Adversity – 1. adverse fortune or fate; misfortune; calamity. 2. an adverse event or circumstance
I started graduate school in August 2003 with the intent to graduate in May 2006. It is now January 2007 and I am STILL not done with grad school. Am I upset? No, but I have had a number of frustrations along the way. Through my journey I have faced a number of "adversities" that had the potential to keep me away from driving on and finishing school. BUT… I am persevering and I will graduate in December of this year (come he!! or high water!!!).
The intent of this post is to share my experiences in and around grad school. I know, it seems boring, but I hope my story will inspire you to "kick adversity to the curb" (no matter what the adversity may be) and drive on with your life.
I applied to grad school while on bed rest – pregnant with my daughter. Instead of wallowing in self-pity and staring at my HUGE belly all day in the recliner, I took advantage of my "down time" and got all my ducks in a row to apply for grad school. It was a lengthy process and I was not exactly in the best mental or physical condition to do it, but I CHOSE to drive on and apply – and thus, get accepted.
I started school when my son was three and my daughter was five months old. 10 months later I got a full-time job (one I applied for but wasn’t real confident that I would get – but, surprise… I did!). So I was working full-time AND going to grad school AND I was a mother of two and a mil-spouse, etc. My family sacrificed A LOT during that time. I was rarely home and when I was home I was either doing work (for my job) or school work. Looking back I missed out on things that I had previously taken for granted (i.e. quality time with my family).
Six months after I started working I had to resign. My husband was about to deploy and my grad school requirements were about to increase (classes and an internship). I came to realize I wasn’t Superwoman and something had to go… so I chose to resign from my job (which was not an easy decision).
My husband was wounded in Iraq five months after he deployed. I had to leave my kids with my sister so I could go to Walter Reed and be with my husband. Again, NOT an easy thing to do! I was in the middle of my summer semester and had to finish my classwork via e-mail and snail-mail. I was fortunate because the school I was attending allowed me to finish even though I could not attend class. So, while my husband was in the hospital I had to take a final exam and write two papers (one was 10 pages long! UGH!!!). But I did it and I got good grades! :)
After that summer semester I took a year off of school. I finished my internship in the Spring of last year, right before we PCSed. When we PCSed I applied to another school and prayed they would accept me and most of my hard-earned credits. Again, I was fortunate and it is all working out.
Despite a few set-backs and situations that I could not control, I CHOSE and I am still choosing to be persistent and pursue my master’s. It has not been an easy road by a long shot, but I kicked adversity to the curb and said, "HA! Watch what I can do!!!"
Now it’s your turn…