What If…?

“What if you don’t get accepted?”
Honestly, I haven’t given it much thought. For so long UMD has been my dream university and the state of Maryland, my new home, that I never once gave thought to what would happen if I didn’t get accepted. Do I stay in New York? Do I forsake the dream of obtaining my Ph.D? Do I apply again?

 Last night, I finally completed the application and I felt underwhelmed. After several stops and finishes, I was finally able to submit everything. I requested my last reference letter and that was it. It was done. The application that had been looming ominously over my head since November 1 was finally complete. The anxiety of obtaining reference letters now gone. All that is left is for me to sit back and wait.

 In my mind, it had played out differently. The application was a much lengthier process. The packet itself hefty. I sent it in and within a few weeks of it being received, I was being notified of admission. I was informing my supervisor and the countdown began. My boyfriend and I had finalized a location to live. We had finalized a job for him. We had found a kindergarten for our daughter to enroll in. By March, our plans would be set in stone and all that would be left to do is move.

 I’d begin packing things up slowly and getting rid of other things. He’d probably move into our apartment before us, putting away my belongings as I shipped them, setting up our daughter’s room for us. As soon as my daughter graduated from UPK, we would spend a weekend just taking her places with my family to enjoy herself. Then we’d take some time out and fly to Michigan and spend some time with his family to help her celebrate. And then we’d come home to our Maryland home.

We might ease our daughter into the whole thing by taking her there a few weekends ever so often so she could get used to her new home before she actually lives there full-time.

 But that was the plan. That was the vision.

 If I don’t get accepted, I can’t really say I’d be too disappointed. I found another program that seems much more up my alley than UMD actually is. Granted, the school is in DC, and I would have to wait until the summer to apply, it doesn’t deter all the other aspirations for Maryland that I had created in my head. We would still finalize the move in March. I would still notify my supervisor. This time, I’d just be securing employment in the same manner that we’d secure employment for my boyfriend. He’d probably still move in before me and I’d probably still ship my belongings to him.

 We’d make weekend trips of visiting our new home and getting used to the environment. And then after my daughter finishes the school year, we’d spend some time with my family and then some time with his and move into our new residence.

It’d make sense to just stay put in New York, but Maryland is calling. Our new place is calling. Even though it would be disappointing to not get accepted, if I didn’t, I don’t think the acceptance letter should deter all the other plans. They still stand on their own with or without me starting my Ph.D in 2016.


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