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Confessions of a College Drama Queen: 8 Things I Hate About University

I hate the way being in college makes me laugh and cry at the same time.

Confessions of a College Drama Queen: 8 Things I Hate About University

Since the suspension of classes started due to the pandemic, I did not open or read any of my notes, I didn’t do any requirements, and I didn’t bother browsing through my assigned readings. Well, I did try to get some requirements done. Call me lazy but hey, I bet that you’ve also done anything you can do this quarantine period except for your academics.

I call this time period getting all the sleep I can, slacking off as much as I can, and mentally preparing myself for the full-blown physical and mental fatigue I’ll surely get once classes resume again. Now that the continuation of the semester is uncertain, let me share with you 8 reasons why I hate going to University because I’m so not planning on going back anytime soon, and I’m pretty sure you are, too. Who knows, maybe we have the same reasons *wink*.

I hate the way that being in college is so stressful. There are quizzes and lab exercises every day. There are readings that must be read (but to be honest, I just print or download them, but I don’t even take the time to read them!) and papers that must be submitted.

For each subject, there are individual and group works to be completed. It’s just an ongoing cycle of this “4 more days ‘till Friday comes” mindset until you graduate. The everyday routine of getting up early, attending class and going back to the dormitory to study is tiring. Why is there no pause button for the workload?

I hate the way that being in college eats up all my time. Instead of going home during the weekends, I have to stay behind and work on my requirements. I only get to see and bond with my family once a month. University demands almost all of my time that I can’t even have my “me” time any more. Is Uni even my boyfriend for it to demand a lot of time from me? You sure are special, huh?

I hate the way that being in college makes you feel like you’re just an average student. Since grade school, I’ve always had straight A’s and I was always an honor student, but then college happened. It led me to believe that all of my so-called achievements are nothing. I eventually find someone who’s better than me, and then I realize that I’m just another mediocre individual who happens to attend the top university in the country, or that maybe my name was just a typographical error in the list of passers. My stomach always churns whenever our exams are coming up, and I get so anxious every time our scores will be announced. I always feel like I’m going to vomit on the test paper. Luckily, I haven’t yet. (Phew!)

I hate the way being in college means that you have to compete to survive. Don’t get me wrong, learning is absolutely fun, but the academic time frame and pressure makes it a vicious race. If you get a failing grade in your prerequisite subjects, you will get delayed your whole college life which will disrupt the academic and career plan that you laid out for yourself, and you’ll eventually get upset and disappointed. College is seriously the epitome of Charles Darwin’s Survival of the Fittest. Plus, it’s considered a heinous crime to get sick! A day’s worth of lecture is enough to make me fall behind, or worse, delayed. I literally can’t afford to get sick, but shamefully, my body is living off of coffee and instant noodles almost every single day. Also, there’s really never a time where I get a good 8-hour sleep without worrying about anything. It’s either I don’t get sleep or I oversleep, and both are absolutely terrifying.

I hate the way being in college makes me laugh and cry at the same time. I can’t believe I was given the opportunity to be able to laugh and shed my tears in the grounds of one of the most prestigious Universities in the country. I cry whenever I get a low score on an exam I studied all night for, but then I laugh because my friends also failed the exam. I cry because it’s only a Tuesday and I’ve literally spent all of my money on Monday, but then I laugh because my friends are all broke, too. There were times when my friends and I would get out of the examination hall and just laugh at the difficulty of the exam. Then, we’d go out to eat to cheer ourselves up and just have those deep talks about life until the wee hours of the morning.

I hate the way being in college means that I have to socialize every single day. It’s too much for my introvert self to handle. Sometimes, I just want to stay in and never talk to anyone for the time being. But I was fortunate enough to have met and encountered genuine people along the way. We were all struggling in our own degree programs, yet we always find time to support each other. We’d laugh at our professors together when classes get too boring, go out to eat during class hours, pull a prank on some of our classmates, do our assignments, study together, and have fun with each other’s company. College is unbearable, but it becomes slightly less unbearable journeying it with the best people.

I hate the way being in college means having to experience a lot of ‘firsts.” Being raised by strict parents and going to the same Catholic school for 14 years (yes, kindergarten to senior high school, and no, there was no loyalty award), I was kind of scared to go out of my comfort zone, but I was also excited at the same time because I’ll finally be released from my cage. I experienced getting a low score on an exam I stayed up all night to study, not being liked back by my crush, breaking laboratory equipment, having my first meal of the day at 6 pm, and partying with people I barely knew. There were many victorious firsts and there were also numerous sad firsts, but one thing is constant, I always have my friends to celebrate those “firsts” by my side.

Lastly, from the immortal words of Ms. Kat Stratford, I hate the way I don’t actually hate it, not even close, not even a little bit, not even at all.

