Not all Sunshine and Rainbows

sunshine and rainbows
Photo by rita peron on Unsplash

Hello everyone! I hope you’ve had a good weekend. Happy Easter by the way as well! As I write this, I’m honestly very tired mentally. When I say this, I speak from an academic standpoint. This semester has been not been easy. As some would say, it really is has not all been sunshine and rainbows. There are a lot of good moments and I’ve had fun, but I’m getting really tired of everything.

I’m tired of online coursework. I’m tired of communicating over long email chains with classmates and professors. If I never saw Zoom or Microsoft Teams again in my life, I wouldn’t be upset. I’m sick of not being able to interact with people in a manner where we aren’t concerned about social distancing or other public health protocols. More than anything, I’m so over going to school thinking I’ll be able to have more face-to-face interaction, only for things to be an absolute, unorganized disaster, resulting in me spending so much time in my apartment by myself.

I’m not here today to write and complain about all of the sucky things about being a college student right now, but I also don’t understand why it seems to be ok to be a bit more disorganized and chaotic now. Take my chemistry lab for instance. We’ve had several labs canceled not because someone is sick but because the materials for the lab aren’t ready or haven’t been shipped yet. We missed the first week of lab because the professor and TAs weren’t ready to begin lab yet. I mean come on!!! You had all of winter break to prepare for this course and it’s not the first time this lab has been offered as a course. There have been several weeks in this lab, where something doesn’t work the way it’s supposed to or it doesn’t work at all and my TA throws his hands up in the air, laughs, and then says he’ll send some data over email and that we can all go home. Then why did I just waste an hour and a half trying to get something to work?? Why am I even putting any effort into this lab if it ends up with me sitting back in my apartment reading through a bunch of chemistry papers that I can barely understand to talk about something in a paper on a topic that my TA doesn’t even understand. Absolutely ridiculous.

And I know, again, that this pandemic has been easy for no one. Again, it has not all been sunshine and rainbows! Things have changed so much and there are so many guidelines and regulations to follow and ensure safety and health of all. I fully understand that. I bet there are a lot of ways that the pandemic has affected how this chemistry lab that I’m in can operate. I think there comes a point though where you can no longer blame the pandemic on your inabilities to be organized and put-together.

This class hasn’t been my only issue either. I feel like I really tried to be an optimistic and hopefully person about these classes at first, but I quickly came to realize that it was not going to be all sunshine and rainbows with two of my other classes… They have been horrible disappointments. It feels as if I’ve learned nothing. It feels like my professors try but all the words they speak have no true meaning. The thing that bothers me the most about this is that I pay for this. I pay a good deal of money for something so low-quality. It’s embarrassing and more than anything its frustrating! I was so excited for these two classes, developmental biology and chemistry of addictions, and I couldn’t tell you one really important or exciting thing I’ve learned in either class.

Being online for most of my coursework and living alone (unless I’m just staying at home for classes) has been a very interesting experience and as much as I appreciate the alone time, it can be really hard sometimes. I’m pretty distracted most of the time, whether I’m working out or doing classwork or watching a show. It is hard though, when I’ve done all that I feel I can do for the day and I have no one to talk to and everyone is busy. I just feel lonely sometimes and that’s something I have not enjoyed one bit. We are social beings and being robbed of that has really taken a toll on so many of us. Sometimes I go on walks and it makes me sad sometimes to not even see another person on campus. Even just seeing another person can make you feel less alone, or at least that’s how I am. At least there’s someone else around, in your presence. And it’s so different to text a person or talk to them on the phone. Yes, it helps to know that another actual person is interacting with you but it isn’t the same as seeing them in-person. In my opinion, it’s the interactions that occur face-to-face that make things so much better and mean so much more.

More than anything, I pray for better classes next semester with better professors and I pray for better days ahead. I’m really looking forward to spring break which starts next weekend and I’m thinking that will help with some of this burnout I’m feeling. I know I need some time to recharge and I’m sure a lot of you out there do too! I know that the world will not always be sunshine and rainbows, but I know that I can make the best of every situation I’m presented with and recognize that most of life is going to actually be pretty good. Life sucks sometimes though, and in these times you really just need to truck along and remember that things will be ok in the end. 🙂 Have a good week everyone. I’ll see you next Sunday.

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