Semesters here are divided into four marking periods, preliminary, midterm, prefinal, and final. The midterm marking period just ended, and I just learned that I got a 91 in the lecture portion of my nursing care management class (NCM 100). This is kind of a big deal for two main reasons:

  1. My grade fell in the laboratory portion of the class, but because lecture is worth 60% of the class grade, my overall grade actually rose.
  2. I soooo didn’t expect to get a higher grade on midterms than on prelims.

This past marking period was the hardest I’ve gone through yet. Between getting the editing business up and running, dealing with the realities of Rob leaving and Baby #2 arriving, and also managing the stresses of visiting friends and relatives, I’ve been strung out and highly short on time.

I’m proud of myself for keeping it all together. Still, the fact that I don’t go around announcing my continued ambition and success has me looking like your run-of-the-mill above-average student. And that? Well, it takes some getting used to.

Today, when the teacher announced that the highest grade in the class went to the same person it always goes to (who is also a mom), I felt a rush of adrenaline. Because, yeah, I’ve mellowed out a lot, but I’m only human. And dammit, I’m a competitive human.

“I’m only 3 points behind her and I work and I have a husband (kinda) to take care of and I don’t get help from my mom!” I wanted to scream.

But instead, I sat and thought of ways to improve my grades without easing up on my mommying or partnering or editing or writing. And I realized that it would be easy. I’d just have to spend five or six extra hours a week studying at the school library instead of spending quality time with my family.

But that? It’s just not possible.

Because all of this? All of the nursing school, culture clash, headaches because of extended family, butting heads with my brother, dealing with my personal issues, trying to be a better student/writer/provider/partner et al.? It’s for Rob and Riley that I do it. It’s for them that I strive to improve myself.

So cutting my quality time with my family in order to do better at school? It would be like cutting off my legs so I could run better.

I’ll take my 91. I’ll continue to do what I’ve got to do. I’ll grin and bear it when I’m being robbed of my time to shine. I just have to remember: The Philippines ain’t got nothin’ on me.


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