THE VIEW FROM THE WAITLIST

Saturday, March 18, 2017



It’s not as bad as you might think.

Sure, the mood’s a little stifling up here. A little apprehensive. We’re situated smack dab in between the two other mountains, the Rejected and the Admitted. Rainbows and stars and fireworks are shooting off from the Admitted mountain; the Rejected kids have a giant storm raging over theirs. Here?

It’s still, calm, quiet. Turmoil aplenty, with little sense of peace until after May first. Some of us are  clustered to the side of the mountain nearest the Admitted pile, hoping to catch a wayward spark. Others sit near the Rejected pile, resigning themselves to what they consider to be their inevitable fate. Some are closer to the middle than others. Like me.

Hope? Desperation? Agony? Anger? Regret?

Some people follow those trails and end up in the same spot where they began.

I’m sure I’ve gone through the five stages of grief already. Denial, anger, bargaining, whatever, acceptance. It wasn’t too brutal. Waitlisted isn’t the same as rejected, but in a sense it’s almost worse. There’s no clean break. We learn the actual decisions in two months, which is almost half a year after we applied. Until then, we have to plan, prepare, and carefully calculate our moves. What we say to other people when they ask. What we're going to do if we're not accepted, which we try not to think about but have to prepare for anyway. If everything was up in the air before we heard back, now our--or, at the very least, my--plans are all shot to the moon.

I don’t know what I’m going to do. If I had gotten into UCLA, I probably would’ve gone there. It’s got a great campus ministry, it’s in a city (which I wanted, because I’m a city person), it’s a good school. I know a lot of people who have gone there. At the moment, I’m considering UC San Diego, which is also a good school, and am waiting to hear back from UC Berkeley. Davis and Irvine aren’t quite options. Irvine’s too close to where I live. Davis is planted in the middle of some cow fields. Which could be nice, but I don't think it's really my type.

But who really knows?

One of my major goals for high school was not to regret that which I could control; i.e., how hard I worked and how much effort I put into it. And I don’t regret not working hard enough. I put my heart and soul into everything I did. I studied hard; my GPA was within range of those admitted. I worked my way through the club system, made sure I stood out from the other students who clamored for board positions, and ended up president of two different clubs, vice president of one, and editor-in-chief of newspaper. I maintained my old blog for three years and redefined my vision and brand to start this one. I wrote a few articles that were published on a couple of different sites. I wrote three books. They sucked, but I still wrote them. I did what I loved. Sometimes I wonder if the college admissions officers smiled, vestiges of condescension in their eyes, at my personal essays, most of which chronicled my ambitions to become a children’s book writer, and admitted some aspiring scientist, doctor, or future Nobel Prize winner in my place.

Which, honestly, good for that scientist person. He or she is probably going to save a lot of lives someday.

But I don’t regret anything.

One bit.

So if UCLA waitlists me? That’s on them. If they end up rejecting me? That’s on them, too. I don’t need them to reach the kind of success that I dream of, because ultimately, in the end, God’s in control. I know what He has in store for me is greater than what I have for myself, and when one door partially closes, it’ll either swing open and let me walk through, or close and make room for another to open.

3 comments

  1. Awww girl. That stinks. I'm about to enter the college search grind and I know it's gonna be a fight (I haven't done nearly as many things as you have and I'm struggling to through together a decent portfolio in my junior year).

    It's so comforting and peace-giving to know that God's got it all handled, and that even disappointments are part of His plan. I'll pray for you, and I hope God guides you to the place He wants you to be in. Till then, I agree with what you said; you should be proud of the work you've done ^_^

    Praying for ya girlie (I already said that but never hurts to say it again :P)

    O | Life as a Young Lady

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    Replies
    1. amen!! good luck to you & your college process!

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