In a month it will be a year. A year since I received my masters. A year since I started a new chapter. Finishing college was a struggle for me. I repeatedly changed my majors, and I even changed my schools frequently. I got to experience life on and off of campus. I started off at a private college states a way from home. After one semester I then returned home to our local community college for about a year. I yearned for that campus life again and I ended up going to a public university a few hours away. I was there for about 2.5 years. I was in love with city and the people, but life surprises caught up with me and my emotions got the best of me. You never know what can happen and a simple moment can impact your life in a major way. I lost track of my classes and I couldn’t stop crying on a day to day bases. I stopped showing up to class and I realized it was time to go home and heal. I left school and got helped. My doctor diagnosed me with PTSD, prescribed me pills to help me sleep (like a sedative to take at night) and “happy pills” I guess you could say. I took the nighttime sedative, put I didn’t take the antidepressants because of the possible side effects. I also went to therapy every week. I took a break from school for about a year. I felt like I was dead inside. I went from being extremely emotional to a zombie, and then back to being emotional again. I just felt weak, like I had nothing left.
After a year I saw an ad for a university that also had an online department. I enrolled in school and I was back at it again. A year later I started to look for a job. It was tough finding a job. I’ve had jobs before, but they all ended pretty quickly it wasn’t worth putting on my resume. 30 applications in I finally got an offer, but it wasn’t even for the position I initially applied for, and it was the kind of job that I wanted to avoid. I was desperate, so I took it anyway. I moved out my parents’ house and just tried to get my life on track. I loved my tiny apartment, but I hated my job. I had the crappiest shifts that took up most of my day and as soon as I got home I had to do homework. I wasn’t happy, and it started to show. I dread getting out of bed and each day I had to take a deep breath and mentally prepare myself for the day. Eight months in and I reached the end of my rope. I was thinking about just quitting. I had some money from my taxes that I could save up. Why not quit and just hope and pray that I will find a new job. Right when I was about to quit I notice a change in my schedule. I got to be behind the scenes like I wanted to. My new position gave me more peace, and the hours was MUCH BETTER. They knew I was in school and wanted to make it easier for me. I also had fewer hours, but I didn’t mind. Months later I finally got my degree. It felt like forever and the moment finally happened. I wasn’t supposed to graduate for another 2 years and a half, but I saw if I switched my major to General Studies I could graduate in the same year, so I did.
I wanted to have a degree now since I was in school for so long, but I thought I could still get another bachelors in my desired field of study. I was told that I couldn’t do that, so I went ahead and applied for Grad School. I thought it would be better to have a degree in a specific field then having a degree that is so broad. Half way into my grad degree everything was going well. I was getting good grades and It looks like I was actually going to finish at a decent time, unlike undergrad. I don’t know what happened, but things took a turn. My job was losing workers and the budget was getting smaller, so they couldn’t hire replacements, and that led to employees having to do more work in the same amount of time. Things got pretty stressful. Everyone was one on edge and just worn out. It was starting to get to everyone. School started to get harder for me as well. I had to drop a class halfway through (which means no refund) and I struggled when I tried to retake it. The last six classes or so really took a lot out of me. I was struggling and trying to pull from part of my brain that felt empty. It was like “headlights, deer” in the words of the great Barney Stinson. I quit my job, so I could focus on finishing my degree. I didn’t want to drop the ball during the last minute. I managed to graduate, but it was the oddest thing. I don’t know what happened, but it felt like my mind reverted all the way back to grade school. Writing simple sentences took a lot out of me. I started to second guess everything. It was like everything I learned over the last 10-12 years went out the window. It’s like I overworked my brain so much I fried it, or at least that’s what it felt like. I’m 120k in debt, and I started to ask myself was school even worth it. It was time to start job searching. I wondered if job searching would be easier since this time I had 2 degrees and a grad certificate. Stay tuned for the next article to see if it went well for me or if I’m still struggling.