By David Lovlien Jr.
The semester is coming to an end and we have all been pounded with work. It is my second day without sleep and I will be up all night writing essays, doing homework. To make things worse it’s 2:30 in the morning. Final exams, my first ones in college.
Exhaustion holds me hostage. I squeeze my eyelids open trying to not pass out. I cannot sleep. This is due tomorrow. My paper is titled, “Pre-Modern Russia: Tsarism? Or Bolshevism?” I just started writing at 9 after I scratched my other essay.
This is trash. I click the delete button and throw away two months of research and various drafts. How could I pass something in that did not truly intrigue me? I didn’t connect with the topic at all.
“BEEP BEEP,” my alarm set for every 20 minutes goes off again keeping me awake. I need to find a different way to stay up. Throwing my flannel comforter off, I walk downstairs to the kitchen. I open the refrigerator door and a chilly blast of air hits my face as I grab a cold bottle of water.
After I down the water, I grab the coffee beans putting I don’t know how many scoops into the coffee machine. I wait while it brews and gulp four cups of hot coffee.
I walk back up to my room. A monster is challenging me: my term paper. The caffeine hits me like a second wave. I can do this.
I gaze out my window. The black sky gradually turns purple. My phone goes off. It’s 5 o’clock. I rush downstairs again. My paper is so close to being finished, I just have to push myself the extra mile.
Downstairs I gulp five more cups of coffee, and face the ogre. At 6 I know I have to get ready for school. I can’t be late.
Typing like a wild man, the words and emotions start flowing from my head to my fingers where I illustrate a red picture of the 1917 October Revolution.
I’m awake, but the awful details of Bolshevism horrify me. Russian history is a long dramatic fairy tale of glory, wars, murder, and tsars. I would like to focus my history degree more around a mystical northern land.
As I finish my paper and run through it a few times, the morning light creeps into my room. I hurry and make it to class. I feel like I died. I hold two extra-large coffees from Aroma Joes. I barely get through class and head home. I crash on my bed and sleep for 12 hours after two days straight with no sleep. Too tired for Bolshevist nightmares.
I am finished with all my papers. Relief, finally.
Working two jobs, getting an education, and balancing a social life can be difficult. It’s something that I am working on and I get better at it every single day.
But for now, I will enjoy the present. I’m rested. I tell myself to enjoy life even while working hard, all the while growing from granite.
David Lovlien Jr. is a high honors graduate of Coe-Brown Northwood Academy who is a freshman at Great Bay Community College in Portsmouth. David is an active member on the New Hampshire Legislative Youth Advisory Committee and plans to become a lawyer. He writes a regular column, Growing from Granite, for InDepthNH.org.