There was a time during my junior year of college where I was probably more stressed out than I’ve ever been in my life. I say “probably” only because I think I repressed a lot of the memories in order to cope with the insanity that was my life, and I can’t be sure it was the absolute most stressed out I’ve ever been.
At the time, I was taking only 12 hours of class, but that included Magazine Editing (fun but super time consuming), Infographics (fun but ALSO super time consuming with an 8-hour newspaper shift each week), an honors humanities class (not fun and super time consuming), and an honors-by-contract 20th Century American history class (a sad attempt to get rid of an upper-division social science requirement). On top of this I was working four jobs: I was a peer advisor in Mark Twain Hall (10-20 hours a week depending), the front desk supervisor (10 hours a week), a marketing intern for ResLife (10 hours a week), and a journalism school tour guide (4-6 hours a month, thank goodness).
Needless to say, I didn’t sleep much, and you can bet I didn’t get around to all my reading. (This resulted in my first ever C’s. Two glaring C+’s next to two gleaming A’s. I cared about journalism; I did not care about Beowulf or the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory.)
During this time, my life was sometimes pretty darn pathetic. There was the time my friend Katie and I stayed up into the wee hours of the night studying literature and art of Early Modern World (think Augustine, Beowulf, and Canterbury Tales) when Katie dumped an entire bowl of ramen on my dorm room floor because I tripped on stray papers. There was the fact that I frequently went to 1:1 meetings with my boss in my pajamas (perks of having a resLife). And then there was the time I did my entire Infographics final project in one night, moving into the basement computer lab of Twain at 6 p.m. and coming out at 6 a.m, bleary-eyed from staring at a giant Mac screen all night. And then there were the deodorant tissues. But we’ll get back to those.
As this semester starts careening toward the end, the stress has risen to new levels. I don’t even want to list off the number of presentations and papers I have. Not to mention stresses unrelated to school, i.e. friends, prepping for the summer, work, roommates, the fact that my room flooded last week, the fact that I still don’t know what’s been making me itchy for the past 3 months, the fact that I haven’t signed my lease for the fall, the fact that I have to transition out of my current work position and prep it for someone else to take over in two months, etc. It’s starting to take a toll on my sanity.
Ah, but I bet you are thinking, “Tell me about the deoderant tissues! What are deoderant tissues?!” We’re getting there. Deoderant tissues are the benchmark on the scale of Pathetic that says, “THIS IS ROCK BOTTOM.”
You see, my junior year I was so busy and stressed out, I couldn’t even find the time to go buy basic necessities I had run out of, like deodorant and toothpaste. At one point during the middle of the spring semester, I remember lamenting with my co-peer advisor Amy that neither of us had been to the grocery store in weeks and that we were staring to run out of essentials. At one point, I was working my way through several travel-sized tubes of toothpaste because that’s all I had. And the only deodorant I had access to was the remnants of a semi-exploded gel stick. The gel wasn’t even in the stick of the deodorant anymore. It was all in the lid. And you better believe I used a tissue to wipe some of that gel deodorant from the lid to my armpits.
Like I said: rock bottom.
Thankfully, once my mom heard of my pathetic state she sent my a care package with toothpaste and deodorant. My boss and hall director also was horrified at my sad existence and offered to pick whatever I needed up on her next grocery run. I probably wouldn’t have survived that spring without both those marvelous ladies.
Thankfully Spring 2012 hasn’t quite hit the level of Spring 2010. It’s vying for that spot, but I’m managing for now. And I have extra toothpaste and deodorant in my bathroom cabinet, don’t you worry.