Finally classes started again and my daily rhythm is on its way back to normal again.
I know that a lot of you will disagree with me on this but I simply love going to uni and attending classes.
A lot of that has to do with the fact that I had to fight a huge battle with myself last year and I almost did not make the cut to be allowed to continue this year. But I did and I am very thankful that I am allowed to continue studying.
Going to a university has been my dream for as long as I remember. Well of course it was not in kindergarten or preschool but ever since I have been thinking about what I wanted to study after I finished high school it has been. I just wanted to educate and also elevate myself, for no one else than just myself. After my preschool I went to a school which is called Havo in Dutch, I believe it translates to Senior General Secondary Education in English but correct me if I am wrong. However, this level of education would not give me access to a university. You get access to a university if you went to what is called vwo in Dutch. (in English that translates to pre-university secondary education I believe, correct me if I’m wrong again) and I worked hard, graduated Havo and was allowed to go to vwo. After all that hard work here I am! studying at a university and man, am I proud!
Now, I can tell you from experience that it was not easy-peasy-lemon-squeezy at all. I had to work my bum off, I cried a lot and I wanted to quit many times. Same goes for my first year at university: I cried a lot, I broke up with my boyfriend, wanted to quit many times, I had a hard time battling my depression and learning how to deal with hypersensitivity, an anxiety disorder and also an eating disorder.
But here I am: still going strong and still studying.
By now I can hear you thinking: Yeah nice story and all but how did you do that? How did you make yourself continue even though all you wanted to do was give up?
Let me tell you this first, I have been a person who does not give up easily if things get tough. If there is anything I really want or love, I will not give up until I have tried every possible thing to reach my goal. So that really helps.
Another thing I did was asking for help when I needed it. When I was going through my break-up I noticed that the demons in my head which had been present for years, were getting stronger. My nighttime fears and depression demons were getting so bad to the point I literally ran away once time and almost took the train to nowhere, trying to flee from what I thought was the situation I was in. I thought that fleeing the Netherlands would be a good option of escaping everyone and everything that was going on, while the situation was all in my head.
After a few weeks and my attempt to run away, I went to a psychologist and it helped.
Asking for help is not a bad thing!
Of course I have other tips for you too, because not everyone needs to go and see a psychologist. Another thing I did was going to the gym and taking yoga classes. Working out and eating healthy helped (and still helps) me getting more confidence and feeling better about my body. The yoga classes help me to clear my mind and just focus on myself for a small hour, which really helps in a busy student life.
I also like to hang out with my friends. We don’t hang out as much as I would like and I often feel left out. But that is all in my head.
My best friend just lives far away, all the way in my hometown and hey, you cannot hangout with friends all the time. I need to do some schoolwork too because I still need to work my bum off haha!
Another thing I see people, often students, struggling with is money. Sometimes they have a side job and when they don’t they have a student loan (like me).
The only thing I can really say about this is that if you have the time for a side job and you like to work then go ahead! Totally. It’s such a good thing to earn your own money.
But if you have the feeling you can’t because you need more time to study, or your general health is suffering from it, and you do have the financial support from either your family or you can get a student loan from the government like we do down here in the Netherlands: then quit the job.
Quitting my side job has been the best decision I ever made in my first year of uni.
It gave me some space to work on myself, adapt to the new situation and study.
Once you feel ready, you can go and apply for jobs again.
My second year has just started and I applied for the job as a substitute teacher.
I have already got two students!
So, all I want to say is: take good care of yourself.
in Dutch we have the saying: ”komt tijd, komt raad.” and it means (quite literally translated): when time comes, so does the right advice/thing to do.
This really helps me get through it all because it has always proven me right. When the time comes, so does the advice. It always does! Trust me.
Long article huh?! Yeah, I just wanted to share my story and show you that there is always a solution if you give your all and are willing to work and willing to find the solution.
The idea to write about this came from the Earnest website. I saw it somewhere and it is about loans and money and how they can help you to decrease the amount.
It also came from seeing all the first years walking around campus and my own younger sister going to college this year.
Good luck sister!
Good luck friends!
Good luck first years!
Good luck everyone!
Let’s make this year a good one!
Everywhere you go always take the weather with you!
Keep the good weather close, especially when the fall and winter season are nearing again. Keep the good spirit up!