Here's the deal.
I'm not going to go back to school in the near future.
Man, I was all gung-ho, trying to avoid every obstacle thrown up in my way. And there seemed to be one everywhere I turned.
First, I figured out that a BS in Nutrition is basically just BS. You can't do a thing with it. It's on all the "Top 20 Worthless Degrees" lists. See, I'd need to become a Registered Dietician, which means a specially accredited program - or you don't qualify for the test. OK, fine. Well, that narrows my list of accredited online programs down to TWO. And they only take like 20 students per year. And I'd have to do a 1200 hour internship. Which would mean for several months before I could get a job as an RD, I'd be working for free. The whole point of me finding an online program is so that I can work... for money... while I do this.
Let me make a side rant here: With the obesity problem in America, you would think that nutrition jobs would be in high demand, that it would be far, far easier to get degrees that are worth more than the paper they're printed on. But they're not. Even if I went for a more fitness-centered degree, the chances of finding full-time work are slim. There's a problem there, people. We'd rather spend billions of dollars fixing sick people then investing in preventing the sicknesses in the first place. It's just not right. It's like we're deliberately breeding a country of sickly, weak people. End rant.
Back to my obstacles. I looked at other degrees, figured out that these strictly online colleges are not regarded very highly. Then I found some "real" colleges that offer online programs. Cool, but then I found out that I'm not getting nearly what I hoped for financial aid.
Lots of obstacles.
Even with all of that, I told myself, "Stay determined. You can figure it all out. We can jump these hurdles."
Then I had a discussion with my husband. He basically asked me how long this would take and how much money this was going to be, asked me if this was something I'd still be interested in 4 years from now... and I got upset. I didn't start a fight or anything, but I wanted to say, "Shut up and support me."
I woke up this morning feeling pretty grouchy about it all. On my drive to work, I was just sulking. "Why can't he just support me?"
Let me back up a minute here. I need to tell you what exactly my husband's concerns are. We have a plan. At the end of May, we will be done with paying for child care for good. We are going to use that extra money to double up on his Snap On bill (ugh, it's ugly). Our van is paid off in November. We'll take that money and at first, put it towards some work on his truck (it's 13 years old - in good shape, but needs some TLC if we hope for it to last longer) and then sock that money away for a down payment on a home. A home with land... so Bill can have, at the very least, a little hobby farm. He was raised on a farm - he worked on his grandfather & uncle's farm until they auctioned it when he was in his early 20s. He's worked on a few farms since we were married. It's what he loves. What he really wants out of life. If I go to school, all of that extra money would go towards tuition and we would be delaying this plan.
And, as I was driving to work, feeling all "woe is me," it hit me... I just asked him to put off his LIFELONG DREAM. Again. "Why can't he just support me?" Good grief, that's all the man has done our whole marriage! "Why can't he just support me?" Why can't I just support him? He's right, I am wishy-washy when it comes to my "passions." I wanted to be a photographer, I wanted to have a handmade sewing and crochet business... none of that is important to me now, but at the time it was. This is something he's wanted forever. And he's always put me and our family first.
It was a huge revelation for me. I hate admitting when I'm wrong. But I apologized to him this afternoon for being so selfish and told him that we are going ahead with our original plan. If I'm still feeling this passionate about going into some sort of health and fitness career when we accomplish that goal, then I can work towards it. But it's his time right now. I know that. I feel good about that. As long as I can have a pet alpaca. =)
No, I'm not joking.
So the moral of this story is...
Sometimes obstacles get in our way like hurdles to see how determined we are to get where we want to go. But sometimes they're honest-to-God road blocks that tell us we're not going the right way. It's hard to distinguish between them a lot of times until we get to the huge potholes. I just have to say I'm glad I avoided the potholes this time, because I'm sure there would have been some killer ones...