February 23rd, 2009

Books!

Study Stress

This is difficult. For the past two weeks, I have been pretty much out of it as far as work goes. Bronchitis and flu left me bedridden for a while, and then came all kinds of emotional craziness which, like the bronchitis, is still lingering. But I don't have a choice anymore. Reading Week is over, and I have done nothing towards my workload.

It's been getting me extremely stressed. I honestly cannot see how I am going to manage the workload of this term. I could handle things if the dissertation wasn't there, looming over all and demanding that I work on it before it's too late. I could also handle the dissertation on its own. However, I keep getting torn between which things to do, and with continuing emotional crazies, I can't see myself being in top essay form regardless. I have so so much to do and I'm not at all sure I can do it. Everyone else has started writing their dissertations, or have pages of notes, but I am nowhere, or so it feels. It's hard to see anything other than doom in store.

But, for now, it's lesser projects that are being tricky. I did some translation work which needs to be in Wednesday to begin with, and it took me so much longer than I had expected, because I am out of practice. I eventually got round to doing the corrections to my German essay for this morning, but I haven't got much further than that, and I still have to write a gobbet for this afternoon's History seminar. That would be doable, as it lasts only an hour or so, but I am also giving a presentation on The Berlin Wall. And I'm terrified, because it's assessed, and because it's Rudolf, so simply remembering the Wikipedia page, merging it with my own knowledge, and blagging for ten minutes (which I can do quite well) isn't an option. I don't think I'll mess up, but it's a lot of preperation work, and it's so hard to concentrate, especially now it has got so late and I need to be up early to head to Windsor for that appointment.

I have got chocolate and my hair feels great after my bath earlier and I'm feeling otherwise quite relaxed and upbeat, but the worry over the workload, and how little I have done over Reading Week, won't go away. Ironic if things finally slip out of control in the final half of the final term. I don't want them to, and I'm pretty good at slipping out of tight situations, but I am really feeling the strain and just want to scream at my unread books. Doing what I am doing towards the end of your final year at uni is not a good idea in terms of getting things done, even though I actually view it as more important than my degree.

...I'm going to try writing something for myself, an article for something or other, rather than something academic. I'm not sure I can quite focus on doing the gobbet now, despite how late it has got. I'm just going to have to plan the important presentation in the tight gap of three hours between German and History. I have almost no time to stop, so I guess Writers' Circle this evening will be a little intense on me. Yes, I know I should get some sleep, but if I go now, I know I won't get both the gobbet and presentation done in time. Ah, maybe I'll just do that and do the gobbet in the late evening, since I have no chance of reading enough Stille Zeile Sechs for GDR Literature on Tuesday. Blagging it again. I feel like a bad student.

Get the assessed precis out of the way by the weekend, and make sure that blasted everlasting Catholic-Nazi essay is finally out of the blasted way by next Monday. Bury self in sources on Unvollendete Geschichte and get that essay done by the next weekend. Then back to the Holocaust for the next weekend. Somewhere in all this, get a plan for the dissertation. There's another History essay somewhere in that mess, but it can *wait* before I feel utterly crushed.

Realistically, everything is going to be rushed. After this term, I must focus on the dissertation, and then come all the exams. When July rolls around, I will be exhausted. I am ashamed of myself for letting things come to this, but I'm not going to pretend I can cope better than I can. I'll do my best, and hope that, somehow, it will be enough.
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Baths and Brothers

...but it was a really nice bath. I spent 90 minutes in there, and would have spent longer if I wasn't both hungry and feeling guilty over not doing work. I'd felt like I really needed a bath since Saturday, but I didn't want to treat myself until I had got some work done, and the translation work took longer than I expected because the German was a little old-fashioned. I didn't actually do it that well in the end anyhow, but eventually, I just ran the bath. I'd been wearing my new dressing gown and pyjamas all day, which I suppose I ought to feel a little guilty about, but they were really comfortable, and made lying in bed and thinking about things really easy. The bath itself was a Lush 'Floating Island' bath melt, which meant the most heavenly bath, full of lovely oils, and smelling of vanilla, lemon and sandalwood, which not only smelled lovely but also helped clear my throat a little.

On that front, the tablets are definitely working. I'm still coughing, and expect to have at least one coughing fit during my presentation, but the coughs are shallower and don't hurt as much. Hopefully, they'll be gone entirely when I've finished the full five day course. I am tired of coughing so much.

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My brother is hoping to go to York to study Economics. It's nice to see him trying for once rather than accepting the easiest option he can get. Although, in that surreal conversation when he phoned me from Golder's Green ("which is near you, right?", "not really"), he did make it clear he just wanted to get rich quick. He could probably do it, if what his economics teacher has said is true. It's still hard to see him as anything other than too lazy. I suggested I should go to York for my postgrad just to keep to an eye on him. Weirdly, he wants to spend a year in Oslo as part of his degree, for which I entirely blame the strong friendships (and more, I think), he's made with several small blonde Norwegian girls. He was near Lillehammer all week, skiing. Ah, maybe I'll have something to be proud of him for afterall.

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Trying not to think about the future too much. Too uncertain. I have plenty to deal with in the present...