Monday, July 18, 2011

Saturday 9th July 2011 - The Day I Failed

Disappointment strikes hard, doesn’t it? I applied to go to university earlier this year. I wanted to study counselling, a more ‘worthy’ subject than what I had chosen to study as a 19 year old (media and theatre, luvvie daaarrhhling). Hindsight is amazing. The amount of time I spent ‘woulda’, ‘shoulda’ and ‘coulda’ing about the whole thing (woulda done better had I studied English. Shoulda studied History and Politics, coulda got a better job than Office Monkey). But as it was, I chose what I chose and whilst I passed and graduated, my experience at uni was more an exercise in growing up and coming out of myself. For those of you who know me, I’m loud mouthed, opinionated and not afraid to say what I think. Back then though, Tara Watson was a different person. Quiet and shy, theatre was the best thing for me to do, it brought me out of myself and made me the gobby idiot I am today.

Anyway, I digress. Over my years, I’ve had bouts of counselling for depression. I became fascinated with how it works, and why it works for some and not others. Under my own steam, I completed an introductory course and really enjoyed it. For the next year, I ummed and aahhed over whether or not to go for the degree, could we afford it? Would it interfere with my work? Would I get bored and drop out? I decided to go for it, with the backing of David and my boss (work were going to allow me to do day release). I applied for a uni course for the first time in 13 years. A great bloke helped me out with my Personal Statement (I hate bigging myself up. It makes me really uncomfortable).

Anyway, long boring story short, despite an group interview (back in March), they decided to let me know on 9 July (some five months later. Honestly, it’s not as though it was important, that maybe my career was hanging on it) that I was unsuccessful. Well, needless to say I was crushed, even though I’m a pessimist at heart and I was trying to suppress any little glimmers of hope I might have thought I had. And for all that David and Tom and Fran, and everyone else tried to console me with ‘Well, it was oversubscribed, 30 places from 130 applicants, chances were slim etc.’, it didn’t help. I was a failure, just not good enough. I spend a lot of my time thinking this anyway, but here it was in black and white. And the interviewers very kindly and helpfully don’t give feedback. Surely I was their worst?

Yes, this is quite woe is me but there are actual sparkles of hope: I’ve applied to volunteer with a charity relevant to the field I think I want to work in, in my home town, I’ve applied to the Samaritans, I haven’t ruled out applying for this course again although cost is the main thing that stands before me (price hike from £2k per year to £6k per year for a part time course). And if all else fails, I guess babies wouldn’t be a bad idea.

I’ve managed to see the possible positives that came out of this devastating blow to me. The me of three years ago wouldn’t have been able to do that. I won’t say things are rosy, they’re not, but they’re not quite as black as it seemed last Saturday when I stood in the kitchen, crying on David’s shoulder. The charity has a course running in September. Keep everything crossed for me, will you? All I want to do is to help people. Shouldn’t I have a chance?

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