Healthy Healing 101: College Widow
January 20, 2007 I was questioning the use of getting a college degree. Is it God’s will that I finish college?
Pastor Brogey said that the “Best way to know the will of God that you don’t know is to do the will of God that you do know.”
While reading What Kids Need Most in a Mom, I found this advice: open every door and try everything. God will close the door if it’s not His will.
I decided to put the maximum effort into college this year, and if it’s not God’s will, He will stop me. “Open every door…”
It’s funny that I found this advice in a book about mothering. It actually seems off-topic, but answers always come from unexpected places.
Living a Lifetime in College
February 26, 2007 Did I think that I was going to be in college forever? I was in college when I started dating Jason, and I was in college when I got married.
At the end of the semester in 2005, I was hugely pregnant. My classmates were relieved to see me arrive on the day of the final exam.
“We thought you might be having the baby!” one of them laughed while he grabbed me a chair.
Jason died while I was taking a maternity break from college. I was grieving and working at a new job while I was in college.
As a college widow, I have a lifetime of experience- I’ve lived through more than most people do in the first forty years after graduating from high school.
What in the world do I expect to do after I graduate? I have a pile of books beside me, and I have a lot of papers to write, but it will all get done.
Living at my parents’ house again is almost like starting over. Sometimes I want to pretend that I’m fresh out of high school, never having seen death.
I desperately want to read comic books and stay in bed all day. Or maybe go camping on Hunting Island with friends for days at a time, eating hotdogs and raiding Diet Sprite from the cooler and snickering because the people in the next campground offered us beer.
The Things You Will Do
March 6, 2007 This evening I did my history presentation in front of the class. I did hours of research for the paper, and I did really well with the PowerPoint presentation.
The class wrote comments: they loved the pictures and the stories. I am so proud of how it turned out, and I am so glad that it’s finished!
How funny that I got a C in Public Speaking when I started college, and now I’m a tour guide that speaks publicly for a living!
March 10, 2007 I was published in Bluffton Today! They wanted articles from a student’s perspective, so I wrote about local businesses and how flexible they are with student schedules.
It was a great experience, but I laughed when I got the check. I spent much more on gas and my restaurant tab than I was paid for the piece! Even so, maybe this is the beginning of a writing career.
The People You Will Meet
June 19, 2007 My summer class professor has a wide, straight smile that draws the attention away from the lower jaw. His eyes are set between crinkles, and his hair is sparse and composed of gray and white intermingled, but it’s more on the white side.
He does not clearly answer questions in class, and his quiz questions are so random that I answer them solely based on the memory attached to my sub-conscious.
There is a girl sitting behind me, and the professor uses our names interchangeably. I doubt he will ever stop calling her Bonnie.
Summer classes are three hours long, and this one is at the air station in the evenings. One of the Marine students comes in every night in his camo and lines up three energy drinks on his desk to stay awake.
The Things You Will Miss
July 19, 2007 My non-Western Lit class will end next week. I have enjoyed this class more than any other. I feel like I’ve learned so much about writing from so many college papers. My last paper has been so easy to write, like it’s flowing from my psyche.
I like every classmate individually. On Monday, we will keep talking about the last book called Disgrace by Coetzee, and on Wednesday I will turn in my paper and leave them forever. I have learned from the people and from the literature, and I hate that it will end.
Nobody from college has any idea what I have gone through. It’s not good conversation, and I felt like I was starting a new life with new people.
I wonder what kinds of things the average person is holding in the pockets of their minds. If I can walk around cheerfully, with a smile on my face hiding grief, what kind of story is behind the quiet girl behind me in class?