December 22, 2014

My SRP journey

 Helloooo my lovely readers  

My SRP writing has finally ended and I am a free girl (At least until Christmas break ends)!
You see, the "SRP" is an exam paper that seniors at the Danish colleges have to write. It must be between 15-20 pages and be about a topic that we pick ourselves. We have to choose two subjects to write in (I chose English and Social Studies) and then we have 2 weeks off from school in which we can write, read, and meet with our teachers in case we need counseling. 

You might think: "Oh, it's just a paper. I can easily write that. It doesn't have to take 2 weeks" WRONG!! Well if you're some genius then yes, you might be able to do it but if you're a mere mortal like me, no way. The SRP is one of the 9 exams you have to take and it counts double, which means that, if you fail, it ruins two good grades and brings down your average by quite a bit. (If you've read THIS post you'll know why a high average is important to me and many others).

I've had a straight up horrible time working on this paper and, from the first day, decided that I would let out my frustrations in order to cope. Blogger was the best place for me to go without ripping off somebody's head and eventually I ended up with a kind of diary. When I tell my friends how much struggle I've had and that I wrote my thoughts down, they all asked if they could have a read. Now that it's over, I'm thinking "why not?". I can be a bit dramatic at times and apparently it's pretty hilarious for people around me so let's not spare you the fun.
Also, to keep it as authentic as possible, I've decided to not anything but some minor typos that I didn't feel like correcting in the heat of battle. 

Day 1:
The school was crowded. Up to 510 students were getting their assignments today. I was really nervous when I sat down with the rest of my class and when they finally handed the assignments out.... I didn't like mine at all. I was about to cry. OH gawd. All of my friends were happy with their assignments. Why me?! Why of all time did I have to get such a alkfhakjfnaejkf assingment now?!
I keep picturing myself laying on the floor, face down, arms out, my cats surrounding me, and having given up on this... and life.
It's been three hours of self-pity now. I should start watching the movie.

Day 2:
Today is going to be my work day! I need to get something done! Yesterday Nanna asked me how I was doing and I told her that I couldn't concentrate and that I was setting up all the technical stuff (font size, design, litteraturliste etc.). Then I asked her and she's already written a page. WUT?!
Aaaah I'm behind already!!
The book I was supposed to work with only came home yesterfreakingday so I had to switch to analyzing a movie. I suck at analyzing movies. I hate this! Grr!!
I feel like my teachers haven't listened to what I wanted to write about at ALL. I told them I wanted to write about the creation of young peoples' identities and especially focus on the influence of the social medias and the expectations of society. Instead I have to write about feminism!
I don't understand the questions either! I don't understand the first one, I can't answer the second one before I've written the first since I need the theories from that one, and the third is supposed to be a discussion including the two first answers and then I have to include a hella long citation that I don't even understand. Can this get any worse?
I need to contact my teacher but changing the assignment is too late now. The exam began as soon as we had been given the assignments. I'm afraid my teacher will get mad at me for not understanding this.
My best friend sent me a snap showing that she had around 3300 words while I'm only at 1200 and most of those are titles. damn-
Okay she just snapped me again "hahah lies. I only have 300 :'D" oh well.
I went to bed around 7pm... I couldn't come up with anything to write and Karoline, who already graduated and wrote her SRP last year, told me that she found it easier to write at night. I've earlier heard that this is good because around that time your more creative sides come out + the house is quiet so there will be nothing to distract you. So I went to bed but couldn't fall asleep no matter how hard I tried until 11pm. I kept worrying (stressing) about the SRP and thinking "What if Philip doesn't like me anymore.. what if I was too clingy?" and kept blaming myself for him not answering my message earlier that morning although I could see that he had seen it. ugh. (Don't ask who Philip is. I might make a post about him at some point. Might).

