So, my advice? Don't go into study abroad with the intention of transferring. Study abroad isn't about tasting a different life and then subscribing to it; study abroad is about living outside of your box and experiencing something new. After you get that experience, share it! I am not a good example with what I've just said, but you can believe I try to share my experiences when I am back in the states. First thing I did when my mom and brothers picked me up at the airport? Put in some Biffy Clyro.
Ch-ch-ch-check it out!
Behold the Scottish wonder.
Amazing, right? Well pretty much everyone here loves these guys. Including yours truly.
Naturally my family wasn't keen on them, but that's ok. I still love them! Seriously, though, share the culture. That's the main point in going abroad, in my opinion.
Well, I don't really have much to say other than that. Although, ok, let me de-stress for a little bit.
So, I'm really freaking out about this upcoming semester. I go through this all the time, though. I've never considered myself smart, and I'm always freaking out about not being good enough. I saw Black Swan on the airplane home for Christmas, and I freaked out a bit because I could see myself in Natalie Portman's character. The perfectionism, it does kill. Consider this, if you will: I graduated second in my class, the whole time considering myself borderline moron. I never once looked at myself and thought, "Dang girl, you've got some brains!" I always thought things like, "I studied the right material" or "I'm only at the top because the smart people don't do the work". I still believe that. Being second in my class had nothing to do with intelligence, but rather it had everything to do with dedication to my schoolwork. If anything it cements the thought into true fact that I'm a moron because I spent so much time concentrating on grades and none of it actually enjoying myself. I also, when I entered university, felt that there was no way I would ever succeed. I figured if I wasn't smart enough to graduate first in my class, what made me smart enough to succeed at the University of Texas-Austin? Ugh, and don't even get me started on body image! Bottom line: perfectionism is a serious problem. I go through depressive states, and I think every single one has been caused by my constant need to be perfect. When I don't hit my expectations, I just bring myself down even further. It's a vicious cycle. I've tried going about not being perfect, because I absolutely hate it when people compare me and my brothers. In the end I ended up going back to my perfectionism because that's who I am. I hated myself for not being me. Then again I hate myself for being me. Gahhh.
Anyway, after that horrid tangent (sorry!!) let me get back to this semester. I'm taking Biomechanics, Issues in Sport, Exercise, & Outdoor Activities, Physiological Assessment (super excited for this!!), Sport Nutrition, and Motor Control & Learning. I'm freaking out. I'm freaking about everything except Issues in Sport, Exercise, & Outdoor Activities. It comes back down to the fact that I don't feel like I'm smart enough. I just hear the name "biomechanics" and fear shoots down my spine. I'll get through it, though. No worries! I've kind of been dreading this semester anyway. Last year I went home for Christmas, and when I came back I felt like everything had changed. Around the first weekend in February, the people I thought were my friends went out sledding (the one and only time I will ever see snow/ice in Austin, TX), didn't send me any invites, and posted pictures on facebook. A few days later I get asked by another friend if I went sledding with them all. I had no idea what to say. I just said, "No, I didn't get the invite." One of the girls who was in the group of "friends" was like, "Oh, Chandrie, I'm so sorry. I was supposed to send you a text, but I kind of forgot."
Wow. Really? So, when everyone (there's about 7 of us in a group) got together, no one thought, "Where's Chandrie?" No one asked why I couldn't come? No one noticed that I wasn't there? I go home for break, and everyone just forgets that I exist. Then the whole semester I'm having a hard time excelling in Anatomy, so I've got this perfectionism driving me down, feeling totally ignored, sent into this huge depression, and no one noticed. No one said anything to me. I was terrified of that happening this year as well. Terrified. I nearly didn't want to come back after Christmas. Thankfully, I've been dead wrong! I have the best friends in the world here. I'm still a bit nervous because of some recent developments in my friend circle, but it'll pull through. I love it here. I don't want to ever go back to Austin.
I'm still freaking out about classes, though!
Alrighty, sorry about that. I shouldn't blog at night... I desperately needed to get that anxiety off my chest though. It's pretty much been sitting there since early December. Anyway, since I'm aiming my blog at potential study abroaders, y'all can completely understand my smarts anxiety! Right? Future study abroaders and potential study abroaders, don't let smarts anxiety keep you from going to wherever you please! If you study enough and put in the work, you can do well in your classes. The experience is worth it. Just be sure you keep on top of your studies; do not let it pile up until exam time. Also, do your reading and pay attention. They do ask questions specifically pertaining to the reading material.
*Sigh*. Well, my entry isn't nearly as, uh, unusual as the last one. I'm feeling a bit weighed down lately, just from that mounting anxiety. I haven't had exams to make me loopy for about a week... one more week off before modules start up! I do miss the loopiness it sends me through though! Ah well, plenty of that to come. Haha.
Oh! Fun fact before I leave you with this oh so cheery post: If you say, "I have 4 finals... 3 down and one to go! Did you finish your finals?" your British companions will look upon you in utter confusion. They do not say finals, they just say exams.
Ok, well I'm going to head to bed I suppose. My flatmates are drunk and I'm heading to the gym first thing in the morning! Adios!