I finished university!!!!

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I finished university!!!!

Post  milo on Sat 22 Nov 2014, 5:22 pm

Hi friends. I've already posted a little bit about this on a hijacked thread but thought I would post an update on it's own thread.

In 2009 a began a journey of retuning to university. I'd already graduated about fifteen years ago. I'm in a profession where the education level is increasing as time goes on and made a decision that I would need to look at going back to keep up with the newer graduates who were all graduating with a higher level of education than me.

So back in 2009 I tried my first two courses of online university. Both courses were topics I was very familiar with and the funding for the courses actually came through some contract negotiations, so I really had nothing to risk other than my time. My first round of university did not involve migraines as I did not yet get them on a frequent basis back then. This second round was all about surviving my daily migraines.

So in 2011 I committed to actually completing a new degree. I was working at a new job with a lot of responsibility and that took up a whole lot of my energy and at least 60 hours of my time a week. My migraines were at a point where they were messing up my ability to do much other than work, so I figured school wasn't going to interfere too much. I was at a point where the migraines prevented me from being as active as I wanted to be. They also had me at home away from the world a lot, so doing some university courses online kind of fit into my home-body life.

I plugged away a course or three at a time, often struggling to find times when my head was calm enough to stare at the computer screen or my texts. Exams and papers were hard as my concentration has really been messed up with years of medications and constant pain. Many days my head decided if I could study or not. I managed to find a rhythm that worked, and in particular figured out how to get my work done as far in advance as possible so that I could have a bad week and not screw up my studies. All of my "good days" were spent studying, and many of my "bad" ones too.

Fortunately, I did not have to do any work experience, just lots and lots of studying, papers and exams. Somehow I managed it all. And now that I'm done, I feel like screaming "Take that migraine!!!!!!!!!!!!!!". I didn't let them win, and I'm so proud of that.

Most days my work takes everything out of me. I have an autoimmune disease that also strips me of much of my energy. I often come home and need to just shut off all the stimuli, relax and try to get my head under control. I'm unable to take pain meds at work all day, so when I come home I am often in desperate need. So each night I'd get home, take medications and have to fight with myself to get going on my studies. When it was a good course with a topic I was very interested in things were not as bad, but each degree seems to come with at least a small handful of courses that suck. Those courses were very, very hard for me to get through.

My last course was by far the hardest in all my years of school. I'm super smart and pull really good grades, but this course had me from day one. It was kicking my butt. I ended up getting a medical extension as I had so many bad episodes of intractable pain. My specialists tried many times to get me to quit, but I was determined. It was as if I had to prove to myself that I still have control, even when my physical health often dictates so many facets of my life. I really didn't care all that much about adding some new letters behind my signature. I wasn't doing it to get a new job or a pay raise (I do get one of those now that I'm done but that wasn't my motivation). I cared about being the captain of my own ship and the sole person responsible for my future. It was that which kept me plugging away through each day I wanted to quit.

Migraine is an evil thing. It robs us of so much. We do so much to try to find ways to live with this monster, and sadly, more often than not, the monster wins. But sometimes we win. Sometimes we beat the beast. I'm proud to belong to this awesome group of survivors. Each of us has fought the dragon in our own ways. I gain so much strength from you all as I watch you go through your own struggles. I share so much pride when I see you succeed. We give each other so much and somehow manage to band together to get through pretty much anything.

We have been through surgeries, death, school, marathons, parenting, divorces, marriages, jobs, journeys, and countless hospital and doctors visits together. I can't find the words to tell you all how much it means to me to have you behind me, supporting me as I go through my everyday. I know I could not have done it without your support and I believe I would never have finished this without you there with me. Thank you so much for being there for me.

I'm DONE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Re: I finished university!!!!

Post  Cluelesskitty on Thu 11 Dec 2014, 4:53 pm

Milo,
I can't being to tell you how enormously impressed I am !!
so I'll just say- huge, huge   congratulations      !! You are amazing !!

Your story is amazing. myself, I can not imagine doing what you did.
I can not imagine having to survive a half a day without  pain meds,    then coming home and instead just plopping down to rest,
getting myself together to study  in a haze of tiredness, pain and painkillers on top of that. unbeliefreakingable!!
You got not only brains but guts as well. and my admiration.

It's true, migraine is evil and takes a hefty chunk of us and our lives. it sometimes quite  successfully prevents us from achieving our goals.
I am truly happy for you that this time it is not migraine who won, it's YOU!!

AWESOME !!!!

cheers

Risa


Last edited by Cluelesskitty on Sat 20 Dec 2014, 3:48 pm; edited 2 times in total

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Re: I finished university!!!!

Post  Porsche Fan on Sat 20 Dec 2014, 4:40 am

Milo,

I want to congratulate you on the completion of your new degree and wish you the best of luck!

Fight like Hell and keep going!

Take care,
PF
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Re: I finished university!!!!

Post  milo on Tue 23 Dec 2014, 6:59 pm

Thanks so much my friends!  It's really real now, as this week I'll get my first pay check with the raise (it's really small but that's not the point). Smile


Last edited by milo on Thu 25 Dec 2014, 1:11 am; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Medicated spelling)
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Re: I finished university!!!!

Post  Cluelesskitty on Wed 24 Dec 2014, 8:24 pm

There you go, the first berry sized fruits of your labor Smile

Merry Christmas!!

Risa

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Re: I finished university!!!!

Post  milo on Wed 28 Jan 2015, 12:55 am

Funny thing is.....I'm actually taking home less pay now! Go figure Rolling Eyes
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Re: I finished university!!!!

Post  Cluelesskitty on Wed 28 Jan 2015, 2:38 am

aww, that sucks. is it because you have new job that pay less, or what?

R

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Re: I finished university!!!!

Post  milo on Thu 29 Jan 2015, 8:31 am

Same job, I think my raise popped me into the next tax bracket? Does that make sense?
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Re: I finished university!!!!

Post  Cluelesskitty on Thu 29 Jan 2015, 3:46 pm

.. meaning, you now pay higher taxes? absolutely.

R

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Re: I finished university!!!!

Post  Migrainegirl on Sat 31 Jan 2015, 6:44 pm

Super awesome!!  That is a great accomplishment for anyone, and all the more so with the M struggles. Congrats to you!
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