Okay, So Finals Week Doesn't Suck

Okay, So Finals Week Doesn't Suck

It's the week before that does (for me, at least).

I’m drowning. Somebody please save me from the ocean of final papers and assignments I’m drowning in, because there’s no way that I’m going to make it out of this semester alive.

OK, I probably will. I always do. So to speak, this isn’t my first rodeo—and it won’t be my last what with two more semesters to go. Every semester I get back up onto the Norse Bull and pray to any merciless soul that I get through it. Preferably, in one piece.

If I was going to come away not in one piece, I’d probably be sans a brain.

For me, it’s not finals week that has me humming a death march. It’s the two weeks before finals weeks. Right now, I’m trying to trudge my way through an annotated bibliography knowing that I still have more to get done. The only light that’s on at the end of the tunnel is my laptop begging me to charge it.

These final weeks are some of the hardest I’ve ever faced. I’m a straight up bear to be around who can’t seem to get enough sleep and who can’t string together a logical sentence unless it’s about my classwork. These weeks are overwhelming, stressful and panic-inducing. There is no clear cut way to survive it unless you’re a super genius who has great time management skills, and if you are, are you even human?

My life tends to be composed of post-it notes at this time of year. They’ve got angry little scribbles on them that have been crossed out to mark what I’ve done and what I’ve still got to do and ideas for the next assignment down the road. Without them, I feel out of control. Lost. Writing my life down for these last few weeks helps calm the raging (yet exhausted) beast that is my stress.

I always try to get stuff done early, but then my mind goes to that terrible place where I think about how I have a month left or how I’ve already got so much to do. Next thing I know, it’s the end of the semester and I’ve got even more to do.

The beginning of the semester trains you to think that life’s going to be easy—that it won’t get more difficult than a paper here and there, the occasional quiz. Hey look, an exam. But it’s all a trick, because then it all tumbles together until it’s uncontrollable and you’re Captain Jack Sparrow running from those people in "Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man’s Chest," which is your metaphorical end-of-the-semester (end-of-life?) work to do.

Why do we even do this?

I guess because it’s worth it. Because we have dreams. Because even if it’s just a laptop light at the end of the tunnel, it’s still a light. Because we’ve already come this far and put this much time, effort and money into it, so there’s really no going back.

Because we have a break just around the corner at the finish, taunting us, and soon making us forget just how much we hate the weeks before finals.

Cover Image Credit: Pinterest

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To The Girl Who Had A Plan

A letter to the girl whose life is not going according to her plan.
“I am the master of my fate: I am the captain of my soul.” - William Ernest Henley

Since we were little girls we have been asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” We responded with astronauts, teachers, presidents, nurses, etc. Then we start growing up, and our plans change.

In middle school, our plans were molded based on our friends and whatever was cool at the time. Eventually, we went to high school and this question became serious, along with some others: “What are your plans for college?” “What are you going to major in?” “When do you think you’ll get married?” “Are you going to stay friends with your friends?” We are bombarded with these questions we are supposed to have answers to, so we start making plans.

Plans, like going to college with our best friends and getting a degree we’ve been dreaming about. Plans, to get married as soon as we can. We make plans for how to lose weight and get healthy. We make plans for our weddings and children.

SEE ALSO: 19 Pieces Of Advice From A Soon-To-Be 20-Year-Old

We fill our Pinterest boards with these dreams and hopes that we have, which are really great things to do, but what happens when you don’t get into that college? What happens when your best friend chooses to go somewhere else? Or, what if you don’t get the scholarship you need or the awards you thought you deserved. Maybe, the guy you thought you would marry breaks your heart. You might gain a few pounds instead of losing them. Your parents get divorced. Someone you love gets cancer. You don’t get the grades you need. You don’t make that collegiate sports team. The sorority you’re a legacy to, drops you. You didn’t get the job or internship you applied for. What happens to you when this plan doesn’t go your way?

I’ve been there.

