'A-Level' Up *

Literally, despite only being back at school for 1 and a half weeks, I feel the upgrade in intensity from what GCSE's were. It may actually be because I haven't had a proper form of learning or education in the last 3 months, but nonetheless, I'm feeling the effects of Sixth Form already.

I stayed in my school, and as much as I do wonder how it would have been if I had left, I always conclude with the idea that I did make the right decision in staying. The way I see it is that these two years are solely for getting into university, the easiest way of doing that being staying at my sixth form; in an environment that I'm comfortable and familiar with; both factors being those that I can use to my advantage.

I like sixth form, but at the same time I don't. I like being older in school and not having to wear the horrible uniform that I did, but there are downsides to the new academic life.
Take having to wear your own clothes for example. Although I've just said that I like the change in clothing I don't at the same time. Uniform was abysmal, but having to sort out 5 different scarves  for the week in itself is a lot, plus the 'do I wear trousers/Do I wear a skirt?' question I'm asking myself every Sunday evening which is a lot more than "do I wear trousers or do I wear a skirt?"*1. Additionally, what makes having this dress code difficult is the fact that clothes don't fit. I'm small, but not tiny-small, also slim to some extent too. Basically, the U.K. sizing system doesn't co-operate with people like me, who has to not only look smart and abide by my schools dress code, but stay within Muslim boundaries of dress, and try and look good too*2. It's a lot to consider when you think about it, trust me.

Never in my life have I had so many assignments set in one day!
I looked at this and knew that A-Levels had begun.

However, clothes are nothing of a struggle in comparison to the work. The workload isn't overwhelming as such for me personally, but just different. Maybe over the last 2+ years I became too comfortable with the GCSE way of learning. You were learning, but I always found it manageable because it wasn't completely foreign to what I may have learnt or known already so it was never too hard to grasp. I guess it's been a long time since I've learnt something completely new- so maybe that's really the problem- but I've found this part of the sixth form experience uneasy.

 Additionally, there's my perception that everyone understands everything already. My Further Maths class (which is Maths + Further Maths, 2 A-levels of pure joy!) consists of 10 people, all of which are so silent during class, ask no questions and seem just fine. Maybe it's the way they are, or they're just shy, but the lack of speech in the class to me suggests that they are managing, understanding, and I'm not. Maths at A-level isn't too foreign, but it's not the GCSE I could do in my sleep. So from being on top of my game to being at the bottom of the heap is not nice. Combined with the pressure in having to well in these two subjects for university, I  haven't felt so good recently in my favourite subject. 

I was discussing my discomfort with a friend of mine, who then told me to "Fake it 'til I make it", which is the game plan for now because I have to keep afloat, even if it's just on the outside. I was also reassured with other words and comments, from peers and even teachers around school. That I received throughout the week. If they think I have the right attitude, and the ability to get good grades at the end of the year, then I should too, right?

Perhaps it's just apprehension, nerves and the likes getting to me so soon, maybe not. But overall I feel okay with sixth form- I like it. The "sun shines brightest after the rain"/ a "sun sets to rise again"/ "after the storm ends, the sun will shine" etc. In my case the rain is just spitting, the sun is just setting, and the storm is only just brewing, I have a lot to come. My challenges are yet to come I know, and I'll just have to get to grips with myself, keep a strong head /mind and get through the year.
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Side Notes and Commentary

* : Do you catch my drift? Get the slight pun there? A level up in terms of education, A-levels up as in they're up and running now.... Not funny 'haha', but kinda smart/cool, right? 

*1 Having choice is not always easy. 

I'm more of a "trousers girl", but as I've recently just wholly adopted maxi skirts, I  also want to wear them too. So ideally I want to mix it up and change from a pair of trousers one day, and a maxi skirt another, but I can't do it alternatively because that's too predictive and boring (which I don't want to be). I also can't wear the same pair in a row, because then I am also too predictable, also its too early in the year to wear the same thing too often. There's also what shirt (and jumper) I would wear that day, with the blazer. I can't be the only one who thinks some blazers/shirts/jumpers don't look good with some trousers or skirts? Maybe I'm over thinking it but I feel have to because otherwise, I'll be extremely ill-dressed. From 'trouser/skirt' to ill-dressed. Wow

*2 Its  my everyday subliminal challenge. How do I pull everything off, whilst staying within my bounds? I consider my religious bounds to be the most important, and so they come before and infiltrate into everything else. I've come to accept that I can't be into quite a bit of mainstream fashion, mainly because it doesn't tend to comply with my Muslim standards, but nonetheless I like to look good, or at least feel good with what I'm wearing, so I do try and take care. On top of that I'm not fussy but I'm very particular about what I wear, so the whole process of wearing clothes that comply to a dress code rather than a uniform is...something to deal with. 
I like wearing different colour scarves though. I like the new freedom I have (from black and grey to all the colours of the rainbow, and every pattern in between). 

That's fun.

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