If there’s one thing I’ve learned since writing my last article, it’s that when the unexpected happens, the only thing you can do is to go along with it and hope that everything turns out for the best. I learned this in the weeks leading up to winter break – do you remember getting an e-mail about a student whose laptop was stolen when they went to get a snack? That student was me. Cue thirty-six anxiety-filled and panicked hours. E-mails were sent to my professors. Phone calls were made to the police, my parents, and the Apple Store. A new laptop was procured the next day. For that, I was thankful. I’m lucky enough to have parents who could afford me a new, and very expensive, laptop.
Of course, I had also lost all my notes, outlines, and half-written final essays. I didn’t store anything of sentimental value unless you count the typed-up versions of my newspaper articles and my fanfiction. (The fanfiction was actually a major loss, considering all my notes for my current story were there and I didn’t have another copy). It was brutal. I had to re-read and take notes on readings I had finished weeks ago and construct those into something resembling my former essays. This, of course, also ruined my study schedule as at the time I planned to be polishing up my essays, I was writing them. Luckily, everything worked out. I had a new laptop, extensions, and a snow day. I caught up relatively quickly.
Winter break threw another curve ball. Two days before I got home, my older brother went snowboarding and got cut off by a skier causing him to fall and break his collarbone. Needless to say, he required constant care as he was unable to move on his own and was in constant pain (He’s fine now. Don’t worry). I mostly spent my break watching Netflix, writing fanfiction and wondering how many brain cells I would lose before I returned to school…The break wasn’t horrible, just a little boring and underwhelming.
I can’t say the same for this semester. I still haven’t adjusted to my new schedule and I’m constantly exhausted. However, I am enjoying most of my classes. I just don’t always enjoy the amount of writing and reading they come with. Silly me for thinking my courses wouldn’t be too writing intensive – especially when one of them actually has the word “writing” in its name (and so far, it’s my favorite course). My main issue with my classes is the times, as I have one night class and an eight-thirty class. Last semester none of my classes started until ten and during break I often didn’t wake up until 9 o’clock, so waking up before eight every day has been a challenge in itself. I tried re-adjusting my sleep schedule before coming, but the internet beckoned like a sweet siren from the sea. I would stay up in my bed staring at the beautiful, bright screen, listening to the clicking of my keyboard as I typed out sentences on a Word document that was white and pure as newly fallen snow. I would be disappointed when I would have to backspace and erase the words that marched like ants across the page. Once I became too tired to focus, I would close my laptop and place it gently on floor so that it could rest and be charged by the time I woke up in the morning. It was a beautiful relationship.
This semester hasn’t been anything like I expected it to be so far. Before I came back, I dropped a class. I was scared to do so because it would mean taking fewer credits than last semester but it was for the best. There was just no way I would be able to survive a 200-level history class. It sounds scary just thinking about it. I loved my history class last semester but it was a lot of work, and since I knew I would have a lot of work (not to the extent I thought I would), I decided to drop it. If I hadn’t dropped it then, I probably would have dropped it within the first week of classes. I don’t think that’s a bad thing. It’s about knowing your limits.
During break, I decided that it would be a good idea to keep the unexpected at a minimum. I don’t need the surprises that comes with a sophomore-level class. I don’t need any more surprises, period. Unless the surprise is something like an extra soda with my delivery or a present or a Valentine or chocolates, I don’t want it (I really like those Lindt chocolate ball things. They make me feel fancy). But other than those, I’m fine with keeping this semester as normal and surprise free as I can.