We moved to Richmond, VA, in August 2004. We found a totally cute, brand new, two bedroom townhome apartment to rent close to campus and the school whose job offer I accepted. I had multiple offers so having a choice was nice indeed.
That first year was rough. New courses to teach, a husband who was constantly studying, and no friends to have a girls’ night out with. To make matters a little harder, month after month passed without getting pregnant and I was beginning to get very discouraged.
Okay, a LOT discouraged. With no money to seek fertility testing, we decided we’d wait until after law school to seek help. We had a plan and although it wasn’t a great plan, it was A Plan and I like to have a plan.
Even if I hate the plan.
We bought a small ranch style home a little further from campus but still quite close to the high school I taught at. With A Plan in place, we agreed to go to Tahiti with my parents the following August.
I was now in my second year teaching at J.R. Tucker High School and had settled in with assisting the marching band and working as a technology trainer for the teachers at the school as well.
I hadn’t lost my knack for figuring how to get a computer program to do what I wanted it to. Knowing how to do something that others don’t know how to do makes me feel little like I have super-powers. I LIKE knowing things that others don’t know. It’s rather like an adrenaline rush for me.
Two weeks after Mom and Dad bought tickets to Tahiti I travelled to DC with the marching band to cheer on the Marine Corp Marathon runners. I roomed with other adult women I didn’t know and we all spent most of the night patrolling the halls of the hotel. Let’s face it–teenage boys think adults are stupid. The girls weren’t much better. You can’t pull the wool over THESE eyes, Mr. Boy-who-thought-he-could-crawl-on-the-floor-and-I-wouldn’t-see-him-from-below.
I’m a teacher.
I see everything.
The day we got back from the marathon-runner-cheering gig, I took a nice little test and had I had the ability to pee my pants at that point I would have. There was a second line on that little stick!!!!!
So I called my mom. Because that’s what you do when you can’t believe what you’ve been wanting for 4 years has finally happened. And you’re scared to death because what if this doesn’t stick??
I realized I wasn’t due until around July 4th, which meant I could easily finish out the school year then stay home for ever after and be the most content mother on the planet.
Do you know how expensive it is to put someone through law school? And health insurance? And a mortgage? Guess who cried, night after night, because she was going to have to keep teaching for another year and put her precious new baby girl in daycare?
ME. But I’m ever so grateful to have done that because it altered my life. It changed my view on working mothers, mothers on welfare, and making hard choices. And it gave me a darn good reason to HAVE my opinion.
I will never regret that tough choice and I thank both myself (yes, I just said that) and my Heavenly Father that I had the foresight to get a degree that was useful. What is the point in getting a degree if you can’t use it to better yourself, your family, and provide in times of need?
If you can’t do that with your degree, chances are . . . you’ve wasted your money. Or someone else’s.
So there you have it. My first not-very-popular take on college. If you didn’t get a degree in something useful, you’ve wasted someone’s money.
Hopefully it was your own, but chances are, it was someone else’s.