Being a full time student is stressful enough, but adding single parenthood and a full time job to the mix might just send someone through the roof. So how do students survive such a hectic schedule, without having to constantly email their professor to apologize for not turning an assignment in on time? While some of us experienced students may have different tricks, I am pretty sure we can agree on a few essentials to ensure the survival of such a chaotic schedule.
For those of us who decide to brave the journey of a chaotic life to get a degree, we know time management is key. Organizing your time and having a day planner handy might save you from overbooking events and over committing. Juggling bills, meetings, class times, and homework is not an easy task. It can get a little tricky when you attend several different campuses and must drop your child off at school before you attempt to tackle your “to do” list. I have learned to block out time and stick to a pre-scheduled plan. Of course there will always be times when things fall out of place and I am playing catch up. We all know you don’t get a “pass” card because your child was vomiting throughout the night the day before a big final. Prioritizing your time is the key to getting through the chaos. Remind yourself that it is ok to delay outings with your friends if you have work to get done. A real friend will understand.
It’s my life, and I will cry if I want to.
There have been plenty of times I have had to break down and cry on the car drive from work to class. I am sure I am not the only one. You may lose your composure and be completely stressed out. No one said getting an education while raising kids was a walk in the park. So, if you are like me, a few tears every now and then are simply expected. If you don’t stress out, quite frankly, you just may not be human.
You may not always get the grade.
Single parents may not have the luxury of fully diving into their studies and spending countless hours on school projects. You have to remind yourself that life may prevent you from handing in your best work, but don’t get discouraged. With some planning and personal understanding, you will survive the chaos and reach your goal to graduate. Just remember that several single parents have successfully completed their degrees and you can too.