Tonight I drink wine. This is not a shockingly rare event, but tonight there is cause to celebrate: I am going back to school.
More specifically, the University of the Virgin Islands, which is housed smackdab in the middle of STX and showcases a lovely koi pond in the middle of the campus.
I. Am. So. Excited.
I love my babies and they engage my mind and creativity and curiosity in ways that will never be paralleled. But I miss a classroom and the learning of strange, complicated and amazing things about this life. I miss the smell of school supplies and the dorky excitement of a test.
Plus, the classes are in the evening, so I still get to spend the days with my babies. This mama is happy.
It’s the beginning of a long journey. My degree is in journalism, and my professional background is a hodgepodge of writing, teaching, speech writing and medical education. The crux of the issue is that I really want to do it all. I want to write, I want to learn all sorts of amazing things about medicine and the human machine and I desperately want to be there to see my kids’ first giggles, steps, goosebumps…
The thing I recently realized is that I actually can do it all. Chris now works at a job that does not require consistent travel (The first since I have known him.) This is a profound blessing, the likes I will never, ever take for granted. He comes home for dinner every night, and we have every weekend together with our beautiful boys. And when it comes to taking some evening classes, he can be there to feed and bathe the kids whilst I am all off getting schooled.
I am starting off slow, just taking a few classes such as Medical Terminology, with the ultimate goal of attending Barry University’s Physician Assistant program. In a stroke of serendipitous luck, Barry just opened up a branch in STX a few months ago. Ever since working at the American Cancer Society (and really the seed was planted having grown up hearing my doctor dude of a dad espouse amazing and beautiful facts about the complications that go into a person’s physicality), I have been interested in the Physician Assistant track. It is almost like an MD, really, except without all the pesky malpractice and crazy hours (read: a mother can do this job without guilt).
The incredible adviser at Barry University offered to set me up with the shadowing of practicing PAs on island, and was generally incredibly encouraging about this mid-life (gag) job change.
Not that this lets me off the hook, I still have to write a novel, and a childrens’ book, and suck up all the succor of the waiting world. But this is just another proverbial ring in the tree, and I am a lucky girl to be able to give it a shot.
Charmingly, the registration process was all very…island. I was sent from person to person looking for the correct individual to sign my registration form. And each person was perfectly content to sit, for however long as I allowed, and bask in the whys and hows of what brought me to Saint Croix and the university in general. There were quite a bit of “good afternoons” and many a hearty handshake.
No Coronas in the vending machines, but I’ll work on that.