Semesterly breakdown - tick!

Open books, scrunched paper and pencils scattered on a desk

I had to submit an assignment this week I knew I had not done well in at all, and all I could think about was how dumb I must be compared to my classmates.

Time escaped me this week. I realised that as soon as I first opened the assignment, I had not left myself anywhere near enough time to put in quality effort. I was determined to redeem my dropped grade from my last submission but the further along I got, the more I knew I was woefully under-prepared.

I sat at my desk for about two hours, doing nothing but staring at my screen, using up the tissue box next to be to combat all the snot and tears. I was utterly lost and bewildered, and I had not an inkling of a thought of where I was supposed to start. There wasn't enough time to schedule a meeting with my teacher. I was re-watching my lectures and tutorial recordings, scouring my notes for anything I missed, but I couldn't work it out. I was so angry at myself. All I could think was, "Why can everyone else do this but I can't? What's wrong with me?"

Ever the perfectionist, there's nothing I hate more than doing something I know is wrong. I knew I had my methodology all wrong, the steps I was taking to solve the problems were out of whack, and most of my answers didn't make sense even to me. Painfully slowly, I worked through every question and put my best answers down, even though I definitely knew they were not the best answers.

Even after finishing it all, I didn't submit it until about three hours later. The thought of submitting something I was not happy with at all made me sick to my stomach, and even more so when I was so confident that it was going to have a drastic effect on my grade. But when I finally clicked submit and the confetti popped up on screen on MyUni, I gave a huge sigh of relief. It was out of my hands. What mattered to me was that I really tried my best with the time I had. I finished it and I know I'm going to do things differently for my next assignment. Even as I write this, I'm still trying to keep those dreaded thoughts of failure away but I'm confident that I gave it my all, and I have to accept that that has to be enough sometimes.

I don't think university is supposed to be easy. It's designed to stretch us beyond our limits and show us what we're really capable of, even if we don't see it yet. It's from the challenges and these moments that we grow into the future graduates we're to become.

Watching all the fresh graduates swarm the campus the last couple of weeks has made me smile a lot, seeing the joy on their faces as they at last achieve their goals. All I can do for now is keep my head high and look forward to the day when I get to wear that same inspiring cap and gown.

Tagged in What messes with your head, grades, assignments