I Almost Quit My GCSEs

Hey guys, guess who?!! So, I am finally back in the blogging universe! I know what you’re thinking; you’re thinking that it’s a total lie, that I’m teasing you and I’m going to publish this post and then not publish anything again for a couple of months… which… considering my track record over the last few months would be a reasonable conclusion! But… this time I truly am back – for a while at least. I have so many blog posts planned out, I have been storing them in the memo on my phone for the last couple of months my fingers just itching to finally type them out and publish them on my blog, but I’ve had so much going on and there simply hasn’t been time. One of two things would have happened if I had continued blogging over the last two months:

1) I would have spent too much time blogging and not enough time studying and revising for my GCSEs and ultimately would have ended up with bad results (but it hasn’t been results day yet so let’s not get too confident!)

2) I would have found a way to do both revision and blogging but my revision would be less effective and I wouldn’t do as much which could result in worse grades and the quality of my blog posts would pay the price because I would be blogging quickly and not spending time to actually get my thoughts and points across and, I would speed edit and speed tag and everything would just be worse.

So, for those two reasons I had to take a break and I have been really sad because I’ve had so much that I’ve wanted to blog about; but it’s okay because today I sat my last GCSE! I am officially free from compulsory education! I’m no longer home-educated… which is really weird and quite sad… but it does mean that I can finally blog again! Be prepared for lots of exciting blog posts over the next few weeks!

Anyway… I guess that was kind of the intro? Quite a long one but we’ll go with it.

Firstly, I would just like to say this isn’t clickbait to those of you who might be thinking that. The title is actually true and I will expand and explain soon. Secondly, this post is going to be a general overview of my experience studying and sitting my GCSEs which might interest some of you or it might just be a chilling feeling of deja vu – in which case feel free to stop reading now.

Okay… where to even start. I guess the first thing would be to quickly tell you my subject choices. So, this year I did maths, economics, chemistry, human biology and English literature. Last year I did three GCSEs and the year before that I did one. So that’s what I was working with and boy do I have some dramatic stories to tell!

My first exams were human biology (10th and 12th of May), I thought they would be really easy and that I would enjoy studying the textbook because I found the subject quite interesting and it was very relevant to me because it was about how bodies  – including mine – worked, there were elements of it that I found really interesting and wish I had been able to learn more about (such as inheritance and genes) and there were elements that I really, really hated and wished I didn’t have to learn at all (such as digestion and diets). So I thought it was going to be easy, despite the fact that the textbook was relatively big and had more material to learn than I had ever had to learn before in my life, including all the complicated scientific terms and names for things and what they did (such as mitosis, osmosis, homeostasis blah blah blah) but I found it quite enjoyable and at first I actually did have fun learning it! Then, it got to about a week before my exam and I did my first past paper – I know what you’re thinking, I should have done one way sooner right?! Well, no. I’m the kind of person that leaves it until the last minute and then gets really stressed about it. Anyway, I did my first past paper and I think I got a D grade. This really upset me because I had put so much work in and had studied really hard and I thought I’d understood it really well and I think my mark was 90/120 or something along those lines and I just couldn’t understand how 90 marks could be a D, so I studied really, really hard and then did a second past paper – this time my grade was an F. Which just made the whole situation worse. I studied some more, did a third paper, a D. This was the Saturday before my first paper… I was an absolute mess. I was honestly, at that moment, at the lowest point mentally I had ever been. And physically maybe. I was so tired and upset and stressed and I felt sick to my stomach every waking second, I felt like I could cry at any given moment, I was cold constantly (I blame that on the anxiety and the tiredness), I could not fathom why I was doing so badly even though I had studied so hard and had pretty much memorised most of the textbook… the Sunday then rolled around, by this point I hadn’t showered in maybe three-four days, I hadn’t changed my clothes in just as long… I was a wreck. But then I discovered something that changed my life around! I discovered that unlike with previous exams I had sat myself and previous past papers I had marked myself, instead of marking the exam papers separately and then adding them together for an overall grade, this paper was marked by adding both of the exam papers together first to find out your final grade – so you didn’t get graded on the papers individually. I found this out through looking at the grade scheme and discovering that full marks for the subject were 180 even though paper one only had 120 marks available. It was then that I realised, honestly I could have sobbed there and then because it turned out I was actually getting Bs, not Ds and Fs. It was quite possibly one of the happiest days of my life. So, that’s my story with human biology. Oh, and I sat the papers and they went okay, well enough but not as well as I had performed in past papers I don’t feel.

