It’s Thanaweya 3ama Shutdown Time

Writer: Malak Mahmoud

Editor: Khaled Mohammed

If you’re a fellow “thanawya 3ama” student, then congrats! You’ve approximately marked 4 months of this hectic journey. 36% of the road. And you’re probably going through the shutdown phase right now. Same, buddy.

We all feel like our brain has zero permeability for further knowledge, and at some point, you know the very correct answer in this freaking quiz but you just have no energy to write it down so you end up answering with absolute nonsense. You’re so aware of the fleeting time (guilt-free breaks no longer exist, right?) but you keep sitting there because? You’ve no idea why? Did I mention the random nightmares about the finals where you study for a physics exam but realize that it’s a history one even though you don’t even take history? Oh, the subconscious mind and its games.

I’m writing this from the midst of an intense shutdown phase. But I want to tell you something – it’s normal. Because when you’re in hellholes (aka centers) all day long and each subject has an enormous amount of homework and endless daily exams (monthly exams are like, biweekly?), it’s so normal to feel like disconnecting for a bit. The frenzied rush of the year is so uncomfortable, and it makes you feel that you simply can’t take a day-off. In addition to everyone’s expectations and the continuous stress, taking a break seems so surreal.

However, you can’t do anything if you lack energy. If you pull an all-nighter to finish something up while you didn’t have enough sleep beforehand, this all-nighter will be a waste of time and effort.

It’s okay if you loosen up a bit for a couple of days. It’s okay if you sleep a bit earlier than usual. It’s not rude to socially inactive – sometimes we just need a break from exerting social effort (p.s.: refrain from “hewaraat” please). It’s okay to have time for yourself away from all the outer world noise.

A nap from doing things is so recharging, and it’s something you totally need after 4 months of hard, hard work. A couple of tranquil days will save you from the couple next months.

You deserve a break, and it’s not a waste of time —it’s an investment. A worn-out warrior couldn’t fight with optimal strength; you can’t just burst into the battle with no energy.

You’re a priority too.