22 January 2008

In a Temporary State of Limbo, Well, Several States, Actually.

The applications are complete. The personal statements - carefully adapted for each individual program - have been sealed and mailed along with transcripts, recommendations, GRE scores, financial statements, and supplementary forms. All that is left for me to do is wait. This is the hardest part.

I'm a planner. I like to map things out, spread them out before me like a quilt, rearranging the pieces until they all fit just right, then carefully stepping back, stepping forward, and letting the plans mesh with reality and take me where I need to go. But now I can't even plan. The schools that I have applied to are in four different states, may or may not accept me, may or may not offer me an assistantship package that makes it possible for me to go there.

Once I know, once I have the name of my school I can tuck it safely in my pocket and sit down to make a plan. I can search Zillow for the perfect house, find a new school for Matilda, start calling around to preschools, help Steve find a new job: figure things out.

I need that one piece, I need to know. Of course there are things I could be doing to keep everything moving forward, things that will have to be done anyway like redoing the floor in the kitchen, tearing down the wallpaper in the bathroom, getting rid of junk we don't need so we don't have to move it...

But I can't. I am without a plan. How do I know what to do first? What if I do one thing and it turns out that a different thing would have made more sense?

In my restless state I have found one thing that I can do, one thing that I can plan, that seems to make sense no matter where we wind up. From February 16 through 23, Matilda and I will drive across half the country - through New York, Ohio and Indiana, to the University of Nebraska in Lincoln, then on to the University of Missouri, and Ohio University and then home, with plenty of museums and hotel pools along the way.

It turns out that a cross-country trip is a planner's dream. I have already spent hours researching the best route, with enough stops, but not too many, the most affordable hotels, even which towns we might want to stop in for quick meals. The possibilities are endless. I'm hoping that my brother will be able to join us, but even if he can't, I think we're going to have a great time, and the best part is that I will have the opportunity to transform myself from a paper application into a flesh and blood applicant at each of the schools I want to get into.

8 comments:

Jessica @ A Bushel and a Peck said...

Good luck, good luck, good luck! And have fun on your road trip!

And I love a good itinerary...planning is always relaxing for me. :)

pootandcubby said...

I'm a planner too and I'm getting anxious just thinking about how you must feel waiting to find out about your school. Gah!

The trip sounds like an excellent idea.

-andi

Lilacspecs said...

Woohoo! Roadtrips are always fun. Hope you have a good time with your daughter and good luck with all those applications.

Jennifer said...

Want to add stops in Cali, Chicago, D.C. and Belgium and take me with you?

cheezewhizandmustard said...

That is a serious amount of trippin'.
I hope the trip is a success!

Lauren 02143! said...

My friend's parents have a B&B in Lincoln NE! Let me know when you are going and I can hook you up!

Lauren 02143! said...

OH- and that same friend is at Mizzou in Columbia - so let me know when you might be there too and I can hook you up!

Cathy said...

You and I are so alike in that planning thing!!

I always want to know everything, down to the last detail, and am wracked with anxiety if anything remains in limbo. This baffles my husband, who is just fine with flying by the seat of his pants.

Hope you find out something fairly soon. The trip sounds like a great idea! Good way to make you feel like you are planning ...