Word Weary

I can’t recall a semester when I’ve been this exhausted at the end of the second week. Not when I had my first math class that was, for all intents and purposes, over my head. Not when I had fifteen credit hours plus work and family and student involvement. Not when I had physics and calculus and differential equations.

I came down with a stomach flu this past weekend and I think I’m not back to my full self again, but this is ridiculous. I yawn all day. I can barely focus on being awake. I could roll over asleep at any moment.

The culprit?


I love reading. I learn best by reading. But with four reading-intensive courses, the reading assignments are mountainous. Not only do I have weekly chapters to read in multiple classes, I also have “short” stories to read, reread, and annotate, stories for workshopping to read and review, and entire mythologies to tackle–and everything has a quiz attached to it. For example, yesterday I read the entire Iliad. Yes, I’ve read it before. But not recently enough to pass a test on it.

I’m word-weary. How can I read more in less time? How can I read attentively without expending all my mental energy on a single page? How do English majors do it all day long?

I’m open for suggestions.


One thought on “Word Weary

  1. Darren, I feel your pain. I would recommend catching as much sleep as possible. Doctors say laying down in a quite room is equal to sleeping. Catch naps, go to bed as early as possible. Although it may seem you need to be reading, you may find more quality focusing and retention and accomplish more. I have been blessed with the ability to sleep 3 hours or less a night. If I find myself drifting while reading, I put it down, shut my eyes, turn off everything and set my phone alarm at 15 minutes just in case. Either way, I am confident you will be ok. :)

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