I have been told throughout my years at Mercyhurst that I should look forward to senior year because it is a year where I can “take it easy” or “relax.”
I was told that this year would be the easiest of my college career. That could not be any more wrong.
I am taking 16 credits. I am a tutor. I am a teaching assistant for an Organic Chemistry lab.
To top all of that off I am the Editor in chief of The Merciad and the vice president of the Chemistry and Biochemistry club.
I love all of the activities that I am involved in. However, there is just not enough time in a day to get done all of the things that I need to do.
I am currently applying to six different Ph.D. programs. That requires writing up statements of purpose, perfecting my resume and making sure that I look better than the other 400-500 applicants that are going to apply to the same program.
Sure, the additional stress of the application process will fade once the Dec. 1 due date rolls around. I should be able to take my friends’ advice and “take it easy” once that date passes, right?
I like to think that I will be able to let loose all of my stress. However, knowing myself I will likely not sleep a wink until I know that I am accepted to one of those six graduate programs.
What if I do not get accepted? What if I cannot afford the schools that I do get into?
What if all of the hard work I put into my undergraduate degree does not earn me a place in an acceptance pool of 15 people?
What if my long-distance boyfriend of five years cannot follow me to wherever I choose to go?
These thoughts are constantly swimming through my head as I worry about all of the things that could happen.
I voice these questions to friends and family, and they are brushed off.
As if I am worrying over something as silly as what happens to my favorite character in the next episode of my favorite TV show.
But my life is not a TV show. It is reality. My reality. Like everyone else, I would love to go through life with a minimal number of problems.
I would prefer to not get stuck in the upside-down loop of a roller coaster, dangling there and hoping that my seatbelt is not faulty.
Maybe I worry too much. Maybe I will get into all of the schools that I apply to.
You don’t know what is coming ahead, and that in itself is terrifying.
Graduate school aside, senior year is difficult. Graduation is coming at me faster than I expected it to. We are almost into October. Almost halfway through my second-to-last semester as an undergraduate.
I look at my friends that I have made here over the past four years and realize that I might not see some of them again until our first class reunion.
I want to make every moment with them last forever, because I don’t know how many moments we have left together.
I cannot talk about senior year being hard though, without talking about the incredible lack of motivation I have that is more commonly referred to as “senioritis.”
I never thought that I would fall victim to this disease because I am a pretty self motivated person. I now find myself hitting the snooze button on my alarm until I only have 10 minutes to get ready for my day because my drive is below zero.
Whoever said that senior year was easy must have had a much different senior year experience, and for that I envy them.
I wish I could ride through senior year taking the minimum 12 credits, going to Stone Wednesday every week knowing that my future is secure before me.
Instead I find myself terrified of what lies ahead, just around the next curve or over the next hill.
Who knows if my roller coaster ride will break down along the way?
I can only hope that I reach the end of my ride safely and exit the ride so next year’s senior class can board.