Exams

Getting Leaving Cert Results?

Written by Classmate 

Dear Person Getting Leaving Cert Results,

I’m not going to try to tell you that it’ll be ok, or that you did your best or that it’s not important in the grand scheme of things. Because maybe it won’t be ok, maybe you didn’t do your best, and maybe it does seem very important in the grand scheme of things.

But cut yourself a break, ok? Schooling takes quite a hit when the condition has moved in. It’s hard to concentrate, the brain and memory don’t work right, and panic is rife. Or else you swung the other way and just checked out.

When I did my leaving cert all those years ago I checked out of life in the January. I just gave up. My parents were fit to murder me, and I just stopped caring. So results day arrived and I cried solidly for 2 days, furious at myself. I slapped away everyone who tried to make me feel better. I really regret that! 

But I’m glad it happened the way it did. I wound up in a course I didn’t want to do, but met a boy I’m planning to marry. I repeated the leaving certificate a few years later and eventually got to where I wanted to be. It always works out in the end.

I think you need to show yourself some compassion. Fighting an ED is hard work, and it’s a distraction that most students don’t face. Well done if there are even any results to be turning up to get. I mean that, well done.

People try to drown you in platitudes, but try to see the intention behind it. They just care. It’s hard when you see all those groups of “happy people” running around on results night, and you might be feeling so low and so disappointed. But I promise you that your day will come. Keep working on recovery & freedom, and sooo many doors will begin to open.

So with the benefit of hindsight, may I suggest the following:

       Give yourself credit for even attempting the exams.

       Don’t bother comparing. Someone will always get more points than everyone else. There will always be that freaky person with 14 A1s, but focus on your own achievement, because it IS ONE.

       Try not to snap at well wishers, accept the congratulations with grace.

       Do something nice that you enjoy. If you want to go to the cinema with your gran’s neighbour’s dog then do that. YOU DO NOT HAVE TO GO GET DRUNK!

       Remind yourself of all the people that took the scenic route in life, and remember there are many ways to skin a cat. 

       Ignore anyone who says that the leaving cert is the most important event of your life. It’s a lie.

       Remember the wise words of Robert Frost:

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.”

‘Classmate’