Sunday, November 06, 2011

Gratitude - Day 6 - Education

Though it has taken me a long time to get to the finish line on this education thing, and I'm still not there yet, I do really appreciate how much education has enriched my life.

I often get people asking me if I'm finished yet.  And I'm always a little hesitant to admit that I'm not.  I wish that it were a quicker process for me.  And yet I know that I've really done the best that I can most of the time.

I certainly could have been more diligent about it when I was younger - and I do wish that I had found a way to continue in school when I was a newlywed all those many years ago (it feels like a whole lifetime ago now).  That was a mistake, and I think I even sort of knew it was a mistake at the time, but it is what it is.  We make mistakes, but we have to move on.

Going back to school as a grown-ed up isn't that easy.  My life as a young unmarried student was a lot less complicated.  My only reasons for not studying at that time were either hanging with my friends and roommates or laziness.  My reasons for when it is difficult for me to find the time now, usually have more to do with my life and my obligations and my schedule and the schedules of everyone in my family.  It's never really just because I don't feel like it.

And I guess the truth is that I always enjoy it.  Even when the subject matter is difficult for me and when I struggle (as is the case with my math classes).  I do appreciate that I am much better at math, and more educated in math than I was 20 years ago, or even a year ago, or for that matter a couple of months ago.  I'm making progress.  I like feeling like I can grasp or understand something that I never did before.

Education is empowering.  There's just never a time when it isn't.  It opens up your world in ways that you don't know will happen until you get there.

I admit that I will be glad when finally I can be educated on my own time.  By just studying or learning about things that I'm just interested in rather than things that are required for my degree.

But I'm still glad to have had the chance to have a "do-over" late in life.

Sometimes grown women in the 30s or 40s or 50s will tell me that if they had to do it over they wish they would have studied__________, or that they wish they had finished their degree, but it's impractical now.  Or they would have liked to have gotten an advanced degree but things just didn't work out that way.  I always try to tell them that I feel like it's just never too late!  It's worth pursuing even if you have to do it kind of slow like me.

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