Overcoming the Challenges of Mom and College Life

The thought of going back to college and being a single mom to a toddler for most people is terrifying. To be honest, I have known a lot of people that would not even consider trying it. I was one of those people until I really thought about how 2 years of sacrifice could really pay off for my child and myself. Being a single parent back in school you need to be prepared to face the challenges. Not only are you taking on a full workload of school work such as quizzes and exams and papers and deadlines, you have to fit in your time to raise your child and get them fed and bathed and up in the morning and off to school for the day. It does seem overwhelming, but I am here to tell you that it can be done. 

One of the major things I was nervous about when considering going back to school was the money situation. How am I going to pay for this much school, keep my job and keep my daughter in daycare? I applied for my student loans, but I was also given grant money, which is not too much in the grand scheme of things, but it did help some. One thing I was not prepared for was how much childcare was going to cost me! On average it costs around 12,000 a year to keep your child in full time daycare. But fear not, there are also programs that can help with the childcare expenses as well.

Another roadblock is how to manage your time. I am in school full time now, but I also work full time and am a mom to a two year old as well. It sounds intimidating, but you can make this work with time management. Luckily my job can be flexible, so I can devote the day to school and to work. My mom time kicks in when I pick my daughter up from daycare until she goes to bed at night. After she is off to bed is when I can devote more time to school. This is all possible if you can manage your time just right. 

Another thing that I can never take for granted is that support system that I have surrounding my daughter and myself. If you are lucky enough to have people in your life and your child’s life, do not ever take that for granted. I am fortunate enough to live close to my parents and my sister. There have been plenty of times when I have a deadline of a test to take or a paper that needs to be submitted and my daughter is running around screaming and playing. I would never be able to accomplish what I have so far in getting through school and mom life without my strong support system. I am telling you to never ever turn down the help when it is offered. 

Life can be crazy, and sometimes you might choose to make it a little crazy for yourself. But what gets me through the days is knowing the big sacrifices I am making in this short amount of time will soon pay off for not only myself but more importantly for the person I love most in this world, my daughter.

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