In just over four weeks I go back to university. For those who don’t know – although I’m not sure how, because I bang on about it enough – I’ll be doing a Masters in Social Work.
The first time around, I did a degree in Psychology. I can’t even BEGIN to tell you how much I hated it. I loved my university though. I got on with my lecturers and made amazing friends, but the subject that I so stupidly lumbered myself with rendered me practically catatonic.
Annoyingly, the overwhelming response to “I have a Psychology degree” is “Oh that must have been SO INTERESTING.” It bloody well wasn’t, I can assure you.
Nevertheless, it’s been two years since I graduated, and in those two years, I have been employed for exactly six months. Luckily, that six months absolutely confirmed what I wanted to do with my life and made sure that I could get my place on the (much coveted) course that would get me there. Had I not been so lucky, however, I would undoubtedly be contained in some sort of facility.
Unemployment and an obvious tendency towards mental unbalance do not mix well, let me tell you.
The thing that’s worrying me at the moment is that, having spent the better part of two years being unemployed, going back to university is going to be a massive change of pace.
Most of the time, in my current life, I have very little to do. Occasionally I have a phonecall to make or something, but that’s about it. This might sound fine to you. I bet you make dozens of phonecalls every day.
But, sometimes, I don’t even feel like I have time to make a phonecall.
You see, I get up quite early – usually at about half past nine – and from this point onwards, I have a set-in-stone television schedule that I dare not deviate from. I watch the news, and then the Jeremy Kyle Show, and then I watch some documentaries so that I feel as if I am learning something. (I’m quite partial to a religious documentary, but if it weren’t for the Crime & Investigation channel, I imagine my life would be very empty.)
Anyway, before I know it, it’s half past three and officially much too late in the day to start thinking about making phonecalls.
At university, though, I will be expected to get stuff done. 'Getting stuff done' has never really been my strong suit. Nor has commitment or enthusiasm in relation to anything academic. Being astonishingly clever*, I have always swanned about during the school year and somehow managed - despite being allergic to revision - to do reasonably well in exams. During my degree, for example, I attended about 6% of lectures in my second year. Less in the third year. I probably don’t need to tell you that this is UNACCEPTABLE BEHAVIOUR that must not be repeated when I am back there in October.
I have to be a grown-up, and learn to be a Social Worker.
Good luck me.
*I would consider this to be no more than a slight exaggeration.