Done it! Finishing line crossed, and now the anxious wait for marks begins.
If you were with me on the Mushy Cloud yesterday you will know that I was a little bit stressed out with deadlines today for my final two assignments for this stage of my training. I was up against it last night, with two semi-written essays completed and a looming deadline at noon today.
I ended up staying up til 1am again (for the second night running) and I was up at just after 7am this morning to finish them both, and boy did it feel good to get over that line and press SEND.
To be honest, as soon as I hit the submission button on that second one I felt a bit lost. I have been studying continuously now for the past 8 years, first with the OU on my bachelors degree, then with the OU again for my masters which overlapped with my postgraduate certificate with All Saints for a year, and then a year on my postgraduate diploma in theology. It has been a wonderful experience and I have learned A LOT in these last 8 years, and I’m glad for a rest now.
What I haven’t learned though, is not to trust my tired brain at the end of a course of study…
After I submitted these assignments, I thought I would have some breakfast and then go for a celebratory leg-stretch on my bike. I actually had my toast in the toaster (double dunked because I was doing it from frozen) and as I was waiting for it to pop up I had the sudden thought that I hadn’t attached my appendices to one of them.
I don’t think I have ever panicked as much in all my life!
It was nearly 11.30am, half an hour before the deadline, and there was me stood in the kitchen in my cycling gear waiting for my toast to pop up and my heart nearly stopped beating when I realised I had made a potentially catastrophic mistake.
I legged it upstairs to sort it out, but as I was waiting for the pdfs to save and merge I could smell burning coming from the kitchen. I figured that at this stage of the proceedings a couple of pieces of burnt toast were a small price to pay to make sure that I got over that finishing line with everything I should have done.
Disaster averted, new submission with about 15 minutes to spare behind me, I decided to go for that ride to stop my legs from shaking and to put it all out of my mind. If I’d stayed in I would have just been fretting about it and so without a backward glance, I sallied forth on my rusty steed.
It was a good ride to be fair. It was cold and I was considering turning back after the first mile or so, but when I turned out of the wind it was better, so I carried on. I’m glad I did because I managed to do 8 miles in just under an hour – a new record in my post-covid recovery – and I managed to get up not one, but TWO of my nemesis hills…. without stopping on either of them! I could feel my the strength in my legs today, which I’ve not felt for a long time, and my breathing was much better than it has been in recent months. I still got a bit of a burning sensation down one side of my chest and there was the odd whistle when I breathed in, but it was nowhere near as bad as it was when I had covid. I am so grateful that I seem to be almost back to “normal” again.
As I rode I realised that I was actually praying as I went. I prayed for the people I passed, the manufacturing sites, the police headquarters, the ambulance that went past me with its lights on, the funeral party outside a church, the minister who was greeting the coffin, colleagues I recognised from the funeral directors where I worked on placement last year, the children in the many primary schools and nurseries who were playing out in their respective yards, the film crew filming outside another church, the draymen delivering to the pub, the queue outside the post office, the lady on the motorised scooter who grinned at me as we passed each other round a skip…. So many people, so many signs of life, and so much to pray for and to give thanks for.
I thought that my ride would take my mind away from the assignments I’d just submitted, but if anything, it helped cement a lot of the stuff that I have been processing in the last couple of months. I really felt that I was travelling with the Lord today and I’m going to bed with a content and peaceful heart.
Love and light