The past few days have seemed like the last days of summer vacation. Only today… with the snow… it was more like the last days of summer in the Antarctic. Or wherever there might be snow year round. My first on campus class does not start until next Wednesday morning, though I have already started two online classes as of today. And since I have been fortunate enough to find employment in a law firm this past August, I also will have my paralegal internship credit. Last year at this time, I was scared and excited and a little bit full of myself. This year, I am a bit more humble, grounded and a much kinder human being, thanks to the people I surround myself with. The last week before the start of classes has been a bit anti-climactic, as I got all of my “college break” fun out of my system last week. (Ok, I am 40, so probably not as scandalous as the average college student, but nonetheless, good times.)
Because at my age, I often need to focus on what lies ahead instead of what will be left behind. In NWTC years, I am practically a “senior”, yet it seems not too long ago that I walked into a Thursday afternoon Legal Computer Applications class, scared to death, and walked away a year later with a “second daughter” (Leah) and a friend who happens to live only 3 blocks from my house (Kelly). Tomorrow morning at 9:30am, it will be one year since I walked into the dreaded College Math course. I say dreaded because my last math experience occurred in 1988, so I was more than a bit rusty. In fact, prior to taking the Accuplacer test to get accepted into my program, I spent a few hours at the kitchen table having my own teenage children hopelessly try to explain simple algebra to me – Thank you Mack and Cody!! One year later I can say that College Math class not only helped me to improve my math skills, but also walking into the kind of crowded class you only find on the first day, is someone who I now call one of my best friends, my fellow ninja, and the only person that I would ever allow to share the most selfish days on earth - July 14th, OUR birthday (Alicia). And then Fall semester, not exactly hip on the whole "ice breaker – put us in groups" scenario, I also came to know another amazing person in my Family Law class (Kathi) who knows and has worked with one of my closest friends in the world (Laurie).
So as I go forward and name names – I want to also apologize to my Wednesday morning “how did we get from happy hour to coffee talk” people (Sara, Mindy and the others) for not being able to participate this year. Honestly ladies, you gave me a reason to ditch the sweatpants and sometimes, though rarely, use a hairdryer and break out the makeup! I wish I could join you, but we may have to return to happy hour, which often consists of a two hour time block in someone’s basement. I feel this year will be full of success. As I sit at my kitchen table and listen to the sounds of my home right now, including a few of you who won’t be here at this time next year, all I can do is look ahead to the future, and be thankful for the past, as it has made me the person I have become today.
That said, let the classes begin!!!