Scheduling Panic Attacks
I wish I could schedule panic attacks. They suck. A lot. This post maybe should have been written last Wednesday when the details of the event were still fresh in my mind and I needed an escape route, but every time I thought about the issue that tightness in my chest cavity started again.
This can all be traced back to a conversation had at my birthday party over break. Some friends and I were sitting around at my parents’ house talking and it was mentioned that Dreamer and CrazyGirl(A term of endearment, I assure you) will be graduating from High School on The Hill next year. Logically, it follows that LittleSis will be graduating the year after. Two years until she is done with high school. What does this make me think of? “Holy crap I’m graduating from college in TWO YEARS!!!”
This does not seem like enough time to absorb all the knowledge I need to absorb before I leave this place. It does not seem like enough time to accomplish all that needs to be accomplished. And it certainly does not seem like enough time to earn all the credits that I need in order to graduate. Almost everyone that I’ve talked to about this last point has said the same thing, “So just stick around for a fifth year like I’m going to.” Well, that is great advice except for the fact that I have three years of seminary to go through after I get my B.A., and(more notably) I can barely afford to be here THIS year. Where on Earth would I find the money for a fifth year when I’m currently worrying about paying for a third?
Now onto the actual panicking I want to talk about.
Last Wednesday night, I was attempting to get my schedule arranged, so that when April 4 rolls around, I’m totally ready to go. The problem is this, everything that I need to take ended up stacked on top of each other. My scholarship agreement(which I am INCREDIBLY thankful for) has clear stipulations: that I take part in a large ensemble, audition for and(if accepted) take part in a second, and enroll for applied vocal lessons. This is usually not a huge deal when it comes to scheduling, but the lovely administration has decided that next fall the Philosophy classes should be scheduled during the same time that Conservatory Singers has been scheduled for the last SEVERAL years, if not always, I really don’t know. There are only two classes for Philosophy being offered that I haven’t taken yet and now I can’t take either of them.
But wait, there’s more!
There are also only two Religion classes being offered next semester that I haven’t taken yet. Take a guess at the problem. Right-o! They too are scheduled at the same time as each other. Why are these departments having this problem, you might ask? Oh, the joys of a small university. I’ll tell you the problem. It’s because there is a mandatory RL101 class that EVERYONE must take to graduate. I certainly don’t have a problem with this. As a liberal arts college, especially one sponsored by the Methodist Church, it seems appropriate to expect undergraduates to have a well rounded and basic grasp on world religions and the roles they play in people’s lives. What I do have a problem with is the fact that there are only THREE professors to cover both the Philosophy and the Religion departments and the majority of their time is being used up by these freshmen courses. Yes, Ministry Man is willing and able to teach classes on occasion, as are the professors adjunct, but those are hit and miss situations.
What’s more, because I dropped Astronomy this semester, I am entering my junior year with a General Education science requirement to take care of. Once again I will state that Conservatory Singers has been scheduled for the MWF 2-250pm slot for as long as any of us remember. Why then are all but one of the labs for this required science class scheduled over the top of the choir rehearsal time that I literally am paid to attend?
I played this game for over an hour before I had to get out. My chest felt tight, I wanted to throw something at someone, and I felt like I was suffocating. So I went for a walk. I was out for about an hour I think. There are a few notable things to mention here, A. The Nerdmate was texting me through all of this. He was very supportive and accepting of the fact that his girl friend is crazy. He reminded me that I am capable of this and that dropping out and becoming a hobo was maybe again my better judgment. B. In this situation 6 months ago I would immediately sought escape and comfort in food. I can honestly say that through the attack I’m pretty sure food was the farthest thing from my mind. Instead, I sought refuge in a walk around town, an activity that is both calming and productive. Of course, at the time I wasn’t thinking about this, but the fact is that even though my weight loss journey is far from over, my attitude and behavior toward and about food is changing.
Here is some good news for you, readers.
1)Friday I sat down in my advisor’s office and he helped me lay out a schedule. He reminded me that I am ahead of most of the people in my class as far as credits go and that my grades are better than most. He assured me that I was going to be fine. “You CAN do this, Kay.” Thank you, Dr. J.
2)I hit the 40lb mark on Sunday. Yeah, I am almost half way to my goal weight and I couldn’t be more excited. As often as I find myself thinking that my progress is too slow or that I’m not doing enough, even I must admit that 40lbs is a big deal.
What did I learn? Sometimes we are blinded by the little things that seem so horrible, that we forget about the larger things that are really amazing.