Posted by: grantahelms | January 11, 2012

Flashback: 1985

Today, is the First Day of the rest of your life! Famous quote from somebody.

As I have been reporting over the past couple of months, today I began to experience ” Higher Education”. Makes me wonder why I didn’t do this 27 years ago. Yes, you read right, 27. It’s amazing the amount of water that can flow under the bridge in that amount of time. And on top of that, my instructor must be CRAZY! She started out the evening introducing herself and stating her qualifications. She spends 7 1/2 hours per day teaching math to high school students. Then 4 days a week, she teaches math to college students for 3 hours. You must be crazy to spend that much time at school. Then she begins to tell us that we are going to review basic ” mathematics principles “. O.K.! This shouldn’t be to hard if we’re reviewing things that I’ve already learned. Yeah right! When she started spouting off things like Integers, Rational numbers and Irrational numbers, I felt like she was speaking French! Is this all new to me, or did I miss something the first time around? Hence, the flashback: 1985.

Ah, 1985. The best, and worst year of my life. The previous year I had been banned from EVER driving a school bus again. Why? I had decided one day, en route, that I didn’t like children! I stopped at a gas station, called my substitute driver and proceeded to hitch hike home. It was amazing! The next morning I was a star. I was at the top of the principals list, and I wasn’t even facing the paddle. So 1985, my Senior year, I had nothing to tie me down except my 3 girl friends, my 1976 Gremlin and my first job. I vaguely remember the promises made during class nominations. I vaguely remember my girl friends last names and what they looked like ( and they sure don’t look the same today!). I definitely remember the day that my grandmother died. I definitely remember the day the judge said 3 years. And I remember what my teachers said… Blah, blah, blah, blah. Suddenly, my instructor was at my desk. Oh my gosh! She was using some of my paperwork as an example. She was commenting how we are to come to class prepared, we are to be organized, we are to be on time and we ARE to be present. We are to stay on track. She is working on a scheduled dead-line that we cannot deviate from. If you need her to slow down, TOUGH! Get a tutor. WOW! I’m back in high school. This woman loves me. If she only knew!

Oh well. I guess I was scared for nothing. For the next week, I’ll have to get my children to prepare me for a review of what I slept through during high school. I must have slept through it. I e-mailed a high school friend when I got home and she confirmed that we HAD studied all of this. If I knew then what I know now. Why do we refuse to believe adults when they tell us what they think we’ll need later on? Now that I’m an adult, will I listen to myself?

How many of you have gone back to school, many years later? How many years was it?

What kind of degrees did you study for?

Were you smart enough to take advice when you were younger?

Well, it’s been fun but I guess I need to hit it. Tomorrow I have a full days work and then it’s off to a College Skills class to prepare me to study, so that my college endeavor is not a waste of time. Go Professor Whaley! God Bless You All, Grant



  1. I was a bit different went to University the first time at 15. Stayed off and on for years both auditing classes and taking courses for credits. Then returned in my late twenties for my BS with a double major in Business and Finance. There were things I absolutely forgot (math was always my most hated subject)

    Returned again twenty years later for my MA in Project Management (still hated math and struggled with it)

    Still audit courses when I can in unrelated courses.

    I think because I was always auditing and I had some really good mentors I was ‘smart enough’ to take advice.

    You are doing the right thing taking the College Skills course, it really will help.

    Good Luck on this, you will do great.

    • Thanks Val. Always good now, to hear from others experience. God Bless You, Grant

  2. Well, I didn’t have the gap in time. I went right from high school to college. I have since been working on my master’s degree through online course work. The challenge for me has been balancing it all and also trying to format papers properly. (APA — why?) I don’t particularly like research, but this degree has a research core. I had to pull some things out of my brain that I didn’t know were in there for that.

    You ask about degrees– B.S. – Christian Ministry/Youth
    Currently finishing — MA – Ministry Leadership

    Just keep moving, you’ll do fine.

    • Thanks Derek. Tonight was fun. My instructor/teacher is the associate pastor at our church. He is a fun and energetic leader who wants this class to be about us. Who are we, where are we going and what are we doing to get there. The course is “College Skills” which is to prepare us to study and help us to get what we want from our journey through higher education. God Bless You, Grant

  3. Lol. I hear your pain. I had one college course (not after hs but early on). Then as my oldest son prepared to graduate high school, I entered college. Earning my BA and MEd in Elementary Education (1-8). I am not teaching now, but the experience changed my life and brought much healing to my life. Math is not my subject either – I have something called Discalculia – which means I can do higher end math, but can’t balance a checkbook. So, I had to accept B+ or so in math (Grrrrrr).

    When I was younger (and now) I have always tried to learn from other’s mistakes rather than make them myself. I’m not always successful at that, but it makes life easier when you follow advice. Now I’m at the stage where I’m telling young people things they won’t believe for now. You can do it! Angie

    • Thanks Angie and for the record, I’m pretty good at math. When my wife first started GED classes, she would have problems that were fairly complex and I could look at it and give her the answer, but not know the formula for the solution. I know, it’s weird! However, being a carpenter by trade, I use math daily and it’s hard to explain the proper way to teach it. As for the advice thing, face it, we’re getting old. At least the grand-kids will listen. Until their 10 or 12. Haha! God Bless You, Grant

  4. A mind is a terrible thing to waste, and your never to OLD to learn, so go for yours. You are a very smart person and going back to school never hurts so I encourage you and wish you the best.

    Remember to study real hard and stay awake.

    • Thanks Jim, If you’ll cover for me at work, I’ll study real hard. See, we’re both accountable. Love you, Grant

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