Monday, January 25, 2016

Back to school as an older student

     Going to college at the age of 30 is in a word: SCARY.

     Until now, I had never attended classes on campus. I had only previously taken online courses. On my first day, the nervousness I had was very similar to the nervousness I would have when starting a new school as a child. I knew I didn't know anybody, didn't have any friends, and that is always such a tough situation to be in. I thought that being older, I would not concern myself with the opinions of my peers or even try very hard to blend in (my previous coping strategies).

    I was wrong. So wrong.

    In the adult world, I am completely comfortable being a person that feels confident in her own style choices and expressions of character. But put back inside of a school setting, that completely went away and I felt like such an outsider. I worried that the students would know I was older or somehow uncool and nobody would think I was worthy of getting to know. Like maybe because I am a mom I don't need friends so why bother. How awful and eye opening is that?

   The other students are polite, but most don't make eye contact. Maybe that's not just me, maybe we as a society don't do that anymore. By now, our third week of class, they know that I am older, but not how much older. I'm 30, guys. I graduated high school 12 years ago. Back in 2004, when you were just in Kindergarten. That's right.

    I don't even know what's cool anymore. I feel like Josie Geller, played by Drew Barrymore in Never Been Kissed. If I show up in clogs and butterfly clips in my hair is that still cool?

    But speaking of cool, I don't even think college kids think they're cool. They all wear college shirts and jeans and chucks, boots and leggings, or workout clothes. I bet they don't even work out.

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