Things I discovered whilst being in essay hell:

Somehow, I’ve naviagted my way through semester one and I now have two weeks of no lectures, seminars and deadlines and the thought alone is enough to make me want to run around campus screaming ”I’M FREE!”. However, because I don’t want to be lynched by students who still have exams, I decided to just blog:

1) The library is not a safe place

What I was apparently doing in the library toilets.

What I was apparently doing in the library toilets.

The university library is that one place where you go to avoid distractions, weep over the fact there’s a book available that you need but someone has moved it from its rightful place and panic about how much work you have. However, due to some Facebook pages called ”Spotted:_______ University Library”, university libraries are now places where people send in anonymous messages ranging from witty parodies of songs, telling someone they think they are hot or telling someone they look a mess. This Facebook group had me paranoid that I may be subject to harsh judgement, and my worst fear was being the subject of a post saying that i looked a state. Unfortunately, for me, I was the subject of a post, one which my friend sent in saying:

”To the mixed race girl in the belly dance society hoody who’s just left the toilets looking suspicious, I saw you high in Echos last semester. I know revision can be hard, but you best not be doing that shit in the library toilets.”(To clarify, this post was not true, I wasn’t even wearing my hoody that day).

Yes, I had escaped having my appearance insulted, but now my friend had falsely marked me out as someone who snorted things in the toilets to help me get through a tough day in the library, all because I mentioned her in a comment suggesting that she did stealth poos in the library toilets.

2) You do not play around with Pro Plus.

What I looked like after Pro Plus.

What I looked like after Pro Plus.

I constantly hear fellow students raving about the caffeine tablets Pro Plus, and at the grand old age of twenty I’d still never tried them, but I was at the point where I was two days away from my deadline and I still wasn’t happy with my essays. Thus I decided to hop on the bandwagon and get involved, and let me tell you something, spending 36 hours working and then still not being able to sleep was one of the worst experiences of my life. I may not have been snorting things in the library toilets, but by Monday morning I sure as hell looked and felt like it. I actually started to wonder if someone had laced my cup of overpriced tea with cocaine or speed, because it felt like someone had sellotaped my eyelids open, and it got to the point where I wondered if I needed a trip to the Priory.

3) You will stop caring about your appearance halfway through.

Where I looked like I belonged.

Where I looked like I belonged.

As my friend pointed out, ”You see people at their worst during exam season”, and whilst I think worst is a strong word, you do see a lot of girls who look like they’ve just given up on life, myself included. For the first half of exam/essay season, you see everyone still maintaining their appearance, but at around the halfway point, make-up is no longer worn, hoodys become a wardrobe staple and there’s an air of defeat. It just gets to the point where you are drowning in work and it seems like you’ll never reach the other side, so you just stop caring. There is also the fact you’re either spending your days locked away in your room or in the library, and it feels a bit tragic to get made-up when your face is going to be hidden behind a book or computer screen.

4) The idea of paying someone to do your work will cross your mind, more than once.

The first two essays that I handed in I managed to stay motivated throughout, but by the time I got to my last one I was sick of reading, sick of writing and I just wanted someone to take it away from me. In the beginning, I (jokingly, I think) asked my friend if she’d write my British Drama essay if I paid her in chocolate (she looked like she was considering it), but as the week went on I actually considered posting on Facebook ”If someone finishes my British Drama essay for me, and it gets a 2.1 or above, then I will give you the rest of my student loan”. (I finished the essay by myself, just to clarify)

5) The taste of freedom is enough to make you salivate.

What I almost did everytime I thought about freedom.

What I almost did everytime I thought about freedom.

When you’re sat in the library with only a stack of books and the fear of failure to keep you company, you need to think of things to motivate you to continue working, even when there looks like there is more chance of Taylor Swift not releasing a song slagging some guy off than you making it through all the coursework and exams. For some people, they ”keep thinking about what alcohol to buy to mark the occasion” of completing all their work, but for me it’s being able to go and buy Febuary’s issue of Glamour magazine and read it without thinking ”I should be reading criticism on Restoration Drama”. That, and the fact I have some BIG nights out planned (obviously).


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