Now that finals are over, we can take a quick time-out to mourn the loss of sleep and friends due to irritability from finals week. It was inevitable, everyone knew it was coming, but what they weren’t expecting were the four day finals for a single class and the teachers who try to be original by giving finals the week before finals week. The gesture is nice, we appreciate that they don’t want to give finals all at once but when all of the teachers decide to give them a week early, it didn’t end so well.
How did it end you might ask? Maybe you didn’t get it too bad this time around but the rest of us are broke from coffee and energy drinks, with bags under our eyes, tensed shoulders, and a resting B face.
Finals week is made up of four parts:
- Procrastination: “Later this week.” You’re in denial.
- Phase two; when “later this week” turns into “oh $#!&, that’s due tomorrow.” It’s then when you realize that procrastination, one of the most valuable skills RAHS has taught us, really screwed you over. You shoot a quick “thank you” prayer to all the homework and group projects that taught you waiting till the last minute is no problem. It’s during this phase that you promise yourself this will never happen again, but immediately proceed to tell yourself you’ll put off this promise until the semester is over.
- Then comes phase three, cramming. Everyone crams differently but it usually consists of hundreds of flashcards, quizlets, and using Skype for Business for what it was actually intended for. These all-nighters out of nowhere turned into you draining your bank account because that Starbucks a block away has made filling your system with caffeine way too easy. It’s during this phase that the phrase “triple shot” becomes more familiar and “decaf” becomes more foreign than that language class you’re stressing about.
- If you’ve survived phases one through three, you make it to the actual tests, which can be spread out over days or even two weeks. Symptoms of phase four may include oversharing about tests you’re stressed about to everyone you meet, even that weird person who strikes up a conversation with you on the Metro. Passing period feels too short as you spend it wondering if you made the right decision to come to school this day–this week really. You’re seated now and tuning out your teacher telling you that “you should be able to do well based on everything you’ve learned.” The next part is all a blur, different for everyone but when it’s over you’re still as stressed as you were to begin with — maybe it’s the impending red bar you might discover on Illuminate that won’t leave your mind.
Whats worse? Sometimes this painful cycle is concentrated to a week, but some teachers droned it on for two, maybe even three weeks? I mean, why not just treat it like a band aid? Quick, still painful, but quick. Then before you know it, you were either blowing off steam at Winter Ball, or boycotting it and loathing the tradition while binge-watching Shameless. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: teachers, we appreciate the thought but, exams week has infected pretty much the bigger portion of January.
Now that we’ve made it to second semester, we can all be thankful Spring Break is one day closer than yesterday. We can all take a moment to meditate and realize one simple fact: we are all very, unavoidably, doomed. What I would suggest is that you consider homeschooling, alternative education paths and contacting your congressmen of choice for any further complaints. Happy hunting and best of luck for your recovery.