Scribble #9: Support System

“I don’t need a support system,”

It’s easy for me to get caught up in schoolwork. Personally, it’s one of my favorite places to be, completely engrossed in the essay that I am writing or the exam that I am studying for. Learning is something that I have always loved to do, and finals week puts my commitment to learning into overdrive. Unfortunately, during weeks like last week and this one, my fascination turns to reclusion.

“Put your hand on my heart and listen.”

The more time I spend away from people, the less time I want to spend with people, including my most beloved friends. I get used to my cycle of entering that special place of focus in my brain and sitting with one task for hours at a time to the point that any sort of social interaction is exhausting just to think about.

“What I need is a dedication to last me all the way through.”

The truth is that I rely on my friends when I am doing well, so I shouldn’t stop relying on them just because I feel overwhelmed. Like Liz Phair sings in Support System, support from loved ones should not stop when things get difficult. Especially during exam weeks, when nearly everyone is experiencing increased stress, there’s nothing wrong with reaching out and telling my friends that it’s been a crazy week for me as long as I take their mental well-being into account as well. In my experience, my friends are usually happy to know that I feel comfortable being honest about how I’ve been feeling and relieved to know that they are able to commiserate with me about the stress of wrapping up the semester, too.

“Pointing the finger, I’m counting on loving you.”

Staying up far later than I should have talking with friends last night might have made me more tired than usual today, but it also reminded me that I’m not alone. Just because I isolated myself to focus for a few days does not mean my support system is gone. Letting them know how I feel is important, too. It’s nothing personal against my friends, I just get caught up in my own world sometimes which leads to my own self-isolation. Telling my friends about this – and telling them that I miss them – is always a helpful step in our relationships. 

“Over and above the passion, I’m connected to you.”

Even though it’s an ongoing process for me to stop guilting myself for resting when there is still work to be done, taking breaks is necessary and healthy. Just because I don’t see my friends as often during busy and overwhelming weeks does not mean that we don’t still love each other, and I need to remember that when I once again have more time to socialize. My restorative experiences with my friends this week have been a healthy reminder that, for me, there are things – and people – that are just as important as (if not more important than) my essays and exams. 

Listen to Support System here:

Sydney Braun

Artist, Musician, Writer, Human. University of Michigan Class of 2024. Pronouns: she/her. Huge fan of 90s music, not a fan of single-use plastic water bottles. Be sure to check out Song Scribbles With Sydney, where I use my favorite music to help analyze emotions, posted every Wednesday!

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