The answer for that is “I have this hope that is an anchor for my soul.” Soon we all realize we are not the captain of our fate. We don’t have everything under control nor will we ever have control of every situation in our lives. But, there is someone who is working all things together for the good of those who love him, who has a plan and a purpose for the lives of his children. His name is Jesus. When life takes a turn you aren’t expecting, those are the times you have to cling to Him the tightest, trusting that His plan is what is best. That is easier said than done, but keep pursuing Him. I have found in my life that His plans were always better than mine, and slowly He’s revealing that to me.

The end of your plan isn’t the end of your life. There is more out there. You may not be the captain of your fate, but you can be the master of your soul. You can choose to be happy despite your circumstances. You can change directions at any point and go a different way. You can take the bad and make something beautiful out of it, if you allow God to work in your heart.

SEE ALSO: To The Girl Patiently Waiting With An Impatient Heart

So, make the best of that school you did get in to. Own it. Make new friends- you may find they are better than the old ones. Apply for more scholarships, or get a job. Move on from the guy that broke your heart; he does not deserve you. God has a guy lined up for you who will love you completely. Spend all the time you can with the loved one with cancer. Pray, pray hard for healing. Study more. Apply for more jobs, or try to spend your summer serving others instead. Join a different club or get involved in other organizations on campus. Find your delight first in God and then pursue other activities that make you happy; He will give you the desires of your heart.

My friend, it is going to be OK.

Cover Image Credit: Megan Beavers Photography

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I'm Not Going To Apologize For Evolving

I'm busy dancing to the new rhythm of life.


I grew bored of the small talk I had with my friends from back home. All they wanted to talk about were their jobs, what's going on with Shelby from high school, and their stress load. Not to be rude or anything, but... I'D RATHER BE SLEEPING.

I find it funny that if they had something going on in their lives that they felt they needed to share, I've always been a great support system. However, if it were me, it seemed impossible to get that in return.

Recently, I've learned that my time is precious and I know damn well who to share it with.

I could write a book of everything else I could be doing instead of talking about the people we used to go to school with. And frankly, I believe that it's a topic of discussion because we don't have anything in common anymore. There is nothing to say because I outgrew them. PERIOD.

I'm not going to apologize for growing and changing. As humans, that's what we're supposed to do. That's why some people get left behind and why some stick around.

If it seems like I am too busy to hang out, it's because I am. I'm busy dancing to the new rhythm of life. A life full of change. A life where some people were just meant to be background characters, not having an impact on my story.

I've found my tribe in college and they welcome me wholeheartedly. We listen to each other during the good and the bad. We show each other that we care by celebrating each of our joys and by lending one another our time when we find ourselves sailing in rough waters.

We don't judge each other for evolving because we know it's the norm. My energy doesn't feel depleted when I am with them. It's not a chore to see them. As a matter of fact, I feel refreshed and uplifted, like we are always in balance.

Outside of talking about the weight that we each carry as well as our insecurities and fears, we talk about crazy things like possible life on Mars, our experiences with sleep paralysis, living in the moment, and our views on life and what our purposes are without judgment. Our ideas are never "stupid".

They are the main characters of my life, and I'm proud to say that they are helping me write my story.

I'm not throwing away my old friends; I simply stored them in the old toy bin as Andy did. They gave me happiness and served their purpose in the past.

I will never apologize for my growth and for moving on. I stick around people that make ME feel good. I no longer will keep quiet about this. I'm done with coming up with excuses to not hang out, afraid of hurting their feelings because I can't relate to them anymore. My story is about my happiness since others are certainly not worried about mine.

From now on, I will be around those who give me the energy that I am radiating out to the world. The friends that make sure I get home safe. The people that share my successes and downfalls, and vice-versa. The ones that make me feel reassured that everything is going to be okay.

The ones that can make any situation significantly better. The ones that each taught me something about myself. The ones that let me express my weird, awkward self. The ones I want to share the world with.

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