Wednesday, June 03, 2009

Waiting for the Final Shoe to Drop

I can't possibly go back to the beginning with all this school stuff, so I'll simply start where we are.

It turns out that if you're a graduate student, you can't have access to your federally funded student loans if you're taking fewer than 5 units of graduate level classes. That I have to take a few semesters of undergraduate math classes in order to take the graduate level classes is one of those catch-22's that most people fill with private bank loans. I won't go that route because the interest rates are so much higher.

For every bureaucratic problem there is a bureaucratic solution though. We just add 5 of those units and take them in addition to the undergraduate classes. No problem right?

So here I am with a part-time job at the law office, a contract writing 7th-grade grammar worksheets, and 13 units of classes. One of which I will be 3-weeks late to the party for (it started May 13).

I thought it would all fall apart and I'd concentrate on making money over the summer to just pay cash for the fall's classes, but things AREN'T falling apart. The C&I department is successfully pulling a rabbit out of their hat and it's just up to me to . . . do the homework. I'm ten days away from being in three classes: Calculus I, Matrices, and EdPsych. All three courses will go till mid-August. Then in early July-ish, I'll add a fourth class. I think it's an overview of basic teaching methods. I've HAD three out of four of these classes before--as an undergraduate back in 1986--but the EdPsych class relies heavily on group work (gag) and so --I really do have to "show up" (the non-math classes are online classes).

Anyway. My financial aid won't be approved till I'm officially enrolled in the final course. So it's a waiting game for now. Chris's new job rocks, but we're broke and I'm buying more textbooks. I'm so grateful for the timing of Chris's job. The health insurance kicks in immediately, saving me $350 in having to buy the school's version of graduate student health insurance.

I don't even know if they ever got my shot records. But at least now that I have health insurance, if I have to go back and get every darn shot repeated for lack of any records saying I had them--I can.

All I want is for everything to smooth out so that I can just concentrate on passing the courses.

And figuring out what's for dinner.

And who's going to get the kids to the pool for the summer.

I'll be blogging more. I promised myself I would journal the 40-year-old-goes-back-to-math-class experience. (For a couple of weeks. Then it will be the 41-yr-old.)

I. am. petrified.

But I have this hope that if I can make it through this first semester that the second semester is going to be good.

And then in the third semester they're talking about letting me teach an ESL class to other teacher-candidates. And I think I'll genuinely enjoy that.

So that's why I'm still in this. Because I think it's going to get better.

And because I don't think G-d is giving me a way out. He keeps meeting me insurmountable obstacle by insurmountable obstacle. So I'll just have to trust that He has a plan for me. I know it doesn't have anything to do with insurmountable debt and a nervous breakdown, and that is some small comfort. And he gave me Chris. So it's not like I'm alone in this.

And my sister who is 1/3 of the way through her own graduate program. So she really gets it.

And that is all I have to say about that.

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