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Good God(dess)(e)(s), is this level of obsession normal?!

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Inafuturelife wrote recently, in his blog, that he is going insane now during waiting season. I feel very much as if I am, also! I have noticed a very disconcerting trend in my life - which is that, no matter what I am doing, the idea of not getting an admit again this year is always there. It's like a bruise...it doesn't exactly hurt, unless you are directly pushing on it or bump into something again - but you are always acutely aware of its presence. It's not something you are dwelling on actively, but you can't stop paying attention to it, either. It's an energy-sapping, subconscious obsession. Is that even normal, or is that the response of a second-time around applicant?

I am taking St. John's Wort, exercising and eating as well as I can, and trying not to dwell - but I also am having a hard time struggling with my emotions over all of this. I'm not 21, 22, 23. I didn't "get it" when I was young enough to be able to just bounce back from a rejection. I am closer to 40 than 30, and every year is a very acutely felt loss as regards my further training in academia. The stakes are higher now than they were when I was younger, because I just don't have as many chances. This is a result of my own choices, in large part, and I do accept that; further, I can assure you that I wouldn't trade my beautiful children for any degree in the world (although if I had it to do over again I could certainly skip the wasted years trying to make an abusive first marriage work without blinking an eye). If I don't get into a doctoral program, after all I have done to turn things around, then I know, in a clinical, cerebral fashion, that it isn't really about my ability. But that doesn't make it easier, to also know that "if only I had......"

What do you have to do, to be considered for a second chance when you clearly possess the talent, drive and ambition to succeed, but you didn't "follow the rules", and your name's not Robert Downey Jr. or Lindsey Lohan? Can a regular, hard-working American get a second shot at her dream? On my good days, I think , "Of COURSE!!! Of COURSE I will get a chance! Look at everything I have done to turn myself into an excellent applicant." On my bad days....well, I admit, sometimes, I just cry.


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Posted

Hang in there! I saw you posting in the Keep a word, Drop a word thread last week and I was thinking, 'whoa, the wait's really bugging Medievalmaniac!' smile.gif

I know how you feel though, I'm right there with the obsessive worry about not getting in again - even though I know I have at best a couple weeks to wait.

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Posted

You're right! lol I'm doing any and everything to distract myself, haha. Things are NOT going well here, which has not been helping with the grad school anxiety. This morning, my car didn't start. It did the same thing Friday. I had it towed to the garage Saturday morning, and they had it all day and said nothing was wrong with it. Today, I got to daycare, dropped my kid off, and whoomp! Car didn't start again. I was supposed to give a test this morning that has already been pushed back a week, also. I am in the middle of a major Cosmic shitstorm, alas, which is only adding to the angst. I am now planning a Pity Party. A real one. We are just going to give in and celebrate the shittiness, because it's just not going away. Between the boiler bursting, the kids getting sick, school days for weather, the cat going missing, and now the car issues, I am SO over January 2011...but I refuse to go down crying and being all depressed. I'm just NOT doing it. We're celebrating the shitty, as soon as I can get it arranged.

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Posted

Everything will be alright. Keep yourself distracted. Here's hoping you won't care in a couple weeks (that is, acceptances)!

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Posted

aaaaaaaaaaaaa what happened to your cat?!

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Posted

surprisecake - he took off for parts unknown last week. I am hoping he's just out scoring a girlfriend, and will be home sometime. :(

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Posted

I can assure you that I wouldn't trade my beautiful children for any degree in the world (although if I had it to do over again I could certainly skip the wasted years trying to make an abusive first marriage work without blinking an eye).

I'm with you on this part! We may be in slightly different situations--I was admitted on my first go-around, but you got out of your abusive marriage earlier--but I very much understand the emotions you are going through right now. I still vividly remember the feelings I had in the days before I got an acceptance that I was running out of time --in fact, on days when my research is going badly, I still feel the same way.

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Posted

Oh, a Pity Party sounds beyond necessary. You must do something nice for yourself in the midst of all the bad.

I really hope your cat comes back. I don't think I'd be holding up as well as you if my cat disappeared. But, then again, I have no kids.

