Examinations Out, Holidays In! As if…

Well, not really. At least not for a part-time housewife like me. Ha.

This is quite an outdated post which I meant to post last Friday but I just couldn’t find time to as I was trying to clear all the housework I have been so lazy too busy to clear and see to. I was, of course, also spending as much time as I could squeeze out to do my revision for the test. Imagine my relief when I finished the last paper! The first thought that came to mind:

Whee!!! I finally finished all my examinations! It was such a relief. I was so glad I took this course as it really teaches me how to better manage my finances and really raise my awareness on certain issues I don’t bother about know so little about. It was, however, pretty nerve-wrecking to take examinations. I had my last on in 2006! That was 6 years ago! How time flies! It also made me realise:

I missed being JUST a student.

Back in those days, I was just expected to S.T.U.D.Y.

Was there a need for me to support myself? No. I received allowances from my mum.

Was there a need to help out with the household chores? No. Mum would kindly undertake them all.

Was there a need for me to get anything done except to study? No. Not really.

So, all I had to do was to study right?

How hard was that?

Not very.

Maybe.

But for me, it isn’t easy.

I have never been the student who loves studying.

Back then, I thought to myself, why waste youth on studying? I’d rather spent my time exploring every other thing I thought was interesting and intriguing to me. It always took me a lot of effort to sit down and stay focused on what I need to learn and study. As a result, I was never the best student or even close to being one of the top few in class. I did not think there was a need to work so hard. After all, what we learnt was not relevant. In fact, when I asked my secondary school friends if they remembered what they had learnt in Additional Mathematics classes, they could hardly remember what was logarithms and integration. All they could recall were vague curly signs and a lot of algorithms which they memorized by heart. It was not the right way to learn but it was not entirely a bad thing.

They took the effort.

For me, I blamed my bad memory and refused to get started. I would start my revision really close to the actual date of the examinations and miraculously, I will pass. I did. Not with fantastic grades, but I got promoted. I was contented. I did not aim higher. Now, on a hindsight, I realised I wasted my school days focusing on the wrong things. I wanted to have fun. As much as I could. I had my priorities wrong and that went on for years til I met Poh.

Poh and I met in the university. He was not as fun. He did not share my beliefs. He knew that he has to work hard to get what he want but I could not be bothered. We fought a lot. He persevered in changing this skewed mindset of mine. I knew his good intentions but I just could not be bothered. I let me continue being me.

Then it happened.

His words sank in. Not all at one go. Not that I turned into an extremely studious girl overnight. I began to think about what I want. I began to think about whether what I did would lead me to what I want. I realised that he was right. I need to work hard. I began to work. I started studying with the real intention to study and learn what there written in those notes. It was hard. I had this huge inertia within me. I stopped, grumbled and failed many times. Poh stuck by me all the while. If he had not appeared, I’ll probably still be a lost sheep, wandering around in a circus I thought was heaven.

Alas, I graduated. Not with fantastic grades but I think I did better than what I would have. I was glad I started to change. Only I was capable of it. Poh was a catalyst. As the saying goes, “You can bring a horse to the river, but you can’t force the horse to drink it.”

And change I did. I began teaching. I was keen and enthusiastic to pass on the knowledge. I spent one year in the National Institute of Education, got myself a postgraduate diploma in education and started my career in teaching. Just as things were turning around, I was diagnosed with an illness I thought would go away with time. I recovered but the illness relapsed when I stopped my medication. I was frustrated with myself for a while and then I realised it is not going to get better unless I detached myself from work. I was overzealous. I want them to be that someone they could be, if they try hard enough. I wanted the students not to be like me. I pushed them hard and ended up drained.

I had to sort out my health. I began to look around for opportunities to improve myself. That’s when Poh introduced me to this course. The name of the course “Accounting and Finance” was intimidating. It sounded really technical and in depth but it turned out quite different. The course provided an insight to an industry that is closely related to numbers. I went for it and really benefitted. Not only did I gained a wealth of knowledge, I made friends. We had breaks, we chatted and we discussed what the lecturer taught together. I was given another opportunity to relive the life of a student again. I looked forward to classes. It was an escapade for me. It was a time I soaked in information instead of being a provider. I took on a passive role when the lecturer is teaching. I enjoyed myself.

Amidst these enjoyment, I was haunted by the ghosts of my past. I was reluctant to study. I was tired to. After a day’s work, I could really use some rest. I had housework to do. I had more tasks to complete than I had when I was just a student. I missed being just a student. Still, I pulled through. Poh reminded me constantly to start my revision early. I made Michelle, a really sweet girl who I could easily relate to, my study buddy and having her around makes studying so much easier. She was encouraging and provided me with guidance whenever I had difficult figuring out what the lecturer was trying to say. I was lucky to meet her.

Now that it is all over, I am glad I enrolled in the course. I tried my best. I did. Whatever the outcome, I learnt stuff I thought I was not interested in. I picked up information I could not be bothered with. The course made me sit down and read. I reflected on my spending habits and started making small changes with the knowledge I gained.

A word of advice to all those who are still schooling: Spend your time wisely on things you should focus on at the moment. When you have other priorities on hand, you will miss the carefree days of being JUST a student. Enjoy studying while you have the chance to!

Til the next post! 😉

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