A friend of mine was tweeting about her upcoming December graduation. She mentioned that it felt like she had been in college forever. After congratulating her on seeing the light at the end of that very, very long tunnel, my spirit was moved to tweet out some words of encouragement.
There are so many detours in your way, that you lose sight of your path of travel. I was a freshman in 2000 but I spent so much time not going to classes that I was voted off the academic island in 2002. Even though I was suspended from attending any four-year institution for five years, I didn’t let that discourage me from my goal of finishing school before I turned 30.
So I enrolled in community college as a part-time student May 2003. While working full-time, I graduated July 2007. Yes, it took me four years and two months to finish community college. But you know what? I finished and that’s all that matters. By the time I graduated, my suspension period was over. I applied for admission in a four-year university for the Fall 2008 semester.
I got accepted. At the time, I was 27 years old.
I carried a full course load Fall 2008, Spring 2009, Summer 2009, and Fall 2009. Insane doesn’t even begin to describe my physical and mental state during that time. Stress from the course load made me sick every semester. At some point, I had surgery on my wrist, came home, and wrote an essay that was due that evening. Don’t judge me.
On December 19, 2009 at 2 p.m. EST, I graduated from Old Dominion University. I was 27 years old.
I’m thankful everyday that I went through this. Without struggle, I wouldn’t be aware of my own strength.
And that, ladies and gentleman, is worthy of an applause.