18 – As an International Baccalaureate student…

I fall asleep in class all the time now. It’s not a good habit and I hope that the trend will stop in its tracks right here and now. I wish. I sleep way too late and I like sleep way too much. Only sugar keeps me awake (caffeine gives me too much of a migraine after). It’s not that the program is giving us too much work. I just don’t work. I don’t like working. I need to fix that mindset – that I know more than anything.

Sometimes, I’ll vent my frustration on objects and people that have nothing to do with why I’m feeling frustrated. Most times, it’s myself that I’m frustrated with. Stay out of my way if I’m ever in a bad mood. I don’t really want to hurt you. I think. I do like hurting people..?Β  I am not a sadist.

In any case, the school routine is taking its toll on me. I can no longer sleep as long as I want. That hurts me. Kind of. I have too many clubs and CAS activities. Far too many. I should cut down or I’ll work myself to death. Metaphorically speaking, of course. Yet, somehow it doesn’t seem that far away from the truth. I have way more than I can possibly balance. It’s not healthy. Especially since I’m not a workaholic and don’t intend to be.

Procrastination. You plague me.

Finally, I’ll get to the reason why I’m writing this blog anyway. I need some help deciding what to write for my extended essay (EE). Sure, it’s a million years away (more like months), but I want to figure out what to do now.

What I really wanted to do was do my EE in French, but apparently it’s impossibly if you’re in French B and not fluent in the language. I really wanted to perfect my French – to make it fluent. I guess that’s expecting too much. Reading articles in French would take a lot of time. Books? I can’t possibly rely on Google Translate anymore. Actually, that was kind of the point. Write my EE in French so that I won’t ever need Google again for help. Fat chance of that happening now since the IBC (IB Coordinator) and my French teacher both rejected the idea. Sigh.

Now I’m caught between a rock and a hard place. History or English. My only two other choices, really. I have no intention of doing it on Chemistry or Physics. The last thing i need is another Science Fair project.

So for History, I was thinking about looking into Quebec’s struggle for Independence (something I wanted to do in French?). I really want to know more about Canada. I might/probably will end up going to McGill – that is, if they accept me. I would love to live in Quebec. I think. It’s hard to say since I’ve never been there. Regardless, if I’m going to live in a whole other province, I should know more about it. So there’s the reasoning for that.

For English, the reasoning is fairly obvious. I want to do a stylistic analysis of Sylvia Plath. This would probably involve reading her poems over a couple dozen times. She had her own problems and I feel like I can relate to her. My interest in poetry is no doubt compelling me to research further into the subject. Besides, English is the easiest EE to write as all you have to do is read and analyze. History is far more complex, it requires dozens of sources and accurate citations.

I feel like the two of them are equal on the scale. I would benefit from doing both and I do carry an interest for both.

The problem is deciding which one to do.

Quebec or poetry?





8 thoughts on “18 – As an International Baccalaureate student…

  1. I would have been in the IB program, had I stayed in the high school instead of becoming home schooled (ended up with a terrible program, oh well.) Maybe I’m better off though ;3. No, I think you will benefit greatly from this. I’m sure you know that.

    As for sleep, I’ll tell you what I tell all my friends who overwork themselves: STOP. You need to budget your time more efficiently. I believe you can do it. Since you’re procrastinating, you must not like something about what you’re doing. Find what you love about it again, or remember why it will benefit you so much. Next year, don’t pick so many things so you’ll have more downtime. πŸ™‚

    For your EE, I would normally say flip a coin since you want to do both. I think I’ll give you a more serious answer because this is a semi-serious situation. (However, flipping a coin is always a reasonable answer.) I think you would enjoy doing the English essay more because I think you have a love for poetry and Plath is amazing. Maybe a history essay could be rather impressive, though? I think sometimes people choose English because they think it might be ‘easier’. History is ‘boring’ and ‘dull’. If you chose that and made an amazing essay, I think that would be rather interesting for the board (is it graded by a board?) to see.

    Whichever you choose will work out, though. Just enjoy it as you do it.

    • I think in the end, I’ll be really happy to have done the program, but right now, I’m resenting it more than ever. Everyone that’s been through seem to have ravished in its benefits. I wish something like that for myself.

