What? What is important? What matters? My life, my happiness, the people I care about, my writing, my goals, my future in journalism, not my bombed math test.
I knew I wasn't going to do great, since I didn't have the time for really learning the lessons. I knew it wouldn't be my best test, or as it's been deemed, "quest" (derived from quiz/test) since it's worth 56 points instead of the 24 of a quiz or the 100 of a test. I knew going in I wasn't going to do well, but this wasn't just "not well". If I hadn't spent 15 minutes on number 3, if I could've stayed instead of running to deliver my oratory, if I could have done something differently so as not to entirely miss number 8, I might have done ok. But no.
I'm sure I wouldn't have gotten an A or anything even with number 8, 3 was clearly screwed up, and no matter what I do, I always have a ton of little -1s for forgetting to carry the negative sign, or forgetting to simplify. If I were to take a guess, the rest of the test would have maybe an 80%, but without number 8, I'm in the D range. I already had one D test this term, but I promised myself it would be different when I moved into the dorms. Why? Why isn't it different? My first thought was to craft some clever lie to put here, but that wouldn't really do anything. I still get distracted from my plan to do work the same as at home, though not accompanied by misery. But if I'm not miserable, then I what's keeping me from doing well? I spent much of last night writing the last two chapters, and not much studying. But if I weren't writing, I would have been drawing, practicing my oratory, napping, reading, not doing math.
The really weird thing is that I like doing math when I'm actually doing it. I like the neat objective organization of it, the puzzle, and the solution. But why do I spend my nights doing everything but math and chemistry if it can actually be fun? I wonder if it's because I'm too antsy to sit down and work, or pumped up about something else, or exhausted. Or maybe I have too many thoughts bumbling around to concentrate on numbers. There must be a specific mindset needed for math. Relaxed, engaged, not too tired. And to do math, you can't be in a place where more exciting things and thoughts can sweep you away from the page. Being a natural thinker, someone who could spend weeks sitting around and pondering things, I can get easily swept away by random thoughts.
How? How can I create a space and a mindset free of excessive abstract thought so that I can sit and enjoy math? Nature is relaxing, but I live on a campus, a campus where there are always snippets of alluring dialogue drifting through the air. I wonder if I can find a quiet place to work...