It’s the Most Wonderful Time

It’s that time of the year again.

Exams.

The joyful time of the year where students suffer from sleep deprivation and stress as they nudge their heads into sheets of paper with printed ink and hallucinate for hours on end to retain information that I can guarantee will forget the moment they finish their exams. I can’t truly complain this year as I only have one exam, but looking back on past years I can relate with students who reduce themselves to coffee drinking hermits residing in their dorm rooms trying to read their course books like it were a script to memorize.

But complaining about exams is not what this blog is about. It is about that time of the year after first term exams, the holidays and family. Now most Canadians probably celebrate Christmas. But other holidays exist around this time as well. Hanukkah, Ramadan and Kwanzaa are all other festive holidays celebrated around this time of year. After exams we all go home to celebrate some sort of holiday with our families and loved ones. I know for many of you dealing with exams you have some sort of special thought keeping you going so you can make it home for the holidays.

For me it’s Christmas. It’s my favourite holiday and my family celebrates it twice. No, we aren’t vain enough to spoil ourselves twice, it’s a cultural thing. Traditional Christmas falls on Dec 25th, but as a Canadian of proud Ukrainian heritage we also celebrate Christmas on the Julian calendar which runs from Jan 6th to 19th. Different calendar, different date needless to say. It isn’t of course as big as the first Christmas, but every Sviaty Vechir I make sure to spend time with my baba and help her set up a shopka in her nursing home and wait for Svyatyi Mykolai. I know you must be SO intrigued by my description but I won’t go into further detail as that isn’t what this article is about.

What it is about is special traditions and those thoughts of the holidays that you keep in mind as you prepare yourself for exams. While you mess with your sleep schedule and take years off your life with stress, just remember the thoughts of family and celebration you indulge in every year during the winter holidays. Sometimes it’s not enough for someone to say “you got this,” so it is up to you to remind yourself that you can make it through exams and speed away home where you can indulge in family traditions and continue to make more.

Happy Holidays, and best of luck on your exams!