So you know like in every high school movie, someone gets an acceptance letter from a university and they scream of joy? Well that was my reaction when my letter of acceptance popped up in my inbox this morning...
This is in fact surreal. Ever since I was about thirteen years old, I´ve wanted to study abroad and travel as much as I could in my later teenage years. I lived in Hamburg for three years when I was ten and I later got to go on an EF language travel to London for one month. They were both fantastic experiences that I will never forget. The only thing missing was my biggest goal - to be an exchange student in the US. I didn´t actually bother to look up any particular schools of interests either - I just wanted to go wherever, as long as it was in USA.
When I later became a mother at sixteen, I put all my dreams at hold to give my all to this little beautiful daugther whom I called Tia, that I was now about to raise at a very young age. She is now nearly five years old, and she is my best friend and my everything. Finishing high school was a big deal for me and I was ready for college here in Norway. Getting in to The University of Southeastern Norway was everything I could ever dream of at that point in my life. I was ready to show everyone that young mothers are capable of doing anything they put their mind in to. Except for that one dream, that was still put aside.
I briefly began discussing it with my parents, which at first thought I was crazy, still wanting to be an exchange student in the US. I couldn´t just leave, now that I had a daughter - or could I? When I first put my mind into something, I never give up until I achieve it (in most cases). But could this be so unachieveable? I wasn´t in my wildest dreams thinking about going for a full school year, but only for a few months. After researching this further and looking into different possibilities, I found University of California Berkeley. If I went for the fall semester only, I would be gone for four months. To be away from my daughter for four months is a hard thought, since we´ve only been apart for no longer than one month last summer, when she had a vacation with her father and his family.
When I later told my parents about only going for four months only, they began to be more accepting and supporting about my wish - as they always are. My parents have always been here for me and supported me through a million different rough patches in my life. This of course was a harder decision, which would lead to them "replacing" me for the fall and having to change their life style a tiny bit. I have to say though, I do in fact live in my parents house, so for my daughter the transition wouldn´t be worse than me being away for some months. This is also my only chance to study alone, since my daughter will be starting school the following year.
After I got both my parents and my daugthers father and stepmoms "approval" in which they would take amazing care of my daugther while I´m away, I am so much more looking foreward to this journey. Of course I feel guilty deep inside leaving for these four months, but in all harness - this will be so beneficial for my future career which again will give my daugther not only a brighter and safer future - but I will be an even better role model for her. My dream is to show my daugther that whatever happens in life, family sticks together and everything is in fact possible! Whats also very cool is that my parents and my daugther most likely will visit me for a whole week midterm in October, so that the separation anxciety doesn´t completely kick in before we all get to meet again! Wow, I´m one lucky gal!
So what´s in store next? I woke up to a letter of invitation to Berkeley University and I am overly excited about it. But it´s still a long way to go, and I definitely got a lot of paperwork to do the next months. Oh... and of course this all comes in addition to the two classes I am taking this semester, which I must not forget about - haha, God forbid.