Exam Anxiety and Chocolate

As an over half century old person it has been a long, I mean more than half my life long time since I had to take a mid term or final exam.  The only exam I take now is my annual GYN exam and that is fraught with it’s own peril, but I digress.


I don’t remember having exams in junior high school, as middle school was called back in the olden days.  I must have started in high school.  So for those four years and the four of college, I took exams.  It was probably more like three and a half in college because I am certain second semester senior year I did not take anything that required a test, let alone an exam.  So for seven and a half years of my 51 and a half I took exams.  That is only about 15% of my life and it happened over 30 years ago.


Now that we have explored the numbers I pose a question.  Why does my 8th grade daughter studying for mid-term exams bring up a strong anxiety in me, which requires chocolate to placate, based on past experiences?


I am not taking any exams.  My child is not terribly worried about the exams.  She has not requested chocolate.  I have successfully avoided all chocolate for the last eight months except for the tiny amount sprinkled on my every other week skinny latte at Starbucks.


What is it about certain feelings that we associate with food?  You know, movies and popcorn is the easiest one to identify, but there is baseball and hotdogs, Thanksgiving and pumpkin pie, birthdays and cake and ice cream.


Back in the day I remember when the only time we ever had cake and ice cream was at a birthday party.  Once when Carter was about three I told her we were having a party.  She looked around the kitchen and asked, “Where is the cake?”  I said, “Cake?  We aren’t having any cake.”  She cocked her head and replied, “You said we were having a party.”


I guess that my few years of studying for exams were enough to ingrain in me the feeling that I needed chocolate to survive.  Now logically I know I will be OK, but I really don’t need to have this added desire for a sweet on top of all the Christmas food around.  I walked into a Christmas party this afternoon at the home of a great local chef.  There was a platter of the best looking sweet treats that almost brought me to my knees.  I hugged the host and hostess and made a beeline for the door.


Back at exam central things are not much better.  As soon as I post this blog I am going to get right to needle pointing, something that keeps my hands too busy to reach for something to eat.  Two and a half days and this exam period will be history.

One Comment on “Exam Anxiety and Chocolate”

  1. Demetra says:

    You said it sister. Three days till its done here. But we had to endure college reading period here as well. Son number one came home to study so we’ve been negotiating college and US exam stress. Hence, the Maple View Farms Egg Nog with a little special addition!!! All is well- it’s a passage of life! Happy Holidays.

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