Many parents find it challenging to raise their children while simultaneously pursuing an education. In the middle of a global pandemic, these hurdles seem even bigger as new challenges arise.
Georgia State student Jasmine Crawford’s life has revolved around her 3-year-old son, Ayden, since she gave birth to him.
Though she had her hands full as a mother with a newborn baby, Crawford started classes at Georgia State shortly after her son was born in 2016.
During her three years at Georgia State, Crawford has had difficulty obtaining her education while raising her son.
“It’s definitely a little bit of a challenge being a single parent and trying to pursue an education,” Crawford said. “Both require a lot of attention, but the noise becomes a little too much at times.”
Crawford adds that although she is a single parent, her mother substantially helps her raise her son.
“My mom is my biggest support system I have with my son, and I definitely couldn’t or wouldn’t ask for anything better,” Crawford said.
Crawford’s biggest concern during the COVID-19 pandemic is the safety and health of her son. She has taken many necessary precautions, such as limiting social gatherings, frequently sanitizing, wearing a mask and avoiding contact with others.
She is usually an outgoing person with a lot of energy, but she admits that she has lost some of that energy since the beginning of the pandemic.
“I am guilty of being a little bit lazy during this pandemic, which is honestly horrible when I feel like sitting back and relaxing and my son wants to be up running around playing,” Crawford said.
Both Crawford and her son have begun attending online school, and they are both trying to adjust.
“I am coming to grips with having to homeschool him, and it is kind of scary to me,” she said. “Despite being nervous about it, it is definitely something that I am working on and getting better at each day.”
She admits that taking classes entirely online has caused her to procrastinate on her schoolwork.
“I am used to taking my classes in a face-to-face setting, and I am still getting adjusted to taking them online,” Crawford said. “I am working on keeping a level head while focusing on my son and my education and not letting this pandemic get in the way of either of them.”
She has found that dedicating half of her day to homeschooling her son and the other half to her own classes has brought her and her son’s schedules fluidity.
Crawford has a word of advice for other students with children who have to take on online learning responsibility now.
“Let your children be your motivation to not give up,” she said. “Do not let this pandemic be the reason for your demise.”