Friday, October 9, 2015

Grad School Blues

Grad school and I have had a bumpy start for several reasons. First, I was hit with incredibly debilitating physical fatigue. Seriously, I sleep until 11 a.m. to noon most days because I'm so exhausted. I have no idea where this is coming from. I'm not pale enough to think it's anemia once again and I'm not bruising anywhere so I doubt it's low platelets again. We have a theory that it's because I've been cooped up in the house for so long. Well, that's mom's theory. I just think my body is out of whack due to the stress I've been experiencing lately. No, not school stress; just other personal stresses that have come up lately. Either way, I lose prime studying/reading time because it's so hard for me to wake up some mornings.

Then another bump in the road and it was something I couldn't control. I was on top of the readings and everything... and then the lecture videos had glitches for almost an entire week. That pushed things back and disrupted the awesome study flow I had going on. This is not good for me since I do best when I stick to my schedule. Not only that, no one warned me that grad school is a lot less structured than undergrad or, really, most of my academic experience. No deadlines on exams? Only deadlines on research papers? Whaaaat?! Does not compute!

I like having a bit of structure, especially when it comes to academia. I like deadlines because I can easily get distracted and procrastinate. I do my best work under deadlines... well, as long as there's a little wiggle room for anything that may come up. I think I just like having those goals. There's something very satisfying about crossing things off of a to-do list... and I can't really do that right now. I mean, I can -- I can give myself deadlines -- but it's not the same because I can find excuses to put it off "just one more day," you know? Sometimes it's not hard for me to work under self-imposed deadlines... but with everything else going on, it's hard.

I've been going through some majorly confusing things in my personal life. My mom's going through something that we never anticipated we'd have to deal with and it's been hard for me to see it unfold. I feel almost helpless in this particular situation and it's dampened my spirits quite a bit. It's made me feel very angry. I'm sure those closest to me are surprised at how upset I've been (even when I haven't shown it)... and how long it's lasted since I usually get over things pretty quickly. I have a sneaking suspicion that this is what's been taking a toll on me, physically.

On top of that, I had something else that came up which threw me for a loop. It was quite unexpected and it took me days to sort through. The good news is that this particular thing is actually pretty exciting (in a way) but it was still incredibly distracting nonetheless. I had to make some big decisions that took me out of my comfort zone. I actually tried to put it off for a couple of days but it just distracted me from concentrating on school work. After a solid heart-to-heart talk with mom about my fears and worries, I'm at peace with my decision. I know I'm still going to bring up at my next spiritual direction meeting because it's one of those decisions that is going to change a lot of things for me. That's basically all I can say about this... for now, at least. Prayers for this (as well as for mom's situation) would be greatly appreciated.

As you can see... lots going on. I've been trying to do little things for myself -- like working on an autumn-themed jigsaw puzzle and re-reading Anne of Green Gables before bedtime -- but I'm still exhausted and I can't concentrate most days. I feel so horrible for not being as "on top" of things regarding school as I was the first week but there's been so much going on. It's a miracle that I'm still functioning like a human being. A very tired, sleepy one but one that hasn't had a panic attack, thank goodness. Not the best way to start grad school but if I can survive this, the rest of my time at JP Catholic will be great. :)

I'm just rambling on at this point. I'm going to help myself to some freshly baked French bread and a cup of tea before I dive back into making sure I'm on top of my coursework.

I hope everyone is doing well and that y'all have a great weekend. :D

As always, thanks for reading and God bless! :D


AnneMarie said...

Oh man, that lack of structure would be so hard for me!!! Last year was my senior year in college, and I created all these self-imposed deadlines, so that I would be ahead of schedule for my two separate theses, papers, and projects. But, like you said, when it's self-imposed, it's easy to push the deadline a day...or two...or several haha. Even though I thought that I am a disciplined person, those self-imposed deadlines did not work out well for me, but I survived thankfully!

Lots of prayers coming for you and your mom!!! Hang in there!

Emmy Cecilia said...

AnneMarie - I've already fallen a day behind on my self-imposed deadlines. LOL. Oh man...

And, thanks for the prayers!!