The change of pace experienced when one comes back to the academic fold is not always what is expected. The student life portrayed on television by the likes of 'Fresh Meat', 'Skins' and the rest of Channel 4 only shows one very narrow part of realistic experiences. Yes there are nights out with your top girls...
...and yes you spend a stupid amount of time watching shit telly and trying to winch yourself off the sofa to do something productive, but the domestic expectations which hit you like a train after a whole summer of home with a mother cooking, cleaning and reminding you to 'PICK UP YOUR PANTS!' brings you back down to earth.
An equilibrium therefore has to be reached. There will be times when you feel lonely and you're sat alone in your room with only the Sims 2 for company, there will be days when you're walking around campus in the rain wondering why its so damn cold when you have 4 layers on and you seem to have been running around like a headless chicken all day with pen on your face that none of your 'so-called friends' have pointed out. The realities of budget also come into play and you soon come to see the benefits of 'Tesco value' and BOGOFF's over you're usual indulgences. The first week is also the week of admin over load, re-adjusting to the REAL reason you're at university, i.e. an education. The effort required takes immense self motivation and organisational skill which needs to be awoken from its summer hibernation in order to start the year in the way you wish to go on and avoid flustered phone calls to your heads of Dept. with an empty timetable and that feeling of dread in the pit of your stomach.
However, after a year as a fresher, and a week of second year successfully completed with body, bank balance and most of my kitchen appliances intact 3 survival tips have re-emerged in my frazzled, wine fuddled brain;
1.If you wake up in the morning with the darkest of dark clouds hanging over your bed, wash it away with a shower and your favorite smelly stuff, (my fav is a Lush shower gel bought for me by one of my Best Friends called 'It's Raining Men' its like washing in honey mmmmm), do your hair and put on an outfit which you feel like you can conquer the world in and get out of your room, even if you have nowhere to go, you know that you look and feel nice and are ready for any eventuality.
2. Buy one little indulgence every week. This week i bought myself 'Date Bouquet' L'Occitane hand cream, made extra indulgent by the fact that it doesn't officially hit the shelves until next week but the luurrvvllyyy shop assistant informed me they had just received the delivery and made by day by fishing out from the back stock room just for iccle me! There is nothing more luxurious than hand cream and whenever I felt shit this week I just put some on and I felt like a princess (despite looking like a mentalist walking round the town center/campus smelling my hands). £8 well spent!
3. Don't ever stop making friends. I was waiting in a queue to see my personal tutor and saw a familiar face in the queue, one of those faces which you see but never talk to, just because the opportunity never arose. Anyway.... a borrowed pen and swapskis of numbers later and out of the blue I spent yesterday afternoon having a mooch round the shops, dinner and wine with a girl who I CANNOT BELIEVE has not been a part of my life till now!!
Take every opportunity and say YES! Pursue sparkle and get out there; life is waiting...
Peace and Love x