What exactly does one do the day after she’s been rejected from grad school?

Well, for starters, she doesn’t go to the gym, she doesn’t emerge from her room, and she doesn’t get in the shower to start her day on time….

Wait, I haven’t done any of those things any day for about 3 months. {Phew} I guess I’m fine then. Thank goodness.

Here’s what I’m thinking: Every cliché ever in the history of things to say when you don’t get something you want. Below are a few examples: 

  • You shouldn’t have thrown all your eggs in one basket.
  • Everything happens for a reason.
  • When God closes a door He opens a window.
  • This isn’t the end of the world.
  • Back to the old drawing board.
  • Grad School is overrated.

I added that last one. It’s not really a cliché, though it does make me feel better. 

And now, once all of those meaningless, overused phrases are out of the way, I’m still left with a wounded ego and no clue what to do next. 

One of my major concerns with the prospect of getting into grad school was that I simply would never have enough time to pursue that Broadway acting career I secretly still dream about when I’m home alone applying makeup before a huge mirror. There. Now that the time-consuming schedule of night classes, day-time internships, and studying has been swiftly taken away from me, I’ll have plenty of time for Broadway. So that’s Plan B…..


mmmmmm maybe not. 

Okay, fantastical dreams aside, what to do about all of the people I have told about applying to this fine school? 

The very obvious thing is that I tell no one, let them assume I’ve been accepted, then move out of my parents’ house, get a job as a waitress (a honed skill), and read every novel of any list entitled Top 100 Books Everyone Should Read Before They Die.

This plan will ensure that I will be well-read, (self) educated, and verbally impressive; I’ll be ready for all of those 20-something social gatherings, where my colleagues, who have in fact been accepted to grad school, won’t be able to tell the difference between my ‘library of knowledge and theirs.

That’s simple enough. Now all I have to do is train myself to stay awake when I read….

And finally: The dilemma of the cautious B.A. in English. 

There are children all over the world who don’t have money to even think about going to grammar school, let alone University. So I’m done complaining about that one. (I wish I thought of this approach sooner. Would’ve saved me a year of feeling semi-unaccomplished.)

So to answer my own question what exactly does one do the day after she’s been rejected from graduate school? 

I will listen to my own clichés and those of others, never quit dreaming of Broadway, furthering my education, or raising baby tigers (….I didn’t go into that here, did I?), and never let on that rejection was close to getting the best of me. When I look at things that way I can’t help but be enlightened by the fact that in the scheme of my whole life, this is, as they say, merely a bump in the road. 

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