Jump to content

Juggling dreams and reality


  • Please log in to reply
9 replies to this topic

#1 galleygirl

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:20 PM

Hi,

Not sure if this is the correct area to post. I'm a single Mum, and my dilemma is I have been accepted to do further study. If I had all the money in the world I would drop everything and study full time. It's a huge commitment 8 years full time, but at the end would be rewarding and secure a pretty good job I would think. It would be my dream to work in a professional capacity helping people which is what this degree would offer. I can do this part time over the 8 years, but it's still a huge HECS debt and would need to juggle all areas of my life just to get through. Life is busy atm even without the study.

However, reality is i need to support my kids. I'm 38, kids are 6 and 8. Expenses are mounting. I'm currently on a low wage working school hours. I could go and do a post grad in accounting/bookkeeping to improve my chances of getting better paid employment in time, but that is not my passion. Seems more like drudgery but a realistic option.

If I had my way, I'd volunteer full time and help people everyday and be creative in my spare time. But that won't pay the bills or support my kids.

How does one balance dreams with the reality of day to day life?

#2 krich78

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:37 PM

It's not easy is it. I totally get where your coming from re compromise and feeling like you need to sacrifice a dream. I feel that I have made alot of compromises for my family but you need to be practical and accept that you need to make the best of your current circumstances rather than follow dreams instead of responsibilities.
For what it's worth, the dream does not always match the reality. For example, a friend of mine studied law as a single mother in her late thirties. She did well but the course took her over 6 years part time and by the time she graduated she was in her forties with no practical experience in the area. That was 10 years ago and she has never been able to get work as a lawyer. The degree has helped her in other ways but not the way she hoped. Meanwhile, her two kids had to grow up with very little money for extras and she still has to build up some super for her retirement. Not ideal.

#3 Angelot

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:44 PM

I think it's about realising that small steps are possible.

For example, with the course that's for your dream, could you start with just one unit?  Are any units offered online, rather than on campus?  That would give you some flexibility as you get your head around it all.  Also, would it be possible to break the eight years down into chunks - perhaps study for a bit, defer for a year and work/save, then go back and study some more?

I would say don't look at it as all or nothing, but realise that there are lots of possibilities (depending on what you're doing, of course) and be prepared to think outside the square.  Talk to people who do the kind of thing you want to do, and find out what the reality of the process has been for them, as well as what things you might not have thought of yet.

And good luck!  I think life is too short to settle for being less than you might be.



#4 kpingitquiet

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:45 PM

Do it. Your kids are 6 and 8. You are 38. In 8 years, they will be 16 and 14 and looking toward their own futures. In 12 years, give or take, you will be on your own or with a new partner and will be only 50 years old with, hopefully, 4 years of the new career under your belt, less expenses, and as much as 50 more years ahead of you to be happy with your choices.

While I'm not a single parent, we're on a very tight income and are finding a way to afford my study, and once HECS is possible for me then he'll begin studying. So 1 FT worker/ PT student and 1 SAHM (of hopefully 2)/FT student. And no money leftover most months. But we're looking forward to the financial improvements our study will make, the emotional and mental satisfaction, and the example it sets for our kid(s).

#5 kabailz13

Posted 05 February 2013 - 12:59 PM

It is a huge decision to make isn't it?

For the past year, we have been a 2x full time student family. Since January 1st, the child care fee assistance we were receiving has decreased resulting in us having to pay TEN TIMES the amount we were paying. It is now inconceivable that I will be able to finish my degree ($250pw on child care with no income is just impossible for us).

We have had lots of discussions about where we are heading and what sort of life we are giving our kids (eldest turns 12 this year and youngest turned 2 last month).

The result is that I will be a SAHM and DH is going back to FIFO work. He is still working toward the same ultimate goal of health and safety but taking a different approach. Me? Well, I want to be there for the kids. With two ASD kids and another 3 with varying extra needs, one of us really needs to be available and present all the time.

