Widgets Magazine

Feb 11, 2012

To Go or Not to Go...that is the Question

It seems that I've got myself stuck in a time warp. Writing the Drama Queen's birth story earlier this week has transported my brain back almost 25 years ago and I'm remembering tons of good stories I need to tell you. Family history, you know! Let's start with this one.

Me and Bossy making cookies.  Check out our rockin' hair!
When I graduated from the University of Utah in 1986 with my BA in English, my sweetie had taken the year off and was working as an electronic tech for an engineering group here in the Salt Lake Valley. It was a good job and he was making a pretty reasonable salary for a guy with only a two-year degree in electronics.

Our agreement had been that he would work for that year while I finished my degree and then we would transfer to Utah State and he would finish his BS in electrical engineering. That left me with a couple of choices, get a job...or try to get in to graduate school. To tell you the truth, I was pretty scared of getting a real job. I was 21 years old and Bossy was a year and a half. I was loving being a mom and taking care of our tiny apartment even with the classes and the homework.

So my decision was made. I applied for graduate school in the English Department. Six weeks later I was accepted and we started making arrangements to move. They also offered me a Research Fellowship that would pay about $250 every month. Not a fortune, but every little bit would help. We also applied for grants and loans, secured an apartment and got my sweetie registered for school. Things were moving forward quickly and according to plan.

Sweetie starts early - I think he's still hoping for a rock star in the family.
That's about when we found out I was pregnant with the Gym Rat. Suddenly everything was up in the air again. Our families told us we were stupid. We had excellent insurance that would pay for the delivery completely. All we had to do was put off leaving for a year. It was tempting.

We spent several days filled with confusion, but after some heavy duty prayer, we made a decision. We were still going. We decided that having kids just had to be part of everything we did. They didn't make life stop...they were the stuff life was made of.

My sweetie turned in his two-week notice and we filled out all the paperwork for Cobra. (No, that isn't another snake story...that's the interim insurance a company is required to offer as long as you make your own payments.) The Cobra bill each month was exactly $269. Just barely more more than my Fellowship. We paid that amount each month from September until the Gym Rat was born in February and we felt like it was money well-spent. Even though we didn't have any real issues with his birth, we had the peace of mind knowing that no matter what happened it would be covered.
Look at us all graduated from USU!

And school was awesome! Life was good.

3 comments:

ccc said...

Interesting story. I like hearing how other people did things with young kids when they were first trying to start their families. We, too, got married young and some of our kids grew up with us.

Anonymous said...

I do applaud you for obtaining your education with two little ones, not many people do that at all...You are most fortunate to have Cobra and the payments were very low...Many cannot do that or get health insurance, putting off ever ever having kids, to me a real bummer..Life is not about things and material possessions even if the commercials seem to want to make young people think they simply cannot live without all those possessions, education to me in my opinion is absolutely necessary to one's survival in the depression we are in and will be for sometime...Congratulations upon your blog, you show to me what a real family should be, your love of your faith, family and your caring for your children who are such a joy in this world...!!!!!!!!!!!!! Not to mention your sweet hubby and yourself. Happy Valentine's day a wee bit early, you certainly deserve it and then some!!!!!

Brandi Yee said...

I love how you put up these little stories! Kudos to you for still pursuing school with kids in tow! And not letting that stop you guys from making a change :)

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