Confession: I never graduated college.
In 2010 I was one semester away from my associates degree when I dropped out. I was 19 and struggling with my mental health and new found college freedom. I had no idea what I wanted to do for the rest of my life either. Shortly after dropping out I met my now husband. I was working a minimum wage fast food job that I absolutely hated.
Our relationship moved quickly, and before I knew it we were married and I was pregnant.
After our daughter was born we had to opportunity to move across the country. We took it without hesitation. Within a month of moving my husband had a full time job and I had 3 different job offers. I finally secured myself a Monday to Friday 8-5 job that I loved.
In my mind, I had no reason to go back to school and get a degree at that time.
I worked there for a year and a half before we had to make a decision to stay in a state without family or move to Ohio. After finding out I was pregnant, we chose to move. That’s when I became a stay at home mom.
When my son was almost a year old I decided I wanted to go back to school. I wanted to be a nurse. I enrolled and took my required pre-requisites and got accepted into the LPN program. Then, I found out I was pregnant again.
I once again made the decision to drop out and put my degree on hold.
Fast forward 4 years and another baby later, something was missing. While I love staying at home, I want to be more than “just” a mom. I want to get a degree and make myself and my kids proud. I want to pursue my true passion.
So I made the decision to go back to college as a 30 year old mom of 4.
I’ll admit, it’s scary, but I know it’s doable for me. And it can be for you, too. Here are my biggest tips for going back to school as a mom.
Find a school that fits your needs.
Whether that’s online classes or part time, being somewhere that works with your schedule is so important. You won’t be successful if you’re struggling to get to class or get your schoolwork done.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help.
It’s so important to have a great support system. Ask for help both financially and emotionally. It’s so easy to feel defeated about paying for school or scared of the unknown. Having someone to vent to or simply encourage you can be the biggest help. You don’t have to do this alone.
Believe in yourself!
Never forget your why. When things get hard, remind yourself of the reason or reasons you began this journey.
Just because you’re a mom doesn’t mean you can’t follow your dreams. It took me years to realize my true passion, and without my kids I’m not sure I would have.
I encourage all moms to explore going back to school if you feel like something is missing in your life.
The hardest part is taking that first step. Don’t let your fears hold you back from pursing your dreams. It won’t always be easy, but it will be so worth it.