29 March 2010

So spring break came and went. Both of my applications to Oxford were unsuccessful and so it is definite: I will be attending King's College London in September. Oddly enough, I was not quite as upset as I thought it would be. In the end, I think that I was just so tired of waiting, and had realized the pros of going to KCL that I was not as enthused about Oxford as before. KCL is a good university for IR, it is in London (future job opportunities), and the program is one year long. I will graduate with my MA at 23. Besides, this past semester has shown me that I am nearing the breaking point when it comes to school. I have one more good year in me before I am totally burned out academically. While the thought of entering the 'real' world of work is slightly intimidating, I suppose it is best that I do it sooner rather than later. We all have to grow up sometime.

School is progressing as usual. My SMP adviser was happy with what I turned in and is eagerly awaiting the last 3 1/2 chapters. I, on the other hand, am not as eager to hand them in, especially as I have mostly avoided thinking about my SMP for these past two weeks. Ah, well, back to work.

More later:
1. Mackall Barn exhibit opening.
2. Edinburgh
3. Graduation

12 March 2010

Today I turned in 75 pages of my SMP. 75 pages written within three weeks. I am so burnt out.

Then it was off to the Phi Alpha Theta inductions (of which I am president) at the Alumni Lodge, after which I made dinner for my boyfriend (Scrambled egg pasta).

Yup. I am slowly de-stressing. Tomorrow I plan to go to the gym before lab, wash brick for 4 hours, eat lunch with my bf, and then go home for spring break.

I made it.

But just barely.

09 March 2010

When I was younger and thought of myself, I never dreamed I would become like this....

Very stressed, very ill. On a better note, I've finished my Historiography, Flight vs. fight, and quarantine chapters entirely (save for the conclusion, but those are always the last to be added because I hate summing things up entirely). The chapter that I am currently writing has 1600 words and I have another two and half hours before I will return home to sleep.

The wait for the Oxford results is becoming excruciating. With 13% acceptance rate, I have pretty much accepted that I will not get in. Still, I hold out the faintest bit of hope because this IS my dream, not to be lightly given up. I've worked hard for this and, hopefully, all of that hard work will pay off. A little under two weeks until the results have to be mailed out. (I check my mailbox several times a day in the vain hope that perhaps they've sent them early, but to no avail...yet.) Knowing my luck, the letter will arrive at school while I am on spring break.

Ugh...I wish I could just SEE that I've been rejected. It will stop the hoping and the 'what if's' that keep running through my head, distracting me from much more important (and immediate) things, such as the SMP. Current page count (with just three chapters added to the file): 39. Predicted: 80+.

Back to work.

"We're going to pieces, we're falling apart"

08 March 2010

This week: (Mainly to keep track of things for the preservation of my own sanity).

Monday: Work at store 7-9; arch lab 9-5; dinner; start 'Remedies for plague' chapter; ODK meeting @8; finish remedies chapter

Tuesday: work at store 730-930; bio 10-12; lunch; work at store 1-4; grad fair 4-5; grocery shopping; start galenic chapter

Wednesday: arch lab 830-5; finish galenic chapter

Thursday: work at store 730-930; bio 10-12; SMP ROUGH DRAFT DUE @ 2 (AAAHHHH); Phi Alpha Theta induction ceremony @410; special dinner plans

FRI: arch lab 830-1230; HOME for spring break

I predict that I will be quite ill for most of this week. I also predict 3 hours of sleep a night. But I suppose this is what spring break is for -- a time to recover after almost working one's self to death. Ugh.

03 March 2010

Graduation is in 72 days.

