About those rejection emails

I am going to make the assumption I am not getting accepted to grad school this year. With four out of five rejections in, I think I can bet on the final rejection coming at some point in the next week or two. Or perhaps I should assume by their silence that it won’t happen this year.

If I were a traditional college student, I think this number of rejections would hurt a lot more. Early-twenties me would have taken the rejection much harder, which would have fueled my imposter syndrome in a way that perhaps would have made me reconsider writing. The self-deprecation of my skills was stronger then.

At twenty-seven I’m taking these rejection emails in stride. I can make some guesses as to why I’m being told no. My research subject was too odd. My research was too specific. My research wasn’t targeting the right school. I can’t art for the one MFA program I applied to. You know what, though? That’s fine.

I keep reminding myself that things happen for a reason.

I’ll sulk into some video games and comic books this weekend, maybe even treat myself to some Mr. Macs or tacos.

And then I’ll dive head first into the job applications. I’ll talk to some professors about their thoughts on my next steps, and see what advice they can give me.

I’ve been rejected from things before, and I’ve learned that I function best by taking my negative energy and putting it towards something new.

We’ll see what I make this time.

How do you decide?

“What do you want to be when you grow up?” is a question we’re asked from when we’re little kids all the way up to our senior year of high school, and even through the college years.

Its a big question. And not an easy one to answer at 5, 18, or even now at 26.

I remember saying to my mom that I wanted to be an astronaut, or a pilot. Later a firefighter, or an architect. And for a short time, a meteorologist (all because of the jackets the King 5 anchors wore).

As I got older, I realized that so many of those careers involved math. And numbers aren’t my thing. Give me some statistics, and already compiled data, and I’m completely happy with those. But ask me to figure out the answer to an equation, and I’m out the door.

The last three years of school have taught me what I’m good at, but just because you’re good at something doesn’t mean that’s where your passion is. I’m good at the jobs I do because I don’t like to give anything less than 100%.

It comes as no surprise that the last three years at school have led me in a variety of directions that I’ve enjoyed; student involvement, diversity, residence life, social media, and creative writing. With the first month of my senior year nearly complete, I have come to a turning point: what do I pursue in higher education?

I’m happy with all of the extra curricular activities I’ve participated in. But how will that all balance out in the end?

I know I want to work on a college campus, but ultimately, I transferred to SNHU for it’s academics. The Creative Writing Program was impressive, and has pushed me and my writing in a direction that I like.

Its time to fill out those applications, take the GREs, compile my recommendation letters, and hope for the best.

All of those steps are a daunting process now that my research is done. I need to sit, put my headphones on, and get all the applications done. And then take everything else one piece at a time.

Last but not least is the waiting.

The schools I’m looking at are all over the country. I have an ideal path under the hopes that everything falls into place. And then there’s the backups.

Will I end up back on the West Coast? Or perhaps I’ll suddenly be farther north? What about moving to the Midwest?

My next move makes my heart pound.