Last night, we received a phone call from some friends asking us to be the guardians of their children should anything happen to them. We agreed. It seems as though we might be everyone’s go-to people for guardianship. We’ve told all of them that we agree, but they are not allowed to fly on the same plan as any of these other people, and that if any of the other people for whom we are guardians pass away, we need to pass on the opportunity to be your children’s guardians. So anyway, here’s the tally of what would happen if all our friends and family died on the same day.
- We have two kids of our own.
- We are guardians for my sister’s daughter (my niece).
- My husband’s sister’s sons (my nephews).
- My own (half) siblings (one almost-18 year old boy, and two girls).
- The children I mentioned in my last post, a boy and a girl (and we went ahead and said we’d be the guardians because we do think we’d do a good job, even if it meant rearranging our lives and maybe having a full-time SAHP…mostly because we think those kids are worth it).
- And the two daughters of my husband’s best friend.
- (Plus I begged my BFF to let me be her son’s guardian because he is adorable and I want him, but I don’t think she’s going to let me. Maybe I can just borrow his cheeks. I think his cheeks could light my house for a week.)
**Abrupt topic change**
I was one of the only people at college I knew there whose parents were divorced, one of only a few receiving a Pell Grant and a Supplemental Education Opportunity Grant. I always assumed college students were struggling and cheap (and eating ramen). Everything I knew about college I learned from watching TV and movies like Animal House and Simpsons episodes.
I was way out of my league. But I am white. There were plenty of under-represented minorities there, and they got to go to the college 6 weeks before school started to take classes on study skills, learn to use the library, interact with faculty, explore different majors, and familiarize themselves with the workings of college. Some of them came from families with other college graduates. Some of their parents even went to college.
If you’d ever been exposed to college before, you might know what office hours are. I had no idea. At the beginning of all my classes, the professors would write their office hours up on the blackboard (or pass them out on the syllabus). I would dutifully write them down in my binder (which was the same binder I had used for a class last year and had removed the papers from because I didn’t have $3 to spend on a new binder…and death to the professor who required that homework be done on green engineering paper which was $6). So I would write these office hours down, but I didn’t know what they were. Why did he tell us when he’d be in his office or lab? Why would I care? I just had no idea. I never went to office hours during my entire college career.
Unsurprisingly, I was offered work-study as part of my financial aid package. Dutifully, within a few days of getting on campus, I got a job in my dorm sorting mail in the mailroom. It was brutal work at the beginning of the year when many students had shipped large boxes to their dorms. We would deliver the boxes to the dorm rooms (with no elevators and just a hand cart) so that the boxes would be waiting in the room when the students showed up. Had I known anything, had a clue, or had parents who could guide me, I would have waited until the engineering department lab jobs were posted a few weeks later. It would have been easier work and given me a better resume. But I just didn’t know. By the time I figured out that lab jobs were cake and got you on the good side of professors, I had worked my way up to mail room supervisor and didn’t want to move to a lower-paying lab job. Money was tight and I had rent to pay and groceries to buy.