April 23, 2006

My 100th Post

My first post back in October (Jeez, 100 posts in 6 months) was the first draft of my application essay for graduate school. Trying for the third year to be accepted to earn my MFA in Creative Writing, Fiction. How ironic, then, that this centaurian posting is the relinquishing of all hope of that dream coming true for at least another year. Happy Birthday to me!

So I suppose that I can now take this down from my refrigerator:
To me this little yellow list was a hopeful thing, a set of possibilities, a way of keeping my eye on the prize so to speak. Even the making of the little exes: the routine of using the same marker, the organized formality of it all. Made it seem less like a disaster or a failure. That final, neat ex meant that I had a handle on all of it, I suppose. A square little metaphor for the future, a roadmap that I could reference from time to time when I looked up, lost and curious about the meaning of it all, of the waiting. Well that and, more concretely, it served as an indicator for The Boyfriend--he could check the list if he found me wide-eyed and babbling under the bed.

The dots in my tidy, tenuous boxes mean that I am on the waiting list. That is some progress, I know. Especially the waiting list at Johns Hopkins, which means I am (approximately) in the top ten of hundreds who applied for the full-ride teaching fellowship position. I know that should make me feel better by providing some much-needed validation. I know that it will. Currently, however, all that does is drive home the blatant subjectivity of the whole process. Isn't "unfair" a synonym for subjective? How can one school find me so valuable and the others so worthless? How can one very credible, accomplished group of professionals see my talent, label it, appreciate it yet I must apply 3 years, spend 100's of dollars (actually, about $1000 at this point) only to not have that talent take me where I want to go. I think the vehicle of my talent may just be a lemon, here. Broke down on the side of the road, rust spots, flat tires, out of gas and the hamsters that run the rubber band engine have unionized and gone on strike. Yet on the lot, this talent seemed promising. It could make it over the mountains! With a little work, it could be quite cherry, quite brilliant!

When I received my last news from Alabama and told The Boyfriend, he responded by saying, "Do they say why?" No, sorry, the don't have to explain why. You don't know if you were the first or the last cut. And they give everyone the encouragement that they "wish you success in your career and educational endeavors" so that's really no encouragement at all. I know I am on two waiting lists but I just can't wait any longer. I can't sit around all summer and plan nothing for my life like I have been all spring. But planning anything, be it where we want to move to get the hell out of Phoenix, what job I should take/hate next, or whether to do the laundry, seems like a declaration of giving up. Throwing in the towel. Losing. Losing hope.

Don't give me any of that shit about things happening for a reason. For each action there is an equal and opposite reaction. I will not be assured about life with abstract, objective scientific principles. Or if that statement's "for a reason" has to do with "God's plan," well then that is a trifle too abstract in the other direction, hmm? Maybe the "for a reason" is because I should just give up already. Just live the rest of my life being a part-time writer, a dream part-dreamt and shoved into the corners, where ever it will fit, where the sunlight is not enough to make it grow.

But I should just get over it already, right?


Post a Comment

<< Home