Brittany's MBA: A Love Story
"As a spouse, I feel a real sense of pride in the fact that my wife earned her master’s degree."
Tuesday, June 21, 2016
Graduate courses are demanding. They take time on weekends and weeknights. As the spouse of a graduate student, it took a little getting used to because Brittany and I both work full-time, and I travel often. We both had to continually adjust our schedules and expectations. Different classes demanded different time commitments, so our routine was always changing. Some tasks around the home didn’t get done, but that was okay. Just to be clear, this was not because she, the wife, was taking classes. It would have been like that if I was taking classes because we believe in sharing household duties. It was because our time together on nights and weekends was limited, so we chose to enjoy our time together instead of tackling to-do lists. We ultimately found some balance with our eyes on the prize of graduation. It was not the easiest time, but it never felt “hard.” Looking back, it is a happy memory of a beautiful time in our lives.
It was ultimately a blessing for our relationship, because I could tell that it gave her a real sense of accomplishment. We celebrated the small and big victories together: each A on a test or quiz, each time she got a better grade on a paper, each concept that she couldn’t understand at first but then nailed it. We learned that challenges like this become opportunities to accomplish new things, and to accomplish them together. It certainly wasn’t boring!
I’ve seen the pride she has now. She knows that it’s a big deal. While working full-time, she went back to school and got her MBA. She’ll have that pride forever. If we are blessed with children, she’ll tell them about it. I’ll tell them how proud I am of her and how thankful I am to have married such a smart, hardworking, capable woman. I’ve also seen the pride that other people have in her. Her family and friends, of course, are elated. But I also notice it in her workplace. When people hear that she got her MBA – that this is how she spent her nights and weekends – they are impressed. Proving that she could accomplish this made people realize that she can do whatever she puts her mind to (which, of course, I already knew).
We learned through this process that challenges will come, but that we can handle them together, and that they are often worth it. That’s an important lesson in a family: anything worth having is worth fighting for and working hard to achieve, especially when you work together.
As a spouse, I feel a real sense of pride in the fact that my wife earned her master’s degree. I feel that pride for her and also for myself. I share in her accomplishment. The fact that we both did our part to accomplish it makes it ours. Of course, she did all of the work. I just helped out with little things along the way and encouraged her. The best things in life are for sharing, and this experience is one of them.
- JD Hays