An Hour-By-Hour Breakdown Of The Typical All-Nighter Cram Session

An Hour-By-Hour Breakdown Of The Typical All-Nighter Cram Session

Sleep is for the weak!

It’s inevitable in college: you will pull an all-nighter. Or at least an “until-the-sun-comes-up-er."

And despite the detrimental effects it will have on the rest of your week, sometimes there is not much of a choice. Starting from the moment you realize you will need the rest of the dark nocturnal hours to finish your work, until that moment of either “starting your day” or finally making it into bed for a quick nap, here are the different stages of an all-nighter laid out by the hour.

11 p.m. - 12 a.m.

This is about the point in the night when it all comes crashing down on you in a giant tidal wave of how much work you have to get done - and how little you have accomplished so far. It is a make or break decision at this point. Either grab the double shot dirty chai, or take the L and get into bed and pretend that tomorrow won’t actually come.

12 a.m. - 1 a.m.

Hype hour (and spooking hour) is here. Usually there is still a decent group surrounding you in your homework endeavors, but it is called hype hour for a reason - this is the break hour. People are beginning to wind down, or simply need a quick hype break before the rest of their soul-crushing sleepless night. Pump up the music, do some short sprints, eat some ice cream, and try and get a last moment of relaxation in

1 a.m. - 2 a.m.

As the chairs and tables around you begin to clear out, the false hope kicks in during hour 3. It becomes a race against yourself as the mind games tell you “hey maybe if I really focus I actually can finish this within the hour! I just totally miscalculated how many textbook pages I actually have to read!” It is the self-motivational “you can do this” period. Nothing and no one can interfere with your laser focus and work-ethic.

2 a.m. - 3 a.m.

This is the “Why am I like this? How could I let this happen? I want out, I regret everything” hour. It is one of the hardest. Push through. Morale will be low, and you will realize that you are the only one left and all of your friends, along with 90% of your peers, are tucked snuggly into their soft, warm beds in dreamland.

3 a.m. - 4 a.m.

Hour 5 is when you officially go numb. Nothing phases you anymore. The creak of the door opening totally could be a ghost, but at this point seeing a ghost would actually be a nice change of pace from the lonesome quietness of your thoughts and your economics study guide. The coffee shop is no longer open, but it is all you can think about.

4 a.m. - 5 a.m.

The hallucinations begin. Although you are wide awake, your senses are all jumbled and at this point you are pretty sure you are hearing colors. If there was some type of “sleep-consciousness” it would be during hour 6.

5 a.m. - 6 a.m.

“Here comes the sun, doo doo doo doo! Good morning sunshine, nice to see you! How am I the only person in the world awake to see such a lovely sight?” You are not the only one awake in the world, by any standard of the imagination. However, it continues to feel that way. Yet at this point, the loneliness is something beautiful and inspiring. Hour 7 is when you begin feeling proud of all the work you have accomplished, and the strength you had to make it through the dark hours.

6 a.m. - 7 a.m.

The rustling of early risers begins as bathroom doors slam and alarm rings echo through the hallway. During hour 8 you finally realize you are not alone and the whole building actually houses about 400 kids. There is not a chance that you were the only 1/400 who just pulled an all-nighter.

7 a.m. - 8 a.m.

Congratulations! The “night” has officially ended. Whether you choose now to shower and start your day with a cup of coffee (since the coffee shop just opened!), go for a quick morning run (because honestly at this point, you could run a marathon and not feel it), or hop into bed and sleep through all of your classes, you deserve to do whatever you think is right. You worked hard, and earned the right to have a chill day. Treat yo self!

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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All You Can Do Is Try The Best That You Can

And when that's not enough? Try again.

“Sometimes I forget how many times I’ve picked myself off the floor, how many times I’ve washed away smudgy makeup and put myself to bed. How many times I’ve said no to something unhealthy. Said yes to something good. How many times I’ve treated myself with kindness and patience. I forget how many times I’ve tended to wounds and made peace with my own anger. If I was taking care of a body that was not my own, I’d believe I was doing everything I could. So here’s to remembering that I’m doing the best I can.”

- Pigmenting

The most we can do in life is try. Try to be a good person. Try to be a better daughter. Try to be more accepting of others beliefs. Try to be open-minded about what other people are going through. Try to volunteer for our community. Try to make it on time to meetings with people who may not even know your first or last name. Try. Try. Try. And when you fail? Try again.