Moving on… so, the next exam I had was chemistry (18th May). This was definitely not my strong point. I hate chemistry, more than I ever thought I would. The main issue was that I didn’t have time to learn or revise it – the issue with my human biology resulted in a major set-back in the revision of all other subjects. I was less inclined to study chemistry in the first place because it was the subject that mattered the least in terms of my future education – maths and English literature I had to do well in and I enjoyed economics so I was naturally more inclined to study that. Because of all of these things, chemistry was ignored a little bit. Which resulted in me being really stressed when it came to the actual exams. To be honest, I definitely could have put more effort into it but, particularly in the last few days once all my other exams were over and I simply had chemistry left to sit, my motivation was in minus figures. It was awful in the sense that I knew I should be working and I wanted to work, in fact I did work just when I sat down at my desk and read the textbook it was literally going in through my eyes and straight out of the top of my head. I was failing to retain any information at all. I’ve successfully sat both my chemistry papers but I’m not holding out much hope.

Now onto the part where I almost quit. First, I would like to quickly add a disclaimer to say that I am in no way trying to portray my GCSE experience as a worse experience than anyone else, and I’m surely not going to be playing the whole “I’m home-educated so it’s harder for me!” act in an effort to make you feel sorry for me. Because I don’t think it was necessarily harder for me and I definitely don’t think my GCSE experience was as bad as other people’s, in fact I know it wasn’t. I am simply telling you the experience I, as an individual, had in my own circumstances. Anyway, so, it was Saturday the 20th May – by this point I was almost halfway through my GCSEs and I hadn’t socialised with anyone outside of my household in weeks because I was too busy revising (or procrastinating but with every intention to start revising) and I had a maths exam coming up… Now… if you had told me at the time that I was actually going to end up hating chemistry more than maths I think I would have cried with laughter for about three hours, anyway, I had two English literature papers coming up that week and slap bang in the middle of both of them I had my maths exam, this made me insanely stressed because I had to make the decision of either: entirely ignoring revision for both English papers and just pray that my English abilities were good enough and that my knowledge of the books when I’d studied them was good enough to wing it; or, I had to decide to avoid revising maths in the hopes that I would get a really good English literature grade and I would just have to live with the fact that I had failed my maths and re-sit it (something which made me feel so stressed and sick); or I would have to find a way of juggling them both over one weekend in the hopes that I would get good grades in both of them… as a result of this really stressful decision and the ever-shortening time I had left to revise the material, I had a cry – a long, long cry which I think lasted about 2 hours… it was awful and embarrassing and despite the fact that I was really upset the only thing I found myself thinking was how much time I was wasting through being upset. That every second counted and I needed to get my act together and do some work rather than sitting there crying. Eventually my Mum heard me crying and came in and told me to come downstairs and we sat on the sofa and she gave me a hug and I was sobbing and I told her I didn’t have enough time, that I felt I was going to fail all of my GCSEs, that I was so stressed and so tired and I just didn’t want to do it anymore and my Mum, being the amazing person she is simply said that I could stop. That I could decide not to do the rest and whilst it wouldn’t be ideal it wasn’t the end of the world. And in that moment, I genuinely, truly considered giving up. I was so close to saying I quit, that I couldn’t do it. That I hadn’t prepared enough, that I wasn’t ready, that I was an idiot but that I didn’t want to sit them if I was going to fail them all. I felt truly awful and despite what I said earlier about that weekend before my human biology exam this was honestly the lowest I have ever been. Never in my life have I felt so done, so completely exhausted that I felt I just couldn’t go on with the situation. That I just simply could not see a way of getting through these GCSEs and maintaining my physical and mental health. The genuine desire to give up at that moment terrified me. I have never felt so helpess like that, so tired and stressed that I would do anything to make it end. I don’t know how I got over the feeling and decided to continue with my GCSEs, but I did and I have come out of the other end and I’m feeling positive about all of my subjects except for chemistry (I’m even feeling optimistic about my maths! And if you knew me really well you would know that, that is an absolute miracle!).

Okay, I’m going to end this post here because I feel like it has been very long! I really hope you got something out of this post or that you enjoyed it in some respect, if you did please make sure to give it a like! If you’re new around here and you like what you see then please feel free to follow me! Let me know in the comments what your experience with sitting your GCSEs was – whether you sat them this year or in the past. If you sat them in the past I would be interested to know how you did in terms of grades compared to how you thought you had done!

If you want to contact me, you can reach me using my e-mail – aninspiredteen@gmail.com

That’s all for now!

