This may sound like a stupid question but it happens so often in my life lately, I need to know how to answer people. When I am invited to dinner with family or to an activity like the 24 of July parade or something family oriented, and I say I can’t make it, I get all kinds of flack from my family. Either I get the guilt trip version from my mom, or my dad says that school will be only a short time of my life, that I need to take a break. Most of my friends understand where I’m coming from, why not my family?
The reason your friends understand you is because they are more than likely in the same situation. When a person is in school, there is really very little time to socialize and that includes activities with those you love the most.
Those who understood me the most while I was attending college were those who had recently graduated and those who were currently attending school. Others who took the time to listen realized that I wanted to be with them but couldn’t for a particular reason. They were supportive of me and what I was trying to accomplish. They realized that school would only be for a short period of my life and that after school was over I would be back with the family in full force. They were willing to wait.
Talk to your mom and dad. Share with them your thoughts about attending school. Let them know how important school is to you. You may even want to work out a plan where you can attend a few of the activities your family has planned. This may mean that you get your homework done sooner or get ahead in your book reading so that you can attend the activity. If such is the case, let your parents know what you had to do to be able to come. Don’t whine or be a martyr about it, just explain to them that you were able to get the homework or the reading done early so that you could make it. They will appreciate your candor and sacrifice.
Still, there will be some in your family that will not understand. They may compare their work load with yours-such as their outside jobs, or keeping up with the house or the errands they had to run. They, frankly, will not get it.
I have lived in both worlds. The school world and the work world, and let me just say that the school route is much harder. The deadlines are more frequent and the opportunity to lay the work aside for another day is much harder to do. Time and school wrap around you like a blanket and before you know it, all you seem to be doing is eating, studying, and taking a nap in-between.
Know that many folks out there are with you, and when it comes right down to it, hanging out, even in those spare moments, with those who have faith in you and encourage you to continue to put school near the top of your list will be those same people who will encourage you even after you’ve finished.