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I have not forgotten you all - Helen's journal and online home
In which an old dog attempts to learn new tricks.
heleninwales
heleninwales
I have not forgotten you all
Just wanted to say that I am still reading, but it's taking me all my efforts not to stress out at the moment and I haven't the energy to do much commenting.

I know that on the scale of life stress, taking an AS-Level Maths exam -- which is only for fun and the sake of a personal challenge -- and completing the final assignment for the OU Children's Literature essay (ditto) is way down near the bottom of the scale compared to what some of you are facing, but it's running alongside low-level background worry about my Dad (nothing specific, just he's nearly 91...) and a pesky sinus infection that keeps easing, then coming back. The blocked up nose means I'm not sleeping as well as I might, not to mention the dawn chorus which is more like a full scale avian opera right outside our window every morning also wakes me up well before the alarm at 7 am. Finally, G is at his most stressed at this time of year because he's trying to herd all his students through completing and submitting their projects and assignments. So far this year I have managed to avoid any flaming rows, which might be a first!

Anyway, the end is in sight. Today I just have one final assignment to mark and return by post[*], then for the rest of the day it will be maths revision, then more last minute maths revision tomorrow morning and the exam (1½ hours) in the afternoon. I know I'm not going to do very well because I just can't do the questions fast enough, but I hope I can do enough to pass. After that I want to plod through the rest of the 3000 word essay and get it submitted by Monday at the latest. I love studying, but the assessments are a pain and I just feel I want my life back so I can start working on what I'm going to do next. Cleaning the house and getting it straight after months of neglect is my first priority, but that won't keep me going forever. :)

At least it's sunny today, which always makes me feel a bit better.



[*]Normally everything is done electronically, but I was allocated a prisoner for this final presentation, which did not please me because it meant that I had to learn how to mark and return assignments via the paper and snail mail route, which is something I have never done in 12 years of tutoring. I wouldn't have minded, but as I haven't managed to get another OU tutoring post, this is the last batch of assignments ever, so I have just had to learn something I will never need to know again. On the other hand, he's done well, considering that as he has no access to the Internet or even a computer and thus has had less support than the rest of my students.

[Cross-posted from Dreamwidth by way of a backup http://heleninwales.dreamwidth.org/41995.html. If you want to leave a comment, please use whichever site you find most convenient. Comments so far: comment count unavailable.]

Current Mood: stressed stressed

18 comments or Leave a comment
Comments
peadarog From: peadarog Date: May 16th, 2012 09:09 am (UTC) (Link)
Good luck to you!
heleninwales From: heleninwales Date: May 16th, 2012 09:32 am (UTC) (Link)
Thanks. I know how to do all the maths questions, but I'm slow and I realised last night, I am so used to working alone at home that I mutter aloud to keep track of where I am. How I will manage in an exam hall where silence is enforced I don't know! :)
peadarog From: peadarog Date: May 16th, 2012 09:35 am (UTC) (Link)
Mutter quietly. In Welsh.
heleninwales From: heleninwales Date: May 16th, 2012 11:02 am (UTC) (Link)
But the people around me will speak Welsh, so that won't help! They'll think I'm trying to tell my neighbours in the exam room the answers. Not that that would be much help, all the rest of the class are better than me. :)
pickledginger From: pickledginger Date: May 16th, 2012 01:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
So it's all part of a fiendish plot to bring down the curve? ;-)

*suspects you are better than you think*
khiemtran From: khiemtran Date: May 16th, 2012 10:00 am (UTC) (Link)
Best of luck!
heleninwales From: heleninwales Date: May 16th, 2012 06:13 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks. I'll let you know how I get on in due course. Thankfully the project counts for 50% of the marks and as we can take as long as we like over that, I'm quite proud of my efforts. I just need to scrape some marks in the exam and it will be fine.
readthisandweep From: readthisandweep Date: May 16th, 2012 10:22 am (UTC) (Link)
In my world, taking an AS-Level Maths exam... completing the final assignment for the OU... [&] low-level background worry about my Dad would be enough to stress anyone out. Add, pesky sinus infection that keeps easing, then coming back & frankly, I'm empathising so much I'm almost sobbing.

The former notwithstanding, earlier this year I had a virus that did exactly the same. It sapped my energy so much that it took two months before I felt properly well again. The trick ids not to imagine you are better before you are.

Cleaning the house and getting it straight after months of neglect... Doing this as we speak - a task that invariably makes me feel more positive.

Good luck with everything Helen & don't forget to take time to breathe...
heleninwales From: heleninwales Date: May 16th, 2012 11:03 am (UTC) (Link)
Thanks. :)
pickledginger From: pickledginger Date: May 16th, 2012 01:16 pm (UTC) (Link)
You are as busy as a busy thing. And sinus infections eat the brain (well, not literally). And the Internet can muddle through without you for a few days, if it must. Good to know you're all right, though!

(Neti pot type things are icky but amazingly helpful for sinus infections.)
pickledginger From: pickledginger Date: May 16th, 2012 01:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
And good luck!!
heleninwales From: heleninwales Date: May 16th, 2012 06:42 pm (UTC) (Link)
I am doing the sinus irrigation, which is helping a lot. It's possible that it's at least partly a reaction to all the tree pollen that is no doubt floating in the air at the moment. The pollen and the birds are the downside to living in what is now effectively a clearing in a forest.
brownnicky From: brownnicky Date: May 16th, 2012 02:00 pm (UTC) (Link)
good luck! You have taken on a lot.
heleninwales From: heleninwales Date: May 16th, 2012 06:46 pm (UTC) (Link)
I probably should have refused to do the maths exam, but the course has been fun and has exercised a totally different part of my brain to the writing. The really stupid thing is that in about a week's time, I'll have nothing to do at all -- well, other than deal with the mess that is rapidly taking over the house. :)

At least I can have a whole summer off while I sort out some sort of part-time work to stop me going bonkers.
coth From: coth Date: May 16th, 2012 02:34 pm (UTC) (Link)
I read this with recognition and sympathy. I'm sorry you haven't been able to secure a new tutoring post with the OU. Sympathy for the lurgi. Good luck in the exam. And best wishes for the assignment.

You will feel better when the house is clean.
heleninwales From: heleninwales Date: May 16th, 2012 06:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have to admit that the disorder in the house has reached the point where it's annoying me, but I'll soon be in a position to tackle it. But looked at separately, none of the things I'm doing is a problem, it's just the way so many things have come together at once.

Re the lack of tutoring job, I was initially a bit upset, but to be honest, with the huge fee increase, it's not going to be the same as it used to be. Fees in England are going to rise from £750 for a 60 point module to £2500. It's going to alter the whole dynamic because when students are paying that much, they're going to be far more demanding, not realising that the OU will actually get less money than before because the government funding has been cut and the fee increases won't make up the difference. I've decided that I'm well out of it and though it's sad to leave the job after 12 years, I'll find something a bit less stressful to see me through to retirement in 2.5 years.
green_knight From: green_knight Date: May 16th, 2012 03:43 pm (UTC) (Link)
Best of luck with the exam! Take deep breaths. You'll be fine.
heleninwales From: heleninwales Date: May 16th, 2012 06:47 pm (UTC) (Link)
Thanks. As absolutely nothing is riding on the maths exam, I am happy to go in tomorrow and just do what I can. And as long as I get something in for the essay, I'll pass. The only stress there is trying to get a good grade, though again I don't need it; it's just habit making me do the best job I can.
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