It seems a long time ago now since I left down that biro last June. Two months in fact. The relief at being finished and the thoughts of the summer beckoned. The thoughts of not having to spend those long dark evenings stuck in a dreary, quiet room with your head buried in a textbook were over. There was no more looking out the window thinking of what I’d do once the exams were over. There were exciting times on the horizon. You could throw off the shackles and do what you wanted to do.
I was no Einstein at school and that’s a fact. There was many a class test where I walked out with my head in my hands pondering what might have been but overall I did the best I could have possibly done and whatever happens on Wednesday I will have no regrets from my six years in Rice College. They say you get out of it what you put into it and hopefully that will be the case. What I get out of it I won’t know until tomorrow but I felt I worked hard at school. The Leaving Cert went better than I had anticipated. I met it head on and took each exam as they came and when I went home in the evening I’d count down the days until the whole damn thing was over. I was delighted to finish but every now and again I would think back to that Maths Paper 1 exam and doubts would plague the back of my mind about it. But please God Wednesday will finally bury those doubts for good.
The thoughts of Wednesday, August 17 seemed miles away last June. Holidays were booked and it was time to make up for some lost time. You could sit back and relax. The GAA season was in full flight and Mayo were, and still are, involved in the Championship.
But over the summer you got those constant reminders from the CAO through the letterbox and the thoughts of meeting the deadline on July 1 was daunting. Letters from colleges didn’t hide the fact that September was creeping up slowly but surely. Deciding your future at 17 or 18 years of age is not easy believe me. It’s a tough choice and even now, like so many, I’m still not sure what I’ll tackle come September! But whatever comes our way we’ll meet it head on and sure we’ll see what happens!
But this Wednesday is a defining day for all students who sat their Leaving Cert last June. At the minute we’re at a crossroads but the picture will become a lot clearer on Wednesday morning and hopefully we will know what road to take and please God it turns out to be the right road for everybody.
Colin McDonagh, who is on work experience in The Mayo News, is a student at Rice College. He receives his Leaving Cert exam results, on Wednesday.