Inspired Teen 🙂

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A Long Absence = Life Update

Hey guys, so, I have some explaining to do… you may have noticed that my blog posts have been wildly irregular at the moment, that’s for many reasons. I feel like I owe it to you to explain myself.

I feel like I keep this blog pretty open and impersonal in a way, that’s not necessarily a conscious decision but rather due to the fact that the posts I write don’t often reveal very much about me. I guess it’s kind of nice to be putting something out there on the big wide web and still feel slightly anonymous.

Anyway, because my blog is kind of open and impersonal I like it when I get to give you life updates, I’m not sure if it’s anything anyone’s particularly interested in but I guess I feel like through telling you what’s happening in my life I can in some ways justify my absence, I know it doesn’t need to be justified but as humans we feel guilty for things that we don’t do and because of that we try and find ways of making ourselves feel better about it by thinking of all the reasons why it hasn’t happened.

So, let’s begin!

Firstly – and I am sure this is something everyone can relate to – I have been drowning in the amount of studying I have to do, I know there’s a saying that’s ‘up to my neck’ but I felt like that wasn’t even close to being the truth, I am so out of my depth it’s scaring me a little bit, but I’m sure everyone feels like that. It’s the most bizarre feeling because a month ago or maybe even as recent as a couple of weeks ago every morning I would wake up and literally feel sick with stress, no lie, and every day would be hard to get through because I would sit at my desk and I would just work for ten hours every single day in the hopes that I could begin to get through the insane amount of work I had to do – luckily, those intense ten hour study sessions actually paid off and I am now drowning slightly less in work and all of the stress has just disappeared, it’s like suddenly I can breathe again but I don’t understand the transition from suffocating in stress to now feeling completely calm, but it’s a great feeling other than the fact that now I’m not stressed I’m slightly less motivated. But anyway, I know most teenage bloggers are going through exam stress and are putting off their blogs in favour of studying so you all completely understand and I am in no way saying I am in a worse situation and I think those of you managing to maintain a blog through all of this stress are absolutely amazing and incredible people – honestly I think you should be given a reward for all your hard work! But I just haven’t quite worked out how to manage my time in a way that caters for both studying, blogging, other commitments etc.

What else has been going on… I’m so busy I can’t even remember. I had a wonderful trip up into London a couple of weeks back and that was really nice, I went to visit my best friend whom I hadn’t seen since November and it was really nice to catch up with her! It had been long overdue and I did double studying the week before specifically so I wouldn’t ‘miss’ any studying while I was there and it was so nice to be able to just relax for a few days and be there with my friend and just feel like a member of society again rather than the introverted nerdy student that I’ve become over the last few months, I’m not saying there’s anything wrong with that, I would rather be indoors studying for a couple of months than failing my exams. We went on a lovely picnic in Regent’s Park and took lots of photos both of the park and of us together, the sun was shining, we did a bit of writing, we got to catch up, it was one of the best days I’ve ever had with her! Oh, and then we got lost on Baker Street (apparently that street goes on FOREVER!) but it was a truly amazing trip and one I wouldn’t change for the world. Although, I did get a migraine after coming back from Regent’s Park through being in the sun for too long… and maybe having a photoshoot which featured me lying in the grass and looking up at the sky, I would not recommend and that did prevent us from watching all the films we had planned to watch but it doesn’t really matter, there’s a time and place for everything. I was going to blog on this trip to London because not only were my friend and I using it as an opportunity to see each other but we were also going to use it as an excuse to just do the things we don’t normally get the time to do because we’re too busy with life, for example, reading, blogging, writing etc. etc.

Also, my cat died, which you probably really didn’t want or need to know and has probably just made this post quite depressing but yeah, I loved him to the moon and back and he was a wonderful cat. He was beautiful and you’d always wake up in the morning and go downstairs to see him sleeping on the sofa or an armchair curled up into this cute little ball of fluff and it was the most adorable thing! But he was old and we knew it was going to happen eventually – it was unexpected that he was going to die at that moment but he had been getting visibly older and less capable, but it just kind of added to everything else and it’s not really a reason why I haven’t been blogging because despite being upset, when he died it didn’t feel like an overwhelming loss or like a huge hole had been created in my life that could never be filled, it was devastating but it wasn’t like if a family member (or even my other cat who behaves like a dog, calls for me, cuddles with me all the time and whom I adore more than anything else in the entire universe) died so I wasn’t like in floods of tears for days unable to concentrate but this is a life update as well as being a post for me to explain all the reasons why I haven’t blogged.

