Yesterday I came out of my last lecture feeling like I want to split myself open or do something equally horrible. On Monday we established a timetable of priorities for the work we have to do, and we were meant to put up a production schedule up for the group, but for some reason we didn’t do it until before 12:00am before a certain lecture. One of the lecturers seems more insistent about production planning than the others. So when he asked about our production process, and we told him about how we went about with our chart, I feel like he lost his patience with us again because it seemed to him that our group only posted the chart right before he was around, as if simply to satiate him or something. Then I began to feel like it was my fault, mainly for the reason that, as one of the lecturers reasoned, we’re all making the same mistakes we did last semester and not doing the work. I felt very upset, even depressed, because when you say to a group I’m in that you’ve all done wrong in some way, I never really know what *I* did wrong as an individual. Especially because I actually did do some work, and I did try to follow an outlined idea of how work might run down (though I didn’t really succeed in achieving an ideal output of work). That leads me to conclude that, as a group, we all just get treated the same way regardless. Then I start to think that if I had nudged the others about the chart we might not have had this. And I still don’t want to think that way at all because to me it just isn’t right. I don’t ever want to share the same mistakes as everyone else, or be tied to everyone else’s mistakes, not ever. I feel deeply insulted about that, and I get resentful, sad, angry, and probably something else along those lines too.
I’m also beginning to worry not only that I’m not going to handle this semester like I handled the last semester, but that I’m really going to suffer trying to handle this next semester. We’re really expected to just spend more time working, particularly in the university premises (even though we are able to work at home). When I talked about that with my group-mates, one of them told me it’s probably because the lecturers have no way of measuring our actual habits. My worry is I know that we’re all just going to go off and do our own work anyway, myself included, because we all just want to complete our part of the project, and the assignments pertaining to it. My worry is that it’s going to just be so much time working, so little time doing anything else, and I’m not convinced I’m even on top of time management on a personal level. And that’s where I go to the question alluded in the title of the post: what’s going to happen to me after all this? How much time will I have to simply live? Am I just going to work like a machine? Am I going to abandon everything else? That would horrify me and sadden me on a deep level. If I was assured that I was to start operating on a mechanical level in order to succeed in life, I’d either kill myself or spend the rest of my life in the wilderness because that’s just not the way I feel I’m meant to live, let alone how I feel humans as a species are meant to live. Part of me thinks I’m probably overreacting, but that doesn’t stop me from thinking this is going to be one of the worst times I have yet to experience. I also think part of our problems is that I don’t think I or some of the others really know what to say when we’re asked certain questions. We’re not really prepared in some cases, and that in my opinion can cause a lot of problems.
And I think some of you might read this thinking, “if you feel that way then what are you still doing on your course?”. Actually, I kind of feel like there’s no going back with me in my course. If I thought of transferring, I wouldn’t exactly know what to do instead of game design. If I dropped out, then I would prevent myself from making the best of what life as a student could still offer, and I think I’ve still made a decent life with it so far despite it still feeling unfulfilled in important areas. And however I stretch it, if I leave my group, that pretty much means giving more work to spread between what will become a group of 5 people, and we have only 7-8 weeks which is not a sparing amount of time for us to complete our project. If I left, I’d be creating more work for them to do in a small amount of time, and my only thought about it is it will make them very unhappy about their course, and it would make their third year a lot harder and more miserable for them. Even if leaving might make me happy, the rest would have a horrible time and I feel I’d be the cause of it. Despite what I consider to be my selfish nature, I don’t like that thought. But saying that, I also can’t help but consider that if I bail but they continue on and somehow succeed in spite of it, it might inspire a new-found sense of regret and the feeling of amounting to little in comparison to them. Other than that, the only reason I don’t leave the course is because of the life I think I could still make as a student, and some of what I’ve learned about game design clicking with me in a certain way and giving me ideas about what I could do in that field if I made it. So I feel like there’s no escape, no turning back. They only way is to move forward, and even then I now feel there’s an aspect of that which might feel less admirable. Once again, confusion has risen when I thought that I had defeated it or found a way to feel good about what I do. Who knows though? Maybe I’ll feel better as I go along, perhaps actually achieve some of what would be ideal to achieve and move the project forward, and maybe it won’t feel so hard. But mark me when I say that there are some things I can’t live with forever: namely the pressure of dealing with the group and with feeling down because I’m not perfect or do as much as would be ideal. If I find myself continuing to struggle with it and feel miserable, I know I’m not going to survive, and it will probably have a noticeable impact on what I do.