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The All Nighters And The Caffeine Shakes... The Darkest Moments Of Exam Season

There is no worse time, no longer week, nothing quite as miserable as... exam season. We've all battled through it, wishing the weeks away. Waking up every day with fresh hopes, only for those hopes to come crashing down when we realise what date it is. Here are the darkest moments we all go through during exam season...

1) The All-Nighters

Or, as I like to call them, hell. Literal hell. During my last year in college, I pulled one of these bad boys at least once a week. Did I gain anything from them? Well, unless you count the shakes, falling asleep in class, a temperature and an overwhelming urge to die... No, I did not. There really is no less beautiful feeling than sitting in your room at three in the morning, drinking black coffee and crying over your lack of motivation and/ or notes. Grim times.

2) The Stage When You Realise That You Know Nothing

We had so many intentions in September. Then, through no fault of our own, the weeks and months sped by in a blur of drinking, hangovers and Netflix. What have we learned over the past few months? Does 'how to drink like a boss' count? Didn't think so...

3) The Stage When Nothing Will Stick

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Words become worms on the page. You've begun to question whether or not you actually are a competent English speaker. For all that your brain cares, you may as well be reading Latin. You have broken yourself. You have lost the ability to retain anything more than weight. Goodbye facts.

4) The Shakes You Get From Excessive Amounts Of Caffeine

A total cliché, but true nonetheless. Tea, coffee, perhaps a cheeky espresso - if your body is really slacking, you need a 'get up and study you lazy fuck'. The thing is, being a student, you're more likely to be inhaling vast quantities of Maxwell House than actual coffee. This will do two things: 1. It will make you smell like a builder's van and 2. You will be crippled with a headache bad enough to warrant a nap. Success.

5) The Moment You Realise You Have Another 14 Days Of This

There's very little I can say to make this better. This is a similar feeling to climbing Mount Everest, only to reach the summit and find that, no, you've actually dreamt it. Or so I imagine. This usually happens when you become one of those poor unfortunates who has four exams spread out over four weeks. Chin up, it could be worse (it really couldn't).

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6) The Guilt You Feel When You Leave The Library Early

It's been nine hours. Everything around you smells faintly of sweat, breath and instant sugar hits. For what seems like miles, all that's visible to the human eye is misery and weary bodies. You decide to pack up and 'finish your study at home' before you crack. So home you go. Home to noodles and a TV series. Nice try. I know your game. Do you feel guilty yet? Well? DO you?

7) The Moment You Realise That Everyone Else Is In A Christmas Mood

When you're in college, you become wrapped up in a bubble that is separate from everything and everyone outside of it. The outside and, as some might say, the 'real' world seems to be a million miles away. Christmas in college means exams. Christmas outside of college means fun, family, drinking, eating, celebrating. It's the silly season. So, when you realise other people are actually enjoying December, it can sting. Joyful bastards.

8) When Your Friends Finish Six Days Before You

This is awful. I know, I've been there. You knew it would happen. You all got your timetables at the same time but, back then, it seemed easier to accept. Now, however, now that you're the only one left slogging and sobbing by yourself while they get disrespectfully pissed out of their brains, it can feel a little more... awful. Sure, they mean well by sending you unreadable texts and blurry Snapchats, but honestly, all that you want is to be left alone to cry. Piss off please and leave me in peace.

9) When You Open That Paper And Realise That Yes, You Are Going To Fail Everything

This is it. It has all come down to this. Everything, all of that hard graft and panic, has led you here and now. You're going to give it your all, as quickly as possible, so that you can get out and erase this whole episode from your memory. You open the paper. You have no idea what any of this gibberish is. You panic. You want to crumple it up into a ball and run, run as fast as your legs can carry you. You don't. Instead, you'll do what many have done before you. You make it up, you write everything you've learned (relevant or not) and you stride out of there. Straight to the pub. Well done.

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Alison Keogh
Article written by
Alison decided to follow a sensible career route and chose to study Media. She happens to think of herself as a kind of Irish Beyonce after four Coronas, which usually results in her being deserted on the dance-floor by her loving friends. Her horrifically short attention span seeps into many aspects of her life, resulting in her half hearing important facts and hating people who walk at a leisurely pace.

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