Designing My Career Part II

Completing my last year in college with a newborn was challenging. But I was NOT giving up!

Long commutes while pregnant were challenging.

I’d start my day before 5AM. My mom would drive me out to a bus stop in Brentwood. That bus would take me to the Pittsburg BART Station which would take me straight into San Francisco. We then learned that Stockton RTD had a bus to the newly opened Dublin/Pleasanton BART Station. That saved us having to drive into Brentwood! I would arrive at Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising (FIDM) around 8AM. Just enough time to get a juice and muffin on my way into class.

When my daughter was born, I realized there would be more juggling to master.

I was determined to breastfeed her for six months; what would be my Spring semester at school. Leaving Stockton early meant I’d try to get in one feeding before my commute. Sometimes it would work out and sometimes it didn’t. When it didn’t work out, I’d miss my morning juice and muffin so I could run up to a small room on campus to pump before class. In 1998, I had a manual pump that made the loudest noise! But I didn’t have time to be conscious of it. I’d end up a few small bottles of breast milk in my insulated lunch bag. The commute home is another story because the timing was tricky. If I had to pump before leaving campus then I’d arrive home over an hour later than usual. Most days, I’d rush out of class to make it to BART then the bus before it left to Stockton. I was so thankful for breast pads because that three hour commute would end uncomfortably but at least my shirt would stay dry. I graduated on time in June 1998. I had made it through the hurdles and felt ready for a career in Interior Design.

In June 1998, I graduated from the Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising in San Francisco, California
My grandmother, myself, and six-month old daughter at my graduation.

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