Ugh School

Welp, I’m trying to plan the last six classes I need to graduate. Woo hoo! I’m almost done! I’ve been plugging away at an undergraduate degree for the past ten years and it feels really nice to be finished soon.

 

Oh wait. My school is the worst scheduler in the world.

 

Yes, today might be a bit of a rant because I’ve struggled with this every. single. year. I’m serious. It’s part of the reason I left school to have a family.

You see, I should have been able to graduate in December of this year. That’s how Brian and I planned it from the beginning. When I got into classes for this winter term, there were only four scheduled that I could take. Annoying, but it meant that I would need to take an extra spring class. Oh well. So I planned my spring classes. I needed to take four, but they only offered three. Annoying again, but it just meant that I would have to jump through a few extra hoops in the fall.

Here’s the thing: you have to be approved to take six courses in one term because a regular full-time course load is five courses. My grades are good enough that I could handle it just fine. I’m sure that approval isn’t a big deal.

Then enrollment happened. There are two courses open for me in the fall of this year. There are the full five offered in the winter. One course is not offered at all. It’s just not scheduled. Where the “View Course Selections” button is, it just says ”
*** This course has not been scheduled. ***”

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Sigh. It doesn’t even sound fun.

I’ve sent an email to my adviser about this problem, which hasn’t been answered. She’s a busy lady. So I’m going in on Tuesday to meet with her. I’ve got no hope of graduating in December. If I can figure out something to do with this *insert curse word* of a class, hopefully I can graduate in April 2018. Sigh.

So, as it stands, I won’t be in school at all in the fall and I’ll be taking five classes in January next year. So that’s just super.

 Update (21 March): I met with an advisor to figure things out. While I’ll still be graduating next April (sigh), they’re letting me take a substitute class for the one not offered. While I’m still frustrated that our program struggles with planning, I am grateful that they’re working with me. I’ve been placed into 3 classes in the fall and 4 in the winter. Since I wasn’t graduating this fall, I figured I could bump an elective from this spring to next winter. All in all, progress is being made!

 

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First Week of School

September is nearly through and I’ve been successfully going to school three days a week. I was definitely nervous in the months leading up to September, wondering if mom brain would have destroyed my ability to learn, wondering if the boys were going to do well at a day home, wondering if Brian would realize that he did not want this one bit. It’s been a bit stressful.

But now I’m on week 3 of being back to school and let me tell you, I’m loving it. The drive is very long, but I’m listening to episodes of my favorite web series, which makes me look forward to the drive. I haven’t had 2 hours of uninterrupted entertainment time since Monkey was born so this is a treat. I might change my tune after it snows, but for now, it’s okay. I’m leaving early enough in the morning that I watch the sunrise through the forests that line the back roads. I see the bright harvest moon reflect on the heavy fog that lazily drifts over the pavement. I saw a moose once, which was both terrifying and exhilarating. The drive is nice.

My classes are a mixed bag. I have two that I absolutely adore, which is perfect because they are the first two classes I take on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I have a class that I loathe, but I sit next to a girl who also isn’t a fan and we roll our eyes at one another for an hour and a half, which is kind of fun. I’m indifferent about my last two classes. One is dry, but important. The other is fine, but I had high expectations about what that class was going to be. Those expectations aren’t being met.

I’m learning a lot. My first–and favorite–class is about writing. It’s less about filling our heads with complex terms and theories and more about practice, honing skills, and helping ourselves be better writers. Like its prerequisite, I don’t come out of the class talking about the terms I’ve learned. I just come out different. There’s lots of mining my own life to reflect and make meaning of things I’ve experienced. Then putting them down on paper. It has definitely changed how I think about my history and it has given me a huge amount of courage to be honest with myself, my family, and my friends about my life.

This stuff wouldn’t be possible, though, if I didn’t have a professor that I admired and respected. Jessica Kluthe isn’t only a professor, she’s also an amazing author. If you haven’t checked out her book Rosina, The Midwife, I think you should. If you don’t have the money for a novel, check out her short story for free on Little Fiction. She’s also approachable, kind, and supports other writers. She’ll probably be embarrassed that I’ve put this on here.

My second favorite class is actually an anthropology class. I’ve always loved anthro, which is the study of humans in past and present societies (not be confused with the weirdly spelled store). It’s so cool to see how people in different places, and different times, made sense of how our world works. This particular course, though, is about gender and age in our culture. I wasn’t entirely sure how many people would be interested in this class, but it’s one of the fullest classes I’ve ever taken. There are 60 other students there, which is huge for my school.

We talk about gender bias and defining gender and what it means to be male or female or something in between. We talk about gender roles, stereotypes, and social class. The professor is awesome. She’s dorky and engaging and very sweet. When she lectures, she moves her hands like she’s a dancer. She’s a mom that talks about gender neutral parenting (something I’m super interested in). I think I could learn a lot from her. I have to take 1 more anthropology course and I would rather take a course that she teaches that I am less interested in than a course that I’m really interested in that is taught by someone else.

I have a law class (super informative), a visual communications class, and a book editing class. They’re okay. I like the professors in all three, which is great. The content is a little… *shrugs shoulders.* But that’s fine.

All of this wouldn’t matter, though, if my boys were struggling in day care. But they are thriving. Monkey is communicating more and slowly giving up his bottle. Eggs is a gigantic teddy bear, but he’s learning to be more independent. They have two friends that are so very sweet. One of them gets a big toothless grin on his face when he sees Eggs. It makes me melt. The other is a sweet, talkative darling who takes Monkey under her wing. And the caretaker… Let me tell you, she is perfect for this job. I’m so very blessed.

So I want to thank everyone for being so incredibly encouraging in this journey. Thank you for talking me out of giving up, for not pressuring me to stay home with the kids, for helping us out with babysitting, and for offering encouragement when we chat. I’m so happy to be where I am right now.