During Primary School
I was studying in an international school (which was when I have never passed any tests once, I was totally in my own world and never pay any attention to lessons. The results marked red in Report Book is shocking) in Kuala Lumpur before I moved to Singapore. I had a repeated Primary 3 after a long period of time having home tuition before officially transferred. I ‘came to my senses’ around this period of time.
I knew a little of what I was doing in school. In Math class, I gained confidence because it felt like I was repeating, (in fact yes, but I go by intuition so.. I used ‘felt’) I had impressions of what I learned. However, in Primary 4 and 5 onwards, there was nothing much that I could really ace.. I was put into a better class, but never the best. But it’s okay, cus I was put into the best class for Mathematics before for a period of time. It was hectic and stressful!! Because the teacher would challenge her students to mentally calculate as quickly as possible. She would call any random student out. I literally forced myself to pay full attention or trying to predict what’s gonna come to me every single second, and a great relief when the bell rings for next lesson. Mentally drained, and physically drained from all the nervous shivers.
I remember when I received my examination grades for other subjects, I didn’t do well. It was either a borderline fail or a borderline pass. I felt terribly bad, pressured that mum would be disappointed. It really hurts every time I thought I was gonna disappoint my mum.
During Secondary School
Mostly, it was kind of a peer pressure, because I noticed I had difficulty in learning with the same amount of effort that everybody puts in. I’m not a person who likes to compare, but I do see differences a lot. I was just comforted that I wasn’t the last one, but I knew the grades aren’t good. I wouldn’t forgive myself whenever I score under 50% on average. I did best in Mathematics but I was disappointed by myself cus I let my guard down and started feeling confused. But my Mathematics was usually the highest that I could score compared to the rest of the subject.
I lagged behind more and more. The fact that I had a friend who also lagged behind comforted me a little, but when there was improvement in her result, I struggled alot inside too. I noticed my grades didn’t improve even when I had group tuition after school or put in effort, though private tuition did helped quite a bit (in understanding what was being taught.) I made decision to request to quit tuitions because I noticed things would stay the same and it was extra pressuring on the mental effort that I put into. I always get really exhausted rushing myself to tuitions and stressed about the extra homework given by tutors, and I ran out of stamina after awhile and would usually feel very sleepy and mentally tired.
I was reaching a young adult stage by that time. (All time anxious girl.) I was quite clear about how my study pattern works generally. I rather spend the time to self study and made extra focus on my textbooks and notes that I received. I made extra effort to self study for N And O levels and realised that there’s so many things I missed in class unknowingly. I was like… “Oh…..! This is how it is… Why didn’t I knew that earlier? Why am I sooooo slow? I finally understood something that was being taught years ago…”
During Tertiary School
Things were getting tough. My anxiety got worse, I noticed I was telling myself this every single day and night before sleep “Another day of crying. When will the day with no crying records come?” Yes, I was undergoing depression. I often had to move around a lot to calm myself down in class, put pressure on something, squeeze my muscles hard, clenching fists hard, poking skin with my nails, lifting my body weight up with my arms on the chair’s armrest etc. Sometimes I even couldn’t help it crying in class but appearing like I’m just having a nap while resting on the table with my face covered with crossed arms.
I chose a course that was not my primary interest. I was objected for my main interest (acting) and I chose Hotels and Hospitality Management mainly because it was something that I am quite familiar with from all the family travel experiences I had since young. (One of the module attracted my interest, I thought it was bartending or wine knowledge but… never mind) I thought it not really foreign to me compared to other courses, and maybe I could gain something from it. I thought if I could finish this course, I could at least have a second chance in my career if I fail in Acting industry, also mainly to comfort my mum that I will not be in a danger zone in future career path.
But things weren’t as smooth as I thought. Reality only proved that I coundn’t learn things about businesses and I even had no idea how other people were doing so well in understanding and giving ideas and opinions so easily. (And about the bartending and wine that caught my interest… I was wrong, bartending was just a very little small portion of the module…. I hated the module a lot, because it was about restaurant services… There’s once a week real hands-on restaurant operation. It was mentally draining, I failed to attend the class a lot.) Eventually, of all the modules, I started to lag behind and always trying to find alternative ways to learn better, but all I could do was to study harder, forced myself to focus harder, it was tough to even speak up to ask for notes that were prepared by classmates, and betting every time to understand and answer questions correctly in examinations.
In the mean time, traveling and attending acting courses after and outside school gave me happy times. Sometimes dance classes was a little motivating. even thou the environment did gave me pressure when I started losing friends or realised that I don’t have long lasting friends. I started to get reluctant in attending dance classes but the will to learn and make progression did pushed me a little.)
I always thought that I’m just someone who’s not meant for studies, I had no plans in studying for degree too, until I thought of studying Filmmaking or Acting. I see myself being an actress or a filmmaker in future, but I always process and progress late. I always notice the norms late, partly because I don’t speak up to communicate. When I do so, it would be because people around me are either not being supportive or they’ve no much idea or informations about the industry. Or I am just not good enough..
P/s. I did not sleep the night before yesterday, I tried to stay awake so I could sleep earlier last night. I did had a tiring 2 hours nap yesterday evening though. Managed to sleep at 2am last night but woke up at 5am by a nature call and my brain was activated energetically, so I decided to put my eye mask away, typing my thoughts here. There ya gooooooo. Initially I was thinking about video making, but I had to draft it out before I could ease my mind. As I typed a short one as draft, while my mind was still on-going, it has became a really loooooong post here.