Since I am posting, it is quite clear that I am procrastinating writing tonight's chapter. Yes, that is right. This is chapter two of three due this week. Topic: Causes of the Plague. Seemingly easy, and yet the various arguments on each side need delicate treatment in order to be thoroughly covered. Also made a bit harder by the fact that today, upon inserting my thumb drive into my computer, I discovered that the file containing copies of ALL of my primary sources was somehow corrupted. I spent hours downloading each individual page of each source, all 133 of them, so that I would have access to the pdf files should Early English Books online go down (or, considering the state of the internet here at SMCM, the internet should take hours to load the site). Considering how large the file was, I was unable to directly save it to my computer. It was located solely on my thumb drive and, as I have found out today, I should have made a backup disk. Let me tell you, hindsight can be a bitch.

Do not fret, dear readers (or, as I rather suspect, just Mum and Dad): I will press on. This is but an unexpected hurdle in a race that is almost over.

In the meantime, I am getting ready to go the gym for an hour in order to de-stress and will then be at the library all night attempting to finish this chapter. Having spent too much time attempting to regather some sources, I've written the introduction and made a very detailed outline. Hopefully running on the treadmill will free up my mind to let the words flow once I come back, hop in the shower, and then head down to the temple of doom - er, the library - until the wee hours of the morning.

Wish me luck.

On the upside, once this chapter is in, I'm halfway done (Left to complete: Remedies for plague, the Galenic-Iatrochemist debate, introduction, and conclusion ) and the next chapter isn't due until Sunday night. Excellent.

02 March 2010

Lessons learned in senior year: (Particularly this senior's year)
1. Nothing is ever easy. A semester that looks easy on the surface will probably end up resulting in death or, at the very least, emotional and mental distress.
2. SMPs are the worst idea ever.
3. Self-set 'deadlines' always are ridiculously idealistic and usually mean at least a day later. If not more.
4. Epiphanies can take place in the shower.
5. SMP = death of mind, body, and soul. Dante should have created a special circle of hell just for the SMP.
6. My SMP makes me feel as if I do, in fact, have the plague. And it is more effective than the quarantine imposed in the early modern period as it successfully isolates me from the rest of society, both well and infected (aka: other SMP-undertaking seniors).
7. It is possible to work on the SMP until 1am, sleep until 6am, go to the gym for an hour, and survive 8 hours at the lab (plus however many more it takes until I finish this chapter, my bio lab, and my bio literature evaluation).
8. Today (or, rather, yesterday) was my two-month anniversary with my boyfriend. Thank god for him, because no matter how terrible my day is, just seeing him is all it takes to bring a smile to my face and cause the sun to shine a little brighter. (How terribly cliche!) I don't think he reads this (or at least I hope he doesn't as he will then find out how truly odd I am), but if he does: just know that you take my stress away like nothing else does, even the gym (*gasp* A crazy idea, right!?!). I could never have made it through this semester without you.

I suppose I am complaining only because my SMP rough draft (all of it) is due on March 11. 10 days away. But, that is just the entire thing. I am currently (or, was...and soon will be back to) writing my third chapter. Presumably by the end of today, I will have thirty pages.

On a lighter note, spring break is in 11 days; I find out my Oxford results in 18 days; Maryland Day (and the Mackall barn launch) is in 27 days; and graduation is in 74 days.

Also: I will be raising funds for Haiti during spring break by 'running for Haiti'. I will be tracking the number of miles that I run between March 15 and March 29, in the hopes that people will sponsor me for each mile I run. If you can donate even just .10 cents a mile, it will add up. At the completion, I plan on sending the money to a charitable organization (probably not Red Cross though, as I've heard that the misdirection of funds has been awful during this crisis). I'll be tracking my progress, and blogging about international aid/development/updates in Haiti on another blog: http://runforhaiti2010.blogspot.com.

Update @ 9:51PM: Been in the library now for close to 4 hours. Have 5 pages (more or less) with the outline potential for a further 6 or 7. I hope to leave here at 11 or 12 so that I can go to bed by 1, wake up at 6 to do my biology lit eval and lab, and then go to work at 7:30. I feel like a poster child for what not to do during your senior year. I feel like my very soul is dying. That said, once this is done I will be the happiest person alive. So here's to hoping that I get this done very soon.