The first week of classes is over. The Spring 2018 semester has commenced with little fanfare. Yet somehow, everything feels different.
Getting back into school after any break can be difficult. Just going to classes on Monday after the weekend feels like it takes extra effort. After a month of naps, gifts, and no homework, going back to classes every day feels like a daunting task. Yet, the stress I often felt during first semester is gone. I see familiar faces in classes and on sidewalks. I find time to socialize, sleep, eat, and do homework. My 17-credit schedule doesn't seem nearly as challenging as I thought it would.
It's different than my first semester of college. At times, freshman orientation was draining for me. Meeting new people sometimes got exhausting, trying to find friends wasn’t always easy, and getting the hang of homework loads and professorial expectations was often a nightmare. But, I learned a lot and made it through.
So, I was a little surprised when the start of this second semester of my freshman year seemed similarly draining as my first one.
On Monday, I moved in. On Tuesday and Wednesday, I already had lists of homework to accomplish. Apparently, "syllabus day" was more like a "syllabus glance-over plus actual class day." It was a shock. What happened to the leisurely academic start I had experienced first semester? How could I have four different reading assignments plus a one-page paper and an analysis to write already? It felt overwhelming. Instead of getting to dip my toes in first, it was like I had been tossed headlong into the water.
Even though I found the first week of classes to be draining, I know that, this time, things will be easier.
I know now how quickly time passes in college, and I know how to manage that time. It helps that I enjoy the massive amounts of reading and writing that my English major demands from me. I have more confidence in myself now because the first semester taught me that I can handle just about any chaos that gets thrown at me. As the stress of the first week fades away, I am already excited about what I can learn from my professors.
The first week of classes is over, but the fun has just begun.