College Blues

Well, as you may have noticed on my 365 project site, Photography, The Daily Ritual, I’ve gone back to college at the ripe old age of something-over-40.

In recovering this morning from my first week of classes I’m contemplating several things.

One is, of course, why the heck am I doing this to myself?

The program, which will qualify me to practice as a licenced optician, thankfully only requires me at the campus Monday – Wednesday, and (even more thankfully) not before 10am. Still, I feel as though I’ve already been there a month.

Without a day off.

I feel like I’ve been on a serious drinking binge and have only a vague idea of where I am, and what I did for the last 48 hours. I have the books and homework assignments cluttering the table in front of me however, graciously reminding me that no, it wasn’t all a bad dream. It was real. Oh so real. Surreal, as a matter of fact.
In class I’m surrounded by bright young girls in their 20’s, from quite a variety of cultures, and a couple of young males of the under-30 variety. I’ve teamed up with the only other over-30 girl in the class; but actually the youngsters seem fun and lively for the most part so I’m not going to let it make me feel old!

I keep telling myself it’ll all settle down, and then I glance at my – expensive – pile of textbooks, now non-refundable, and say…Okay, we’re committed, we can do this! If those cute little chickies can do this, well, so can I!

Of course, those cute little chickies are recent high school and college grads with high marks in Math and Sciences…and me, well, I’m someone who didn’t bother showing up for such irrevelant classes, and am now being mocked by the gravelly old voices of my high school teachers whispering We told you so!! while I attempt to open my mind to the concepts of algebra and integers and how they relate to the piece of glass we hang before our eyes to improve our vision.

The other thing I’m contemplating is why on earth I ever thought I’d be good at something that requires screwdrivers and those teeny, tiny, screws you can barely see, that frame makers very masochistically delight in using as much as possible.

You need young eyes and slim nimble fingers…and let’s face it, I’m peering through progressive lenses struggling to see, while my cute little sausage fingers fail to do the simple task in front of them.

Yes, what was I thinking?

Well, rather than ponder that thought I really should go and attack the pile of homework in front of me, and remind myself that week one of any big life change is always bound to send anyone into the quicksand of doubt. It’s not enough to puff up the hill like a little engine chanting I think I can, I think I can. One has to march up the hill saying I know I can, I know I can

Or, at the very least, take a look at the tuition spent, and the pile of money now morphed into textbooks, and the student loan forms already submitted and say: There’s no darn reverse on this stupid engine! Full steam ahead, folks!

So, let’s picture me gliding gracefully to a stop at the terminal station, shall we? Every little bit counts!

In the meantime, I intend to keep the 365 project faithfully alive, and hopefully, once the pace settles into a rhythm, I’ll be back to participating in some of the wonderful photo memes I enjoy.


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