Why I Took Time Off School
Start writing a post
Entertainment

Why I Took Time Off School

I thought, at the time, that all I would ever amount to is the cumulative GPA on my transcript. Little did I know, there is a whole life out there away from school.

35
Why I Took Time Off School

When I was 16, I made my first big life decision. Before I had even gotten my first job, I decided that my sophomore year was going to be my first and only year attending highschool. After much consideration, I decided that I would be better off enrolling in my school districts Runningstart program. For those of you that don't know, Runningstart is a dual-enrollment program that allows 11th and 12th graders to attend their local community college earning both highschool credits and college credits; ideally going towards an AA degree. I had different ideas though.

For me, runningstart was my spring-board to something better. My entire life I have been endlessly fascinated with anything and everything STEM related but, with the way my highschool transcript was shaping up, it was unlikely that I would ever be able to study what I love. When my AVID counselor brought up the possibility of runningstart, I saw my opportunity and took it. My second huge decision was a calculated risk that lead to many beautiful and painful moments in my life. I decided that with my two years of free tuition I was going to work towards my Associates of Science; AA-S for short.

My first year, looking back on it, was a breeze. Of course at the time I thought I was drowning, but I had no idea the flood that was about to consume my life. I took three classes a quarter and worked as a peer tutor on campus, taking all my prerequisites for math and science as well as finishing all of my required humanities classes in a single school year. I spent the summer before my second year planning which universities I would apply to and how I was going to get my GED. The unfortunate part of how I used runningstart is that all of my science classes counted as simple electives to the highschool meaning that I would not receive my diploma. However, getting a leg up on my science degree was far more important to me than getting my highschool diploma.

September 2015 rolled around way too quickly and it brought with it some interesting things. For starters, I was approached by my supervisor at the tutoring center and was asked to be a Supplemental Instruction Leader. I was so excited to be considered for the position that I immediately accepted, not taking into account that being an SI leader is very time intensive. On top of working my new position, I was also taking the core classes for my degree. My second year of college courses consisted of calculus, chemistry, and biology each quarter. Sounds simple enough, but keeping track of three very difficult (and homework heavy) classes was extremely brutal. I spent 12 hours a day on campus 4 days a week and 6-8 hours on Fridays and Saturdays. My only day off was Sunday and I typically spent it sleeping all day. I still don't know how I managed it, but I made it through failing only one class; it was an actual miracle. However, the academic pressure broke me and I ended up spiraling into an all-consuming depression.

What I failed to mention is that halfway through Fall 2015 (the start of my second year) I was diagnosed with Major Depression, Anxiety, and Panic Disorder and started working with a psychiatrist to find a medication that works for me. I also had just turned 18 around this time and was struggling with coming to terms with the fact that I was no longer a child. It took about 6 months for me to find a medication that works well for me but it still wasn't enough to keep me emotionally stable with all of the stress and life changes being thrown my way. I kept all of my emotional and academic struggles bottled up and by the end of the year I was a train wreck. I didn't even show up for my biology final spring quarter because I was too depressed to get out of bed the morning of.

Once the school year had ended, all the emotions I had kept wrapped up tight found a way out. On August 13th, I went to work (a summer job at the mall to make some extra cash) like I did every morning, but something was different. I felt as if someone had turned off the light and left me cold and scared in a deep darkness. That night I stayed up late pacing and panicking. I was so convinced that I was a failure and that my life would never amount to anything that I decided I was going to try and OD off of my antidepressants. Luckily, SSRI's are very hard to OD off of and after going to the ER, I was given the help that I desperately needed.

Despite having a suicidal episode a mere month before school was due to start back up, I decided to continue working as an SI and taking classes. This was a huge mistake. While I was in a better place (and on better medication) I still had that residual feeling of being an absolute failure. I failed the one class I took in Fall 2016 and lost my job as a tutor because most days I was still too depressed or anxious to crawl out of bed. After a lot of consideration I decided it was in my best interest to take some time off of school to get my head back on straight and it was the smartest decision I have ever made.

When you're too close to a situation, it's hard to see what the best way out is. I thought, at the time, that all I would ever amount to is the cumulative GPA on my transcript. Little did I know, there is a whole life out there away from school. All I had ever known was school and the hardships that came along with pursuing your studies but over the last 6 months, I've gotten to experience a whole different side of life.



Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Health and Wellness

Exposing Kids To Nature Is The Best Way To Get Their Creative Juices Flowing

Constantly introducing young children to the magical works of nature will further increase the willingness to engage in playful activities as well as broaden their interactions with their peers

1157822

Whenever you are feeling low and anxious, just simply GO OUTSIDE and embrace nature! According to a new research study published in Frontiers in Psychology, being connected to nature and physically touching animals and flowers enable children to be happier and altruistic in nature. Not only does nature exert a bountiful force on adults, but it also serves as a therapeutic antidote to children, especially during their developmental years.

Keep Reading... Show less
Health and Wellness

5 Simple Ways To Give Yourself Grace, Especially When Life Gets Hard

Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we are becoming.

731393
Photo by Brooke Cagle on Unsplash

If there's one thing I'm absolutely terrible at, it's giving myself grace. I'm easily my own worst critic in almost everything that I do. I'm a raging perfectionist, and I have unrealistic expectations for myself at times. I can remember simple errors I made years ago, and I still hold on to them. The biggest thing I'm trying to work on is giving myself grace. I've realized that when I don't give myself grace, I miss out on being human. Even more so, I've realized that in order to give grace to others, I need to learn how to give grace to myself, too. So often, we let perfection dominate our lives without even realizing it. I've decided to change that in my own life, and I hope you'll consider doing that, too. Grace begins with a simple awareness of who we are and who we're becoming. As you read through these five affirmations and ways to give yourself grace, I hope you'll take them in. Read them. Write them down. Think about them. Most of all, I hope you'll use them to encourage yourself and realize that you are never alone and you always have the power to change your story.

Keep Reading... Show less
Entertainment

Breaking Down The Beginning, Middle, And End of Netflix's Newest 'To All The Boys' Movie

Noah Centineo and Lana Condor are back with the third and final installment of the "To All The Boys I've Loved Before" series

746225
Netflix

Were all teenagers and twenty-somethings bingeing the latest "To All The Boys: Always and Forever" last night with all of their friends on their basement TV? Nope? Just me? Oh, how I doubt that.

I have been excited for this movie ever since I saw the NYC skyline in the trailer that was released earlier this year. I'm a sucker for any movie or TV show that takes place in the Big Apple.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

4 Ways To Own Your Story, Because Every Bit Of It Is Worth Celebrating

I hope that you don't let your current chapter stop you from pursuing the rest of your story.

481121
Photo by Manny Moreno on Unsplash

Every single one of us has a story.

I don't say that to be cliché. I don't say that to give you a false sense of encouragement. I say that to be honest. I say that to be real.

Keep Reading... Show less
Politics and Activism

How Young Feminists Can Understand And Subvert The Internalized Male Gaze

Women's self-commodification, applied through oppression and permission, is an elusive yet sexist characteristic of a laissez-faire society, where women solely exist to be consumed. (P.S. justice for Megan Fox)

296089
Paramount Pictures

Within various theories of social science and visual media, academics present the male gaze as a nebulous idea during their headache-inducing meta-discussions. However, the internalized male gaze is a reality, which is present to most people who identify as women. As we mature, we experience realizations of the perpetual male gaze.

Keep Reading... Show less
Lifestyle

It's Important To Remind Yourself To Be Open-Minded And Embrace All Life Has To Offer

Why should you be open-minded when it is so easy to be close-minded?

435910

Open-mindedness. It is something we all need a reminder of some days. Whether it's in regards to politics, religion, everyday life, or rarities in life, it is crucial to be open-minded. I want to encourage everyone to look at something with an unbiased and unfazed point of view. I oftentimes struggle with this myself.

Keep Reading... Show less
Swoon

14 Last Minute Valentine's Day Gifts Your S.O. Will Love

If they love you, they're not going to care if you didn't get them some expensive diamond necklace or Rolex watch; they just want you.

293656

Let me preface this by saying I am not a bad girlfriend.

I am simply a forgetful one.

Keep Reading... Show less
Student Life

10 Helpful Tips For College Students Taking Online Courses This Semester

Here are several ways to easily pass an online course.

197522
Photo by Vlada Karpovich on Pexels

With spring semester starting, many college students are looking to take courses for the semester. With the pandemic still ongoing, many students are likely looking for the option to take online courses.

Online courses at one time may have seemed like a last minute option for many students, but with the pandemic, they have become more necessary. Online courses can be very different from taking an on-campus course. You may be wondering what the best way to successfully complete an online course is. So, here are 10 helpful tips for any student who is planning on taking online courses this semester!

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments