The other day I found myself on the same bus route I took in my college years. It then hit me: “Wow, how did I manage to do this for 4+ years, every weekday, and NOT expect to have a mental breakdown…”
Now I can explain.
At the time, because I didn’t know any better.
I didn’t see any alternatives to shutting up and swallowing my discomfort.
Actually, my parents were pretty good in raising me that way. “If other people’s kids wouldn’t have a problem with it, so why would you have a problem with it.” – aside from that, their ‘suck it up’ parenting style also made me realize I never want to have kids, ever.
I just accepted that commuting for 1.5 hours every single one way (which amounts to 3 hours everyday) was the necessary evil to get a higher education. ‘To be someone’ to prove that once and for all that ‘I’m smart.’
But you know what’s NOT smart.
A 3 hours loss for every weekday of the school year for 200 Days out of a year.
And times that by 4?!
In hindsight, there was just so many things I could’ve done with that 2400 hours rather than commuting to and from school and being miserable for it and not achieving my true potential even though I tried my hardest to make things work. Because you have to realize, when you are young and foolish like I was – you also skimp out on sleep over other stupid things (sleep is critical to memory and learning. It helps us retain information. And getting a restorative night’s sleep boosts our otherwise impaired and caffeine dependent cognitive abilities). Who knew how much time I lost back then.
And the thing is, the other day, I didn’t even go the full route from my house to my old school. It might’ve taken me an hour instead of three, but still that was enough. I only went half way between work to a meeting to well a nice coffee shop in the area to work. On the way home, I was squished among strangers in an sweaty, foul smelling, overcrowded bus. Just like how I remembered.
I can only imagine how many have to put up with it on a daily basis and how lucky I am that I just had to endure the occasional ride here and there. Which is probably another good reason why I’m looking for digital alternatives to further my education.