8 Years is Too Much

bored student

I woke up early, dressed in a new outfit, excited for the first day of my last year at school. I drove to school, weaving through traffic with brisk ease as I blasted some classic rock and sipped my coffee. Cars parted for me like I was Moses of the freeway- normally, morning traffic on highway 50 has my blood boiling by the Bradshaw exit, but not today. I got to school early, found a great spot in the parking structure close to the Union.  Today was going to be a good day.

And it was. The first day of school was a breeze. We are now at the beginning of week four, I think- the semester has barely begun, and already the weeks are melting into each other. The same routine- get up, go to school, come home, do homework, go to work at some point- this has more ore less been my routine since the fall of 2005. Or, if you want to get technical, it’s the routine of my life- over two decades of school. This is not to say that school is the worst thing I could be doing- far, far from it; I may be a young college student but I’m old enough to know I’m lucky to be where I am. It is to say, however, that after awhile, it’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel, so to speak. Where is this all going? Where is it all leading?

I hope it’s leading to a job post-graduation. That is the aim. But it seems to far away, it doesn’t feel like a real possibility. I feel an overwhelming sense of dread whenever I open my biology textbook. I can’t focus. I find myself reading and re-reading the same paragraphs. Nothing absorbs. My brain does not compute.

So here I am, with my bio book out of reach, the blackboard tab with my bio assignment open, it’s tiny, black box icon with unreadable white text glaring me in the face with its judgey pixelated image, taunting me. Knowing it will be open on my computer for hours, knowing I will read the assignment at least three more times before I decide to actually begin finding the motivation to learn.  Finals feel like they are a years from now instead of mere months, and regret will replace this feeling. You can call it senioritis, call it laziness, call it a lack of motivation- it feels like school will never end, I’m in a constant cycle of stress, studying, and poverty and this is how things are (and I don’t mean the typical “Sac State poor,” where students say they’re poor as they text away on their brand new iPhones and take notes on their iPads wearing Toms shoes and True Religion jeans- I mean that my husband and I survive below the poverty line). I see other people my age, and younger, people my little brother’s age, who are starting families, graduating college, being promoted in their successful careers. I’m sick of being the one who’s still in school, and you can only blame it on a recession that started five years ago now for so long. At a certain point, the only one you have to blame for your failures is yourself, and the people who look at you with sympathetic eyes when you tell them how long it’s been since you’ve started college know that, too.

Tomorrow I’ll wake up early, go to school, come home, study; rinse and repeat for a few more months and hopefully I’ll have a shiny new diploma at the end of it all. It sounds so easy when your future year is worded so simply like that, but I know it’s going to take so much more on my part than a sentence can convey. Motivation is somewhere, I just have to find it.

If you enjoyed this post, be sure to check out my radio show Technical Difficulties on kssu.com, Sacramento State’s Student Run Radio on Wednesdays 5 pm- 6 pm. 

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