Monday, February 7, 2011


re·entry or re-entry re-en′try (rē en′trē)
noun pl. reentries -·tries
1. a reentering; specif., a coming back, as of a space vehicle, into the earth's atmosphere, the act of entering again
2. a second or repeated entry; the act of going back to a prior location

Reach for the moon,
'cause even if you miss
you land among the stars

So today i felt like i was coming in from outer-space. I have been orbiting around my life and it is time to make some changes--a re-entry of sort into my life and the direction i want it to go. Who knows i might crash and burn but then again experience counts for something..Right?

For a number of years I have been toying with the idea of returning to school and getting a nursing degree. When i finally had this life changing epiphany it was after my last baby was born. It had only taken me thirty two years to figure out what i wanted to be when i grew up. Then life sorta got in the way. My goal was to get my butt back into school when little man turned one (he is now nine). That was about the time when we were finding out there were some issues with him. He became my full time job between working part time, remodeling a kitchen, being a mom and dealing with four other children. The timing just wasn't right. Goals were postponed and life got busy. Having five kids/teenagers has the tendency to do that. I figured i would go back when he got into school. Time just kept marching on and it didn't happen. I found myself on auto pilot dealing with the daily needs. It is hard to get back into school when you have been out for so long.

Today found me picking up my oldest from college. She has recently decided that she wants to go into nursing. That has become a happy coincidence for me. In trying to move her in the right direction it has gotten me thinking. There was a meeting that she/I needed to attend to get more information about the nursing program. We have been throwing around the idea of when to go--and today was the day. It was fun walking the campus with the daughter. It certainly had changed a TON since i walked it 20+ years ago. Thank goodness i had my own personal tour guide to show me the way. We went to the meeting which was great. I found out that my math that I took 20+ years ago was still applicable and I could count it--YIPEE.

After the meeting we went off to the advisory office to get my student #. We spoke with the advisor and then we were off to the the testing center. After all these years I had actually never taken the entrance tests to see what i was capable of. We asked how long the test would take and were told it would take a few hours. I decided to go ahead and give it a whirl. Why not? I had the afternoon off. My daughter bid me farewell and I told her i would call her when i was done.

First lets just say when I started on this college road many years ago we didn't have things like, "the Internet". We had barely gotten our first computer and lets be honest, it really was more like a glorified (albeit expensive) word processor. When you did a research paper you actually had to do a library. Things have changed just a bit since then. The test i was taking today was on the computer--and i will be honest in saying that i missed coloring in the little circles--there is something satisfying and cathartic about staying in the lines and seeing the pattern the little circles would make. --Let me divert here for a moment. When I would have to take those standardized tests in Junior High there would come a point where i would get bored, and knowing that those tests didn't really count, i would fill in the dots randomly to make pictures. Somehow i was a pretty good {{guesser}} because i seemed to do well enough even with my questionable strategies. Seeing how this was on the computer today and there were no dots or pictures to distract me it had my full attention. I couldn't even go back and re-check my answers. Once i hit "accept" that was it. It was out into cyber space. I found that i actually had to really concentrate and read some of the things out loud to completely comprehend what i was reading. I have gotten into the habit of skim reading things over the years and I didn't think that would work here. I actually took the time and cared about this test. I felt pretty good about it when all was said and done.

Then came the math portion. I thought how hard can it be--I was WRONG. It is not like getting back on a bike--I had forgotten more than i remembered. I ask you...What is the point of mixing the alphabet and numbers? Who's idea was that? I know it used to make sense but as i started taking the test I knew it was not going to be pretty. Maybe i should have reviewed a bit before i sat down to attempt this. What happened to adding and subtracting? Maybe even throw in some multiplication and division--but NO. Instead they tortured me with....I pretty much could not remember much of anything. Can we say "Houston,we have a problem." I know I did well on the word problems--because that is the kind of math i do these days. Or if they had asked me how much tax is on a $20. item--or perhaps how much it would cost if it was 65% off. I like those kind of math problems. I am good at those kinds of math problems--but alas they wanted me to figure out what these little letters meant and my brain just was not having it. I could not pull it from the archives to remember for anything--so i pretty much resorted to hitting the button that was the equivalent of "I am clueless". It was either that or have my brain explode.

When i finished the test i came out. The girl at the desk asked me how I did. "Horrible on the math" I responded, all the while thinking "crash and burn". She proceeded to tell me that was what most people said and usually they did fine. I told her that was not my case--I knew i had blown it--burned up on re-entry. Now please remember that i have already taken college algebra and passed it when i tell you my grade...
I got a 17.
Yes, you read that correct.
A 17.
Now that is not a 17 out of 20.
That would mean it was a good grade-
instead it is a 17 out of 100!
Can you say PAH-Thet-ICK
(that is pathetic only exaggerated a bit more)
All i could do is laugh. She told me that i would need to take Basic Arithmetic--MAT081. Yeah?? I don't think so. I can retake the test and if i need to take more math i will do some refresher problems before i attempt that again. English and Reading turned out MUCH better. I had test scores i was proud of--one i could hold my head up high on. I actually tested out of reading and my sentence skills I scored 114/120. Not so bad. She told me that i could actually take HONORS English.
What is the point of that?
I soon learned that if you take honors you can actually get money for that class--
HMMMM.... something to think about.
Might actually make the work worth it.

I can't begin to tell you how excited i am about this big step i took today. I know i have a long road in front of me but the fact I actually have started the process thrills me. I might crash and burn on my re-entry, but i hope that my lifes experience will play in my favor. When i thought about how long this path will take me, it sorta made me discouraged at how old i will be when i finally finish. But guess what?--I will be that age whether i try to do this or what do i have to lose?

“It is never easy to keep reaching for dreams.
Strength and courage can sometimes be lonely friends.
But those who do reach the stars,
walk in stardust.”

1 comment:

Annette said...

You are AMAZING! I believe in YOU! Congrats on finding your 'FISH'. It is in reference to a James Christensen Painting called "finding your fish". You will have to look it up. It is an amazing painting.
Love you...