32053: Corpus Law Diary TT 2
The idea of a crazy week may seem strange, given that most of our lives have taken a monotonous (and perhaps depressing) turn since the beginning of lockdown, but this last week has been one of the craziest weeks I've had since starting at Oxford - so it's probably fitting that this is the week I'm due to write for the law diary.
So why has this been a crazy week? For one, I had my Law Moderations. This is the culmination of the Moderations course - three exams focusing on Criminal, Roman, and Constitutional law respectively. This is arguably the most stressful part of first year law at Corpus and the reason behind (and motivation for) most of those sleepless nights at the library. As a result, much of the week was taken up by revision, but singing and tv have been my respite. Exams are hard enough at college, so the added pressure of completing them online in lockdown caused more procedural concerns (adding to the already seemingly overwhelming stress over the actual content of the exams). However, finishing Moderations was incredibly satisfying and freeing: two terms worth of work finally coming to fruition.
Being at home hasn't been the only test of the week: I damaged my ribs after falling off my bike last week and had to deal with a lot of pain. This injury especially impacted my revision and only heightened the stress of exams. I really tried to heed the advice of my tutor: let go of the feeling of ever being completely prepared for an exam because that feeling is unattainable at university.
Lockdown is rough, especially for mental health. It's hard balancing the sadness and disappointment I feel about my life being disrupted while also being thankful for how lucky I am. Maintaining an optimistic attitude is even more difficult than usual. It hardly provides for a conducive working environment - motivating myself even just to get up every day is exhausting. Particularly as there aren't the usual distractions of Corpus life - the coffee breaks, the beer cellar, or even the study partner for that all-nighter.
The law diary is supposed to offer an insight into studying law at Corpus Christi. Right now, that's obviously impossible - but the lesson I learnt from this week is one anyone who studies law at Corpus will also learn: to trust that you will always get to the end of the week. Some weeks seem endless and your motivation won't just wane, it will completely evaporate. Learning to allow yourself to feel this feeling and realising you can still do it is one of the most challenging, but also rewarding, things about the law degree. Often things seem impossible at first and then as you progress and revise you go back to what you found difficult and it is not nearly as challenging.
Corpus Cloister This week especially has felt like an eternity, but here I am at the end of it. Not only that but feeling like I've achieved a personal goal. That is in part because of the extraordinary people around me, if only virtually right now. The support from the faculty, my college tutors and the incredible friends I have made in only two terms have helped me through the craziness of this week and every week since I arrived in Oxford in October. So, onto next week. We have already started our next two modules online - Contract and Tort. Each is a new and distinct challenge, as are the methods we are now learning them by. They are also two areas of law perhaps less well known than the areas I have already covered so learning something new will be fun particularly in lockdown. As much as the uncertainty of the future scares me, I am excited to keep riding this roller coaster that is studying for a law degree at Oxford. I just hope we can get back to Oxford soon to enjoy the full experience of life at Corpus!