Thoughts We All Have During Syllabus Week

Starting a new semester can be both exciting and terrifying.  Syllabus week has the reputation for being the best week of the entire semester in terms of reconnecting with friends, leaving the confines of living with your parents, and going back out into your favorite college atmosphere. It's the silent triumph of sitting in your favorite spot in Java House ordering your regular drink. It's the pure happiness you feel when devouring your first Marco's grilled cheese of the semester on a Tuesday night outside of Brother's. It's coming back to Iowa City, or whichever college town you call home. Syllabus week is full of highs and lows, and these thoughts definitely begin to sum up the roller coaster of emotions that the first week of a new semester can bring. 

This semester is going to be different. 

You've made a pact with yourself (and maybe your parents) to do a lot better than previous semesters. Whether its finding that perfect internship or excelling in a difficult class, you're definitely trying to prove to yourself and others that you are capable of greatness, in and out of the classroom. 

I shouldn't have gone out last night. But I'll probably go out again tonight. 

It only gets harder from here. So go out, enjoy the minimal to no homework and live it up a little. Who cares if you stroll into your 8 a.m. with last night's makeup on? This is the week to do it, considering from here on out, there will be mounds of reading, quizzes and exams to wake up to. 

Wow, my break was extremely unproductive.

Some of your peers spent their winter breaks saving the rainforests or winning awards for curing diseases. And you may or may not have spent break binge watching "Making a Murderer" and eating Christmas cookies for every meal. So you might hate talking to other people for the first few weeks back because while they were being productive, you were laying on your bedroom floor counting the revolutions your ceiling fan made.

I already miss home food. 

Back to cooking for yourself or the lovely world of dining hall food. No more home-cooked meals or freshly-baked anything. Now you're living off Mesa Mac and Cheese pizza on the weekend and whatever has been sitting in your freezer since before break. Is it possible to gain a Freshmen 15 for each semester??

Is this book required or suggested?  

There is absolutely no way you want to spend $200 on a textbook you'll barely use. So you'll spend a chunk of time this week emailing professors asking if you actually need certain books. And 9 times out of 10 they'll respond with a yes and a link to the only book store that sells it. New editions only, please.

I need to get back into a routine. 

No more sleeping until noon, lunch dates with mom, or staying out all night catching up with your friends from high school. Its time to iron out what you need to be doing when. Some of us will be falling back into our work schedules, sports practices and homework time. Others will be strategically planning where and when we can fit in the most important part of the day: nap time. 

I should probably look like a person again.

You probably spent winter break in sweat pants, sans bra, and hiding under infinity scarves. But now it is time to rejoin the world of the living and put a pair of jeans on and brush your hair. Before you know it, it will be time to find an internship for the summer and go on inteviews that require clean outfits and plucked eyebrows. But those of us with 8 a.m. classes know deep in our hearts that this will never, ever happen. 

Hello, caffeine. It's me. 

I've been wondering if after all these weeks you'd like to meet, to go over, everything. Because let's be honest, I need you immediately, either in a venti size or IV bag. Either works.

I forgot how to write papers, read, speak, make sense, function.

The most enaged speaking you might've done over break involved your order at the Portillo's drive through window. And you may have even messed that up by forgetting to order a chocolate cake shake. And now, suddenly, you're immediately expected to be grammatically correct and use proper spelling and, well, make sense. 

What are boys?

You spent all winter break with your high school friends you've known forever who don't actually count as boys. The biggest interaction you've had with an unknown male in weeks was probably the customer service rep you cried to over your laggy Wifi. Your New Year's resolution may include falling in love/finding a significant other/ not being single for the next 60 years. So talk to the boy sitting next to you in lecture or the one standing behind you in the coffee line. Stop trying to meet your future boyfriend on the dance floor at Union because chances are, that probably won't happen.

Wait, I love it here! Why did I ever leave?

You've missed everything about this beautiful, magical, wonderful place. You missed your friends, your professors, and your favorite spots on campus. Luckily, you're back and ready for a great semester. You're not going to want to go home. Until finals week. Then you'll definitely want to go home.  


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