      And some ‘down time’. I’d like that.I really would.

      A coin flip huh…I’ll think about it.

      Thank you for your input, ottabelle. I’ll take it into consideration.

  2. Grandfather’s right. I would add to his admonition to reduce your commitments that sometimes that’s easier than you think, if you take a moment, sit back and ask yourself which of those commitments gives back to *you*–it doesn’t have to be tangibly or obviously, it could be emotionally or in the long term. But it’s surprising when I survey the stuff I do and realize which things I do only because I think I have to for some reason (rarely true) or just because I’ve ‘always done’ them (habit, not choice). Cutting out the non-beneficial things can sometimes be a surprising exercise in ‘weight-loss’. Same is true for making that EE choice: as Grandfather says, choose the one you really want, not what you think you should choose, and that in itself will make the project easier. Whatever you’re truly passionate about, you’ll get around to at some point, so why not allow yourself to prioritize one over another for the moment and back-burner the other loves for later. Gives us something to anticipate.

    The sleep thing is important. That’s a health issue, and I know you know that it’s often strongly associated with depression. We depressives crave sleep, both as an escape and because it’s one of the only healing mechanisms our bodies allow us when we can get it. That can lead to sleeping constantly *or* at the wrong times, as well as *not* being able to sleep when we most long for it. The only real cure for that that I know from any personal standpoint is to deal with the root causes of the depression. For me, that took therapy and medication. Teenager-hood is a documented cause of sleep deficit, too! The growth spurts we go through physically, hormonally, and most especially mentally and emotionally in our 12-19-ish years put heavier demands on the body and mind that *require* more sleep but sometimes, perversely, make it elusive too. The only real cure for *that*, as far as I know, is getting older. πŸ˜‰

    And possibly, one sleep aid will be found in the aforementioned commitment reduction. Less demand on your time and energy and focus will allow you to spend it on other things, whether the commitments you choose to keep or on sleep. I say all of this, having slept until nearly noon today. Really. I do understand that contented and happy people like the one I am today *can* simply require a lot of sleep and crave it. I am not at my best unless I have at least 9 or 10 hours of sleep. No kidding. But I have managed for the most part to arrange my waking life so that I can afford to have big chunks of sleep time most of the time, because I know it’s what works best for me. Just as you’ll need to suss out what works best for you. Pardon my rattling on. Obviously sleep is a very important topic for me!

    • Thank you for your detailed comment, it’s heartwarming to see you put so much thought into a comment like this. I understand where you’re coming from and like what grandfather said, doing what you love is truly important. The thing is, I’m not a fan of analysis so both English and History are not the most appealing topics for my EE. At the same time, I have an interest in those two areas I have mentioned (Quebec and poetry) and have difficulty deciding. Being a Libra, I weigh things too easily. With time, hopefully I’ll figure out which one I’m more inclined to.

      Sleep is definitely important – although my ToK (theory of knowledge) teacher has fully convinced me that sleep is an addiction and not necessary for the survival of the human race. In all honesty, it’s true. We’ve been addicted since the time we were in our mother’s wombs. We sleep because we’re bored and have nothing better to do. There are people who can work perfectly with zero sleep. You just have to take yourself off this sleep “drug” slowly. But to be perfectly truthful, I love sleep. I don’t have any intention of doing that to myself.

      I have heard that sleep deprivation is related with depression and it’s quite possible that it’s related to what I’m feeling. The thing is, my depression causes insomnia – not the other way around. In any case, I should work towards fixing my sleeping habits and getting myself on track. Hopefully, as you say, it gets easier with age.

  3. Overachiever? Then cut down on your commitment and focus on what you love. And if you love english more than history the decision is made. Write about what you love and it will be easy. Do what you love and you will never work another day in your life. Libras have a hard time making decisions, they want to be all things to all people, just remember that includes you!

    • Thank you for the advice. And yes, I do find that I have a hard time making decisions. I take far too long weighing the ups and downs. I guess it’s part of the scale symbolism.
      Maybe I should just follow what I love…But the question is, what do I love?

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