What Time Is It? Grad School Time!

If I haven’t said it before, I’ll reiterate, applying to grad school is like walking across a darkened room in which you know there are Legos scattered about, ready to tear your soles into tiny shreds, but you need to get to the other side because otherwise you know you’ll soon be sitting in a tiny cubicle with the spiked walls closing in a la Indian Jones and the only way to stop them is to rapidly translate the Voynich Manuscript before succumbing to despair. In other words, it’s one of the most anxiety-ridden things I’ve ever done in my life.

I started writing this post before I was done with my applications, so I was in the midst of stressing out over every little detail. But now I’m done; even with the ones due in January (I’m on top of shit).

But now it’s hurry up and wait.

I’m really afraid to spend my next 7-8 months in a state of limbo between having graduated and not yet going to classes again. I have a job, yeah, but only working 20 hours a week isn’t exactly going to keep me afloat OR entertained. I’ll need to get another job, if only to make sure I’m not bored and stagnant for all that time.

Yesterday was the last day of classes, which traditionally is a day for day-drinking, shenanigans, and overall shitshow-level drunkenness for all members of campus. It’s always spectacular to walk into your discussion class and your professor takes a long draw from his flask and says, “Ya’ll be safe now.” Work hard, play hard, that’s our motto.

Overall it was probably my best last day of classes I’d ever had. I celebrated the finality of my undergraduate career (yes I still have exams, shut up) without having to wake up feeling like death this morning. I did all the graduating senior traditions with another of my sisters, sat on my house’s condemned balcony, and got to dress up as a zombie and scare people in a Nerf game for a couple of hours. Good times, man.

But now what?I have to study for my finals, then I’m done with undergrad. For good. If one more elderly family member asks me where I’m going to be next year/if I’ve gotten my acceptances (HAHAHAHA) I’m going to scream. They don’t seem to understand that I JUST finished my applications (no matter how many times I remind them) and would really just like a consoling pat on the back for that alone. Noope. And why do I laugh so hard when acceptances are mentioned? Oh I don’t know, maybe because I’m applying to arguably one the hardest types of Ph.D. programs to get into across the board. The chances of my actually getting in are extremely slim (across the board, <10 students in a cohort)./ 8/9 of my applications were for PH.D. programs, and only one for a Masters. Yeah, maybe that was a mistake, but why other wasting the money on application fees if I know what I want to do?

Speaking of, my judo instructor really scolded me (scolded me!) for wanting to go to grad school, especially directly out of undergrad. What if I don’t like my subject area once I finally delve into it? Oh, I don’t know…I guess I’m screwed! He legitimately made me feel like I was making the wrong choice. Of course, then I reread my personal statement and felt like myself again (thankfully).

Anyway. Grad school seems terrifying, but it’s really my only option given my double major in social sciences with useless Bachelor’s-level degrees. Oh well. Even if it turns out like this, at least I’ll be doing something I love. In theory. ;D

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