Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Back to School (Part 2)

There are more ways to be assertive and/or request accommodations, but you have to provide a solid reason, so don’t request anything unless there’s a good solid reason. There are some accommodations that schools do not supply automatically, or schools need to make an exception for. I’ve had one friend in high school who needed to use a rolling backpack even though the school ruled against that. She got to use one. I’ve had another friend in college who used a scooter to get to and from campus. That sounds crazy, doesn’t it? It’s not crazy, as long as you need it. He needed it. I don’t have very strong leg muscles, so always bending up and down was a little painful for me. During work study, when I had to do things where I had to kneel down to get to the lower shelf often, I sat down onto a stepping stool or if I had to, sat down on the floor. I worked in the school library, so I had to get to the lower shelf when shelving books or doing inventory. Now, why didn’t I think of that when I volunteered at my library during high school?

It was not until college when I found out some of the many things I could do. Freshman year was the year I learned a lot of lessons and made many mistakes. One thing though, I was always assertive. If I wasn’t assertive, I would not have been able to graduate with my Associate’s, but I’ll get to that in a minute. Sometimes, you need to be assertive to be able to get to where you need to be or to get the job done. For instance, my college has apartments, not dorms. If you needed a downstairs apartment, you had to specifically request one. Being assertive doesn’t work 100% of the time, some of the time, you’ll have to figure out another way to succeed in getting what you need or want.

There was one major time where being assertive has helped, in my experience. There may have been others that I do not remember at the moment, but this one is one of the biggest achievements I never gave up on.

First semester of my Sophomore year, I thought I was still set for the four years I had planned to be there. It was nearing mid-terms and that’s about the same time we had to go sign up for classes for the next semester. I forget how I found out I couldn’t come back the next semester. I just remember being upset about not coming back even to at least graduate with my Associate’s. Yeah, I moped for a couple of days, but then I had the mentality that if you want something done, you had to do it yourself. I knew I had to at least graduate if anything. I went right up to my academic advisor. She told me I’d have to take six classes. I was fine with that. But there was the issue with money. My mom kept saying no, but I kept fighting back so much, just to finish one more semester that I got the attention of the president of my college. I guess she was impressed, because she pulled some major strings for me to finish.

It wasn’t an easy road, but I reached my goal. It was worth it. I have no regrets about fighting to go back that last semester. I survived. I graduated. I’m proud of myself to at least have my Associate’s.

Sometimes, you just have to be more assertive. You may surprise yourself with how far you’ve come.

Until next time, God Bless.
- MissNiChloe

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