The sickness of early semester

Tuesday, February 8, 2005


Written by Benjamin Mark Lynch (Contest Entry)


Have you ever wondered why your body always embraces some sort of cruel sickness within the first three weeks of class? Perhaps you're wondering how your nasal passages can fit all of that gelatinous, slimy, (and don't forget runny) snot into its thin tubes of pure distracting action? Let me tell you, I'm currently there, and between my coughs of violent aggression and very audible honking, I have one thing to say. School breeds stress, and stress breeds sickness.

Oh, I have tried to avoid imagining the two lovable villains, skipping hand in hand with each other, prancing and making their way up into my nasal cavity, only to create a vengeance so vile and so inappropriate that even my sense of balance is thrown off. They strike like lightning out of a darkened sky. I didn’t even have a chance to defend myself against their onslaught of pain and malice… or did I?

As it turns out, my sickness is most probably the bi-product of the stresses that I let infiltrate my day. Is it the new sleeping schedule that has thrown me out of whack? Could it be the self-imposed late night essay writing tactica that I have worked so hard to perfect during my academic career? Perhaps, it is knowing in the back of my mind that I will never, not ever, complete all of my readings for a semester. In truth, it is probably all three of these things. Many students, not just myself, are masochistic stress-inducers, and until we get over this, we will continue to be sick during the semester. So, that being said, here is my solution.

Don’t get stressed out. A wise Buddhist once told me that “there should be no such thing as worrying. For you see, if you worry about a problem that has a solution, then you will eventually find it, so you shouldn’t worry. If you worry about a problem that has no solution, then there is no point in worrying, because there is no solution.”


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