My First Visit to the Art Institute

Monday, October 12, 2009

Today was my first visit to the Art Institute. The previous weekend, Marc (My husband), the kids, and I went down to Ormund Beach to stay with Marc's stepmother and Aunt at their time share. They started talking to us about how they thought that now would be a good time for one of us to go to school. Marc and I talked it over and we agreed. I was thinking in more "practical" terms, and was thinking more along the lines of medical transcription or something along those lines. Marc is actually the one who went online and requested more information from the school.

Becca B. contacted me and we set up the meeting for today. She assured me financial aid was everyone's biggest concern.

I woke up this morning with a dragging feeling. I didn't tell Marc, but I didn't want to go. I didn't see the point. This dream has been buried in me so long that it just seemed like it was something that others got to do. Not me. I knew that thinking like that would make Marc mad, though, so I didn't say anything. We dropped Harmony off at school and headed out. I signed in at the office and we waited.

Becca was warm and friendly from the beginning. It was a flurry of activity from the start as paperwork was began immediately. Things swept along so quickly, I felt my head spinning. Marc left to get Harmony from school while I filled out a FAFSA and personal loan forms. I actually began to get a little excited. Maybe it was really going to happen! Maybe I was going to get to fulfill my dream. Maybe I wasn't going to be just a mom anymore. (Don't get me wrong, I LOVE being a mom, and have loved being a stay at home mom, but sometimes your identity as a person can become lost.)

They asked me to write an essay on why I wanted to attend AI and email it to them that night. At one point, I was left alone in the room and in about five minutes I whipped out my essay. The words flowed onto the page with no effort. I didn't have to think about what sounded good or what I thought they wanted to hear. I wrote the truth. I wrote my heart.

I was almost in tears thinking about finally getting to do what I never thought I would. At least, I didn't think I would have the opportunity until I was old and gray. I let myself think, "I could actually be worth this. Maybe I am going to get to be more than average." Because this, to me, is more than average. Doing what I want to do. That is more than ordinary.

Then came a snag. With us having just had a bankruptcy discharged, I would not be able to get a private loan.

I gulped back my tears as we left. It had seemed so close. My spirits had soared. I was able to taste it. Once I was there at the school, I fell in love with it: the school, the people, the possibilities. Then, like that, they dropped again. Marc could see the look in my eyes.

Tonight, I received a call from Becca. Because of my essay, they want me to come back and meet with more people. They really want to help me attend. I got off the phone with her and called Marc. I lost it. I am already emotionally drained. I know if I want this, I am going to have to fight for it. I don't want to get my hopes up, though.


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