM and you aren't sure how hard it will be!!

6. So far I've experienced only nice teachers so far. They actually care about you and want to see you succeed. Especially the ones that are moms and hear you are going back to school with 3 kids under the age of 9. They eat that stuff up. I got a lot of praise from my English teacher about that, and that made me feel special, and even more motivated to work hard!

7. I still dread taking math classes. I have one required to take for my degree, and so far I have already put it off for the first two semesters. Have they caught on yet? I don't know.. but I guess I will have to deal with it eventually! Thank goodness for a Father who is an accountant-- a true math whiz! (and why didn't I inherit any of his math skills?!)

8. My handwriting hasn't gotten any better over the years. Still looks like a 5 year old wrote the paper. Found that out when Arnold couldn't even read my notes to help me study for a test! ;) I am so, so glad they let you type most things in college!

9. Speaking of typing-- social media like facebook and blogging really pay off when it comes to typing speed. I was told I was one of the fastest typers in my typing class. And Arnold said Facebook was a waste of time! Pssssshhh!

10. It is really fun to study for tests with your dog and hubby. While laying in bed. Hubby can quiz me on the stuff. Dog is just there really, to look cute.

11. I still get excited over grades like I did when I was a kid. When I walk out of class with a paper with an "A" on it, I still get happy feelings in my tummy :) It's even better when the teacher writes a little note on the top like GOOD JOB! Now that really is elementary stuff, but it never gets old ;) Hanging the papers on the fridge next to your 5-year old's drawings of rainbows is perfectly acceptable too ;)

12. The kids care, and want me to do well. They were excited when they heard I was going back to school, like they were. They asked me all sorts of questions. Brooke wanted to know where I would eat and if I would make any friends.. she was VERY serious about my well-being :) They want to hear how I do on my exams and only stand for the best ;) To be fair, their Pop Pop told them to stay on me about grades ;)

13. Analyzing litereature didn't  get any easier. I love, love, love to read. But putting into words why the author chose to write specifically about what they did and what the deeper meaning is and why the box was purple polka dotted?? Yeaaaaah. Not so much fun.

14. I still care very much about my parents' opinions. I want them to be proud of me. I know they are. But I like to be sure to keep them updated with  my progress and send them an email every time I make a good grade ;) Dad asked me If I needed him to quiz me on my medical terms like he did back in the day with my multiplication tables. Ohhhh, those were the days.

15. College is tough to do as an adult/parent, because there are so many other things to juggle your time with. But it is so worth it. I can already tell. I wish I had finished my college up before starting my life with kids, but things don't always work out the way you expect. In a way it's even cooler now, because I have little cheerleaders to help me along the way :) I still have time to study, I just have to do it when the kids are gone or asleep ;) I have so much at stake and I think about our future and how great it will be when I get into  a career I love, that I worked so hard for. It will be amazing to see the end results!!

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