I hate the way I miss University life so bad. I hate the feeling that I took normal life for granted and wished that college would immediately be over. I miss studying, hanging out with my friends, procrastinating assignments, cramming for an exam, and attending my classes. I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I do miss living the student life. As much as we get exhausted of experiencing hardships, there were also many lessons we picked up along the way which helped us grow. However, with online classes, it’s just a simple click of the send button to submit your requirement, then off to finish a new one again. It’s tiring. There’s no pat in the back from your friends and no more dinners with them once you’ve all finished a difficult task. If only I knew that on that bright and sunny day of March 1, everything would go spiralling into hell and that would be my last day in the University grounds, I would have cherished it and not take it for granted. Unfortunately, we don’t know when we’ll be going back to school or if we’re ever going back. Amidst all these uncertainties about life, there is only one thing that I’m certain of: I love University life so much, and I’d give anything to come back home once again.

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Bea Alamis 2 days ago
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Jhoana Librada 2 days ago
It's Okay to Not Be Okay/Netflix
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Bea Alamis 3 days ago

PRIMO.

First. Pixie dust and paper cuts – these are the first things Wendy knew about Peter Pan. Aurora first met Prince Philip when she was sixteen. Learning how to ride a bike was also a first while I was growing up, but you are probably the first of too many. The first collection of dust and stars; maybe Luna will try to ask, who was your first? I might answer and tell her that it was you.

The first of too many stars in the sky. You are the first of too many fallen leaves during fall – and you will be the most anticipated snowflake as winter comes. A dark path that you can’t see without any light, hence, you were once the moon and there are the stars that shine so bright at night. Are we too early? Or we just really want to be ahead of time? Even in a glimpse, I would like to see the two of us connect as if we can reach the sky. There are other parts of the heavens you have never saw and other oceans you haven’t laid your feet onto – but the constellations will always wait for you. Close your eyes, love, close your eyes. Start counting backward: 5, 4, 3, 2, 1. Count backward until you see the twinkling lights that will guide you to the right path. To the right satellite; to the right person. A first.

There are many firsts – first love, first heartbreak, first sport you played, the first thing you do in the morning, the first thing you remember about the person in front of you. There are a lot. It’s actually up to us how we will consider something as a first. So, Primo, you are already a first of too many.

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If you know me, and know me well, I am not the biggest fan of idyllic lifestyles. With a Type A personality, I act immediately upon whatever challenge that needs to be addressed. I actually enjoy keeping my mind preoccupied: doing university work in my favourite cafe then running errands around town, grocery shopping here, updating my accounts there, photocopying documents on the way down the street - all just in time before having a glass of champagne at the bar with my friends come evening.

And so, you could imagine my bewilderment when the next challenge to be faced was an extensive self-quarantine protocol. I didn’t know what to do when my greatest responsibility in this situation was to do nothing at all. My first few attempts to combat my consternation were very much rooted in distraction and imagination. My distractions involved conducting research, writing songs, calling family and friends, filming videos, and eating chocolate! My imaginations and fantasies were centred on travelling, shopping, even clubbing (which I rarely do) for when they find a cure to COVID-19. I did anything and everything that could be considered constructive in order to pass the time, mainly hoping I could just undertake the basic human necessities to survive - that is, eat and sleep the day through - until the next day comes, until the world is closer to becoming a better place, until quarantine ends, until my flight follows through, until I see my family and friends again.

Days in self-isolation and suspended flights turned to weeks and turned to months. By the third extension here in Spain where I study Fashion Business, I had to tell myself this shall be my new normal now, that I was blessed to be healthy, that I was tired of merely existing and missed what it was like to actually live - even if just within four walls. Little by little, I began to find significance in the simple occurrences of the day: the soft glare of the rising sun beaming golden streaks through my bedroom window upon waking up, the fragrance of freshly washed bed sheets that I had painstakingly hung to fit a relatively small clothes rack without crumpling them, the crunch and tanginess of warm toasted bread topped with raspberry marmalade, the buzzing sound of a phone call from home just waiting to be answered, to the caress of a fuzzy sweater to keep warm at night. I realised, “What pleasures to be enjoyed in the pause of slow living!” Through this continued pause, which I loathed at first, I began to appreciate each moment of the day rather than wish it would pass more swiftly, moments I had overlooked so often before the lockdown. I started to find that the challenge of self-isolation was never to pause both the regular routines of life as well as the positive emotions that came with these - as initially, I thought it meant to pause all happiness, so as to withstand a time of endurance in hopes for a better tomorrow, much like a form of delaying gratification. Life is just too fragile these days to delay gratification any further.

Life has paused, but it has not stopped. Believe that like any punctuation mark in a sentence, the pause will provide the right timing of things to take place. Till then, let us not waste our time waiting. Instead, we could be in the moment, seek substance in simplicity (that is, in what we already have), And enjoy the pleasure in pause. “Practice the Pause. When in doubt, pause. When angry, pause. When tired, pause. When stressed, pause. And when you pause, pray.”

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