Most wonderful time of the year

Sonjia Gurecki

The month of December is known as the “most wonderful time of the year” only on the fact that it is the holiday season, but what about for college students? While life at home may be filled with a cheerful air, school and work can become anything but.

When Thanksgiving’s over, the atmosphere of school suddenly changes. Teachers no longer discuss what you’ll cover next in class. Students begin to hear the famous phrase said by most teachers in one way or another, “we’ve hit the home stretch.” The “home stretch” becomes harder and harder, especially when the weather begins a chilly transformation. When someone wakes up in the morning to the sounds of wind and rain, it’s that much harder to get out of their warm and comfy bed to face the icy cold the morning air brings. Let’s face it, we’ve all waken up in the morning thinking, “Do I really have to go to class today?”

During the month of December, school becomes more stressful, as students put the finishing touches on their projects, essays and research papers. Just when you think you’re done with all the assignments in one class, a teacher adds another that they “forgot about” or “didn’t have time to get to you,” until now. After it’s finished, let’s not forget the looming stress over finals. Finals come with a set of challenges that are all their own. Various teachers put every possible thing you’ve learned this whole semester on the final; others have their finals consist of the information learned the past few weeks. There is a lot of information to review and to be retained by the time, the test comes.

One final may seem like a lot, but for a majority of students who take more than one class a single final would be a dream. Full-time students can face anywhere from three to seven finals. If you don’t do well on a final just because you spent your time studying for the others, don’t expect understanding from your teachers, too many assume their class is your one and only priority. When you think school has become too much, there’s always the additional pressure that the holiday season adds at work. Because of the stress in their lives, your boss can sometimes seem to be angry at you for merely blinking at the wrong time.

If you work in retail, everyone is praying for your sanity this season. The most wonderful time of the year begins for those who work in retail on the craziest shopping day of the year, Black Friday. Some stores even opened Thanksgiving night, giving the new shopping day, Gray Thursday. If any of you reading this worked those two days, you’re brave souls. From the grandparents and parents fighting over the latest Elmo doll or the football fans looking for an even bigger TV to watch their favorite team on, employees probably dealt with some irrational people.

If you work in the food industry, prepare to serve equally irrational people. In some cases, the people who just bought their TV’s are now hungry, wanting their food and they want it right now. If you’re fortunate enough to get someone who appears friendly and pleasant, keep in mind they might have spent all their money shopping, leaving your tip close to nothing. December is the busiest time of the year for college students. But once the semester is over, the final paper is turned in, and you’ve bubbled in the last answer on the scantron, you can breathe a sigh of relief. You’ve done it. You survived the battle of fall semester.

Though you may have to work with absurd customers and tense bosses, when you go home at the end of the shift, you get to enjoy the season. You can take the time to remember what you’re thankful for; what has truly been a blessing in your life. You can catch up with friends and spend time with family. That’s when you know what really makes this the most wonderful time of the year.