I’m back at Tufts after spring break today, and realized that there are only 5 weeks left of school. Only 25 days remain — so few that I wrote out 25 numbers on a sheet of paper and hung it up, so my roommate and I can cross them out day by day.
I feel like this semester went by decidedly faster than the first semester did. I feel like I came back from winter break, put my head down for a couple of weeks, and 3 months went by. I have this perpetual feeling that this is still the beginning of my classes, when we’re decidedly over the hump and on the way out.
I heard a theory once that adults say that time moves faster because our brain focuses on novel experiences. When you’re a child, many experiences are novel. You haven’t done much before.
But as you get older, or as you become more settled in a new phase of life, life becomes less novel. You’ve been here before.
That’s what I think is happening to me. My first semester was an entirely new experience, in a new place, with new norms and routines to learn. My second semester was largely a continuation of that, but without much novelty. And because of that, it feels like it’s gone by much more quickly.
My first reaction is that that’s a bad thing — life is passing by! It’s not a great feeling. But on the other hand, I enjoy that the difficulty and stress of classes is passing me by quickly. I find myself hoping hard that the next 5 weeks slip by, so I can crawl across the finish line of classes.
Perhaps the root of my problems goes back to me getting overwhelmed easily. If I wasn’t in such a rush to be done with my classes because they stressed me out, I would want the semester to go by slower so I could savor it.
I think I want to let go of caring so much about schoolwork and letting it overwhelm me. That’s easier said than done, but I have 5 weeks left in my freshman year to try.