Open University Random Ramblings

My Dilemma

I’m thinking and puzzling and pondering and cogitating here. I have still not reached a decision either, which is frustrating.

You may have read my post where I was deliberating over recommencing my Open University degree this year, and then my excitable post sharing that I’d decided to go for it, and have registered for my course. I remain interested and excited about that course, that has not changed at all. I have the set books here, and have started to dip into them.

OU study books


I want to get lost in them. I’m looking forward to the day (or at least I was until recently) that my materials and texts all arrive and I can immerse myself in piles of paper, grab my highlighters, scribble notes in new notebooks and get going on my assignments. You see my love of paper and stationery is all entwined with my love of studying!

But the dilemma? Well, my main initial concern was over whether I could actually make the time to study and do this, with balancing the home, kids and this blog. I decided that with Little Man starting nursery for two days a week from September, I’d go for it, and hope to fit some work in of an evening, too. It would be a challenge, as this blog takes a lot of hours of my time, too, and I’ve just started to get the right balance between this and family life. But now there is a new issue.

Little Man is no longer starting nursery in September. He is not ready for it. Which means I have him still at home with me every day, and as you’d expect, he’s starting to drop his naps, too, which I’ve been fortunate to have until now as I’ve used them all for getting my work done. My available time to do anything at all is shrinking, let alone time to study.

If I could be certain he would start in January, as we’ve deferred it, I would just go for it and ride out a challenging 2-3 months of work. But I am not sure he will be ready in January either, which means I’ve a full year of attempting to fit studying in alongside everything else.

My nature is the sort to just say go for it, I take things on and figure it out later. But I do know that sometimes the blog/family balance can slip and it makes me unhappy when it does. I want to be fully present with my family and I don’t want to be short-tempered with my kids because of deadlines, so I am concerned about adding a whole other pile of pressure and deadlines on top of that. One alternative would be to scale back here, but this is my income and one that we can ill afford to lose, quite apart from the fact that I love it and it’s often a place to unwind.

And no, I cannot defer it for a year. I have until 2019 to complete my course or I lose two years worth of work that I’ve already completed. I need all four years to do that in, as I don’t foresee a time when I could be a full time student for a year and double up my credits to make up for lost time. So it’s pretty much now or never.

So that’s my dilemma. I don’t need the degree. I can just say no and walk away, no problems or stress caused. It’s just that I want the degree. I want to study. But my kids come first and I know that Little Man needs to be with me now. I made that decision and am happy it’s the right one. It just means I’m wavering over my History course now. I need to decide quickly, before the materials are sent, before my fees goes through.

I still haven’t got an answer. Your thoughts are more than welcome…


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