This is my first year taking midterms and it’s quite exhilarating, in a stressful sort of way. They are the conclusion to my first chapter here at MHS and they are also the first few words of the beginning of a new chapter.
They are the first checkpoint of my high school career and are a marker for what is to come. When I think of midterms, I seem to draw comparisons between them and the Super Bowl...for some interesting reasons. For one, they both occur around the same time: the Super Bowl is in early February and midterms are in late January, they are about a week or two apart.
Second, they each have little checkpoints leading up to them: the tests that you take all throughout the first term can compare to the games that are played to measure the progress of the team that could eventually partake in the Superbowl. The other major comparison is that they shine a light on you.
With midterms, the teacher is specifically watching you to see if you know what you’re doing and with the Super Bowl, all eyes are on you to make sure you don’t mess up what could be the biggest game of your career. So they’re quite similar in unexpected ways.
Midterms are a big thing. They signal the end of the term and a fresh-start. They could mean the end of one class or just the halfway point: a place to stop and review the work that you have already done. It is here that all that you have learned comes into play, every little fact you wrote down, every little test you took, it all comes rushing back.
In comparison, the Super Bowl is a big thing too. It signals the end of the season, a final hurrah before next September. Here everything that you did, all the plays you practiced and all the games you won, come rushing back. Here is the place where you can prove that you have what it takes to win it all, here on the world’s stage. It will be the biggest moment of your career and it will be watched by millions. They both are the place where you have the chance to prove yourself – or crash and burn.
With this being my first “trip” to midterms, I await it apprehensively like a rookie quarterback: I am excited to finally to do this, but I know that I cannot ruin this moment, whatever I do. This is my big time to shine, my chance to prove myself. Midterms are a big deal, they may solidify you a good grade or they may bring it down a few points and cost you that grade you had tried so hard for. Just like that quarterback, I’ve been reviewing everything I know for the past couple of weeks, I’ve been going over my flashcards and doing practice questions whenever I get the chance...it’s kind of like reviewing the film of the opposing team before going on to face them. Every advantage has been given – the extra practice, the extra help – for me to win this game and to go home victorious...so why am I still intimated and fearful – yet calm and content – of what I have to face? Why these mixed feelings?
Midterms are approaching fast, as is the Superbowl. I wonder how anxious the two Superbowl teams are feeling right about now, how much they’re practicing and if they have reviewed the film yet. Have they spent every waking minute thinking about the game, thinking about how they carry the weight of themselves, their team, and their city on their shoulders? I would be; and I’d also be freaking out, yet somehow I feel calm too.
I should feel calm, I’ve studied and I am prepared...there’s my reassurance. Instead I’m left to fret about the impending doom that awaits me, along with the relief that will come once the week is over, and then the knot in my stomach that will retie itself when I hear the words, “Oh don’t worry, your tests are almost done being graded...all will be fine.” Then I just have to wait to hear how I did, and if it all paid off. At least the players don’t have to wait a few weeks to hear if they won the Superbowl!