The Spring semester officially started this past Monday and so far, so good. I started off my first day with the second half of a year-long introductory biology course. This semester, we're covering Mendelian genetics, evolution, ecology and some physiology. The course is pretty centered around humans and disease, which I find rather disappointing. Every topic, whether it's cell reproduction, metabolism, evolution, or genetics, is somehow connected back to human beings and medicine. It makes sense, since most of the biology majors at the university are actually pre-med students and since there's a hospital connected with the university that has a decent med program.
I'm running into a lot of interesting problems this semester already. For one, I am in smaller classes, which is fantastic!, but I really feel like the weird old lady and I know that people have noticed that I'm not a traditional student. Often, I get asked how old I am by other students, which doesn't bother me, but it is a little strange. Students are much more likely to start conversations with other students in their peer group, so I feel like it's a little hard for me to make connections, which is unusual - I usually am pretty good at meeting people and socializing.
Another problem I've run into is my own ego, which somehow has convinced me that because I'm older than my classmates, that I should be smarter. Yesterday, we were solving a simple genetics problem using simple probability rules and I just couldn't do it without drawing a Punnett Square. All around me, I could hear people saying "Oh! I get it!" and I was getting so annoyed with myself. Why wasn't I getting it? In the end, I left the class a little shaken up - partly because I struggled with the material, but mostly because I don't want to be the kind of person who thinks their age is related to their intelligence. I don't want to feel competitive with my classmates...at least not in that way.
My geology class went a bit more smoothly. In fact, I'm enjoying the class so much that it's going by way too fast. Every day, when the professor says "That's all the time we have for today," I get so disappointed. His class is really interesting and he is very engaging. I felt comfortable with him the first day I stepped into the classroom and I think that that comfort will allow me to open up to asking more questions.
Anyway, things are going well and I'm excited to be back. More to come on the following:
-how I went to the wrong class, twice
-the state of my carotid