For the past semester I have been highlighting fun and inexpensive activities and projects for college students to try. This week, due to extenuating circumstances, I will be telling you the number one thing you should avoid at all costs: An end of semester surgery.
After a month-long battle with a sore throat I found myself sitting in the office of an ear, nose and throat doctor as she told me I needed an emergency tonsillectomy. Battle lost.
“How long do can you take off for recovery?” Dr. Beck asked. I counted two, possibly three, maximum of four days I could commit to rest, to which Dr. Beck laughed and responded, “How about three weeks?”
Failure ensued as I tried to argue every point, from finals and classes to birthday parties and work. I inevitably lost yet another battle and was scheduled for surgery the very next morning, with recovery time spanning both my last week of classes and finals week.
Sparing you the gruesome details of my surgery woes and recovery debacles, I will move right into the advice part of things, because believe me, you don’t want the details.
So, in the case you also find yourself in a similar situation approaching finals, here are some things I found out, which may just help a bit:
- Doctors notes are taken seriously. Ask for one, a detailed one. As soon as you have the note, scan it and send it to every single one of your teachers with a note explaining your situation and asking what you need to do to fulfill your course requirements. Don’t take an incomplete. Professors are generally understanding when situations like this arise.
- Get as much planning and organizing done as possible. While you can’t preemptively know how quickly you’ll recover, try your best to stick to stick to a plan to stay on track for finals, even if it starts with studying for an hour a day.
- Follow your recovery plan so you can get back to the grind sooner than later. Drink fluids; take your medications.
- Sleep, study, repeat.
- Take some time to watch some trashy movies or indulge in one of those non-literary type books (my guilty pleasure is always the Twilight Series. This time I may jump into Fifty Shades of Grey).
- Ask for help. Friends are awesome. If you need a ride, some soup or even just some company, don’t hesitate to ask.
- Whine a little, you’ll feel better.
And finally, if the pain medications just won’t go down, take it from me—coffee ice cream is by far the best to top with crushed pain pill sprinkles.