I'm not sure that has helped you at all. My only suggestion is to realistically look at your life and how it would impact both you and your kids with you studying for 8yrs. Is that how you want to live your life? (I'm not saying it's bad or wrong AT ALL, it's merely a question only you can answer).

Good luck making the call original.gif

#6 Feral_Pooks

Posted 05 February 2013 - 01:06 PM

Go for it!

I agree with PP, study while your kids are young and then you will be ready to launch off into a fantastic career where your abilities, heart and soul all want you to be.

My spider sense are tingling, is it a social work degree? Coz if it is PLEASE DO IT people with life experience and who have experienced some adversity and have some maturity are exactly what the profession needs.

You will also be setting a brilliant example for your kids. Do you want them to work hard and do the things they love? Modeling it is the best lesson you could give.

In those young adult years they will feel so pleased that you have a secure base to live your own life and they will be able to set out with that example behind them.

Make sure you reach out for help when you can, and all the best!

#7 emnut

Posted 05 February 2013 - 01:42 PM

I'm in team take a chance & do it full time.  Like Pooks I assumed it is social work you are talking of.  My SIL is a single mum of a 10yo and made the choice after being diagnosed with MS 3 years ago and losing her low paying job largely due to the excessive amount of time she had off work sick that she was going to go for it.  Yes things have been tight for her financially, and due to the change in PPS we are helping her a bit, but she is much happier now she is following her dreams and really looking forward to the future with the finishing line in sight.

As she decided, she could struggle on a low income job that she would be stuck with, or she could take a chance on things being tough for 4 years but a happier future for her & her daughter.  Even with the financial strain she has no regrets.

#8 galleygirl

Posted 05 February 2013 - 01:45 PM

QUOTE (Pooks_ @ 05/02/2013, 02:06 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Go for it!

I agree with PP, study while your kids are young and then you will be ready to launch off into a fantastic career where your abilities, heart and soul all want you to be.

My spider sense are tingling, is it a social work degree? Coz if it is PLEASE DO IT people with life experience and who have experienced some adversity and have some maturity are exactly what the profession needs.

You will also be setting a brilliant example for your kids. Do you want them to work hard and do the things they love? Modeling it is the best lesson you could give.

In those young adult years they will feel so pleased that you have a secure base to live your own life and they will be able to set out with that example behind them.

Make sure you reach out for help when you can, and all the best!


Your sense is correct. It's a BA Arts/Social work. I'd like to do a psych major to keep options open, but that also terrifies me!! Since the end of my marriage I feel so scared to commit to anything for fear of failing it!!

Thank you everyone else for your posts. It's so good to get feedback on the way I feel!

#9 RunDMC

Posted 05 February 2013 - 03:06 PM

Go for it, make your own luck.
Your tough experience may actually be the experience you need to get your dream career, sometimes in social work it helps the people you are dealing with to see that you can not only talk the talk but also walk the walk.
On another note I always think that it is better to have tried and failed than to have always wondered. By trying you expose yourself to all sorts of opportunities that may even take you on a journey you were not expecting.

#10 L.A.M

Posted 05 February 2013 - 08:42 PM

I am where you are at Galleygirl!

I a single Mum but to 3 who works FT, so I need to study PT as a result. I can't cut any hours at work to study more quickly as I have a mortgage so need what I already earn (and then some..sigh).

II can't work any more (Overtime) if I am going to study to help pay for it, (as I will have tto do PAYG due to my current earnings) which I could do with as the $3000k a year I need to pay for school fees is my fix the carpet problem this yr money, buy that new couch as kids have wrecked old one money next yr money...basically my ONLY surplus money, and barely that as general kids cost usually eat half of it anyway.
And I am with you on the ..life is busy at the moment without studying, BUT if I really analyse that I procrastinate A LOT lol, like now on EB.

Can I make it work, who knows. I want this yr to be my test yr, if I blow $3500k as I pay for this yr but know that at the end of this yr in all realisim I can't keep going ($ wise, time wise, general sanity wise), well at least I gave it a REAL shot! wink.gif


All the best deciding. Social work was on my list, but half the course was to wishy washy for me lol. The job sounds super BUT couldn't study it to get there lol

Edited by L.A.M, 05 February 2013 - 08:44 PM.





