Why Do I Do What I Do?

25 Jan

Most of you know by now that I started my masters degree about three weeks ago (if you follow me on Twitter you’ve been hearing about it a lot).

Understandably, people are generally shocked when I tell them this. Yes, I have three children under three – one with special needs, a husband who isn’t quite a year out from a kidney transplant, and a full-time job as a social worker.

I know. I’m insane.

But honestly? I wouldn’t have it any other way.

I have always known that I wanted to go into Anthropology – well, since I was about 11 at least. I fought it for a long time because my parent’s told me I was insane (they were right), that there were no careers in that field (they were wrong), that women couldn’t make it in science (also wrong, but they were only speaking from experience at the time, in their defense). Once I got to the university level (after completing an AA and an AS at a community college) I also knew that I wanted to go to grad school and that I wanted needed to get at least a master’s degree, preferably a PhD. I have also, always, more than ANYTHING, wanted to be a mom.

You wouldn’t believe how many people honestly believe that a woman cannot have all of these things.


Watch me.

Granted, I did not intent to have THREE children – at least not right now. Alex and I agreed that our goal was ONE child and that we would discuss more after that, but one was the goal. probably to stop there, but maybe more after college or in grad school.

I probably don’t have to tell you that life doesn’t give a sh*t about the plans we make. I tried for one baby and – I am thrilled to say – I was blessed with three. But that doesn’t mean that I want to give up on my dreams. On what *I* feel that *I* need to do in my life. (Of course that doesn’t mean that there won’t be, and have not been, times when I have to put my own goals on the back burner to care for my family – I was not in school while Lennon was having surgery, for example.) Sure, it may take longer to get it done, and I am fine with that. But I don’t see how being a wife, a mother (even a mother of three) should prevent me from being ambitious.

Does that make me a bad mom?

Are my children going to be scarred for life because I spend my Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays away from them studying 9 months out of each year?

OR, are they going to feel empowered, that they too can go to college. Can go to graduate school. That they can follow their dreams no matter what else they may have going on in their lives?

Time well tell I suppose.

I won’t deny that it takes a certain kind of “crazy” to choose the path I’ve chosen. That and a very supportive family. My husband stays home with the kids while I work and go to school – hats off to daddy’s who potty learn and play tea party! And both sets of grandparents take turns watching the kids on Saturdays so I can study and write.

I am also one of those people who can’t handle not being busy. I am very, very driven. To a fault (just ask my poor husband who I am forever barking orders at and wondering why he can’t keep up?!). Before I had children to fill my time I would often be working two jobs (one full and one part-time) and going to school full-time.

So, why DO I do what I do?

Because I want to. Because I can.

What do YOU do?


10 Responses to “Why Do I Do What I Do?”

  1. Jess January 25, 2011 at 9:49 pm #

    I also go to school (nursing school) and work full time and have my daughter (who is almost 2) While it is certainly challanging at times, I am so glad that I have continued with my education even after having Anna. First of all I figure she isn’t going to remember me not being around on certain days, she has learned to be comfortable with everyone in the family (my fam is very supportive and watches Anna as well) and I will be able to provide for my family in ways that my parents weren’t always able to. So kudos to you and to me and to all of the other moms out there who are working their tails off to be better people and moms for their kids!

    • MrsLala January 25, 2011 at 11:02 pm #

      Yaaaay!! Good for you. I also think its important to note that we are setting good examples for our children…they may not remember our not being around as often for a few years but they may remember our graduation & they will for sure apprciate the extra income. 😉

      I was also thinking, after I posted this, that I in no way mean to say that I think all moms (or women, for that matter) NEED to be going to school or that you’re less than if you’ve chosen a different path. I don’t think it came off that way, but ya never know for sure how you are coming across on the internet. SO, I just wanted to make it clear that this is a post about following your dreams, no matter what they are, not a pro-college post. 🙂

  2. Tammy January 26, 2011 at 5:09 pm #

    Wow girl! You inspire me! I can’t imagine going to school with Mark and his health issues and you’ve got that and 3 kids! Wow! YOU GO GIRL! Soooo proud of you!

    • MrsLala January 26, 2011 at 5:13 pm #

      Thanks hun. ((squeeze))

  3. Chelle January 27, 2011 at 7:31 pm #

    You are definitely driven and motivated. I am envious of your ability to go and keep going. I took 23 credit hours and worked 32 hours my senior year of college, but I didn’t do it because I wanted to. I did it because I wanted to get the HELL out of school ASAP and be done with it for the rest of my life. I was soooo burned out. I haven’t had the energy to go like that again since I graduated. Maybe it’s because I don’t want to. lol

    I say you do what you want to do. Achieve your dreams. I think your children will be proud, and definitely empowered. Show me a child who wishes their parents hadn’t gotten educations to better support them and provide them with the best home life they could. You won’t find one.

    If anyone tells you that you’re crazy, you tell them they are right, cause who cares? lol This is YOUR life and YOUR dream!

    What do I do? I live out my every childhood fantasy because I can. 😀 (She says as she happily watches her gerbils play in their cage — you’re the first to know I went and got them already!)

    • MrsLala January 29, 2011 at 2:46 pm #

      Oh. My. GOSH! I can’t imagine taking 23 credits (AND WORKING!?) eh-var. For any reason. YOU ARE MY HERO! lol

      Squeeeee (about the gerbils!).

  4. Sadie January 27, 2011 at 10:37 pm #

    Good for you. I had my twins in my second year of grad school. I finished my final year going full time while caring for two babies. It wasn’t easy but so worth it.

    • MrsLala January 29, 2011 at 2:45 pm #

      Yay, yay, yay!!! So glad to hear from other women who have walked this path ahead of me. GOOD FOR YOU!!

  5. Maya January 28, 2011 at 4:00 pm #

    I hate that so many people assume a mother can only be a mother. I remember my sophomore year of college one of my professors pulled me aside after class so we could “walk and talk.” She told me she felt I had a lot of promise to be a professor/researcher and hoped that I would pursue that course. “You can’t get married and have children though,” she added. “Not if you want to succeed.”

    Well forget that!

    I mean, who created that rule? I say YOU GO GIRL! Someday I am going to get my PhD. Not now, but I will.

    And as for whether your kids will be inspired or not? They will. My mom was in school a lot of my growing up. She’s doing her PhD now: it will be her 5th degree (she has 3 Masters and a BA). I know that I can do anything or be anything because my mom showed me that was possible, even as she took care of 3 kids with various illnesses/disabilities and a disabled husband.

    • MrsLala January 29, 2011 at 2:44 pm #

      You said it EXACTLY! So glad to hear I’m not the only crazy person hoping to be Dr Crazy Person one day. 😉

      What was your major, by the way?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: