After 19 years away from school, I am very…
Late for Class
At just 17 years old, I went off to college thoroughly unprepared and in no way at all ready for what awaited me there. We’re talking total cluelessness in all the ways of adulting: Financially, emotionally, mentally, and physically. And so of course, I completely blew it. After just three abysmal semesters and a GPA of less than 1, unsurprisingly I flunked out, got sick, went home, but with the promise to myself that I’d get my act together and return some day.
But then life happened (as it does). The years went by, the job opportunities vanished, and the student loans defaulted. And so instead of going back to finish what I started, I struggled for nearly two decades, constantly underemployed and swimming in insurmountable debt from that first failed college attempt. As such, screwing up my college opportunity has always been my number one regret in life.
Which brings us to today. While I’ve finally worked my way up to decent employment that I love, it doesn’t make up for the fact that I never earned that bachelors degree like I should have. However, there is hope! Those ancient student loans are finally repaid, which means that I can finally fill out that good old FAFSA again, and throw my hat back into the academic ring.
This time around, I’m much more prepared to tackle all of the challenges that come with academic life, plus the new ones that returning as a non-traditional student will bring. I’m older, better, smarter, and more responsible. And more than anything, I have way more to lose now, which inspires an intense amount of motivation, drive, and desire to do everything right this time around.
This blog was inspired by some very lengthy musing I was doing on Facebook about this subject of returning to school. I thought rather than continuing to ramble on there, I’d transfer those passages to this blog, and then continue to use this forum for such writings as well as documenting the misadventures of being a 36-year-old college freshman. I am glad you’re here with me for this journey.