The Future

I've mused on here a number of times about what my future holds, both personally and professionally. I've been a stay-at-home mom for going on twelve years now. It's been a few years since I really didn't need to stay home, but I wasn't sure I wanted to return to the workforce as a computer professional.

Back when Randy and I were talking about me returning to college to complete my Bachelor's degree, one of the fields I was interested in was architecture. The program at Miami expected me to concentrate on this field for two years and then submit my portfolio and see if they would accept me. As a twenty-something with a family, that seemed like a lot of work to put into something and then (possibly) have them reject me. I didn't have a lot of confidence in myself back then. I also had a niggling doubt in the back of my head that I was changing degrees because I "couldn't hack it".

So, being the stubborn mule I can be, I returned to college and completed the degree I'd set out to achieve: a Bachelor of Science in Applied Science. I almost had enough credits to minor in Spanish as well. It's been thirteen years this summer since I graduated. I worked for less than a year under two different managers -- one as supportive as a new employee could hope for; the other a complete bitch liked by no one I knew. I ended up spending more time with the latter of the two. By the time I left that position, I couldn't imagine ever wanting to program computers again. Aside from some small projects of my own, I haven't.

I'm not sure what put the seed of the idea in my mind now, but for the last two years, off and on, I've been contemplating returning to school. Arizona State University has a Master of Architecture program which is aimed at non-architecture Baccalaureates. It's called MArch 3+. As can be seen on the last link, I'd start in the Summer session, taking 15 credit hours. The first year, I'd take 14-15 credit hours each semester and then dove-tail into the two-year program. But, in order to begin, I need to take the GRE, which I've not even begun to prepare for.

There's one other complication to consider. It's both minor and major. My sister is getting married! The wedding is August 28th of this year and I'm going to be a bridesmaid. The Summer session would be completed by then, but the Fall session starts on the 19th of August. Randy and I are planning on driving back to Ohio for the wedding, which means I'm likely to be out of commission for about a week. Not a good idea for a serious student.

So, I'm going to spend the next year preparing myself mentally and physically to go back to school. I'd like to take a sprint course or two in the fall, if any of the deficiency courses I need to get up to speed are available. But, perhaps my time is better spent studying for the GRE.

Meanwhile, I've just had my doctor's nurse practitioner (NP) sign off on the DMV form for a disabled plate -- she marked me as permanently disabled. She ordered x-rays and an MRI of my lower back. We're waiting on the insurance company to sign off on the MRI and we'll do both at the same time. Based on what we find there, we can proceed. I was looking at a poster in the doctor's office and saw that the sciatic nerve is right where I've been experiencing pain. The NP noticed I don't have trouble "transferring" -- I moved from a chair to the exam table easily -- and I explained, "Some days I move without thinking and it's fine. Other times, I go to make the same move and pain halts me and I have to slow down."

I used to be able to manage the walking on campus from PS4 (now called Rural Road Parking Structure) to Moeur or Coor Halls. Google Maps says that's about .6 miles each way. By the end of a semester, I was usually doing okay walking that much. I'd go from Coor to Moeur, then up to Rural and University for lunch and then back down to the Computing Commons. At the end of the day, I'd go from there back to PS4. Today, I could barely manage the walk from Coor to Moeur. sigh

I might be crazy, going back to grad school at 40, but I'd rather try and fail than sit here and dream "what if" but never do it.