Wednesday, May 5, 2010

On Final Grades...

... and how not to let them define you.

I think I'm getting this now.

When I was little, I felt that getting anything less than an A would be the end of the world. And because it never happened, I never had anything to contradict that belief. My parents let me know that I was an A student, and anything less was unacceptable.

This semester, I had a relapse. I had to dig my way out of the crazy place again, and it was hard. It felt a lot harder than the first time, because the first time, I didn't even know how bad it was so I didn't realize how hard I worked. But this time, I had to come back from an abrupt spiral and get everything running smoothly again. Well, it's not quite there. But I did get my grades and I've been thinking about them:

One D and one F (it's an E, but it's really an F). Wow, that is ugly. I'm used to all these pretty A's lined up, like a perfect row of academic soldiers. And what a shock to my system, to earn those grades. Those aren't just decidedly below average. Those are FAILING grades.

And look. I'm still here. I'm still standing. Sort of. I'm kind of limping and crying like a fox with its foot caught in a trap. But the world didn't end. And I'm the same person. I think I'm actually a better person.

I've decided that my education will no longer be based on grades, but on experience, on learning, and on what I can suck from the marrow of life.

So long, Dean's List. It's been nice knowing you.

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