Forget Week Five blues, Week Two blues are the the real villain

What do you mean we have six more weeks of this?

Week two gets way more credit than it deserves.

That being the case, why has it taken me (currently a second year) so long to realise that the week five blues pale in comparison to the blues of week two?

To prove my point, here’s a list of reasons that prove week two is the real problem… week two, it’s time you stepped up and took some responsibility!

Week two is never ending

Due to the fact that the Cambridge week starts on a Thursday, the first week of term seems to fly by, we have two days of work and then its the weekend! Then, we only have three more days and week one is finished, what a breeze!

It’s beginning to look a lot like lent term from home. ( Photo credits: Author’s own)

So that’s week one in a nutshell. However, when we finally reach week two, we suddenly find ourselves drowning in work, zoom calls and feeling an impending sense of doom because we know we have to withstand six more weeks of “academic rigour”. The workload quickly reaches a peak and the intensity of our degrees come flooding back. With only having one week to prepare, it’s easy to find yourself overwhelmed.

Expectations get thrown out the window

Everyone understands that week one acts as a gentle reintroduction. But the grind really gets going in week two. We dive into the beginning of term with clear heads, up-to-date on holiday work and pre-reading, we have all these big plans to stay organised and on top of our workload, but all this preparation and organisation has already gone out the window by the time the middle of week two comes around.

The essentials for an organised term.  (Photo credits: Author’s own)

I’m certainly not alone in feeling like this, and English student from Gonville and Caius told the Tab Cambridge: “Week two is really the start of the never-ending workload, whereas week one is just the ice- breaker for the start of term. I really think that week two is the first normal week of the semester and therefore the hardest.”

Week two in lockdown

In case you hadn’t already realised, this time round, week two is during the *third* national lockdown. For students staying in college, it can be hard being away from family, for students staying at home, it can be hard being away from friends.

Being in lockdown also means it can be incredibly hard to stay motivated. The fact we are in week two also means we are just at the beginning, it’s easy to feel anxious about the lack of motivation we may be feeling as the term progresses, especially if we are struggling to stay motivated already. Week five is also past the halfway mark in the term, we can comfort ourselves that we are nearing the end, but week two is only the beginning!

Pre- lockdown antics (Image  credits: Author’s own)

Holiday mode

Granted, by the time week five arrives, we may be exhausted, drained and mentally worn down, but by then we’ve become accustomed to the un-ending Cambridge workload. This cannot be said for Week Two as we are still in holiday mode. I’m currently drowning in zoom calls, supervision prep and trying in vain to re-gain organisational skills. But, by the time week five comes, I have become a warrior at getting my act together and can tackle the work-intensive days head-on.

An MMLer from Churchill College agrees: “It’s depressing when you’ve just come out of a holiday and the workload is starting again. Week one is so calming but week two is a readjustment period that you’ve overcome by the time week five approaches.”

So, if this doesn’t prove to you that week two is the absolute worst, then I don’t know what will! Week five seems to get all the bad rep, but it’s definitely fair to say that week two has “blues” of its own.

Feature Image Credit: alexxxis via Pixabay (Creative Commons License

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