Up until yesterday, whenever I went to a final exam at the University of Waterloo, I knew I was not going to fail the exam even if I needed to score at least 50%. This was because I always walked into the examination room fully prepared and full of confidence. This is not to say that I am a genius. No, not at all. It is simply because I always work hard during the three months preceding an exam. During these three months, I would go to bed at 7:00 or 8:00 PM, wake up at 3:00 or 4:00 AM, study for a few hours, and then leave for work at 7:30 AM. My weekends are devoted entirely to my studies. Some of you may think I’m crazy, but to me, the effort is worth every penny for peace of mind when I walk into the examination room and joy when I see my grades.
Yesterday was different. I was in a situation I have always worked hard to avoid, a situation I don’t usually cope too well with. November was the month when everything went South for me. My wife pregnancy became a cause for concern and she had to be hospitalised in London, Ontario for 2 weeks. The hospital where she was admitted is about an hour and half (driving at 100 km/h) from where we live. I had to drive there a few times after work, and on weekends. This means that everytime I was going to London, I was spending at least 3 hours driving. Eventually, she was allowed to come back home. However, because there is always a risk for the baby, she was precribed bedrest and has to have 2 ultrasound sessions and see her OB once a week until the baby is born.
This means that I have to do a lot around the house on top of my regular job. To be able to leave work earlier than usual, I have to go to work earlier than usual and work through my lunch hour. So, instead of starting at 8:00 AM, I have to start at 6:30 AM.
Needless to say that since the beginning of November, my studies were the least of my worries. For the first time since I started at Waterloo, I was working towards “limiting the damage” rather than “scoring the maximum points.” I can only hope I managed to score 20 points. The final exam yesterday consisted of 40 multiple choice questions worth 0.5 point each, 10 mutiple choice questions worth 1 point each and 2 mini essays worth 5 points each. I was unable to do the essays. My mind went blank. However, I think I did pretty good on the multiple choice questions.