A small confession

In an earlier post I wrote about my exam, I mentioned that my attendance at Uni had been horrendous due to my mental health declining. I’m going to confess now something that only my mum and close friends know, I haven’t been in to any lectures etc in Uni since January, I just couldn’t face it. I did keep everyone who needed to know informed but just couldn’t get my butt out the door and onto the bus. In fact, I struggled going out at all, often staying in for days at a time with just a quick trip to the supermarket or local garage. I am not proud of this, I still need to recognise all the signs I guess and get help rather than hide under the duvet.

I have had an amazing about of support from friends and family and the University as well. Now I have all the equipment I need to help with my studies as well as a mentor who is brilliant, I am genuinely looking forward to starting the new academic year.

Surprisingly, I passed my exam which when you consider I missed an entire term of lectures is pretty amazing! I don’t advocate it as a study option though so don’t follow my lead.

Yesterday, I got confirmation that I can retake a module which I missed. I had a module that was only the length of the term I failed to attend. There is a cost implication but Student Finance have got me covered with that.

I eventually sought further help for myself and have now been told that the community mental health team are referring me to the psychological therapies team for treatment. Thankfully, they haven’t recommended mucking about with my medication which I am pleased about as it’s taken almost 2 years to get it steady.

I now have all of the back up and support that I need to get back to my studies, I am planning on improving on last year’s results and with all the stuff I have been given, I now believe it is possible. I still have to deal with the appeal against my benefit being stopped but at least I can do that now without worrying whether or not I will be accepted back at Uni in September.

The moral of this long and rambling post is that if you feel like your world is collapsing in on you, get help quickly, I didn’t but I know not that I should have done. Luckily, everything turned out OK but it might not have done and then that would have had an even worse effect on the way I was feeling. I look forward to the day when I am less broken, I can’t even think about being “fixed” as that feels an eternity away.

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Exams…pfft!

Yesterday I sat my introduction to criminology exam. I was not in the slightest concerned about the exam; my attendance in the last term has been horrific due to my mental health decline but even though I didn’t attend like I should have, I was still determined to sit the exam. 

My mentor talked me through what to expect while there, where the bag room was and how I would find my desk, the 2 most essential things to me. 

I got on the bus, switched on the ipod and switched off my brain. Well, until the bus driver decided that he needed to sit for 5 minutes at several bus stops leaving me almost homicidal! The one thing I hadn’t thought to ask my mentor was whether I would be allowed in the exam room if I was late. However, due to my speedy little legs and amazing knowledge of the building the exams were held in, I arrived a minute or two before the exam started! There were quite a few of us in the room, at least 5 different exams were being sat in the same room, 2 of those lasting just 2 hours and the rest of us lucky people had 3 hour exams. 

I read all 12 questions on the sheet, of which I had to choose 4. I chose my first question to answer and I was off and writing. In the end, I managed to choose and answer 4 questions with 40 minutes to spare. I toyed with the idea that I should sit there and re-read my answers until I fell asleep but decided not to so I raised my hand and asked to leave. 

When I got home, I sat on the sofa and grinned to myself, I had done it. Pass or fail, it didn’t matter, I had sat and finished an exam, my first of many I suspect. Then my belly rumbled so I treated myself to 2 bacon and egg sandwiches which I ate surprisingly quickly. The natural high of finishing the exam lasted until around 5pm when I fell asleep and woke up 2 and a half hours later! So, failure and resits aside, I am free to do what I like until the end of September when the next year starts. But, being the kind of person I am, I won’t be relaxing, I have a major de-cluttering and DIY project on my hands, it’s called sorting my flat out and painting it. What have I let myself in for?