Day 3:
My alarm woke me up at 00.30 but I wasn't ready to go downstairs yet. I fell asleep and woke back up by myself at 3am and... still couldn't go downstairs. I stayed in my bed until 8am, still stressing and blaming myself for Philip not answering. Oh please dear Philip, answer me and tell me you like me like you 'always' do? C'mon, I can't concentrate on stressing about the SRP when I have to worry about this too. 
I still haven't found anything to write.
My English teacher is off tomorrow and available Tuesday but that day I'm going to be out all day since we (Maria, Jasmin from piano class, and I) are going to One OK Rock's concert in Copenhagen and we're leaving early :/
So I wrote to my other counselor (the one who's not my teacher), telling her that I honestly felt really stressed out and asked her if she'd have time tomorrow (Monday). 'She said she had time Monday at 9.35 where she was going to help another girl with the same problem (yes!!) but that I also could call her today if I'd like to begin now (she left her number in the message).
It's 2pm now and I have to be at Mette (the one from my class)'s surprise birthday party a bit earlier than 4pm. I don't know if I should call her now... it'd suck to finally be able to write something and then "get out of the writing mood" because I have to go somewhere.
I think I'll leave earlier at Mette's and go home and call her. She seems really nice so I'm hoping for the best *crosses fingers*
Another girl from our class, Pernille, had asked a few of us to hold a surprise party for Mette since she was turning 20 but had nobody to celebrate with (and it bummed her out quite a bit).
Mette was really happy about the party. So happy that she cried! aaaw
After 1½ hour I went back home and called my teacher right before 6pm. When the phone was first picked up, I heard tapping on a keyboard. Apparently my counselor's cat had just laid down on it. Hahah cute.
But she was really nice, really helpful and very good at explaining. She gave me a much better idea of how I had to write the assignment. But I'm still going to meet her tomorrow. There is another girl with the same question who also finds it hard to start so we'll both be talking to the counselor at the same time. Maybe the other girl and I can help each other out (come with new ideas and stuff). I was also supposed to have a sleepover with Emilie tomorrow but she's taking her driver's licence right now and has class tomorrow night so we moved that to Wednesday-Thursday.
Maria also asked me how I was doing and I was like "I slept. Then I had an existential crisis. Then I went to Mette's surprise party".
I told her about the bad dream I had with Snoowey (my bunny) dying and me feeling worthless because Philip, in my dream, told me that he liked another girl and had been playing with me all along. I called her and ranted for like half an hour. I was panicking and Maria laughed several times about how pathetic I must've sounded. In the end we decided that Maria will be coming over tomorrow to help me and give me that starter kick. Phew... I think I'll call it a night and get some sleep.

Day 4:
I went to the meeting with my teacher/counselor and she is really nice! I´know it sounds bad but I'm "happy" to know that I'm not the only one struggling with my assignment like this or struggling with understanding it all. It relaxes me a little because I know I'm not the only one who finds it hard. "I'm not stupid!". And as my counselor said: "Nobody told you it was going to be easy". She even praised us saying that we seemed very humble to the SRP and that was good because then she knew we were going to take it serious compared to the other people who were like "it's just the SRP. It's not that hard"ish.

Maria is going to come around 1pm but I'll try to sort out my notes and start writing before that.
Tomorrow is reserved for the concert and I haven't even had time to get all hyped because of it. boooh. So I better work hard today!
.... in the end we ended up with very very little (like, 5 lines of text and 3 big citations including strange terms that we didn't even understand). Darn!

Day 5:
Today was the concert and the entire day was spent in Copenhagen with Jasmin and Maria. We also met up with our friend Sara who used to be in Maria's class and did cheerleading with me some years ago. The concert was WAFHKAWLNGFAWNFMWAN FKWALH and WOAH! We were so close! Like, 2nd and 3rd row and they came so close to us that we got to touch both Taka and Toru! :OO 
In the train home, a Japanese guy named Shu sat down beside us. It was a little awkward at first until we found out he had also been to the concert and suddenly we had something to talk about. He had been studying here in Denmark but was going back to Japan in two weeks and said that, if we came to Tokyo next summer, we should definitely hang out! He'd be our guide~
After 3 hours we had to switch to another train and our ways parted. There were like no people so we each took a double seat and laid down. At some point I grabbed my phone to check the time and I saw a notification from Instagram- wait. what?! is that- OMG IT IS?!?! "Girls! Taka liked two of my pictures on Instagram!!" I quietly "yelled". We were like "woooah that's unreal!" for five minutes before we drifted back to sleep. Later when we got off the train I had gotten a new notification that he had actually followed me :O Holy freaking cow! 
So much happened! My little fangirl heart can't take it <//3. A-MAZING day!!!

Day 6:
Our train arrived back in our own city 4.30 in the morning so I slept until noon. I was supposed to go to Emilie's place and sleep there until Thursday but I was so tired that I asked if we could post phone it. After all that happened the day before I was too hyped to do much. I sat down and spent 6 hours (literally) fixing what Maria and I had found into a normal coherent text that takes up 2 pages but in reality equals to 2.77 pages if you look at the amount of characters, which we have to. Those 6 hours flew by and even though I actually managed to get something down, I don't feel like it's good. I feel like I've been repeating myself way too much and that there is no structure. Heck, I might have done it all wrong.

