Sunday, February 23, 2014

Rejection tastes like shit.

After a few days of internet-free time to clear my head, here I am.
Friday came and brought with it disappointment, rejection, a lot of tears, and wine to follow.
I did not get matched which means no internship for me.
As I said before, there is a Phase II (with horrible odds) so all is not lost just yet.

What is so god damn frustrating though is that now I sit here, continuing to wait.
Waiting. I have to go through the application process all over again, building a site list, updating essays, writing cover letters, applying, waiting, hoping for interviews, followed by more waiting. It honestly feels like I just cannot catch a freaking break (really wanted to drop an F bomb there). It is just so frustrating, watching SO many of my classmates going through the same motions as me with success each and every time. I'm sure they've experienced rejection along the way somewhere (I mean, they're human so it must happen some times) but from where I sit, I see them getting placements year after year and these being their top choices meanwhile I'm getting rejections, second rounds, more rejections over and over. It is incredibly difficult not to compare yourself either. These people have been along side you for 4 years now, taking the same classes as you, applying for the same positions as you, and succeeding where you fail. It's gut wrenching.
What hurts worse is when they're announcing to the world (yes, FB is "the world") about how they got an internship they say things like "hard work pays off, I got the internship!" and I'm sitting here thinking "but what about my hard work? it doesn't seem to be paying off at all" as if to say I haven't worked just as hard as all the others out there. Obviously, they are being ego-centric and not thinking of me when they say that (and I suppose I too am being ego-centric taking their statement that is clearly meant for themselves and applying it to myself) but it still hurts.

There's a song out on the radio, I'm not sure who sings it because I am not up-to-date on that sort of thing but the chorus rings out "How and I gunna be an optimist about this?" and that is exactly the question I'm asking myself right now. This persistent "realist" also known as a pessimist was actually optimistic for once about this internship thing, and I feel like it blew up in my pretty little face. How am I going to be optimistic about this? How can I look these odds in the face after such a disheartening blow to the ego/soul/heart and move forward with my head up and my mind clear?

I did not go on Facebook for a few days because I knew I could not handle seeing people's statuses about how they got matched or where they were going to internship next year. Instead I studied the list of sites available in Phase II, contacted my advisors, updated my essays, and began tackling my cover letters. Pushing forward is all I could do (I mean this was after lots of crying and sulking, mind you). I decided it was time to face the music today and signed on to face what was waiting on my news feed. Tons of congratulations and sentiments of joy about internships, they were unavoidable.

Last night J and I watched a new movie that we came across, Dallas Buyer's Club. It's a movie about a man with HIV in the 80's and his quest to find effective treatment (and fighting the FDA the whole way). I looked into the truth behind the story and came to find out that this movie has been one they've been trying to make for almost 20 years. Due to funding issues, the difficult subject matter, etc things kept falling through. I read somewhere that it was rejected 87 times before going into production. 87 times! That is a whole lot of rejection, and yet they continued on and made it happen. Not only did they make it happen, it was a wonderfully moving and tragically beautiful movie.
It got me thinking about how much rejection some people have to endure, and yet they figure it out, they push forward, they are eventually successful. Although with how much rejection I've already endured the thought of that much more just seems unbearable for my well being.

Rejection. How am I going to be an optimist about this?

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