You know what’s funny about my previous post “Retiring the Wonder Woman Mask?” Wonder Woman doesn’t wear a mask. I just walked by a Wonder Woman DVD in Borders tonight and noticed that in addition to her costume (which I will not publicly confess to actually owning), she wears a crown, not a mask.
So she’s the same woman she was before, only with a crown to show her power. Maybe that’s what I was doing with my Masters degree status – proudly walking around with my crown so others would know I’m more than what I normally am. I’m better.
I don’t think I’ve ever actually voiced that thought before, but now that I’m not wearing the crown anymore, I recognize it for what it was – a show of pride. I’ve never been content to simply audit a class. Oh no, if I’m going to make the effort, I’m going to get rewarded for it in some tangible way. I rationalized that motive by saying that if I were simply auditing, I would not really learn the material, and there is truth in that; without accountability, I rarely follow through on anything. But acknowledging the pride doesn’t negate it in any way; it is still there.
I went to the registrar’s office today to formally drop my class and was informed that by doing so, I would place myself on some kind of scholarship probation and the penalty for doing that is having to pay for the next 5 credit hours I take at 100% tuition. When I found that out, I started crying, right there in the office. Why? Because I know we can’t afford that. Even 5 measly credit hours will cost somewhere in the neighborhood of $2,000 – two and a half months of rent. She was very caring in how she broke the news to me, but the news still had to be broken. And she encouraged me to rethink my decision, knowing what the implications would be. She also suggested I could still audit classes for free.
I held fast to the decision we had made – talk about putting your money where your mouth is. I was tempted to not drop the class, to go ahead and finish and not reap the consequences of having to pay for that possible future 5 hours. But I knew in my heart that doing so would put that stress right back on me, and that relief I’ve been feeling since the weekend would vanish.
I know I made the right decision, but making right decisions are not always synonymous with making easy decisions. And in this case, the consequences could very well mean that my time taking classes for credit here at Covenant will come to an end in May. And the knowledge of that stings just a little, because I am capable and I should have been able to make this work. But I couldn’t….or I wasn’t willing to sacrifice what would necessarily have to be sacrificed to make it work…or something.
So here I am, holding this crown – this Wonder Woman crown. I’ve been doing my best Charlie Brown kick for a while, but I think this time I’m going to make contact with it.