I stood on Wednesday afternoon with Mr smith over looking Huddersfield in the glorious sunshine, talking about the past present and future, whilst Megs clambered around below us and it all felt truly amazing and light. We had been to his university to hand in his final dissertation that he has been working so incredibly hard on over the last few weeks and then celebrated together with a spot of lunch. We stood and reflected upon how close the end was now, how hard it has been, how stressful at times, how we have voiced on more than one occasion “What were we thinking?”, but that we have also accomplished a lot as a couple and a family and together we have almost made it. Our ordinary for the last 4 years of being a “Student family” is on the edge of coming to an end… we are nearly done with this chapter of life and that is a little scary, mostly exciting and feeling all very strange as we wonder about what happens next.
Ethan was almost 2 and Megan just a couple of months old, when Nathan started university back in 2012. He had started uni like most people do earlier in his life, but it hadn’t worked out then and it wasn’t what he had expected, and so at the time the best thing was for him to leave. He since has worked hard in various things and as long as I have known him, I have admired his work ethics. He had a good job for the early part of our married life, and I was again grateful for how hard he worked, but I knew he wasn’t 100% happy and that he had more to offer the world, but faced the problem that despite applying to jobs that would further his career, he couldn’t progress to where he wanted to be and go without a degree. We made the decision to just do it, do it whilst the kids are young and then as their needs increase he will be in a job where he is happier, earning more and able to offer them more and so he did. In September 2012 he enrolled as full-time student at the University of Huddersfield to study “Logistics and Supply chain management” at the business school and most of the time I haven’t a clue what he has been on about!!!
That wasn’t an easy decision, it has meant that money has been tight, we don’t always see each other at exam time and stress levels too have soared at certain periods of the year, not to mention parenting continues and we have faced some incredibly challenging personal trials too. But now it is almost done, life feels exciting and whilst so much has happend in these last 4 years of being a student family, its almost a shock we are so close to the end. I looked at he and Megs together and couldn’t believe she was a new born when this journey started and in a few months she will be starting school. So many changes and so much growth.
Whilst it his his degree, his hard work and his knowledge that has been required to get to this point, it also wouldn’t have been possible without our sacrifices as a family and couple… We all have just pulled together, which hasn’t always been easy with grief, pregnancy and general life, but I have helped and supported him however I could, and he me when I needed him, and together we walked the journey together to get his degree and help him progress in his studies and hopefully career. We have both known it is a choice we made together in hope that it will bless the rest of our lives as a family. We looked out to our future on the edge of that hill under the sun and bright blue skies, and wondered what our ordinary would be like now? In 3 weeks University will be a thing of the past and whilst we still have a graduation, a ball and a job to find for him, this chapter is nearly closed and the world lies ahead for us to discover something new.
I am so proud of him and how hard he has worked. It has been great as his wife to see that characteristic of work in him continue and not be extinguished when things were hard or when work loads increased. I have loved seeing him develop a passion for something and it was therefore so wonderful to be with him and see his face as he finally handed in his last ever assignment and headed out knowing it was nearly done.
The late nights, the research, the missing out on family time and the sheer exhaustion some days will hopefully all have been worth it. Our Ordinary moments of student life we soon say goodbye to, but they will be years and memories we hopefully will be thankful for as they shape the rest of our story. Thank you Nathan for working hard for your wife, your kids and especially your self accomplishments!