Thursday, January 20, 2011

I am totally wiped out!

Last week, in my Butterflies and a New Educational Adventure post, I mentioned that I'd be starting graduate classes at the University of Iowa this week. I'd gotten into a class entitled American Literature I, for 3 credit hours. But I needed a second class so I'd have at least 6 hours total this semester.

I'd tried signing up for a Native American Literature class last Thursday during my first visit to the campus, because this is a topic that really interests me.

However, upon finding up that this class was full, I had to show up at the first class on Tuesday, in hopes that there'd be an opening; if enough people had dropped, then I could get the professor to sign the "add" slip and then I could rush it to the registrar's office.

Well, guess what? When I got to the first class on Tuesday morning, I found out that enough people had dropped, so I actually got a spot in the class!! I was SO excited.

Since we got out of class a little bit early the first day, I rushed to the registrar's office to get myself officially added to the roster.

Then I ran back to the same room, where my second class (American Literature I) just so happened to be (and taught by the same professor, by the way).

Anyway, this second class is solely for graduate students (unlike my Native American Literature class, which has both graduate and undergraduate students).

Once this second class started, I immediately wondered if I got myself in over my head, wishing my Uncle Hector were around so I could've gotten his advice before signing up for this particular class.

As the professor began going over the syllabus, and giving an overview of the class, I became very nervous, thinking I'd bitten off more than I could chew. Some of the stuff went way over my head.

Fortunately, there was another student in the class in the same boat - she and I have both recently returned to school after a hiatus; we're also both parents. She'd felt the same way.

I felt a little better, a little more confident about being in this class.

This feeling didn't last long, once she and I went to the book store to get our required books. For both my classes, I have a total of 18 books! I tried to buy as many used books as I could, but not all of them were available as used books. I walked out of the bookstore with a total of $298.48 worth of books!! For TWO classes!

That confident feeling continued to dissipate once I started in on the required readings. It was a big load to take on, and intimidating, to say the least.

But I'd exchanged e-mail addresses with my fellow "older" student, and she was feeling as intimidated as I. Once again, I felt a little better knowing I wasn't alone.

Anyway, today was the second meeting of both of my classes, which obviously meet Tuesdays and Thursdays.

After the first class (Native American Literature), I was even more excited about the subject matter as well as being able to continue with the reading assignments (even though we have a quiz on Tuesday, as well as a paper due on Thursday . . .yes, during week #2).

I was still nervous about the second class, since it would have much more reading to accomplish, and the professor would expect more from us, as it was a graduate student only class.

Once we began discussing the assigned reading, however, my nervousness eased up a bit. I still felt like a dunce, having been out of an academic setting for so long compared to the majority of the class, but it was still a rush, and fun, nonetheless.

When class was over, I walked out of there thinking, Hey, I can do this . . . it's just one reading at a time.

After stopping at the student union for lunch, and a bit of time to myself for reading the assignment for next week, I headed home.

Let me tell you, after commuting (about 45 minutes one way), and two days' worth of classes this week, I am WIPED OUT. My eyes have that scratchy I-stayed-up-too-late-and-I-can't-keep-'em-open feeling. I[m so tired, I almost can't think straight. This is the one drawback - the exhaustion.

And I have yet to put Livie to bed for the night.

I think I'm going to pass out as soon as my head hits the pillow tonight.

It's been an exciting and challenging, yet fun week.

2 comments: said...

But keep on thinking positive, you'll see how little by little you'll make it, and how proud you'll be of yourself! ÁNIMO, TE LO MERECES...

varunner said...

That does sound exciting! Cool classes too. When I was doing my masters I bought a lot of my books from - they carried a lot of the texts I needed at half the cost. Course you have to know your books a couple of weeks before to be able to do that. I look forward to hearing more about your classes!

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