Life's Disappointments, Marginalized. TA, VT, marriage and dessert.

Thursday, April 16

I'm not going to be a TA next year.

When I decided I wanted to go to graduate school (when I was like... 5), I made a plan. I sought out a program that fit me exactly, looked up their grants and fellowships, drew up a timeline and WHAM: my plan. It's been my plan for a long time. And I loved the plan.

Except it's no longer my plan. Because my plan was to be a TA. My plan was to do so well as an undergraduate that the grad school would be FORCED to give me a Teaching Assistantship, but they won't.

Not because they didn't think I deserved it... they don't have any left to award. They ran out of funds early this year, and they have none left.

So despite the GPA, the honors thesis, the extra-curriculars, the double-majoring, the internships, the awards, the recommendations... I'm not going to be a TA. Not because I'm not good enough, but because of the economy. Because of funding. The only way I'd get one now is if someone refuses theirs... if someone changes their mind and doesn't accept the position... and let's just say I'm not holding my breath.

So now I have to pay tuition. I have to work my way through school, bog myself down with loans, and accept that my hard work as an undergraduate didn't pay off the way I thought it would.

But it's ok.

Well... ok, it wasn't at first. I cried a lot. A LOT. Matt and I talked about it for what seemed like hours, going over plans and Plan Bs. I skipped stitch and bitch (AGAIN-- serious knitting withdraws, now!) because I was so upset... but it's ok.

Why is it ok? For three reasons.

1. Lemon Posset.

Please excuse the picture quality...
I was upset haha. Underneath those cut
strawberries is a delish lemon dish
dedicated to me by Rebecca. This is
the first successful dessert I've made since
starting this blog, and it was JUST what
I needed. One dish, two spoons. :)

When I got home from class, in profuse and pitiful tears, Matt was here. He let me cry, let me talk, offered advice without overdoing the optimism... AND... he ate dessert with me. Before dinner. Sitting on the couch together, splitting a stiff drink and a sweet dessert, I felt better. I love my boyfriend.

Thanks, Rebecca. It was just as good and just as easy as you said it would be.

2. Tom & My Mom

Tom and my Mom were married on April 16th (Happy Anniversary!)

3. The 32 of VT.

Two years ago, 32 innocent lives were snatched in a horrific tragedy at Virginia Tech in Blacksburg, VA. Our world stood in awe of the immense devastation that blanketed one unprepared campus (see B's chilling rememberance post-- she helped to remind me that today was this event's anniversary). Despite the horror of the event, the students unified, the nation empathized and today, the world recognizes that although time heals wounds it does not forget. We will not forget. Today, remember that we all live on as survivors of tragedies that our world subjects onto some; remember that others who deserve to live on are missed by families and friends; remember that when your life seems unfair it is still deserving of thanks and appreciation simply because it exists.

So, I won't be a TA...
... but I'll figure it out. I was heartbroken, and that's ok-- life can be heartbreaking sometimes. But... c'est la vie, and move on. One day, I'm sure I'll appreciate this turn in my life's events because it led me down some different, brighter path.

-Your hopeful, healing and appreciating
New Girl Blogger


jessinohio on April 16, 2009 at 9:17 PM said...

Oh, sorry to hear that! It sounds like you have the right attitude though. Here's to hoping it works out better in the end anyway.

Fidgeting Gidget on April 16, 2009 at 9:20 PM said...

Sorry to hear that....I know it totally sucks when you've got your heart set on something and then it doesn't pan out. You have a great attitude though, remembering what it is that is important in your life!

Enjoy your dessert!!

Tamela on April 16, 2009 at 9:43 PM said...

It sucks when something can't happen because of funding. I know. The department that I work for at the college is so short on funds is crazy. We have quite a few TA's that work for us and it would be wonderful to be able to have more. Heck I even get cut on my student workers because we can't afford them anymore.

Things will work out for the better. God always has a plan for us..even if it doesn't go along with our plans!

Ace on April 16, 2009 at 9:49 PM said...

Aw, that stinks. But you're right, this turn might lead to something you'll want and like even more!

B on April 16, 2009 at 11:24 PM said...

Way to stay positive! God does have a plan for all of us. I truly believe that. It may not be what we expect but hey, it could be something even better than you imagined!

Thank you for remembering VT.

Chad on April 17, 2009 at 2:20 AM said...

Just when you think the economy can't screw you over any more than it has...

You're right though, you'll figure it out. Good luck.

green ink on April 17, 2009 at 5:02 AM said...

Oh Sarah, you've got such a great attitude in the face of what must be a very crushing disappointment. I know how you feel - I applied for a PhD scholarship just after I finished my degree and was refused, not because I didn't have the credentials but because of funding (and my uni had really screwed up and had given out more scholarships than they could afford the previous year, which meant not as many to give out the year I applied!)so yes, I was heartbroken and bitterly disappointed and can understand how you must be feeling right now.

I like to think that there was something pulling me in another direction though - as I truly believe that what is meant for you will not go past you. If I had got that scholarship, well I'd still be living in the small Australian town I grew up in, I'd probably still be with the man I was with at the time (shudder!)..... but here I am five years later, resident of London, writing, and living the dream! I know deep down that all of what I have at the moment would not have happened had that PhD scholarship come through.

