A holiday wish…

In 1987 the #1 single was Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance with Somebody.” The hair was big and the shoulder pads were plentiful. That year, 36 year-old Bridget and her father were celebrating the holiday season together when he looked at his daughter and said: “Do you know what my Christmas wish is? I want you to get a college degree”. Her father firmly believed that higher education would lead to a more fulfilling life for his daughter. “He pledged to save up money so I could go to school, and in return, I made a promise that I would graduate.”

When Bridget made her promise she knew that she suffered from bipolar disorder, which comes with many challenges. But in her words…

“In my family, when we say we are going to do something…we do it.”

Bridget had incredible potential to be a great student, however, her biggest challenge during her educational journey was managing her bipolar disorder. “I was diagnosed at a time where they knew very little about this condition and so the mental and psychological care I received wasn’t great” she remembers. It took everything Bridget had to try and fulfill her promise. Even when her father got sick she wouldn’t stop…

Despite all of her obstacles she graduated in 6 years with a masters degree in counseling at 42. During her tenure, she maintained a 4.0 and was the first woman in her family to ever attend or graduate college. Her father lived just long enough to see his daughter fulfill her promise. After graduation Bridget went on to become a family therapist and metaphysical minister.

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