Okay, another reason why I haven’t been blogging as much is because since last November I have been working on a fanfiction series – I am currently planning on it being 4 books long; which was completely unexpected but given the current state of the series 4 seems like a good number to get all the storylines completed in. Obviously I love to blog, it’s something I have a passion for but I also have a passion for fiction writing. I just love to write and I get different things out of both experiences. I like the feeling of being part of something that you get when you’re blogging, I like how on WordPress it’s like a community of people all sharing stories and opinions and interests etc. and there are just certain things I’m passionate about that I want to write about and I can’t really discretely put into a fictional story. But I also like the ability to escape that I get from writing fiction, maybe ‘escape’ isn’t quite the right word because I don’t feel like I need to ‘escape’ from my life but I guess it’s kind of a way to experience things that you don’t normally get to experience or to just create a world that can be however you want it to be; you can control the level of good and bad; the level of nice and horrible; the level of love and hatred and so on, you can put words in other people’s mouths and develop relationships and I enjoy it a crazy amount and have been getting really excited about my fanfiction series, maybe I’ll upload it onto Wattpad, maybe I won’t. I’m not sure. I’m going to finish all four books first. Anyway, I don’t really want it to sound like I’m prioritising fanfiction writing over blog writing but unfortunately it’s not exactly a choice, you see, the thing is, when I write fiction I think about it almost constantly and I am always thinking about what’s going to happen next or certain things people can say to others or a particular ‘moment’ that I want to happen, a cliff-hanger, a certain new character etc. and sometimes I get these really vivid images of a ‘scene’ I want to include and I know how I want it to read word for word and so I have to get my laptop and I have to write that scene whether I would rather be writing a blog post, watching TV or reading a book because if I don’t write that scene out there and then unfortunately the scene will be gone, and whilst, of course, I can write down a small memo saying I want to have a ‘marriage proposal scene’ or a ‘dramatic break-up scene’ or an ’emotional death scene’ I still don’t have the word for word details and – without trying to sound really full of myself because I’m really not – my first draft is usually actually the best draft, I mean everything needs a bit of editing after it’s finished but for some reason the way I write just comes out exactly the way I want it to first time, I do reword things sometimes or add things in that I didn’t think to add in the first time around and of course correct spelling errors but usually the way I’ve written it first is always the best so if I don’t get the words in my head down on my laptop then they all disappear and I can never recreate the word document on paper as good as it was in my head, if that makes sense.

I would just like to put it out there that I have been doing ‘blog’ things despite not being noticeably active on WordPress, I haven’t completely been ignoring my blog although it might seem like that. I have a number of drafts waiting to be reviewed and edited and in fact finished but the problem is, I am so busy that when I do have some free time it’s usually late at night when I’m exhausted from whatever I’ve had going on in the day, I’m half asleep and what I really want to be doing is drinking a hot chocolate and watching TV and the few times that I’ve tried to write a blog post instead in those circumstances they just don’t sound right, it sounds like I’m forcing the blog post and I’m not fully connecting to the content – probably because I’m half asleep – also, often I know the point I’m trying to make and what I want the blog post to say but I struggle to actually come to the conclusion and write it in a way that sounds good, basically I need to not be blogging when really I should be sleeping but I do plan on reviewing those blog posts over the next few evenings hopefully and finishing them, editing them and then getting them published.

Lastly, before I go I would like to quickly mention that I have been attempting to be much more active on my social media sites so you can go and follow me on them (links down below). I have specifically been paying attention to my Instagram recently firstly because I took lots of beautiful photos in Regent’s Park in London when I went to visit my friend and also because at the moment Instagram is my favourite social media site, I just love how so much can be conveyed in a photo and how loads of people are using this app and sharing photos of either pretty things they’ve found in their day-to-day lives or more professional type photos or even pictures of themselves and what they’ve been doing with their day, I just think it’s such a nice idea and personally I’ve been becoming slightly disconnected with twitter recently but I want to try and get back into it soon. Make sure you’re following me on both of the social media sites just mentioned so you can keep up-to-date with what I’ve been doing even when I’m not actively publishing new posts on WordPress.

I really hope you enjoyed this post, make sure to give it a like if you did! You can follow me if you aren’t already to see any new posts as soon as they’re published! Also, feel free to leave any comments letting me know what you’ve been busy doing and how you’re coping with all the exam work/revision you’ve got going on at the moment – I would love any tips and tricks you might have on effective study sessions!

If you want to get in touch you can do so using my e-mail – aninspiredteen@gmail.com

That’s all for now!

Inspired Teen 🙂

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