Wednesday, March 18, 2009

One Day At a Time...

When I began going to school, I did so becasue my husband was working in the construction business- which inevetably meant being layed off in the winter months. Deciding I needed to be doing something during that time, I made the chioce to go back to school for nursing. I already had some credits in from clases I had taken before we were married, and rather spontaneously I signed up for classes. To make a long story incredibly short- Ryan took interest in what I was doing, did some major desicion making and decided he needed a change of careers.

As most of you know- we're soon facing the end of the school year and the completion of the practical nursing program at G*****C. In approximately six weeks, we'll be done with this part of the journey. Which also means it's time for me to finally make the decision I've been waffling over all year long, the one I've been neglecting to involve any of you in because it's been so back and forth: go back in the fall to complete the RN program (along with Ryan) or wait another year. On the kitchen counter, my acceptance letter awaits my signature, the deadline is growing near.

My biggest fear has always been: how will my kids deal with it? I am, after all, a mother first. That has, and always will come before anything else. I've dealt with my share of irrational guilt. My consolation is- they're always with family when we need to be away and they're young; they'll have little to no memory of these days. And, up until this point- my part time schedule has been rather light- very manageable. Today we got good news- news that will probably make my choice a bit easier. We learned about the schedule for the RN program and found out (besides the one day of classes each week) we would be able to be on opposite clinical schedules. Which means our kids would almost always have one of us around.

Looking around at those I know, I've seen the struggles in this economy, I know times are difficult. We've felt the burdens here at home. And to wait it out a year might make it more difficult for me to return at all. So I'm leaning toward one more year. Two more semesters with an entire summer off. I'm just trying to regroup my motivation and understand if this is the right choice for us at this point.

I know people don't quite understand how we're both going at once... But it's like anything in life: one day at a time. I had a nurse tell me, "That's cute," when she heard our story and I laughed, then got serious and said, "No it's not." It's just the way things fell into place, the way it all worked out. And it's working for us right now. Somehow. This might not have been our plan several years ago, but it's amazing how life meanders and pivots and alters our direction in ways we'd never guess. Things happen, life presents us with difficulties and joys alike, and choices are made accordingly. In fact, if someone had told me we'd be in this scenario at this point in our lives I would have responded: Impossible! Because we thought we had it figured out. In life it's important to remember: we never have it all figured out.

I just wanted to share this with you because it's such a big part of who I am. Up until now, I've kept rather quiet about the details of our schooling on this blog. For some reason, this just felt like the right time to share.

And, now you know a few minor details to our crazy life.

13 comments:

Megan Lorraine said...

I say just do it! I guess like you said, the time to do it is now, and more than likely you would have a hard time going back later. Your kids are already used to you going to school, and if one or the other would be around all the time I say go for it. It's only one more year, and you can do anything for a year if you put your mind to it.
I would love to go, but right now I think I'll just go later, when my kids are older. I understand where your coming from though, just wanting to stay home with your kids. But.... seriously, if you have the opportunity to go, go. Your kids will thank you for it later in life, and you won't regret it, where as if you don't go, there will always be that "what if" on the back of your mind. If you really hate it, and for some reason it's not working out, you always have the option to stop, as junky as it would be.

Anonymous said...

I say do it too. You never know what tomorrow will bring, and if you have the courage to dive in, go for it! Hans just signed up to go Tech for engineering in the Fall. We're having our 9th baby this summer. Do people think we're nuts? I'm sure they do. But you put it so well, I'm tempted to print this out and read it on my bad days ahead. He'll only have to go for less than 3 years because he's already got 1 1/2 yrs. in. I'm the same as you, if someone would have told me this was going to be us, I would not have believed them. But right now, making these decisions, it just seems right. ~Brita

Anna said...

I'm not gonna kid you-it ain't easy. But then you already know that. Being on this end of nursing school and being able to work a little, I can tell you it is worth it. Totally. It's a good career, there are still jobs of all kinds out there (few hours, lots of hours,in between), and in 'these times' it doesn't hurt to prepare for the 'what if's' of life. Oh, and about a week after you're done the kids won't even remember.

Jen H. said...

I say do it while you are doing it. I think that taking any time off will just make it all the harder to go back later.

Sarah said...

Thanks so much for the encouragement! You all bring up very good points. Anna, I love the last line of your comment. Makes me smile and I know that's very true.

Juli said...

we'll be cheering you all the way through! along w/ Hanna:)

Jan said...

My hubby went to nursing school, started after our second baby. Got LPN, then broke his leg (majorly) a couple of weeks into RN, which delayed his finish, but he finished eventually. The week after he graduated we found out we were expecting twins. All I could do was laugh (hysterically)- what next? Now he's been working for 3 yrs. as an RN. And he still likes it.
Life is really funny that way, you never know what curves there will be.
Jump in if it feels right. If it's not right, you find out.

Katie said...

My Dad went to school when I was young, I know at times he has felt bad about missing out on different events because of it- but the truth is, I don't even remember him being gone. I do remember being a little bit older (I think I was 7 or so when he graduated) and he was always there.
I say do it if it feels right. Your kids really won't remember!

Cheryl said...

I say go for it! I will be starting the RN program next fall, and my daughter, who's 4, loves the fact that her and I will be going to school at the same time. Your kids will be just fine! Like everyone else says, they won't even remember it, and someday they, and you will be glad you did it!

Cami said...

I understand where you're coming from. Even though it's just me going to school while my husband works...it's hard. There are many sacrifices that need to be made along the way, not all of which are easy. It's hard to leave a child/children behind and head out the door to follow your own dream. But in the end it'll be totally worth it and a great help to the family. The job options are limitless and the opportunities for advancement are great.

I wish you both the best if you continue on to finish the RN program. I struggle with the fact that next year I'll be leaving a 10 week old baby behind along with a two year old to finish the RN program myself. But then I have to stop and remind myself that in the end it'll be so worth it. It's only for one more year! : ) (And you'll be thankful you did once that year is over.)

Hand in there...you both can do it!

Cami said...

oops...
that was supposed to say..."Hang in there!" : )

Anonymous said...

I say go for it too! You don't know what is around the bend. It is only one year, and at least your kids are with family while you are at school.
It will be so worth it in the end.
God gives strength for whatever we face on the journey. He will carry you all through.
Christy

Pete/Heidi said...

I am writing from a different perspective -- my dad finished college when I was in second grade. During that time, my mom worked full time & my dad worked too. I mostly remember them being home and the things they did with us -- sledding, going fishing, getting stuck in quicksand, eating pizza for dinner (if dad was in charge) and feeding ducks. I also fondly remember our babysitter, Shannon-- she made a few fun memories with us too(did you know cheese on your nose can get rid of pain from a skinned knee?). And after he finished... I have fond memories of our other sitters that were used to bridge the gap between mom & dad's work schedule.

Point being: Your kids will remember the memories you make with them, and its okay if someone else makes a few fun memories too. It may be easier to go back now while the learning is still fresh. Even if you don't go back now, your kids are likely to have a sitter from time to time, if you both work. Good luck with your decision!