COLUMN: It’s that point in the semester

If you’re a college student, you probably understand what I mean when I say it’s that point in the semester. You have a million things to do, you’re probably broke, you haven’t eaten and you’re on your seventh cup of coffee and it’s only 11 a.m. I get it, and so does every other college student. With fall weather and allergies upon us, honestly, most of us are miserable right now. It’s just that point in the semester.

For me, week seven of the semester should have been filled with working on midterms, covering several sporting events, washing laundry for the athletic teams, stressing about what I plan to do after graduation and dealing with the other reoccurring responsibilities that need to be taken care of. However, my week seven looked very different from what I’d expected.

I spent last week at home, and I’m not talking about the home I found among the Herd at Marshall University in Huntington; I’m talking about my home in Gretna, Virginia, dealing with unexpected family issues. 

Life has a funny way of knocking you down when you’re already down. A friend of mine told me last week, “Well, it can’t get any worse.” Boy, was he wrong. Already stressed beyond belief with class, work and school, having to spend a week away definitely wasn’t ideal; however, it gave me a perspective change that I realized I desperately needed. 

Having five midterms, two papers, three discussion boards and 50 pages of reading due sucks; I totally get it. You’re expected to work a 20-hour-per-week job, eat properly, get enough sleep and exercise every day— it’s hard, but we still need to make the best of it.

These days, in between youth and adulthood, are supposed to be the ones that mold us into the people we are going to be for the rest of our lives. These days are supposed to be unforgettable. 

So, that midterm is important. Yes, you need to reply to that discussion board and tell Sally you agree with her and you think her post is spot on. But you also need to have that “family dinner” with your friends once a week, take 15 minutes and sip a cup of coffee by the fountain and take notice that the leaves are changing and another season has come and gone. 

As college students, sometimes we get so worked up about the next chapter in the book that we forget we are living a chapter now and we forget just how amazing our life is. 

So hang out with your friends on a Monday night, laugh with your people and day dream about living together after graduation. Go to trivia on Wednesday nights and get the cheese fries because it’s so worth it. Play jokes on your coworkers. Make sure you call and tell your mom you’re doing well. Go support an athletic team that you don’t know much about. 

These are the moments that are important. These are the moments that make these days the best days. It’s not about what you said to Sally in that discussion board or how many hours you spent stressing over if you were going to get into graduate school or go find a job once you leave this place. It’s about the memories and the people you make them with. You can do this and you will make it, and you just might miss this little city. Just remember to live in this chapter and have some fun along the way, because you never know what tomorrow may bring.

Sydney Shelton can be contacted at [email protected]