As the spring semester marches forward, students—at least most students—find they have been transported from the comforts of their typical physical reality and thrust into one of Daunte’s tiers of hell; the tier one resides in directly reflects the amount of continuous procrastination an individual has hitherto undertaken.
While the fifth week of the spring 2015 semester thunders into existence, I find myself teetering on the edge of Daunte’s sixth level of hell—inches from falling into the inescapable abyss of the seventh level of hell, but also in a position to climb out of the academic wasteland my procrastination led me to.
Mid-semester marks the moment when some students have finally mastered—and maybe even understand—the anatomical functioning of different systems throughout the body. These same students, however, also find they no longer remember their middle name, their father’s birthday and how to read—I believe I actually even witnessed one health science student relearning how to tie their own shoes, but hey, if you can tell me how the liver works it doesn’t matter, right?
Mid-semester is realizing daylong Netflix purges throughout the first half of the semester—despite the unequivocal pleasure—was probably a poor choice; maybe planting myself in front of the television for days-on-end (or at least until my eyes started to bleed) with a planner full of tasks was, most likely, a poor choice.
Mid-semester means breaking up with Netflix to spend late nights with Arnold B., early mornings with Maxwell House, and middays with Pearson: what else could a student ask for?
Aside from daily meetings with the aforementioned three, the fifth week also celebrates—or curses—a student’s personally imagined trajectory for every class they’re enrolled in. The internal dialogue most students undertake goes something like this:
“This class is cake, we got this buddy.”
“Good lord, I don’t know where the tensor faciae latae is and I don’t imagine I ever will. The word latae reminds me of latte. I could go for a latte.”
“Okay, I can live with a C. It’s third place in the alphabet so I’m at least taking home a bronze. Look, Mom, I made it on the podium.”
Although things may seem bleak and the situation may seem unchangeable and the future academic forecast may seem hazy, please know we are all simultaneously burning in our own unique academic infernos—a science majors hell may be different than a business majors hell, but regardless of the difference, we all burn together.
I do not write to bring anyone down, but, rather, I write to remind those who feel buried in academic work that they are not alone. I write because I understand misery not only loves company: it loves a party.