I think you rock :) I know you'll get your dream one day - or something even better! I have no doubt that you'll do something amazing. Keep smiling, and don't lose that great attitude you have - it really does make all the difference in a world that, sadly, is not always fair.


Kim on April 17, 2009 at 5:44 AM said...

I love you, a lot. Sorry to hear this lame news. Not only for you, but for those kids that could have had the amazingness that is you for their TA! I've thought this for awhile, and now this enforces it further, we're always going to work hard, push ourselves, and suffer through whatever to get to this one particular goal in mind... and, most of the times, it seems it doesn't work out that way, even though it should. Just think, though, it all happened in a fashion that made us pretty awesome. It's cool being those kids that double majored, over-extended, graduated early. We have time for more of the same process, haha. No matter what happens, it'll work out. It sucks, but it will. Never know what other doors lie ahead.

Always remember, you're so cool, awesome, and fabulously YOU!

Anonymous said...

I'm pretty sure all that hard work and dedication is exactly why you're now able to pull through this disappointed, but not much worse for wear. Mom and I will help with the tuition. I'll echo the chorus of responses here and say that your attitude towards what's in your control versus what's out will serve you well. Keep smiling and demonstrating excellence just like you did in undergrad and good things will find you. There's lots of other ways to make money and to get that teaching experience you were excited about. Good luck. I'm always around to help. ;) -T

Susie on April 17, 2009 at 6:54 AM said...

I'm so sorry to hear this Sarah. But girl, you may be the best example I've seen of taking lemons and making lemonade! Your hard work and amazing attitude will pull you through this.

Amy on April 17, 2009 at 7:17 AM said...

awww...I'm sorry it won't work out for you next year :( I'm sure it's not helpful to hear but I really believe that everything happens for a reason. Maybe there's something bigger and better coming your way in the short term. Good luck! :)

Donna-FFW on April 17, 2009 at 7:26 AM said...

Yes, everything happens for a reason, but I am so sorry for your sadness. You are such a bright, smart, pretty, talented girl, it will all work out, I am sure and your attitude really is wonderful.

Rebecca on April 17, 2009 at 9:35 AM said...

I wish I could give you a big hug right now. The system is slightly different here in the UK, but I too haven't been able to be a TA. It's been tough, but has also allowed me some more freedom in what I chose to do for work, and sometimes a break from your department is a good one. If you have a great attitude like yours something is bound to arrive. I solved my problem by looking for other teaching opportunities in places I might not expect, and it's worked out really well.

I'm glad the posset turned out well, serving with strawberries is an awesome idea, I might have to steal that! See, who needs to TA when they can make a great dessert and have a great guy to share it with :-).

Mary on April 17, 2009 at 11:39 AM said...

I am sorry to hear that, Sarah. Things just seem to work for a reason and you are doing an excellent job of staying positive! Keep it up, girl!

Jennifer on April 17, 2009 at 2:15 PM said...

This is my first time to your blog. I love the layout, its so cute!

What a bummer about the TA position. I know how bad it sucks when things don't turn out as you wanted. But, it seems like you are the kind of person who can make great thing happen anyway. Maybe this was the universe's plan and you'll find something even better! Good luck with your plan B!

The Duo Dishes on April 17, 2009 at 2:54 PM said...

So sorry to hear about the TA deal. Things happen, and it sucks. Especially sucks when it's something you can't control. But your plan B will come true! As for the VT tragedy, we went to school in NC, so that still hit a bit close to home. It was two years ago, but it seems like it just happened. A very scary and unfortunate thing. The dessert is a good way to end the day for sure.

Vicki on April 17, 2009 at 5:30 PM said...

I am truly sorry about this TA stuff. Going to school is hard enough, especially grad school. Let it go. Throw yourself into school and think about all the extra time you will have by not doing your TA duties. btw what are you going to school for?
I spent a torturous 2 years in grad school, but it was so worth it!

Sebastian on April 17, 2009 at 8:19 PM said...

Well, at least she's not wearing one of those awful Union Jack sweaters...! Is that somewhere down the Thames? It's a good photo :)

At least you gave it your best shot... that's what counts, right? Of course it's even better when you get everything your own way, but sometimes it's fun when things don't go quite the way you planned.

Who knows -- it might open other avenues! Or a professor might take pity upon you... or... I don't know!

You'll be fine though, you have love, and affection, and pro dessert skills.

LiLu on April 18, 2009 at 10:33 AM said...

My $1300 in taxes seems like pittance now in comparison to this. You are so kickass to have such a great attitude/POV about it all! I know it will work out the best in the end :-)

Ron on April 18, 2009 at 12:53 PM said...

Sarah, I'm so sorry to hear about the TA situation. But hey, believe in the power of fate--because I'm sure something better will come from this mere misfortune. You'll be fine!

Sarah on April 19, 2009 at 4:56 PM said...

Sorry I'm late in commenting, here, I was at a wedding yesterday and never touched a computer... :P

I'm just going to echo everyone else when I say I really admire your positive attitude in the face of such a disappointment. You're a real gem.

Things don't always turn out the way we plan, but I believe everything happens for a reason, and if you trust that and just keep moving, it will turn out better than you expected. :)

I'm glad you have such a good boyfriend who is a supportive shoulder for you to cry on. I find that makes everything better. :)

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