A Memo for the Exam Nights

Stand up.
Step away from your desk.
Let the knots and aches of your muscles dissolve.
Clear the numbness of your body,
And face the entropy of your heart
Bombarded with gnawing fears and echoing desires,
Unmuffled by the haze of a mind processing books worth of knowledge.
I see you’re tired:
Tired of reviewing, tired of expectations,
Tired of anxiety being your motivation to succeed.
Yet you press on, boat against the current
For that moment of paper in your hands
And a scarlet number that fills you with more fiery confidence
Than ten thousand August suns.

Stop at your kitchen, open the fridge door
Or pour yourself water from the pitcher you haven't touched in awhile.
All this for a number?
I won't tell you to stop.
(You're the only person who should define "success" for yourself.)
But when your pen charges through your notes
Remember to let it pause after a while,
As you wander away for a well-deserved repose.
And if you get your results back and they’re not what you'd liked,
Don't worry.
Don't let the despair of losing one battle cost you the whole war.

Step out.
Sense the snow beneath your feet
And breathe the wintry air that burns bonfires in your lungs.
The stardust and streetlights spiral into a galaxy --
You are here.
You belong on this celestial arm, small yet capable of cosmic accomplishments.
You are the threads of fourteen billion years of space-time converging into a singularity.
You are all the possibilities.

You can do it.

-- Jessica