Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Finals...not good...

Well I took my first final this morning and yikes. I do not feel good about it. It was multiple-choice and I think I learned I shouldn't do multiple choice. We were given an essay option and I so should have gone for that.

See, I over-study. Then I can think of things not just from the reading but stuff the professor said that supports more than one of the little a,b,c,d answers. And then I make myself nuts talking myself into the different answers. Then I go home and realize I chose the wrong one in the end.

But this test, this was more about getting into the prof's head than they usually are. Usually it's not so difficult to determine the objectively best answer. Some of these questions were honestly based on belief. Okay, so then you go with the prof's belief, but what if she said something different on different days? Not inconsistently, just both/and statements.

Cases could be made. And I bet I chose the wrong one. And now I will get my 2nd A- or even a B. I know, you are gagging at me. Well I want to get a PhD and so I stress about my grades.

I am learning - I learned a lot in this class...almost too much. Definitely studied too much for the final - so much studying that I confused myself. It's not that I'm pissed about the grade for its own sake, but it's because I really knew this stuff, I really studied, I really learned - I can't think of a way I could have tried harder or done better. And my best is usually an A, that's all.

I guess I need some humility shot through me. I really am too hard on myself. I made a mistake in our bookkeeping that caused us to bounce checks and pay $25 in fees. I lost a house key. For these things, I beat myself up.

I complained to my mom and she told me I was mad because I'm not perfect. I've been mad that I'm not perfect since I was little. I've always been distressed at my failures, however small and insignificant. Not because they matter. Not because I need to learn something. Simply because they point to my fallibility. Or so Mom says.

But she's right. I don't like it when I try my best and still fail. I also don't like it that I care this much, believe me. I'm not happy to be such a freak about this stuff. And honestly if I wasn't getting my period tomorrow I would probably not have cried after the test.

But this is how it is. I'm hormonal, the test was maybe a bit unfair, mostly I just made some bad choices. C'est la vie. Get over it.

I am grumpy from not eating lunches, too. My Lent thing, remember? It makes me cranky and I way overeat at dinner. I don't think I'm actually eating any less. Maybe I should give up.

I'm doing very well with the prayers, though. And I really love them. Whenever I make myself do morning prayer consistently it's such a blessing. It makes me calmer and I think about scripture or the prayers throughout the day. Imagine how I'd be if I hadn't done it before going to my test this morning!

Well, to calm me down, J did the smartest thing he could, which was invite me to look up several schools' admissions requirements to see what they said about GPA. As it turns out, only one school I could find (and I was looking at places like Yale, Notre Dame - not cheesy schools) even listed a GPA requirement and it was (drum roll, please)...3.0.

So unless one of you tells me different, perhaps I'll stop stressing quite so much about my 3.98 going down a few hundreths of a point. J says GPA are set pretty low usually, 3.5 or so, and it's just a weeding-out thing. It's not going to make the decision to get you into a doctoral program.

Well I know that but I still feel like it could be impressive if it's high. Then again, with grade inflation these days, I'm probably being quite naive.

Okay, so I learned a lot in this class. I need to have the same attitude as I had after I finished my Bartchy paper, which was I do not care at all what grade I get on this because I learned so much the experience was more than worth it. So there! Ha, teachers! I don't care what letter you want to slap on me! Label me - go ahead!! I'm learning and you can't stop that with a B!!!

(I feel slightly better now)

2 comments:

Hugo said...

Oh, Feminarian, I am with you.

I failed the first Latin test I took in grad school. My second paper was handed back to me with the words "devoid of promise" written across the back page.

And I did get a Ph.D. from UCLA (with sone coursework from Scott Bartchy, as I've mentioned). Self-doubt is part of the price we all pay, and sometimes, man, it's high.

The Feminarian said...

Damn! That is harsh!!

Okay, I've had it easy. No complaints.

Besides, I realized at least one really idiotic mistake I made so I can no longer claim I knew the material all that well. sheepish me.