For the longest time, I would blame myself for things that didn’t work out, even if I knew they were beyond my very control. Of course, it’s not rational to blame yourself for rain on the day of your big presentation, but you can’t help it. Sure, it’s become prominent in American society to promote the idea of self-love, but it’s also been ridiculously common to blame ourselves for things that are unreasonable… things that we completely have no say over. It is true that we are our own worst critics, but it is important to remember that we are doing the best we can.

I often refer to this quote when I’m feeling down because it reminds me of how many times I was able to pick myself up again. We have all had those collapsing moments when we’ve had to pick ourselves up off the bedroom floor and force ourselves into the shower. Or force ourselves to eat something for dinner even though there was a huge pit sitting in the middle of our stomachs. These moments of weakness actually turn out to be some of the strongest moments in our lives.

You will always be a love-hate relationship with yourself, no matter how much confidence you carry. Some days are truly a struggle to recognize that your strength comes from within, not from those that you surround yourself with. Of course, your mood becomes a product of your environment, but ultimately, you are the person who decides how you’re going to react to the things that happen in your life. Even through all the chaos, you have managed to remain patient. At the end of the day, you are the person who makes yourself happy, regardless of how happy other people make you.

“If I was taking care of a body that was not my own, I’d believe I was doing everything I could.” This line resonates to me because I always put myself down when I feel like I’m not doing the best that I can to help other people. If I miss a family event, meeting, or have to call out of work for whatever reason, I always feel like I let everyone down. Sometimes you have to put these things to the side in order to make sure that you are okay first. Your mental and physical health will always be a priority over everything else in your life. If it were other people missing meetings or calling out you would understand where they are coming from, so don’t forget to take care of yourself in the same way. It’s not only necessary, it’s critical.

So don’t forget to remember who you are, and how strong you truly are without even realizing it. You have gone through hard times and managed to survive. You have lost important people in your life and have still managed to make connections with others. You have learned the importance of taking care of others, and now it’s time to learn the importance of taking care of yourself. The most you can do is try the best that you can. And when you slip up? Try again.
Cover Image Credit: Pexels

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I Live With Invisible Pain

Do you have to see it to believe it?

Excruciating. Unbearable. Neverending. Invisible. These are just some of the words I would use to describe chronic pain. You see if you would have asked me, a year ago, what the worst pain I had ever been in was I probably would've said cramps or a pulled muscle. Oh, how naive I was.

I am in constant pain, but from the outside, I look totally fine. I don't have a broken leg or a cut that needs stitches, I have an internal problem with my spine and the pain is like nothing I have ever felt before. Living like this every day is exhausting. It is constant tension and inconvenience. Not to mention my body just hurts.

Last June, I slipped three discs in my back, but up until October, I had no idea what it was that was causing such insurmountable pain. It started in my lower back, causing me to not be able to stand up straight or walk normally. After much chiropractic work, my pain went away. It was about a month later, near the end of July, when my pain started up again, but this time it was down my right thigh. I didn't think much of it, as it went away almost as soon as it came, but it was slightly concerning.

Weeks went by and it just got worse and worse. It wasn't going away after a few seconds and it had also made an appearance in my calf. Walking was not an issue, but sitting was a task that I didn't want to handle. I was starting my sophomore year of college in just a few days and I was nervous about how I was going to be able to handle the pain during classes.

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Sure enough, I got an MRI and I had not one but three slipped discs. Knowing that there was a tangible problem that was causing my pain eased my mind only minimally. This was due to the fact that I had done nothing that would normally cause a slipped disc. I hadn't been in a car accident, I don't play sports and I'm not a heavy lifter. I was so frustrated that there wasn't a singular incident that I could point to and blame this on.

The following months and even still have been filled with countless physical therapy, chiropractor, and acupuncture appointments and trips to various surgeons on both coasts to make an educated decision on what to do. Only within the last few weeks have I finally made the decision to get surgery and it fills me with both relief and fear.

I'm incredibly lucky that I have really supportive people around me that have always believed me. They are so incredibly accommodating and understanding of my bad pain days or when I can't go out, but I am not as forgiving with myself. It upsets me that I can't always keep up with my friends. For a while, I felt like I was going to have to put my life on hold and it scared me.

Despite this, I get up every day and attempt to go to class and work. I hang out with my friends and try to go out as much as I can. Hopefully, in the next few months this will no longer have to be my day to day. But for now it is and I intend to just keep going about the business of living.

Cover Image Credit: Photo by Larm Rmah on Unsplash

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