The five stages of finals grief


Audrey Jewett

Final exams cause major stress – that is if you’re able to come to terms with them happening.


Finals aren’t on Wednesday. This can’t be happening this soon. If I continue to watch White Collar, time will stop progressing and I shall simply sit in my timeless vortex and be content. I have all the time in the world. Netflix wouldn’t betray me like that and soak up all my time; it’s really here to help me relax before the studying commences. The studying doesn’t even really need to commence because finals aren’t happening on Wednesday––these so-called “finals” are merely a ploy to get me to clean out my math folder via this ancient practice sometimes referred to as “reviewing.” I see right through it, and I will not buy into this scam.


Why do I even have to take these finals anyway? My grades are decently subpar, and it’s just another thing to add to my already swamped schedule. Doing this will aggravate me further and I’m at capacity for stress. I spent the whole semester listening to lectures, writing papers, and taking notes––is that not enough for these teachers who are supposedly on my side? What more do they want from me? Why must they punish me for a semester’s worth of learning? Who do they think they are? Trying to test me on the material they’ve spent months trying to instill in my memory, I won’t have it.


If I start studying on Tuesday night at six, it gives me a solid 14 hours of studying before my first final. I can totally pull off an all-nighter and function the next day; sleep shall not own me. I’ll manipulate it into a reward system––a half an hour of studying can be equivalent to a cookie and ten minutes of sleep…but it’s cruel to my fragile state of mind to only sleep for ten minutes at a time…and studying is really more effective when done in shorter increments… and cookies are too addicting to just have one…Okay, if I study for twenty minutes, I get an hour of sleep and two––three––cookies.


All hope is lost. I might as well not start at all. If I do, it will only bring my mood down even more––it will affirm the fact that I know nothing. Absolutely nothing. My mind is an area jam-packed with nothingness. I spent the last five months committing things to short-term memory to aid me on minor tests and quizzes and now it’s all crumbling down around me. The world is a dark, dark place, devoid of happiness and equations necessary for me to pass my math final. There’s no light at the end of this tunnel. No amount of late-starts or three-day weekends on the other side can motivate me because I won’t make it through the first final. This is my third chocolate bar this hour, I don’t even know who I am anymore.


All right, finals are in less than 24 hours. I can do this, I actually remember most of this information, and it actually makes sense. It’s almost like I’ve done this before… oh wait. Finals aren’t some unbeatable adversary, they’re like one giant review before I move on to second semester––now I’m growing nostalgic.