So this is a B I G day for some of you! I remember the feeling of pure dread on both results days. I hope you all do as amazing as you’d hoped, but if you haven’t THAT IS OKAY. Sometimes you won’t get the grade that you worked so hard for, it doesn’t make you any less amazing. My mum always used to tell me “As long as you have done your best, that is all that matters” and it is so so so true. Please don’t be so hard on yourself. If you carry on reading you’ll soon see my education journey wasn’t a walk in the park either!
Let’s start with my GCSE’s! So, if you read my “Losing a Parent: My Story” you will be aware of the massive bombshell I received the night before my first exam, which was Religious Studies. I was so devastated I was prepared to walk away from school with no qualifications. I went into school the next day with no bag, not even a pen in a pair of jeans and a top. I was ready to break the news to my form tutor and my Head of Year that I was NOT doing my exams. These two ladies saved my education, more than once. Without them I would not have a single qualification to my name. We talked everything through and I eventually agreed to do the exam. Believe me I was not easily persuaded, I am easily the most stubborn person you will ever meet. My mum was also heavily influential on me sitting those exams, education was soooo important to her and if I didn’t do them, she’d understand but I wanted to show her I could do what I had been working so hard for.
I did every single exam.
Obviously, before I received my results my mum sadly passed away. But by the time results day came, I was so nervous and the feeling of anxiousness I felt was unexplainable. One subject I always struggled with was maths, I just did not get it one bit. I was in the top set but genuinely I have no clue why, I failed every single mock exam and easily was the most clueless in the class. I just simply did not understand maths and still don’t. When I walked into the hall to collect my results and I saw my maths teacher – if you don’t already know they receive your results by email in the morning so they see them before you – he gave me the weirdest concerned look ever. I thought, that’s it, I’ve failed, time to go home. I didn’t fail… I passed everything! My results were as follows (I feel like I’ve forgotten one):
Maths – B Textiles – A English Literature – A Media Studies – A
English Language – B Biology – B Chemistry – B Physics – C
Religious Studies – C BTEC Sports Diploma – Merit
From there I joined another schools Sixth Form, which ended up being the most challenging period of my whole life and if I’m honest I hated it. It was a place I could not wait to leave. I was never one to bunk off of school or anything but my attendance was appalling because I was so unhappy. If I could go back there would be so many things I would have done differently. I had, again, an amazing support system around me who ensured I did well over the course of the two years. I tried to drop out around 3 times, the intense social and academic environment was not something I had experienced before and I did not like it at all. However, it isn’t all negative as it has in ways shaped the person I am today, it has helped me see what I want from my future. Despite having a rocky ride with it all, my results were not that bad.
English Literature – C Media Studies – B Psychology – D
Extended Project Qualification – C
They were very average results and I was predicted A LOT better but I’m honestly just glad I finished them, especially psychology. It clearly was my lowest grade and this was down to my pure lack of effort and interest in the subject. I’d definitely say to someone who is going to begin their A-levels to research the courses they’re thinking of doing, with this course in particular I made the mistake of not doing so.
I was also preparing to go to University and had received two unconditional offers from my top 2 choices to study Media Studies. Over the course of that summer I become very, very ill, I lost loads of weight and wasn’t leaving home very often. When I did, I’d get very dizzy, short of breath and physically sick. It really wasn’t like me at all but I came to the decision to defer my application for a year, which the University of Hertfordshire were so supportive of.
In the last month I have actually withdrawn my application, purely for the fact that I like having money hahaha. University is 100% for some people, most of my best friends go and I am so ridiculously proud of them and they are happy. Another one of my bestie’s went and after a few months decided it wasn’t for her and is now in a job that she really enjoys and most importantly is making her happy. Happiness is the main thing and is not determined through one single pathway.
Every single one of me and my friends have taken a completely different pathway to benefit our own personal futures – whether that mean going to uni or having a full time job – they are all AMAZING, we may not see eachother all the time due to our hectic schedules but when we do it is completely wonderful. No matter where we go we will always have eachother. I know it is always a worry when one chapter ends. The fear of the unknown but it will all work out.
Finally. if you do want to go to University but didn’t get into the one of your choice there are other options – going through clearing or alternatively doing a foundation year are both great ways to get your degree without the sky high grades. There is more in depth information on the UCAS website.
Never be disappointed in yourself.
Believe in yourself.
Trust that everything happens for a reason.