From when I was five years old until the day I left school you couldn’t accuse me of not working hard or being lazy. With hard work comes success, a lot of which I enjoyed as a result of applying myself and just getting on with things. I’ve always been very conscientious and I not only like to get things done, I like to do them properly. I was your typical model student, never late for class, always handed work in on time and I never got a detention. It seemed to shock people when they learned I hated school and didn’t enjoy being there. Despite hating school, I still went everyday because I knew that I didn’t want to be a failure and I wanted to get qualifications.
Looking back I am still not entirely sure where this fear and hate stemmed from. I wasn’t someone who found it difficult to learn or didn’t enjoy learning but I was so scared of the other students. It seemed to start when I was 11 years old and I started becoming paranoid that everyone hated me and didn’t want me to be around. From then on and throughout high school I would very much keep to myself; I dreaded group activities because I was convinced no one wanted me in their group and I spent break times alone. I think here it’s important to point out that while I am naturally shy, I didn’t mind talking and working alongside other people, it was the feelings and insecurities that made me become hermit-like.
They say school years are the best of your life and for some people they might be, but because I found things so emotionally difficult I used to think to myself, “I hope not.” I didn’t want to have this constant fear of people and life and not to be able to complete ordinary day-to-day tasks.
I think another reason I disliked school was because there was many a time where I had finished all my work and no one else in the class had. Therefore, they would then get an extension or extra time to finish and I would be sitting there waiting for them with nothing to do. I don’t claim to be a genius or find everything super easy but I’m very strict when it comes to deadlines and part of me was scared I would get in trouble if something wasn’t finished.
I know this is meant to be about university, but it’s vital you have a backstory about my schooling so you can understand where I’m coming from. As you progressed through high school and got to choose your subjects and certain subjects weren’t compulsory anymore I found that difficult. I knew what I didn’t want to do but there wasn’t anything jumping out at me that I did want to do either. My subject choices were always academic and centered around writing. For example, in my last year of school I had five subjects (English, Media Studies, History, Health and Maths) and had exams for all of them, when lots of people only had three exams.
I always admired friends and students who knew exactly which university they wanted to go to and what they wanted to study. I had numerous people try to convince me to go to university but deep down I knew I didn’t want to. This sounds silly considering I want to move to England one day, but I was afraid to leave home and I didn’t want to feel lonely like I did at school. I have no sense of direction and being by myself in a new city scared me.
I decided to continue studying though. I signed up for a journalism course but ended up doing a Communications course. Three days before I was set to begin, I received a phone call saying it had been cancelled due to low numbers and Communications was the next closest. Some of my friends also studied on the same campus so it meant a feeling of familiarity. The course was one year long and I graduated in 2014. I’m not going to lie and pretend that course helped me get my current job or that I enjoyed every minute but I did meet some nice people and I’m proud of myself for giving it a go. My average grade overall was either an A or an A- which I’m also really proud of!
As I mentioned earlier, my problem has never been that I don’t enjoy learning or I’m not ‘smart’ enough but rather not knowing what to study. It’s hard to know what jobs are out there which is something I’ve always struggled with. Of course there are obvious ones such as, lawyers, doctors, nurses, chefs etc. but not everyone ends up being one of those. Even though I love music, I never considered studying it because quite often you have to play an instrument and know how to read music which I don’t. I did consider studying a beauty course but one of the things that put me off was the waxing element.
There’s nothing to say I won’t ever go to university or I won’t study again. I don’t regret the choice I made because I believe at the time it was the right thing for me. There will always be people offering advice and telling you what you should do but don’t ever let their opinions shape your decisions and what you want to do.
Let me know if you can relate to this post in any way. The discussions on my Hey, It’s Okay… posts are always riveting and extremely insightful!