Thursday, October 24, 2019

Day 244

Yesterday, I wrote about a number of great things that have happened to me over the past few weeks, even as I have been quite overwhelmed with work and other things I committed to doing. While some of them were silly (like eating catfish and grits three weekends in a row or buying new clothes), there were also several outcomes related to work and school that were kind of cool to think about.

This afternoon on my way from work to the Varsity run group, I talked on the phone with a friend who was having a rough day and told me he needed a pep talk that included "Get your shit together" and "Move on," so I told him those things, but then I threw in some of my own lines. Using some catchphrases from the cool kids (mostly "live your best life"), I told him something along these lines:

You have to live your best life. It might not be the best life you thought you were going to have, but it could just be better. 

I also gave him some other bits of advice that are more specific to his situation. After we hung up, I thought about some of the times when life did not deal me the hand I was expecting. I thought back to some feedback I received on a paper I turned in for my Access and Choice class about my college choice process. Among the feedback from my professor were these comments:

"I also appreciate your honesty in talking about schools that you didn’t get into...Sometimes people see successful, talented people as not ever experiencing rejection … and that is often far from the case."

Then tonight on Facebook, at least two of my friends made posts about some difficulties they are having in their lives, and I felt compelled to share some of my less glamorous moments. In the spirit of life balance, I am going to list some failures, rejections, and disappointments I have experienced in life. They are not all from the past month (in fact, many of them aren't) but I did manage to come up with 24 items, which matches my number from yesterday.

  1. I got rejected from my first choice college (Duke University) in 2006.
  2. I got rejected from every medical school I applied to in 2010.
  3. I was also rejected from serving as a Leadership Consultant for Alpha Gamma Delta in 2010.
  4. I was not accepted to facilitate at the Undergraduate Interfraternity Institute (UIFI) in 2018.
  5. I was initially not accepted to facilitate at UIFI in 2019, but I moved up the waitlist enough to be able to go.
  6. I got picked up by the sag bus at the Marine Corps Marathon in 2014.
  7. I fell off of a platform not once but twice the first time I went to Lunchtime Lifts last month.
  8. I DNFed (did not finish) the Possum's Revenge 69-mile race in May.
  9. I got rejected from NC State's Higher Education Administration Ph. D. program in 2018.
  10. I don't even know how many jobs I have been rejected from in my life...including jobs I thought I would for sure get.
  11. Also, I once got denied from the same job twice.
  12. I've also been rejected from jobs on my voicemail, which has pros and cons to being rejected live on the phone, but it was still unpleasant.
  13. Most of the people I dated dumped me rather than me dumping them.
  14. I've cooked some bad meals and desserts in my life.
  15. I got rejected from facilitating at Alpha Chi Omega's Leadership Academy last year.
  16. I got rejected from facilitating at Sigma Alpha Epsilon's Executives Academy this year.
  17. I got rejected from being a facilitator of Kappa Kappa Gamma's Harm Prevention Program last year.
  18. I failed my driver's test the first time I took it (2004). 
  19. I had to take Organic Chemistry I and II twice each (which probably should have been an indicator that #2 was going to happen, but I pressed on)
  20. I lost a lot of spelling bees. I lost the 4th-grade spelling bee when I left a "k" out of "bookkeeper." I remember this because the person I lost to (who was my friend) told me that was an easy word for her because it's "b-oo-kk-ee-per." I also lost the 5th-grade spelling bee, but I don't remember the word I lost with. After winning the 6th-grade spelling bee, I lost the school spelling bee by missing "pursuit." I spelled it "persuit." I lost at the 6th-grade spelling bee at the district level with the word "allege." I spelled it "alledge." I lost the 7th-grade spelling bee with the word "brocade," and I have still never had a cause to use the word "brocade" other than mentioning that I lost a spelling bee with it. I lost the 8th-grade spelling bee too. I don't know what I missed that year.
  21. I was in FBLA in high school. To attend the National Leadership Conference in my event, I had to place in the top two at state. I placed 3rd in 2004 and 2005 before moving to 2nd in 2006 (at last)!
  22. I never made district honor band. In fact, I tanked almost every musical audition I ever had except when I auditioned for the wind ensemble at Mercer.
  23. The one semester I had to do a jury in college, I blew that.
  24. One time I made jambalaya for my hall using a Tony Chachere's kit and thought it'd be vegetarian if I just didn't add chicken or sausage. NOPE, THERE'S CHICKEN BOULLION IN THAT, AND I FED IT TO MY VEGETARIAN STUDENTS.
Anyway, the point of this is that while I have lots of amazing things going on in my life--the fact that I can list as many awesome moments from the past few weeks as I can name about ugly moments over many years is testament to that--sometimes I mess up, fall short, or just have less to offer than other people in the universe. That's okay. It happens to everyone. If I had more time to think about it, I could come up with even more items to list, but I also try not to dwell on these moments. I try to grow from them and think about how life is better in some ways I ever imagined it, and that feels pretty darn good.

I ate this delicious donut today.

Something that made today great: Great run with Sandra tonight!
Time I woke up: 8:23 am

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