I recently received the scores of both of my essays from last semester and unfortunately, they weren't as high as I would have liked. I'm not sure what went wrong since I haven't received the feedback yet, but nevertheless, it has been causing me much distress. I decided to reread both essays a couple of days ago just to see if they were really that bad, but they weren't, at least in my opinion. Of course they could have been better, but I still expected higher grades. In the end, I may just have to accept the fact that I don't write very good essays.

Adding to my mini-crisis right now is the pressure that I have to come up with topics for my upcoming essays. Unlike last semester, I'm much less certain on what I want to argue and so I'm probably going to be struggling to finish writing before the deadline. In general, this semester is just not going as well.

Regarding my GRE studies, I have returned to practicing math again and I seem to have forgotten a lot of what I learned a month ago. I really hope I'm not forgetting as much as I'm learning because I don't have that much time left; my test is on March 15th. Although I can always retake it, I've been feeling a lot of pressure to do well and this is simply because I want to get it over with. I want to be able to focus on my dissertation, which I hope will be the highlight of my academic experience here.

On a more positive note, I spoke with my grandma for the first time yesterday. It was so amazing to hear her voice. Ever since she fell ill our communication pretty much came to a halt. Right before I left for York again, she was able to say maybe two words, but now she can have full conversations. What's also amazing is that she's now able to eat solid food and read the newspaper.

When I called yesterday I cried right when I heard her voice. I told her that I knew she was going to get better and that she's really strong. I then asked her if she remembered my visiting her for three weeks and she said “no.” This was of course unfortunate, but keeping in mind everything that has happened, the fact that she's able to speak and eat is a miracle, and I should be extremely happy about that.