Friday, August 20, 2010
 Orient(ate) me
In honor of my embarking upon the adventure of my grad school orientation this afternoon, I present you with my neurotic ramblings from the day of my CSUF interview. I wrote this while sitting outside the office of the head of the American Studies department, and feeling entirely inadequate. I'm pretty sure that there are two possible personality types for those of us who are more creatively inclined. There are those who are utterly convinced of their own greatness and entitlement - I know a few of those - and then there are those who are just as convinced of their unworthiness for even the most basic recognition or acceptance. Nine times out of ten, I fall into the latter category. While there has never been any solid evidence in my life to back up that ridiculous assumption, the insecurity is there, and it is pervasive. Exhibit A:
I'm doing my darndest to be confident, to appear as though I am certain I am qualified, and to convince whomever I come into contact with that s/he would be a fool not to take me under his/her wing. My heart is racing and my iced tea isn't sitting right in my stomach, but I'm doing the best I can.
It's 3:14pm. I am one minute early, and the professor with whom I am supposed to meet has not yet arrived. Perhaps he has forgotten. Maybe I came all the way here only to be completely and totally stood up. Well, at least then maybe he'd feel bad and let me into the program out of pity. I know. They don't do that. But I'll take any bit of encouragement I can at this point - anything to make me feel like less of a presumptuous idiot for even hoping in my wildest dreams that I'm worthy of graduate study.
Sometimes I wonder what I'd even do with an M.A. Yeah, sure, I know what I want to do. How likely am I to actually do it, though? What if I put an M.A. after my name and stagnate? What if I'm a waste of a degree? Oh jeez. Maybe they shouldn't want me after all.
Who am I but just a lowly B.A. from an unknown undergraduate university with no reputation? I shouldn't even be here, tapping my foot anxiously in the hallway outside this office. Should I knock again?