Monday, November 21, 2011

Failing Myself, and Maybe School

That project is due tonight. And there's no way I'm going to make it.

I emailed my teacher a few days ago, explained my situation and asked for an extension. I understand that she has no obligation to help me out, but when I saw her reply, that she "couldn't have a different set of rules for me and another for the rest of the class", I broke down. And I continue to break down.

I feel like giving up. Just walking away with my quitter's badge and never, ever trying again. Maybe I'm just not cut out for school anymore, not like this. I asked for a week extension, but honestly, I could use a month. My brain doesn't work like it used to. I've made some progress on this project, I've been working my ass off on it, but it's just not good. I can't organize my thoughts, and finding parallels between my work and others' for the required citations is confusing. I've been doing really well with the quizzes and shorter assignments, but this project is just too complicated for my addled brain.

I'd requested a tutor, when I was first registering for classes. My counselor glossed over it, said that we'd see how it went and to just keep her informed as to how I was doing. But when I emailed her over a week ago to tell her that this project was kicking my ass, she suggested I just take it one step at a time. VERY HELPFUL, THANKS.

I feel really defeated right now. If I can't handle school, I don't know what to do to improve my life. I thought I had a better support system here. I thought they would help me if I started to drown.

And then, my teacher ended the extension-rejecting email on this note: "I want to remind you to work ahead on the [other, even huger project we have due at the end of the quarter] which will require more time and effort than [this project that you totally suck at]. In addition you will be unable to get an extension on that."

Fantastic. Panic attacks all around.


Anonymous said...

You're not failing yourself! Cut yourself a little slack -- it's your first project at school after years off of school, and you are a different person with different abilities now than you were back then. Does the teacher realize you are disabled? Can your counselor act as an intermediary between you and the teacher while you get a tutor? Don't give up hope, and don't panic. We need to get you a towel.

(I realize that that last statement only makes sense if you've read Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, which I'm assuming you have because you are also a nerd. In a good way.)

steph said...

Oh yeah, I could definitely use a towel.

My teacher knows that I'm disabled and my counselor was cc'd on everything, but she hasn't gotten back to me yet.

I haven't totally given up hope, I'm going to keep plugging away as well I can. I'm just really discouraged that my best may not even be mediocre, at least by this teacher's standards. That really hits me where I live, you know?

Thanks for your encouragement, my friend. :)

Migrainista said...

Hopefully this is a teacher you will only have to deal with for this one class. I know you will find other teachers who are more willing to work with you as you move forward. Don't give up Steph - I know you can do this college thing.

MigraineMe said...

Don't give up! Some teachers are just like that and they think that migraines are just headaches, like the common headaches they have when they have a head cold or a hangover. I recently completed law school and took the bar exam with a migraine and it can be done - you just need the support of friends and/or family, or both, to get through it! I found ways to study during my peak hours of the day when my migraine wasn't as bad as other hours of the day and even though some days were less productive than others, it still worked out. Continue to use the school administration and your counselor to assist with teachers that are difficult to work with, but you can do it!

steph said...

Thanks Migrainista, I'm trying not to let this setback get the best of me. :)

And, MigraineMe, passing the bar with a migraine? I can't even imagine! Thanks for sharing your experience, and I'm definitely still figuring out how to juggle migraines and studying. Did you utilize your school's disability services?

Sue said...

I'm just catching up now because life is just simply kicking my butt since my concussion. The brain fog from the concussion combined with the usual migraine pain - oy.

I'm so sorry to hear that school is so challenging right now. I agree with the others, cut yourself some slack and be good to yourself. As a disabled student, you should be given more than just extensions on projects, but extra help in any form they can provide.

I hope it all sorts out soon.

steph said...

Thanks so much for your encouragement, Sue. Since I've written this post, I've let go of some of my expectations and am just trying to learn from the experience. I agree that I should be getting more help than I am, I'm just not sure where to go for it.

I'm sorry to hear the concussion has affected you for so long. Glad you're back! :)