Results day 2020
Without sounding like a geriatric, I remember my results day like it was yesterday. Scarily though it's receding further and further into the past. All the way back to 2018 for my A Levels.
The feelings though don't change. Results day is a worry. It's a nerve wracking time and there's just no escaping that. I've always been somewhat of an anomaly when it comes to results, whilst my friends are anxiously biting their fingernails I actively look forward to results day. I see it as the culmination of all the hard work I've put in for weeks and months. I've always tried to have the mind set that in a way there's just no use worrying over the results. I worked my hardest and did my best and my results will (hopefully) reflect that so. What's important to remember when all these letters are flying past you and everyone is eagerly asking you what you got that as long as YOU did YOUR best then anybody else's results are irrelevant and you should be proud. A Levels are hard.
Admittedly it's a bit different this year. Most people didn't take any exams at all but instead grades have been based on teacher assessments. This might mean that your grades will be less of a surprise but then again you might still be nervous. For many of you, you have university places riding on this and so, quite rightly, your results are important but it's also not the end of the world if you don't get into your first choice uni. That's why UCAS has the insurance option.If the worst comes to the worst and you miss out on your first choice and insurance then there's still the clearing route to follow and that's not a problem either. What I'm trying to say is that there are lots of options and whatever is inside your envelopes today, you should be proud, celebrate, take a deep breath and then look on to the next stage- whatever that might be.
It's also important to remember that university isn't for everyone either. It can often seem like a really conversational thing to do to ask people what they got in their results but take a moment and consider the impact this might have. Not everyone wants to be interrogated and you need to question your motivations for asking. If its to massage your ego, don't bother. If you genuinely want to know and feel comfortable to discuss it then go ahead. Always be aware of other peoples' feelings. Results day is a momentous time so always be kind.
On my results day, there wasn't anything riding on what I got in my exams as I'd made the decision previously to have a gap year and apply the following year (which I did and you can read about that in my other posts). I actually got to my school to collect my results really late and the staff were starting to shut up (I slept in embarrassingly enough!). So I ran into my Sixth Form centre, grabbed the envelope and ran straight out again, opening the envelope on the way to the car park where my mum was sitting in the car wringing her hands nervously. I remember opening them and just stopping to take it all in. I was shocked in a way. I'd had a plan of what I wanted to get but was aware it was quite optimistic but here before me was pretty much what I'd aimed for and I was surprised. At this point my mum got out of the car and started coming towards me, worrying that a tragedy had occurred and I'd flunked every exam but I greeted her with a smile and I could see her eyes welling up - my mum is a cryer folks. I remember feeling very relaxed though. I didn't have a university place riding on my results. I was now free to apply in September knowing my results which really helped when it came to choosing universities as I didn't need to worry about entry requirements-I'd already got them. This meant my exams, I think, had been less stressful and I felt totally in control of the next step which was university applications. In a way I would really recommend having a gap year and applying after you already have your results. It takes so much of the guesswork and worry out.
Whatever is written on those slips, in those daunting envelopes try to remember that you did you're best and that's all anyone can and should ask of you, including yourself. Now it's time to celebrate and look forward to the next stage. My fingers are crossed for you all and good luck!
Let me know in the comments how you got on at your results day, where did you apply, did you get in, were you pleased with your results and are any of you going to Oxford?