This week I’ve been trying to find my feet in Wellington and get back into the uni groove, so I’ve decided to do a blow-by-blow of my first week back.
I woke up feeling a bit coldy, which is no fun on the first day back at uni, but decided to start the week off with some morning gym time regardless. I was there for an hour and it was a good session. I’m hoping I can keep up the regular visits as school gets busier.
After the gym I went out for a bento bowl with Mum, which was delicious. She was also very kind and gave me some grapes, cherry tomatoes, capsicum and chocolate to get me through the week ahead, which will be greatly enjoyed. I’m very lucky in that Mum is quite often in Wellington for her job, so I get to catch up with her most weeks.
Then I headed up to uni for my first lecture of the year, which was MDIA 208: Media Audiences. Having done this week’s readings the previous day, I was concerned that it was merely going to be an extension of a media course I’d taken last year (and loathed). Thankfully, this course actually seems grounded in something rather than just a butttonne of overcomplicated theories floating around in the ether, so I’m now thinking I should be fine.
The thing with media studies at university is it tries really hard to be a scientific subject, when it’s really really not. This means that all the readings are unnecessarily complicated, the authors take ten sentences to say one thing, and words like “qualtoid”, “epistematically” and “semiotician” (all of which have come up in my drafter with squiggly red underlines) feature waaaay too fuckin’ often man. I’m not a huge fan of academic pseudojargon (there’s a neologism for you, MDIA 208), so I’ve struggled to like being a media studies major so far. Despite this, I do pretty well in my assignments and exams??? So I’m sticking it out.
The difference in my mindset this year compared with last year is insane, and I definitely noticed that sitting in my first lecture today. I’m ready to tackle this third year business. I’m loaded with deadlines already, but I’m confident I can stay on top of my workload, and hopefully keep up my other interests as well. Maybe I’ll even manage to maintain a bit of a social life, who knows?
Still feeling coldy, but it’s whatever. Had a bit of a slow morning sorting stuff like insurance and AA membership renewals, and then had grapes and a pesto sandwich for lunch, which was pretty awesome. I also enjoyed some muffins my friend Luke gave me instead of birthday cake (it’s a long story). Then it was off to uni for my first MDIA 202:Television Studies lecture. It was considerably more popular than 208, and with good reason: it’s about freaking television. Any excuse to watch TV and call it study? I’ll take it. I have a feeling I’m going to enjoy this course, despite the 45% exam waiting for me at the end of the semester.
I received a lot of compliments today about my dress and also my aesthetic in general, which made me happy. See, I know in the grand scheme of things makeup and pretty clothing are social constructs and it doesn’t matter if I leave the house looking like a model or a hobo. But when I take the time to put some effort into my appearance, I feel like 100x better about myself. That said, few things are better than getting home from uni at the end of the day, getting straight into comfy pants and basking in how gloriously cosy your butt feels.
Here’s how my timetable is looking so far. Aside from a kinda shitty Wednesday, I can’t really complain. I’m just gonna have to make sure I’m ultra-prepped and ready for my tutes, which I foolishly scheduled ALL ON THE SAME DAY well done Beth A+ demonstration of life skills right there.
For dinner, my princess/flatmate Kate made us an amazing lasagne and it was incredible and I probably cried with happiness the entire time. For this and many other reasons, she is one of my favourite human beings.
After dinner I went and chilled out with Dallas, who is RAing in the new hall just up the road from my flat. It was super cool to see her again after probably like half a year (way too long, man). Plus she gave me a wall planner and a Fruit Burst so that was pretty great.
My cold has now progressed from being a slight tickle in my throat to being actually annoying. It still hasn’t gotten to the point where all I want to do is lie in bed, surrounded by a sea of used tissues, and watch shitty movies all day. So that’s something. I’m confident I can beat this through sheer willpower (and maybe a lozenge or two). We’ll see how that goes.
I had my first lecture for HIST 318: Early Modern Science today, which I’m very excited about. It’s kind of an extension of the course I took last year, HIST 235: Early Modern Europe. It was probably my favourite paper in the whole universe because early modern European history is my shit. 318 promises to be just as interesting, although definitely a step up from 200-level in terms of workload and assignments. Whee!
