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It was the day after my 17th birthday. I was fatigued
due to the lack of sleep I received. I was up until the early hours of the morning
studying for a seemingly “easy” test. It was my learners licence test.

I had arrived at the testing station an hour early, just
for precaution. I sat outside waiting for my name to be called. I sat alienated
from the rest of my fellow peers. I was nervous for my result.

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I had studied for many hours and did not want to fail
after all my hard work and I did not want that burden on me. I glanced over the
pages of the book; the distinctive ink smell entered my nostrils as each page
was viewed. My hands shook, I was restless and the chatter around me irked me. Two
affable girls beside me seemed less tense than I was. I queried if they knew
anything about the test. They both commented how you always fail the first time;
they both said this was their second time they were writing the test. This did
not ease my nerves at all.

What seemed to be eternity had passed we were summoned to
the testing room. It was monotonous room filled with touch screen computers
each assigned to a person; the air was stale and unwelcoming. The examiner
stated the instructions far too quickly for me to absorb in my anxious state. The
test started, one question followed then next and I began to feel at ease. The questions
seemed familiar to me, my extensive hard work paid off. I checked my answers
multiple times and pressed “submit”. I turned away as I could not bear the
stress of finding my results immediately. I eventually built up the courage to
glance and my result. The word “pass” caught my eye. I was so overcome with joy
that I let out a shriek of happiness in the silent room. The examiner humorously
put two thumbs up to congratulate me on my achievement.

Thinking about this now
makes me realise how much of a mammoth conception it seemed for me to pass my
learners test, I was more concerned for this test than certain examination
papers at school. I now see that it was not necessary for me to stress such a
large amount about it. So what if I failed the first time? So what if I did not
get it before my holiday? I could always do it again.

I stressed about what my
family and friends would think of me knowing I failed. I was too concerned about
what other people thought and put this test above things that were far more important.
I sacrificed precious sleep which is much needed in a moody adolescent’s life, I
prioritised studying and stress over the enjoyment of my 17th
birthday which resulted in one of the least enjoyable birthdays I had
experienced. I did not listen to the people around me saying that the test is nothing
to stress about, I pressured myself too much and it did not help me in the end.
I now realise that I should not take things as seriously as mistakes can be fixed
and I can always try again after I fail. Overall, I learned that work does not precede
family as my relationships and my well-being is much more important than a test. 

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