Leeuwenhoek had stolen and peeped into the fantastic sub-visible world of little things, creatures that had lived, had bred, had battled, had died, completely hidden from and unknown to all men from the beginning of time. Beasts these were of a kind that ravaged and annihilated whole races of men ten million times larger than they were themselves. Beings these were, more terrible than fire-spitting dragons or hydra-headed monsters. They were silent assassins that murdered babies in warm cradles and kings in sheltered places. It was this invisible, insignificant, but implacable-and sometimes friendly- world Leeuwenhoek had looked into for the first time of all men of all countries. ~Microbe Hunters

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

Respect Your Grades, But Respect Yourself More

Here's the thing, children.

In order to be successful in your en devours  you have to respect yourself more than you respect the outcome of such en devours. For example, In order to be successful in school, you have to eat, sleep and (moderately) exercise. You have to care for yourself over the short term gain of getting that A on your midterm. In the long run, if you fail to respect yourself, you will get sick for exams, or you will sleep through a critical lab class.

Nicole is notorious for not having any food in the fridge, living for days off dutch puffed chip things and hardly sleeping at all. The only exercise she gets is walking up the 2 flights of stairs once or twice a day to her lab classes. In the middle of the semester, this is NOT NORMAL. This is hazardous to your health. Sure, you slip up in the middle of exams because of the stress and lack of time- it happens to us all.

Last week I was running out of food and I kept putting off my plan to bus to the grocery store because I knew Nicole and Jillian also needed food. By the weekend I ended up eating spinach crackers with plain cream cheese and pickles on them for lunch. I'm pretty sure Nicole hadn't eaten anything for a long while so I told her we had to go NOW and she didn't have a choice. That was the first time she went grocery shopping since the 2nd week of school.

To keep your stress level down, you have to plan out your tasks and know what is on your plate. If there is too much, take some stuff off. Nicole is my ride to hockey, and last night I found another ride so she could study. That way, she can focus on school. She slept the whole time I was gone and an hour or so more once I got back... 5 hours in total. Then, she got up and stayed up until 5am, again, and went to sleep. She slept right through the calls and texts she got from people in her lab asking her where she was. She was so over-tired going to bed that she failed to set any alarms to wake her up for class.

Also, don't get too ahead of yourself. Don't start planning your future, planning where you want to live and stuff like that. There is a time and a place for stressful decisions like that, and they are certainly not to be taking time away from proper eating and sleeping. We have Christmas break to casually think about stuff like that. It is supposed to be fun to think of what you will do with your degree, especially if you are in a program like Nicole and I where we are in such a high demand, we can basically get a job in any city/town with a hospital or medical center.

And parents. Parents and family always want to see you. If you tell them you are struggling, they will make every effort to help you. They might come visit you with care packages that will both feed you and lighten your mood. It is awesome what an afternoon off with the family or someone to remind you of your hometown atmosphere can do to bring you back into perspective of how far you have come and can realize that you are probably making your whole situation more stressful than it needs to be.

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