I have a good feeling for you this year. Chin up.

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Posted

FYI, inafuture life is a she, not a he. :)

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Posted

MM, you're epically unlucky! But at least you can hope you'll exhaust your bad luck before admissions start rolling it?

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Posted

FYI, inafuture life is a she, not a he. :)
MM wasn't the only one who thought that :rolleyes:

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Posted

MM wasn't the only one who thought that :rolleyes:

that's interesting... i'm wondering why i came off as male? my icon is sawyer from Lost, so i guess if no one had watched the show maybe they'd assume it was me?

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Posted

that's interesting... i'm wondering why i came off as male? my icon is sawyer from Lost, so i guess if no one had watched the show maybe they'd assume it was me?

I didn't know where your icon was from - I didn't think it was you, but I guess, subconsciously I saw a male icon and assumed the person behind the icon was male.

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Posted

MM, hang in there, it'll work out. About the age factor -- my significant other, who is 39, is currently in the second year of her PhD. Needless to say, she had been out of school for a long time. The first time around when she applied, she got rejected across the board. And that was just awful, awful, awful. She strengthened her application, changed her strategy and applied again the following year and got in. If it can happen for her, it can happen for you! Good luck :)

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Posted

lol Inafuturelife - I saw your icon and<i> did</i> think it was you, or something you figured was close enough to you. (I never watch TV, except for Glee, Grey's Anatomy, and the Tudors, so I've never seen Lost, lol). Your disclosure totally explains the gender-bendering, sensitive at times, fairly effeminate nature of the writing and phrasing in your posts, though! FWIW, I found you rather Johnny Depp-esque as a male! lol<br>

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Posted

Hi MM, Sounds like we're living twin lives. I am hoping for a "second chance" too and applying to PhD programs with 2 kids and a few gray hairs. Are you a teacher too? I drive a 99 Toyota, so I'm right there on the car issues. I will definitely follow your posts and I hope you get in. I am a mess just waiting to hear something back. I only applied to one school because anything else would wreck too much havoc on the family. Even though my family does tie me down I find immense strength in my role too. I am better than I ever was now...hungrier, more driven and more confident in my abilities. Here's hoping! :rolleyes:

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Posted

Its great to read about other mom's/non traditional students going through this. My husband died leaving me 8 mo. pregnant w/ 4 older kids ages 4-12. That was 10 years ago. So now, at 44 I am trying to get into grad school. I may get rejected across the board, I've already received word of rejection from one place. So reading this helps me prepare. I am glad I am trying even if I fail...Good luck to you! I hope your troubles lift and you get accepted!

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Posted

good for you pjkbmarm!! Thanks for sharing your story! I agree that just coming up to the gate and trying is a victory when you have others depending on you. I hope for good news for you!

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Posted

Thanks for your kind words! This website is a blessing, just reading about the struggles.....i guess the nerves and the roller coaster ride are completely normal. I applied to 10 places for studio art, most very competitive...they take maybe 6 for every hundred applicants. And a couple that take maybe 1/3 of applicants so we'll see. Good luck to you also!

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Posted

pjkbmarm - you are an inspiration! Fall-11 and Curca - thanks for the encouragement! Curca - I hear you on the "limitations - but not really" mentality having a family imposes on you...and I definitely, DEFINITELY think being a parent has made me a far better candidate, because I don't take it for granted, I don't waste time, and I'm dead-serious about getting in and getting it done - I would never be one of those eternal ABD folks, and I would never take a professor for granted or assume s/he has oodles and oodles of time to work with me. I'm really an independent scholar, but I need some direction and a lot of polishing, besides credentials, and you can't get that any other way aside from the PhD...so I'm really hoping to get in this time around. My whole family has been through this now twice, and I just don't think I can ask them for a third round, financially or emotionally. :(

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Posted

Hi Medievalmaniac, (new user here) I just wanted to say that I think it's amazing that you're doing battle with the applications process again. This is my first time, and I feel like a total wimp about it... I think you may have significantly more guts than I. I wish you the best of luck!!! (and ps, are you going in for lit or history- or something else?)

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