Navigating Education and Elder Care | A Personal Journal Entry
Glory be, I've made it through another 70 hour work week.
You might be wondering what causes me to accumulate so many weekly work hours. That's easy to answer, I have two jobs. I currently work forty hours a week as a legal investigator for the City of Chicago. Once I'm finished there, I come home and begin my role as an informal care giver to my 74 year old mother. She suffers from Alzheimer's disease and requires 24-hour care. My weekdays begin at 4:30am and can continue through till 10pm. Although the hours can be physically and emotionally draining, it is the evening gig that offers the most rewarding experience. Luckily so, since informal caregivers receive no compensation for their efforts.
It was several years after Mom suffered her debilitating stoke that I decided to return to school to obtain my graduate degrees. I knew no matter what occurred regarding my mom's health she'd want me to pursue my educational goal. My mom had been a nurse and worked diligently to provide for my sister and me. She always instilled in us the importance of education and encouraged us to attain our personal best. I believe that I inherited my tenacious spirit from her. I received my Master's degree in 2011, and although I was fifty, decided to proceed towards a doctorate degree.
Fortunately, I chose a university that offered a rigorous program with engaging students, supportive staffers and dedicated faculty. This combination allowed me and fellow colleagues to achieve our educational pursuits. Unfortunately, my mom made her transition before I graduated. Yet, I know she is eternally happy that I pursued my dream and obtained my doctoral degree . I am also grateful that Argosy University helped me turn an aspiration into actuality.
Note: Debra earned her Doctor of Education in Organizational Leadership in 2017!
Written by Dr. Debra Gavin Ware EdD
Dr. Gavin Ware is an adjunct instructor at Argosy University, Chicago .