For all my successes in this world, a lot of it simply has to do with the fact that I am very lucky and have a knack for being in the right place in the right time (or blessed and highly favored, depending on your worldview). Where other people take time and plan things and come up with backup plans, I pretty much just pick the path I want to go down and assume that everything in the universe will align itself with whatever my current goals are.
When I applied to college, I applied assuming I would get in. I therefore saw no need to waste money on application fees or waste time on application essays to create for myself a “safety net” that I would never need because I wasn’t going to fall.
When I moved out of my mother’s house, I didn’t have a full-time job. I actually got my dad’s permission to forge his signature on a promissory note which I then took to the bank I worked at and had them notorize saying that he would provide me with the supplemental income I needed to pay my rent on my first apartment application (haha jk feds).
I have a habit of leaping before I look, seeing no other way to properly execute a leap of faith, and to this point it has worked for me. I have always gotten the job/housing/apartment. It has always worked out for me. I have always ended up where I started going, and there has never been a need for me to make a backup plan.
But now that I’ve graduated college, everything is different in my mind. Fear is working its way into the core of my “everything will work out the way I planned it” ethos, and it is driving me to make these plans, these backup plans because for the first time in my life, my mind is aware that there could be serious consequences if things don’t work out the way I assume they will.
It’s not like me to worry about not finding an apartment on time. It’s not like me to worry that I won’t into my graduate programme. Heck, it’s not like me to apply to more than one place I want to do anything at a time. This month I applied to three apartments because I was terrified that I would find a place, but not have the time to get my application submitted.
That’s not like me.
Saturday was GRE day. I went out Friday night with my friends because, well, the best way to go into a test is relaxed right? About midnight, I start feeling like I want to hyperventalate–my GRE was the next day and I’m out with my friends in no state to drive myself home. While figuring out how I’m going to get home, I take out my phone and start studying GRE vocabulary online. In the middle of this party. Everyone’s asking me what’s going on, etc.
I’m like “you guys, my GRE is tomorrow. I gotta do something” (except I was probably slurring my words just a tad).
That’s not like me before a test. It’s not like I’m arrogant or anything, but I feel very secure in my world and my ability to be in situations that always turn out OK. Pre-graduation bryoneyH would have taken this test assuming that everything in the universe was working together to get her in her graduate programme. Post-graduate bryoneyH has somehow adopted the word “failure” into her mental lexicon, and so begins to regret choices like going out partying the night before the test that could make or break whether she starts grad school in the spring.
The next morning I was nervous. That’s not like me. I kept telling my mom that I was scared because this time it counted, you know? It’s like I was just playing at a play life with play consequences all the way up until I crossed that stage. Now, suddenly everything is real, and in real life you don’t just get to make up the outcome of your situation like it’s a Barbie dreamworld.
I did do pretty well on my GRE though. I’m reasonably confident that I’ll get into my Master’s programme. And if not, though it pains me to say this, I do have a backup plan.
- Are you wasting your money on grad school? (halliecrawford.com)
- How to game the U.S. higher-education system (kuro5hin.org)
- How to Write a Great College Application Essay (brainz.org)