Midst the Midterms

In the middle of the semester classes often have an examination to test your progress and understanding of the course material. While great in theory, many classes have a midterm exam roughly around the same time period which leaves many students stressed out.

I recently experienced a moment that may have perpetuated my stress, but also made me laugh about the situation I was in. Hopefully if you are a student, my story will give you a funny study break, and if you are not, I hope you are reminded of your exciting days as a college student.

As I am taking my hour long break between classes. I decided that I wanted to simply NOT think about my upcoming midterm… I wanted to destress.

This hour before my midterm was fantastic. I was getting to look at different classes I could take for next semester, reply to some chats I had left unanswered on Facebook, and think about exciting weekend plans. On this particular Monday I was feeling rather lethargic after 45 minutes of “de-stressing”, so I started thinking about going outside for a walk to refresh my brain.

I decided that maybe it would be best if I took a moment to go over some slides from a discussion just to make sure I remembered some key information correctly before I went for a walk.

I open the midterm review presentation we had from our last discussion. Feeling confident I wouldn’t be learning any new information I continue scrolling. The second slide goes over some items to bring for the exam. After I glaze through the word “blue or black pen” I see “Blue or Green Book.”

“Blue or Green book?” I think to myself…

“BLUE OR GREEN BOOK! I’ve FORGOTTEN a blue or green book!”

I look at the time and I look at back at those four words. I think about where I would possibly get this book to write in for the midterm. It’s been so long since I need to bring something to an exam!

With 15 minutes before the official start of the exam I pack my belongings and run as fast as I can down the hill from the Haas business school to the school’s Golden Bear Cafe. As I exit the building I see many of my classmates holding their blue books and their black pens, unknowingly taunting me.

I count the seconds as I run to make sure I can keep track of the time. I ran so fast that I out ran the woman exercising that afternoon! I felt invincible (and incredibly nervous) as I continued speeding through the campus in my blue jeans and incredibly heavy backpack prepared for another session of studying for my midterm the next day.

“I am so thankful I wore sensible sneakers today.”

I am excited to see the cafe as I still have at some time to spare! I am in fact, so excited to see the cafe that I trip over the stairs in front of me and fall onto the ground. All the students who eat lunch at a noon turn to see what has just happened. I get up as fast as I can and hurry along into the cafe selling a very important book.


I grab a couple of blue books near the cash register and swing open my bag to grab my wallet. A friend I made this past weekend shares a “Hello” as she stands behind me in line. Out of breath, I try to explain to her that I have a midterm in ten minutes and will talk to her later.

I pay and go back up the hill. I think about if there is any hope to make it back in time for class. After checking the time I find I still have 8 minutes to spare. I thankfully was able to make it back to my class on time, while getting the materials I needed for success.

I sure wasn’t lethargic after those 15 minutes.