The Uncontrollable

I couldn’t control that I had mono for about three weeks. I was super tired for two weeks and not only trying to keep up with school but also trying to train for a marathon. By the third week I started experiencing other symptoms like swelling of tonsils which prevented me from speaking and eating properly. I couldn’t take it anymore. The week after reading week I had to take off from school with a doctors note. I moved a midterm and an essay due date so I could lay in my bed feeling the worst I have ever felt. I may not even be able to run my marathon in May now, due to the missed training opportunities.

Here’s my point:

You can’t control everything that happens to you. I didn’t expect to get sick and have to deal with mono. I couldn’t control that. But what I did do was act as I could to control what I could.

The one thing that can be controlled is the reaction you have to what you experience.

If I bummed around after my case of mono, depressed from the school I had to catch up on and the training I had to get back to, I would not be writing this blog post right now. I was able to pull myself out of my struggles after I got over my case of mono and get back to what I needed and wanted to do.

Why do I tell this story? I tell it because university is a big step into experiencing more things that you cannot control. You may not thrive like some of the students you see and you may not fail like others that you see. You may be average, you may be extraordinary. You might fail something. You might fall down a flight of stairs and embarrass yourself or break your leg.

Life is not predictable, obviously. How dare it? I am kidding. It is stressful not being able to control things, though. Even your grades are tough to control. I can tell you that there have been times I have studied super hard and received a low grade and barely studied and received higher ones. Life isn’t fair, and that is not something I can control.

My point is that the way you react to these things that stress you out, cause you problems and prevent you from being happy is what you can control and what you can work out. Therefore, the only way to stay positive, or at least sane, is by being aware of your reactions. React in a way that can help you to stay positive.

I am getting tired of directing these sentences at “you” because I remember how tired I felt when being told how I would feel in university in my first year.

So I am going to leave this blog post the way it is with my only piece of advice being to be aware of your reactions to university’s inevitable stressors and life’s crazy tendencies and bid you a final adieu.

Good luck. I can’t wait to see the new faces at Nip next year.

Sarah Sceviour
1st Year Psychology Philosophy major, English minor