25 May 2014

The Working Student

Last April, I enrolled in a month-long intensive German class. As I mentioned in a previous entry, I have decided to go back to school and learn German again. So I did that last April. I enrolled in a class that met between 6:00 and 9:00 PM, for three hours, for four days per week, for four weeks. And boy, that was tough.

I should say that I have a new-found respect for working students. I am grateful that my parents as well as other sources financed my education when I was an undergraduate and a graduate student. Now, I can see how difficult it is for working students to work and study at the same time, and excel. I found myself last month pretty much dead, working a full-time job, between 9:00 AM and 5:00 PM, and then heading to school and spending three more hours, instead of heading back home and relaxing after the day.

That meant that I was pretty much dead by the time I finished everything. I also lost my personal time, even time for cooking dinner. We needed to get creative and schedule things beforehand. I learned a lot of recipes that were quick and easy and took only 30 minutes or less. Because otherwise, I would find myself eating around midnight, and that isn't healthy at all, given I have to go to bed soon, otherwise I won't get a good night's sleep.

I told people that this German class felt like I suddenly had a baby to support. Now I can see how difficult it is to be a student with a child. I knew a few of those when I was in graduate school. All of us single people would have time to congregate and hang out after class, while the ones who had families typically don't make themselves available, because they had family obligations to attend to.

I am glad that I only enrolled myself for 1 month. That means I have finished the first half of B2 level (Level 4 out of 6). I still intend to continue and finish the second half of B2, but I am taking a few months' break. Since I have scheduled some trips for the next months, I felt it would not be worth it. I'll probably enroll myself again in August and finish the level. In any case, I don't want to go to school and study German in multiple consecutive months. I need to take a break after one month of not having time for myself.

Perhaps because of this attitude, I think that children isn't for me.

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