What Did I Get Myself Into?

At night, it has been quiet in my head.

This should come as a major breakthrough, following the Winter Break’s saga of “Can’t Sleep, Brain Won’t Shut Up.” And it does. It is extraordinarily satisfying to lie down in bed and not be thinking about twelve things simultaneously. It means that I’m actually getting sleep.

And sleep, folks, is wonderful.

Of course, the reason that my brain is quiet has less to do with some kind of miracle of modern science than it does with this:

“This” being my new schedule for the semester. That’s right. The quiet in my head can’t be attributed to meditation, prayer, pharmaceutical help, alien invasion, monsters, vampires, zombies, lobotomy, or brain death. No – it can only be attributed to sheer end-of-the-day exhaustion. I simply don’t have the energy to think.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not complaining. In fact, I think it’s wonderful.

My OCD doesn’t DO idle time well. As much as I looked forward to my month-long winter break, I was kind of done with it after the first week. I missed class. I missed assignments. I missed interaction with other human beings that didn’t consist of:

“What’d you do today?”
“Me neither.”

And as you all witnessed here, by the end of the break, I was driving myself absolutely batty. I started translating Dr. Seuss into Russian. For fun. (The fact that this exercise will look nice in my portfolio this semester is purely coincidental.) The backlash of a winter break full of boredom, however, is another tendency of mine – overscheduling.

I do it every semester. I book myself solid, and then swear I’ll never do it again. Until the next semester rolls around, and I’m itching for something to do. This time, my excuse is legitimate. Now that I’ve switched majors, I have to play catch-up with the introductory courses I would have taken last year. I have a vast array of now-completely-worthless Social Work courses to my name, and a deficit in Linguistics. Not to mention those nasty little things called ‘Core Requirements,’ that say I’m required to take so much Math, Science, and Government – probably the school’s idea of “What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.”

Oh, and by the way… biopsychology isn’t a science. Nor is neurolinguistics. Despite the fact that both of them focus extensively on the brain and how it works. Because THAT isn’t scientific.

So, I’m taking 18 hours. Yes. 18. And none of them are slacker hours.

I usually manage at least once class full of slacker hours per semester. Heck, I’ve been in Social Work – so really, I’ve been taking two “slacker hours” courses per semester, considering that I didn’t ever have to crack open a book in Social Work in order to make As in the classes. Last semester, I had Theatre. And I still felt like throwing myself into oncoming traffic by the end of the semester.

So obviously, signing up for 18 hard-core hours this semester was the bright thing to do.

You know. If something seems too hard, you have to make it harder to make it easier.




The big orange blocks are classes. The big grey blogs are office hours. (I love office hours. Professors love students who love office hours.) And those little orange blocks across the top? THOSE are my assignments. The things that are due each day. Did I mention that this is the schedule for the first full week of school? Go about four weeks deeper and those assignment blocks start stacking up. Mixed with exam blocks.

I was clearly delusional when I decided to do this.

The good news is that so far, all of the classes are pretty awesome. With the exception of Statistics, which is, well… math.

Russian is fabulous. Russian Youth Culture equally fabulous. Intro Linguistics is…well, the reading is actually interesting, which makes it easier to get through, but thus far, there isn’t much participation in class. That’s a downer for me. Still, I love the material. And Psycholinguistics will be fascinating, I think, once we really get moving in it. I can’t wait to share with you all some garden path sentences.

Because I know you’re so interested.

For now, I need to head over to the chemical engineering building so that I can learn about bar graphs and pie charts. I may, quite possibly, be bored to tears.

I suppose I could always start translating “One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish.” Then make a pie chart showing the distribution of the fish. Then I’ll turn it all in, in Russian, and see what happens.

Or, you know. I’ll go, pay attention, and try to be a good student.

First option sounds like much more fun.



2 Comments to “What Did I Get Myself Into?”

  1. Your post is music to my ears! Another validation that we did the right thing by insisting our son go back to college, which he absolutely loves: http://ocdtalk.wordpress.com/2011/01/22/ocd-about-ocd/

    Being engaged in your work/studies is wonderful, and the exhaustion that makes it too hard “to think” even better!

    Good Luck with your semester……such interesting courses~

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