DUB Speak

The First Class: An Account of Anxiety and Apprehension

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The conception of the ‘firsts’ is raised to a pedestal and glorified by any young adult who is about to join college. There is a great deal of anticipation associated with your first day at college, but it’s your first class with the new people and the new mentors that get your heart racing. Do you relate to it? If yes, read on.

As you walk towards your first class, the hot rains of July would most likely be enveloping the lush, green gardens surrounding the campus. However, with the sweat-beads materialising out of your body, you almost overlook the beauty of the rains and rush to find your way in the big, daunting world you stepped into. The clock strikes 8:30 a.m. You realize that you’re 15 minutes early to class, but so is everybody else. A succession of thoughts engulfs your mind. You think, “Are all these people always this punctual?”, “Am I not serious enough?”, and “I’ll never get to sit on the good benches, will I?” A hundred more questions like these exasperate your awkwardly-smiling self, and dance to the tune of your misery.

As the lecturer enters the class, you ascend to greet in unison, almost hoping for her to miraculously know everything about you just by the way you wish her a good morning. As the introductory class begins, your notebooks are out. Your heart thuds in desperate anticipation of a mind-blowing revelation in the first 10 minutes of your college life. Nothing like that happens. Instead, you use your pen unnecessarily to scribble down the words being uttered by the authoritative figure before you who is moderating a gradually opening discussion.

The experience of your first class generates a wave of profuse sentiments. All around you, hands are raised, beliefs questioned and stereotypes defied. All the new phrases, all the new names, and all the newness in general makes you feel awfully overwhelmed. For a good while, you’re in awe. You’re nervous. Your feet are tapping. Your eyes are twinkling. You feel privileged.  But on the other hand, there is also a giant cloud of formidable emotions making you feel alone, scared and home-sick.

Everybody tells you that it’s going to take some time to adjust to the bout of change, to take it easy and that it will be more than okay in just a little while. However, you know in your heart that surviving this is going to challenge your mental health and strength. With time, the heavy-seeming assemblage of incomprehensible emotions will hit you in the face stronger than the heat of July ever could. But before that happens, you won’t have the opening to narrate survival stories and say, “Hey, I survived change. I changed for growth.” Your first day might be the epitome of pleasantries or a dooming quiet. Nevertheless, you must remind yourself that nothing is fixed yet. The other person is not your best friend in the whole wide world and this day would not determine the rest of your life in college. Before you comprehend it, you will be a part of it all. Don’t forget, you’re not the only one.

Feature Image Credits: brilio.net

Anushree Joshi

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