Monday, December 5, 2011

Life Time Learning-There Must Be An Easier Way!

This week is the last week of school.  Last week I did papers and turned in projects.  This week, I have three finals and a large take at home essay final.  As I come to the end of the semester, I look forward to a month's break and then the beginning of the next semester. 

I have to say that while I have enjoyed some of my classes, this doesn't feel like retirement. It feels way to much like work.  I enjoy the normal pace of my days.  All the normal everyday things I do are important to me, be they volunteering, sewing, the business end of sewing, or lazy times around the house.  Going to school full time has ruined that pace, and I have had to eliminate some important activities from my schedule, including my Wednesday sewing group.

I also need to admit to myself that while in an ideal world I would get a job as a translator and move to Germany, the reality may be different.  This is especially true at my age.  While much of the money I receive is award money, some portion of my financial aid package involves loans.  I already have some loans due to helping my son with his schooling. I have no desire to be paying student loans into my eighties.

I won't be giving up school. Instead, I will be taking a class or two each semester, and next semester I've decided I will take exactly what I want. Degree requirements will not enter the picture, and I'll probably be taking watercolor painting (so that I can design) my own fabrics and a literature class as well. I like going to school-when I want to go to school.

I wont say this semester was a  mistake, because it was a learning experience. As I said, there are some classes that were very engaging, especially my physical  anthropology class.  At this point in my life though, I would rather concentrate on what I want to do instead of what I have to do.  Admittedly, occasionally those "have tos" enter our lives.  In my case I suppose my need to bring in money with my sewing is a "have to". But I control the timing and the amount of those endeavours. And any commitment I make is short term rather than the length of a two year degree.

Life is about learning and experimenting at any age. This semester has been both of those-but now I'm ready to more forward in a different area.  After all, I can always change my mind.

Note:  I've shocked even myself, by the way.  Before Magic became ill we were looking at adopting a playmate for him-a companion if you will. I had thought I would wait to reconsider that until the new year. The foster mom called today and asked if we would like to take Trevor for a few days while she traveled and I think we will do that.  It's not  what I planned.  But we had already talked about this dog, and Magic was very old and we knew it would happen-we had time to prepare ourselves.  I miss having a dog near me at night (in the bed) and a dog greet me when I come in the house........if it's meant to be, it will be. If not, then  we'll try again later.


  1. Does your community college offer low cost or free classes for seniors? How about a local art guild? Do you really need a degree to do what you want to do anyway? I would think that translation is something you can or cannot do. My son in law does it for a living and gets paid well. He has a high school degree and an excellent "ear".

    I had been paying for my masters out of pocket- $1000 a class. When I left the classroom I had four classes to finish. I am not going to - finish that is. I cannot justify it. I can still function with what I have- no problem.
    I am finding less and less people ask me about my educational background---and more people ask me about my experience background.

  2. I can't imagine going back to school full time anymore. I did in the nineties when I was in my mid to late forties and that was hard enough. Now I take workshops every so often and that does the trick. I learn what I need to learn and don't burn myself out with loans, homework etc.
    Good luck with your pursuits.

  3. Janette, I would need a degree-mainly because I would not just be translating orally but documents and written words-reweriting them. I would not consider myself good enough to translate on any level without more education-especially the grammar and the technical stuff. So I will be kissing that goodbye..............

    I wish what you said was true about my unemployed 22 year old. He has started a small business but does not make a livable income. No working in high school is killing him i think..........

  4. Brava! Brava for taking classes. Brava for reevaluating. And a special brava for being willing to be vulnerable to another dog and the wonderful, beautiful complications they add to our lives.

  5. Well linda, my well meaing daughter too him to her friends house to play with their boxer. He promptly walked over to the other dogs bed and marked the area, then he went to the living room and took her son's corndog off the table and ate it. He's definitely a beagle..


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