Trying to Kick away February Blahs

Slushy roads, late nights and days that zip by so quick you think time’s skewed. That chill that just won’t leave your chest and the monochromatic colour scheme of nature that ceased to be beautiful as soon as the new year hit. I don’t know what it is about this month, but after Valentine’s Day I am just so overly ready for spring. And this year, I know its more than just the weather.

Here in Ottawa winter really isn’t so bad. I mean sure, its freezing in January and sometimes two layers of pants is still not enough, and the wind just loves to kill your lips, but there’s a lot to do here. There’s the canal, and Winterlude to look forward to and beaver tales and tons of hockey rinks and tobogganing hills… But being a fourth year university student, I realize that I can’t enjoy any of it without feeling guilty. Or stressed.

“That was a great time skating on the canal!” “Oh shit! I still have 40 pages of reading to do for tomorrow morning.” “Ya, I’d love to see a late night indie film at the Heritage theater ” “Crap, I have a mountain of research to prepare for this flippin’ 20 pager.” (which I have yet to finish… god I can’t wait for the end.

The thing is, I shouldn’t be so goddam mopey about it. I am receiving an awesome education about a subject I’ve been passionate about since I was a kid, and I get to have it in a beautiful city. But I can’t help but feel a little angry, and just a touch “I just don’t give a f**k.” I suppose I’m just tired. Or perhaps I’ve been a stagnant student for so long that i’m just ready to almost move on. Or perhaps I’ve come to a recent realization that learning doesn’t happen just in a classroom setting. Or perhaps its also the realization that I want to seriously start focusing on my writing and try to begin to make some sort of career out of my words.

The academic environment is stimulating, but there is so much learning that can be accomplished outside university walls and I’m beginning to feel constricted.

I made a suggestion to a friend of mine who is currently in her final year of high school and was previously stressing out about choosing a subsequent university. Just watching how the pressure of making a “choice” or “decision” about your life was eye opening. Its okay not to know what your going to be doing for the rest of your life when your 17. In fact, its okay to not to know what your going to be doing while your still in university.

Society seems to always be building this pressure, always trying to prepare you for the future. Everything you do is for a reason, to get you somewhere. Well, what about right here, right now? Whats wrong with the moment? My moment is slightly edged with stress right now because of those two 20 pagers that I have to write in the near future, but I’m trying to wrap my head around the fact that life won’t end if something goes wrong.

I think I just need a change of scenery. I need to start seeing a bit of green outside in that landscape of snow. I’m tired of toques and dark winter coats. I need SPRING! and a gin and tonic.



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