Feeling hella coldy today. I started off the morning with my first counselling appointment with Student Health. I’ve been to counselling a couple of times before, in first year, but it wasn’t the most helpful experience in the world. However, I’m open to giving it another go, so I’m seeing a different counsellor this time. This first appointment was just an introductory session, so I had to answer a lot of questions about myself and my anxiety, including very personal ones that I’ve only told a handful of close friends before. It was weird telling a stranger some pretty heavy stuff, and in that respect it seemed to do more harm than good, because in a sense I was forced to review the really dark times last year (which I now try not to dwell on as much as possible). But it was also helpful in that she talked through some strategies for dealing with anxiety attacks and feelings of panic, and it also reassured me that I have come a long way since the bad times. My next appointment is in three weeks’ time, so I’m sure I’ll post on here about how that goes.
After the appointment I went and got a smoothie from Tank. Ridiculously overpriced I know, but I was feeling all snuffly and low from my cold, and having a smoothie made me feel a lot better. In the afternoon I went shoe-shopping with Kate, and then cooked the two of us an A+ teriyaki chicken dish for dinner, which I unfortunately didn’t get a picture of. But it tasted pretty great.
After dinner it was off to see Birdman at the movies with Luke. We both emerged from the theatre at the end of it going ‘wtf did we just even watch’. Technically and visually, it was a very well-executed film. And Emma Stone was in it, which is always a bonus. But after the first like half of the movie, it stopped being clever and funny and interesting and just because confusing and slow. All in all, I’d probably give it like a C+. Don’t believe the hype.
Friday can be summarised as follows:
Random spontaneous coffee dates and walks through the rain and study and homemade pizza and flatwarmings and old friends and fistfights and new friends and card games and fire alarms and late night trips to BK holy shit what a day.
As I was going to bed, I realised I’d been out for two nights in a row. I’d been at a party surrounded by people who were mostly in varying stages of drunkenness. I’d hung out with a bunch of strangers. I’d walked through town on my own after dark. And it was all 100% fine.
If you didn’t know me when I was bad, that might not seem like much of a big deal, especially for a student living in Wellington. But for me, to be able to do all that without a hint of anxiety is fucking huge. I am so freaking proud of myself, and I can hardly believe just how far I’ve come.
And now for a narcissistic selfie, because there aren’t yet enough of those in this post.
I also found this amazing Tumblr blog and it’s kind of perfect so go enjoy: http://buttpoems.tumblr.com/
Saturday consisted of a rainy day and a lazy morning, which was lovely after a busy couple of days. I did get some study done before lunch though, which was good, because after lunch I had a weird little anxiety attack. Thankfully I managed to recover from that, and Kate and I enjoyed another delicious lasagne dinner, this time complemented by a glass of the reserve syrah I’d been given at work. It was a good time.
After dinner, Mark joined us for a spontaneous trip to The Warehouse in a thunderstorm. We got absolutely soaked, but it was a lot of fun. On the way home we managed to pick up 2-for-1 donuts, so when we got back to the flat we dried off while eating those and drinking tea. Then we got some study done (yay) and the fire alarm in our apartment building going off twice for no apparent reason (not yay). Despite the anxiety attack, it was a good day on the whole.
And we’re here! The last day of my first week of third year started bright and early, with a trip to the fruit market/supermarket to do the first flat shop of the year. I always enjoy walking along the waterfront early on Sunday mornings, and today it was gloriously blue-skied and sunny and still.
The rest of the day will involve editing and publishing this post, then heading to the library to get my last bit of study done in preparation for week two.
This style of blogging was an interesting one to play with. I probably won’t be doing these ‘week in review’-type posts too often, but it was a bit of a fun change. Overall, I’d say that this was the best first week of uni I’ve had so far. I was feeling a little apprehensive about studying again when I first got back to Wellington, but after a week of it I’m feeling a lot more relaxed and confident in myself. I think this semester is going to be a good one.
Back to regular broadcasts next week.