Hello everyone, my name is DeVonte Tyler. I am returning to college for the second time, which would make me a non-traditional student. I attended Ridgewater College for the first time back in the fall of 2012. My mom, my aunt, and I drove all the way from Augusta, GA to Willmar, MN.
Back then I was immature and did not really care much about school. What happened next in my life I would not have predicted. On March 8, 2013, my twin boys Noah & Nolan were born. My life changed the moment they came into this world.
I knew at an early age that I wanted to have my own children just not as early as I had them. So, I knew right away that things would need to change so that I could provide them with a good life. I decided to join the Army as it seemed like the best decision to make. Things, unfortunately, did not go as planned and I went down a dark path for a while.
Shortly after I joined the service, I began to abuse alcohol to numb the pain and completely shut everyone out of my life. And I continued down this path for a few years until I met my now wife. Now things did not change right away when we first met. It took a little while, but she has always pushed me to be the best person that I can be.
Fast forward to now, it has been 9 years since I was first in college and a lot has changed since. My wife really pushed me to follow my dreams to become a hospice nurse and that is now what I am pursuing.
Although I am more mature now there are other difficulties that I struggle with. My biggest struggle is being around crowds of people that I don’t know. And although the classes at Ridgewater are not super big, I still find them to sometimes be a challenge at times.
Another thing I struggle with is self-doubt. I often find myself questioning myself if I am too old or if I am smart enough to even become a nurse. My wife and four children are the biggest source of motivation that has helped me this far and I am not sure what I would do without them.
Overall, throughout my life I have learned that life at times is not always fair, but it is those low moments in life that really define who you are, and it also shows you who your real family and friends are. I have been blessed to have so many people by my side to help me through this long journey.