And so it begins once more

by Janie Jones

Another holiday over.  Another semester just beginning.

Last summer I prayed that I could make it through the fall semester with the minimum amount of stress and difficulty.  You all have an inkling of how that worked out for me….  But much to my amazement, I actually did best in my math classes, scoring A’s in both College Algebra and Trig.  I bombed my Organic Chem final, but still managed to pull off a B in the class.  This frustrates me because O Chem got the short end of the study stick and should have been an A performance.  I liked that class best.  What is that the French say?  C’est la vie.

The spud brought her germs home for the holidays and I ended up spending 9 tenths of the holiday too sick to do much besides sit like a lump on the sofa and blow my nose.  Then her departure got pushed back 4 whole days.  On the one hand it was nice to spend extra time with her, but on the other, I had to work and get myself ready for school on top of being sick.  So, here I am, staring down the barrel of yet another semester I’m rushing into exhausted and ill prepared.  Damn those French and their “C’est la vie.”

On tap this semester is:

  • Organic Chem, part two
  • College Biology, part two (making up for the disaster last spring semester)
  • Calculus (twitch,twitch)
  • and Ceramics (one of my remaining “Liberal Education” requirement options)

Come February, when I’m not studying and working I have to begin the long dreaded and yet much anticipated hunt for lodgings in the Big City.  While this has been an ongoing process of some concern, it must truly and irrevocably begin in all earnestness, because the semi written in stone date we have to be out of the current Casa de Jones is June 1.

If all goes well, Leif will be closing on his farm before the end of the month and his moving process will slowly unfold over the next 4 months.

Oh, yeah, and I have to keep on Stickittoyou U to make sure my file is properly reactivated so I can return there either this summer or fall to finish my last few semesters for my Bachelor’s degree.  They’ve already screwed it up once, so I can’t count on anything until I actually see my bill.

I don’t do the whole New Year’s Resolutions thing.  But, it is a good time to stop and take stock of where you’re going and where you’ve been.  I’ve been slogging through some rough, miserable terrain.  I see a lot more ahead before I make it to the top of the mountain.  Popular wisdom chirpily reminds us that what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger.  Still it sure would be nice if the Universe could see fit to throw me a bone here.  In the words of the Immortal Forrest Gump, “I’m pretty tired.  I think I’d like to go home now.”

As I take stock of where I’ve been, all my trials and tribulations of the last 3 years have been slowly moving me toward this point and I’m still really looking forward to getting back to Stickittoyou U.  I’m looking forward to finishing my maths and all the other “required” crap I’m not really interested in and focusing on the bio-chem stuff.  I am looking forward to living in the Big City.  This is my dream.  And, I do have this sense of crossing a major hurdle and entering the down hill slide of the first major goal.  So, as I gird myself with my stalwart big girl panties and stride forward into the unknown and likely ferocious battle for education, career opportunity and general health and happiness at the end, I can at least say I think I’m doing the right thing and still keeping my eye on the prize.

In the quiet hours when I have the least number of distractions and my poor, exhausted brain can process all this there’s really just one fear, one obstacle, one unknown factor I am unable to control and solely at the mercy of: I have no money.  Nothing kills a dream faster than not being able to afford a place to live, than not being able to afford gas to get to class or work, than not being able to afford tuition.  Sure there’s some federal, state and other financial aid out there, but a lot of people are depending on it besides just me.  And what you get after all the scraping and begging and hoping and praying and filling out 10 million forms in duplicate, triplicate and promising your first born to be sacrificed to the harvest moon is never enough to really take care of your needs.

This spring I’m not praying for smooth sailing and the least amount of trial and tribulation possible.  This spring I’m praying for a financial miracle.  All my carefully laid plans, all the set-backs, all the strife, all the long hours of studying, making good grades, worrying and getting back up, drying the tears and dusting myself off come down to one thing:  Can I actually summon the dollars and cents necessary for this final leg of my journey to my Bachelor’s degree?

Stay tuned.

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