Day 7:
Today was my "work date" with Emilie! ... We have both been busy lately so we had a lot to catch up on (which we didn't even get to! :( ) and... in the end... we didn't do much.
I asked my friend Karoline for some notes. Yesterday Maria had told me that Karoline had said that I should just find her if I needed anything since she wrote about the same topic for her SRP last year.
She said that she'd send something later and... while I was waiting for her to send me the notes so I could get some more "fill" into the first question (it should be 3 pages), I felt stuck. I didn't know how to analyze the movie properly and when I finally did, I couldn't see how it was in relation to my overall question.
Once again, I wrote to my teacher and met up with her at 3.30pm (Thank GOSH that Emilie lives right beside our school).
In my absence, Emilie wrote around 5-6 lines and that's pretty much what I got to add too. Emilie's mom thought I was going to stay for the night but we both agreed that we probably wouldn't get anything done.
Since today was NOT as progressive as I had hoped, I'm planning on forcing myself to stay up until I feel like I've got a nice piece of text. My teacher gave me a better idea of which angle to keep in mind while writing but I'm still worried.
So much for wanting to finish early... today marks that we're past halfway and I have so little D:
I made a brainstorm of what my teacher had told me and instead of staying up I decided to go to bed and wake up early. Toooo tired...

Day 8:
I had dedicated today for writing but around noon, my grandma called my mom, crying, saying that my grandparents' best friend had passed away the night before and that she only just now had gotten the message. She was home alone and my mom and I couldn't stand her being all alone so we went over there. My grandpa was at the foot doctor but when he came home, my grandma got out of her chair and, while crying, told him the bad news. I have never heard my grandpa sob like that. So... today's hardcore writing day was screwed up. It's 4pm and my stomach hurts for some reason. I'm going to try to write more. I'm watching the video but all the stuff I note down fits much better into the 3rd question's answer. Maybe I should work on that first and analyze afterwards?
In the end I couldn't concentrate... once again I was confused as to how in the world I was supposed to analyze the movie. I mean, I can analyze the light settings and music and whatnot but since it had NOTHING to do with my overall question. Censor could bash me and lower my grade for that reason.
Today my best friend, Emilie, also put up a selfie on Facebook with the caption "SRP #fakesmile #dyinginside #don'tknowifI'llsurvive - SRP Hell. I feel you Emilie, I feel you.

Day 9:
Today was yet a day of not being able to work on it as I was going to my grandpa's early 75th birthday party. The whole family went and I had brought Emilie to cater with me. I was "glad" to know that Emilie hadn't worked on it the day before either and that we still had an equal'ish amount of text. I mean, of course I'd want for us all to finish quick and get this stupid paper over with but on the other hand I'm glad to know that I'm not the only one struggling. It's not just me. My mom told me later that Emilie had told her that she found it frustrating. I agree with you, Emilie. I totally agree.
In the evening I went straight from the birthday party to Mette (from my old class)'s house. She had invited "the ladies / tea club" over for dinner "one last time" as she will be leaving in January for 3 months of traveling in Thailand and New Zealand with her boyfriend.
At the party I talked to Monika and I was very surprised to hear that she had 15 pages(!!) :OO
All the other girls graduated last year so they understood how frustrated I was. To be honest, I was in a really bad mood. It's like right before the party I realized how little time and how many pages I had left. The ladies said that they could feel it too and Karoline came over to give me a hug. Monika agreed with me that everybody BUT I was happy the day we got the SRP. Sigh. So the day after tomorrow, Karoline and Maria are going to come over and help me. I  really really hope I will be able to write something. Please! *crosses fingers*

Day 10:
Today I spent the day writing. I finally found out how to write about the settings of the movie but just as I finished, I looked at it and thought "... I'm not sure if this is right". I swear I'm so close to dropping out, moving to Japan, and work at McDonald's! (An intern joke from the train home)
So yea I found this video and...
No jkjk. But I'm so tired of this! AAARGH!!!! lakehgkjeahgjkeag *throws paper, books, mirror, table* idk...
After hours, HOURS I SAY!!!, of work today... I only have 5,5 pages. FFFFFFFFFF
I want to print it already so I can lit it on fire and watch it burn in hell.

Day 11:
Maria and Karoline came over around the early afternoon. They read the questions for my assignment and agreed with my. This is a stupid assignment!

The questions should be easy enough if it wasn't for the stupid angle my teacher wanted me to see it from. I was really starting to feel the stress coming over me again and I can already see it on my skin. All of their ideas as to how to write it were my exact thoughts too that my teacher had turned down so... somehow they weren't much help. But it was a really nice feeling having them there and while they were sitting there talking with my mom about whatnot, I slowly picked up some important things from the movie. It's so nice to have people around who know what you're going through. However, since they were talking I wasn't able to write my points into sentences. So after they went home, I stay up. I had originally decided to stay up all night because I felt so stressed. Screw sleep! Then I gave myself a pep talk. "Okay. we can do this. all you have to do is write this. you have 4 days. we can make it. write as much as possible until you fall asleep on the floor or at least until you're about to collapse and then your treat will be to sleep". It was hard around midnight but Maria had the next day off so she was able to stay with me for a little. Around 1am I had a most unbelievable philosophical moment of enlightenment and after writing my thoughts down in badly structured sentences, I decided it was enough and went to bed around 2am. Out cold.

