It’s that time of year again. FINALS! (EEK! ) I haven’t posted much about it–or at all, really. Usually I write a few posts to pump myself up, get myself in the right head-space to conquer the insanity of academia. Well, the insanity of academia has been coming non-stop all semester. I feel like I’ve just hit the study-mode, that buckle down and steady focus stride. Of course, you’re probably wondering why I’m writing this instead of reading sources for my research paper or revising my manuscript or looking at literary magazines to submit to. Well, I’ve gotten a hell of a lot done today already. I’m taking a much-needed break before I start on that other side of finals week–packing and cleaning.
Today was a good day. I woke up at a quarter after ate, cooked and ate breakfast, and got to work. Personally, knowing I’m capable of getting something done, or doing something well, is huge. If I don’t think I can do it, I generally don’t try. At all. I let the anxiety well up, I hold myself back, I make excuses. I just shut down–literally. The past few days, I’ve been tired and depressed. I was so overwhelmed with the amount of work that I had to do that I couldn’t even get myself to start.
But today, I had clarity and motivation and–can you imagine it?–excitement. What would make excited about studying for finals? Not getting done with the semester, although I greatly look forward to that. Not studying with friends–because I actually don’t, and I find it very difficult to study in groups. Not because it’s an excuse to stay cooped up in my room listening to music–that’s become a daily habit, this semester. (Have I ever said that I’m a hermit?) I was excited because I felt like I had the strength to study. I love learning new things. I love the process of making note-cards to understand terms and concepts. I love writing papers to explore new ideas and ways of thinking. I love going through my notes and books and reading the information, committing it to memory. (I’m not your average girl…)
When life is hard, and all sorts of shit gets thrown your way,it’s hard to keep your mind open. It’s hard to learn, to process new things, when you feel like your life is falling apart. It’s hard to live well when you stop caring, when apathy crowds in and steals that spark, that zeal. So what do you do? I’m not sure that I know, really. I don’t know how I got through this semester, save that God was with me. This January, I learned and was made aware of God’s nearness. I may not see Him, I may not always understand or hear exactly what I’m supposed to do. It won’t come packaged and detailed, but I have to trust. God is near. He is with me, with us. And He’s the reason I made it through this semester–with my faith, with my friends, with my grades, with my life.
I’m so grateful that I got to spend today doing schoolwork, after what feels like a whole semester of floundering and spending most of my time underwater. I’m so excited to have that clarity of mind. I spent most of the day working on my part of a group project that I was able to have a lot of creative liberty on. Did you know your hand can cramp up from coloring? The thumb-side of my hand is happily sore from a day spent with crayons, a Crayola coloring book, and markers. It’s hard to be angry or sad or hateful when you’ve spent a day remembering what it was like to be a five-year-old.
I have packing, cleaning, and paper-writing to do. My family will be here tomorrow. There is so much to get done, but what matters most is that I feel capable. I know I can do this. I know I can finish this semester well. And I know that I will have people there for me–my parents, my brother, my friends. I’m not just sputtering in the waves on my own, here. Today, I feel like I’ve hit solid ground. I’ve not got all my footing intact, but there are plenty of people out there I can reach out and grab hold of. And my God is near, here, with me. It’s gonna be okay.
He Is Near,