Something that has always been mentioned to me is how many people flop after finishing their Herbal Medicine degrees. Actually, from what friends have said, everyone flops after finishing their degree. But this especially seems to be the case with people who have done the Herbal Medicine course. I think it’s because going through a course like this takes you on such a journey of self development and personal transformation that when that process stops, establishing where you are and what you are going to after university comes as a huge shock.
I’ve not entirely finished yet; I still have my final clinical exam. This is not an academic assessment, it is a clinical assessment, and as such puts me in an expansive mood. I’ve been taking clinical exams for 5 years now, and before that I was very good at showing people my abilities by getting on with them rather than writing about what I’d do if I was doing it… But in terms of academic/written work and exams, I’ve technically finished. Whether I pass or not, and I have no reason to think I won’t, the final clinical seems more like a formality than a stumbling block to finishing the course.
After last week’s final exams, the fatigue hits you like a ton of bricks. Even if, as I have, you have things in place to directly take the place of all the course related stuff and divert your attention onto, the sheer act of getting through the finals, and all the mental preparation and work to revise and cram in all the information needed to pass, leaves you feeling worn out.
I use an aviation analogy here, given that I have often made jokes about the term ‘finals’ and the fact that academic finals won’t kill you but the flying kind might. When you’re flying, ‘finals’ refer to the last leg of a circuit/approach pattern before landing. As such, they are similar to academic final exams. All the way through the final leg of an approach, the workload on a pilot is great: managing the particulars of flying to precise requirements with a decreased margin of error. In the final stage of an approach, and before you touch down, you ‘flare’ out; letting ground effect take you, as you sink onto the ground. If Aviation finals are like academic finals, I’m now in that ‘sink’.
The symptoms are much like a mix of a migraine and ‘flu. With a real muzzy head and no concentration. I was anticipating this, but it is still startling, and somewhat arresting. For those who aren’t expecting this flop after their finals, it must be a great surprise indeed, and not a pleasant one.
Categories: The Journey