Day 12:
I woke up early and went downstairs to begin writing. I wasn't very productive before breakfast though. But I worked and worked on the second question and I have almost finished! (that question). I have 10,2 pages now out of 15-20. I can add two pages of conclusion and abstract and then I have 12 pages, which means I won't have to write a discussion part same length as a Harry Potter book!!

I can finally see an end to this SRP Hell!

AAAAAH the joy!!

Day 13:
Although I only have today and tomorrow to finish this assignment, I feel much more calm.
Yesterday I was still pretty stressed though and after hours in front of the computer, I was starting to get a headache. I was also supposed to have a Skype call with Philip at 8pm so I could help him buy tickets for Denmark but.. he sent me a message almost three hours later apologizing, saying that something got in the way. Honestly, I was really disappointed. Maria also felt troubled because Shu kept reading her messages on Facebook but not answering before the next day so we complained to each others.. it didn't make my mood better but it was nice to let it out. So while Maria and I were complaining, I was reading through my Facebook feed and some page I've liked had shared an article with how to de-stress. Well, I've been really stressed with this assignment and I thought it was a little too late for me to find that article but with nothing else to do I clicked it and found this video by Michelle Phan whom I've been a fan of since like... 2009.
It's amazing how this video affected me. I mean, I knew most of these tips already but hearing that music and her soft voice telling us that everything will be okay... wow. I felt like a huge stone that I had been carrying on my back had just been lifted. In her video she also talked about a Tibetan singing bowl so I tried to look up videos with it. This one is just amazing.
As I was listening to this, I wrapped myself in my blanket and leaned again the wall. I had a cup of warm tea resting in my hands on top of my stomach and then I closed my eyes and leaned back my head. *breathes out* wauv.. that was great. Philip never answered after the last message so around midnight I went to bed and continued listening to the video for a short while before falling asleep.

It's like the world is testing me once again. Every morning my mom will listen to One OK Rock and ask me to join and I really want to but... I'm going to listen to this video again tomorrow. I want to finish this assignment and get it out of the way. Then I can fangirl again. 
In the evening I texted Maria saying that it was nice to finally relax. I suggested that we have a spa day before Philip comes to visit (if he does). We should drink smoothies and tea , wear face masks, listen to relaxing music, meditate, and take foot baths. 
And then, at the same time we sent the messages: 
"Totally! And then we turn off our phones so no boys can distract us!"
"And then we'll put our phones somewhere so we don't have to think about others while we let the hours fly by"
Aaah yes... great minds think alike.

Day 14:
I don't have anything written down from this day. I was so stressed out of my mind and I don't know how many times I said that I'd quit and print it and burn it and then drop out of school and leave the country forever. Really... I was pissed. No matter what time I tried to write, nothing would work. So I had a meeting with my counselor but forgot it once I got home. Then I called her in the evening for help and... once again I forgot what I had to write. The SRP was due the next morning at 9am and I ended up staying up all night (and finished at 6am). I was so tired and sick-looking and my parents felt really bad or me. I must have looked pathetic. 
(Me the entire day and night)
In the end I wasn't anywhere near satisfied. The conclusion probably makes no sense and the third question... let's just say I completely screwed that up. I wish I could have done it better but, if given the chance, heck no I'd go back in time and do it over! 
That stupid assignment is out of my life now and I only had 3 existential crises.
When I came to school, I walked through the foyer with my 3 copies in hand. As I passed some tables with 1st or 2nd graders (only the 3rd graders had had those last two weeks off), I heard them whisper:
"*gasp!* SRP!!"
and felt their eyes on me until I was no longer within sight. You could hear the fear in their voices... it was really satisfying to think that I no longer have to worry like them. Okay.. that sounds mean. I didn't mean for it to sound mean!

There were two rooms for us to turn our assignments in in. I got in line right after my friend from IT, Rasmus, and we brofist'd as soon as we got out. I asked him how his went "S***!" he said but none of us cared because IT WAS OVEEEEEEER!!! FREDOOOOM!
I sat down with my class and the rest of the seniors for breakfast, which is a tradition on the day we turn in the SRPs, and we talked and laughed the stress away with each others and the teachers until the Christmas finale ended and our Christmas break began. 

Let's all exhale for a moment~