In what world are “recharge days” comparable to a real spring break?
( @zoeisabellakravitz / Instagram )
Freckled cheeks, guilty-pleasure novels, a pack of seltzers and a socially isolated spot on the beach. This is what the middle of March should be. Instead, you can look to my nightstand for a glimpse into my current state: Scattered Yerba Mate cans, a copy of Writers & Lovers that hasn’t been opened since the start of the semester, and a pile of coursework that waits for me every morning.
About 60% of colleges have cancelled their spring breaks this year, according to a study by the College Crisis Initiative at Davidson College.
When the University of Florida announced that we’d be going through spring term without a break, we were all understandably disappointed. I kissed away any hope of a tropical escape, but more or less forgot about the loss. However, I’ve now reached a point in the semester when the lack of pause is taking a toll. I can muster up the energy to turn in my assignments, but not much else. (RIP to my weekly therapy sessions that I no longer have time for.) Self-care is a distant memory as the inevitable fatigue sets in. UF’s solution to the campus wide burnout? Recharge days.
Dear Administration: My problems cannot be fixed by a silent disco or a virtual conversation with Tiffany Haddish. In 24 hours, the university expects us to be able to turn our mental health around and approach our classes with the same amount of energy as we did in January.
When Flo Milli said, “I am healthy, I am wealthy, I am rich, I am that bitch,” I wish I felt that. What feels more honest is, “I am struggling, looking ghastly, my bank account is in the single digits, someone please help me,” but that doesn’t really have the same ring to it.
While I see the school’s intention, I would have liked to see more extreme measures taken here in Gainesville. Instead of focusing on the super spreader madness happening at Midtown clubs, they took away the one period of time we had to regroup and reset. Sure, a bunch of kids traveling to Key West and Bimini wouldn’t bode well for our town’s case numbers, but neither does the constant partying on our home front.
While we may have deemed 2020 the true hellscape, 2021 has its fair share of emotional turmoil. The wellbeing of the world may seem like an external issue, but it's undeniably our environment. If you’re feeling drained not only by school, but by depression, anxiety, trauma, fear and injustice, you’re not alone. I would do anything for an opportunity to realign myself without the pressure of spring semester hanging over my head.
Unfortunately, that’s not the case. All we have is a Wednesday. If you’re like me, lawn games and crafts with fellow Gators aren’t the definition of an off day. Do what your body needs. I’ll be eating really fantastic pastries from Curia and crossing off my Letterbox watchlist. It doesn’t sound productive and that’s OK. We deserve a week but enjoy the day.
Madeline Murphy is an Online Editor at Rowdy Magazine. She’s currently studying Journalism with a minor in Women’s Studies. Madeline can be found making Apple Music playlists, trying Nigella Lawson recipes and binging SATC. She’s fiercely passionate about social justice and the power of words. Her Instagram is @maduhlinemurphy