1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

How to tell if your child has a speech or language problem

 Left untreated, children who start school with speech and language difficulties face an increased risk of reading and writing difficulties, more bullying, poorer peer relationships and less enjoyment of school. So, what should parents expect of children at different ages?

Finding your tribe as a new mum

How was my renegade mother's group different from my first? They were my kind of people. My tribe.

Following your child's emotional roadmap

Psychologist Angharad Candlin will guide parents through their child's emotional development during her seminar at the Essential Baby and Toddler Show in Sydney this weekend.

Delivery room surprises: when gender predictions are wrong

Out of all the questions asked of mums-to-be, “Do you know what you're having?” would be right up there in popularity. Sometimes,

The fertility battle we don't talk about

“You’re nowhere near menopausal,” my doctor cheerily informed me, and my heart sank. I don’t want to live with worry about pregnancy anymore.

'My morning sickness was so bad I'm not having any more kids'

“All the horrible stuff was totally worth it to have my son. But there is absolutely no way I could go through it all again.”

The 'no children' wedding invite

It was the wedding of one of my oldest and dearest friends, and she had invited me to be her bridesmaid. It was quite an honour. But there was one problem.

Baby Dylan recovering well after spending five days alone

 For up to five days he lay alone after his mother died of a suspected drug overdose, but eight-month-old Dylan Micallef has made an incredible recovery.

Win a $200 Pumpkin Patch voucher

Fill out this quick survey and tell us in 25 words or less your best pregnancy or parenting tip - you'll go in the draw to win a $200 Pumpkin Patch voucher.

The mystery of William Tyrell, little boy lost

The question remains: How does a little boy simply vanish without a trace?

Woman fights off robber, then gives birth

A thief in the US got more than he bargained for when he try to rob a woman who was nine months pregnant because he figured she would be an easy target.

Video: Two-year-old tells mum off for laughing at her

This little girl is not happy that her mum started laughing during her performance - so she tells her exactly how she feels about it.

Download now: Essential Kids Activity Finder app

Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

Losing yourself to motherhood

While watching your baby grow into a unique little person is exciting and wondrous, the intensity of meeting everyone else?s needs can ever so sneakily overtake your own needs for self-care.

Tearing during delivery: the facts

Almost all women will experience bruising, grazing or tearing after a vaginal birth. Depending on the degree of tearing, there are various treatments available.

6 tips for a day out with a baby and toddler

Outings can be lots of fun with the kids, but there are inevitable challenges. Here's some information about days out to help you be a little more prepared.

Why I invited a dozen people to watch my son's birth

I sent invitations on burgundy scrapbooking paper stamped with a field of poppies, and told each person why I wanted him or her there. I warned that there would be nudity.

Getting labour started: tips for a natural induction

When your baby?s due date comes and goes without so much as a pop - let alone a bang - it can be disheartening. Mums and a doula share their stories of natural inductions.

7 mistakes old hands make with new babies

As I sat across the table from my friend ? me, a seasoned mother of three; her, a brand new mum ? I thought of all the mistakes an old-hand parent can make when visiting a newborn baby.

That's my boy: a dad's diary of the first 4 months

Unbearable anxiety, unspeakable joy, constant exhaustion and bouts of frustration ... The many shocks of first-time fatherhood resound in a dad's diary of his son's early months.

One of the most important things a new mum can do

Finances may not be as cute as a newborn, but with many women?s working arrangements changing post-baby, monetary matters need attention too.

When punishment goes too far

What should you do when a stranger goes too far when disciplining their child in public?

Personalised baby gifts

We've scoured the internet to find gorgeous personalised keepsakes and nursery decor to record baby name and dates. They make great gifts for christenings, name days and birthdays! (All prices in AU.)

 

My Wellbeing

Making time for me

We look at your wellbeing, covering health, relationships, beauty and fashion, mind and body.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.