Sunday, February 15, 2015

The Five Stages Of Finals

Finals are a rough time. This is something that I had always been aware of (having watched many of my friends and family grapple with the harsh and unforgiving time) but had never experienced first hand, until recently. 

The last few weeks have taught me that the best way to survive finals is to tackle it in stages. These stages are remarkably similar to the five stages of grief. 

Overly optimistic and wildly unprepared, I approached finals with a big cheery smile and what I hoped was a positive attitude. This was the first stage, denial. 

Denial can affect us each in different ways. For me there was a resounding sense of invincibility. I was positive that I could do anything, that I could not fail. The first test was a breeze, I marked down the answers that I knew and then confidently guessed the rest of them. I was sure that the mere fact that I had marked down a certain answer, would lead to it being right.

We got our grades from the first test back and I was unsure how I felt about it. Next up was psychology, I knew the teacher was a little off but I figured the test couldn't be too bad. Turns out I was way off about the test not being "too bad" the questions were vague and the answers, ambiguous at best.

Upset and frustrated I walked out of that test in a rage. Thus making a seamless segue into the second stage, anger.  The second stage didn't last long as, prior to the next test, I immediately transitioned into the bargaining stage.  

I soon realized that bargaining wasn't really helping matters. Things took a turn for the worst when I noticed that the hose in my shower had a crack in it. The rational part of my brain said "Be a big girl and call your land lord" but the less rational and over stressed part of my brain reasoned that no showering = less time to get ready in the morning = more time for sleeping.

The sudden turn of events, combined with the sheer exhaustion and an overpowering sense of doom, nudged me into the fourth stage. Nothing really mattered anymore so why bother studying or showering. I could fail my tests smelling like a hobo just as well as I would being clean and well dressed. 

Almost as if to fit my mood, there was a drastic change in weather. The temperature dropped and big gloomy rain clouds rolled in to drench the city in icy rains. I sought refuge from the rains in my apartment. I spent a good couple of hours glaring at my notes with as much contempt as I could muster.

I had given up on passing my finals but I hadn't given up on everything. I knew I had eaten far too many cookies and that I couldn't avoid going to the gym forever. I walked into the gym and saw that it was pretty full. As I was standing in the middle of the big room I noticed some people giving me funny looks. 

One guy was making this weird gesture towards my legs. I had on a relatively new pair of leggings and wondered how he had known. The weird gestures continued and I looked down to discover that my leggings were on inside out. 

Trying to keep my cool I nonchalantly nodded and said "They're supposed to be like that, it's called fashion...". For a second there I thought he might have bought it but then he pointed to the not so conspicuous tags on display and then went back to working out. 

Standing in the middle of the gym with my leggings on inside out, I decided that it was time to make a change. After slipping into the bathroom for a minute to fix the leggings situation and working out I headed home to call my landlord about the shower situation. 

Unfortunately, my landlord had a slipped disk and was unable to come fix the shower but I did take advantage of the country clubs free water and showered there. 

Acceptance, who knows? All I know is that no matter how hopeless and despairing finals may seem, you have to remember that there is always moed bet.

I still have one last test left and I'm really not sure how that's gonna go but I'm hoping for the best. It would probably go better if I stopped procrastinating and actually studied but that's not really my style.... 

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