You know, when you first begin the application process to universities, they tell you it’s going be stressful. Sure, you’ll probably miss a night or two of sleep writing essays or researching schools, and yeah, you’ll probably feel a little down when one or two of your favorites seem out of reach. You see, that’s the common narrative of the college process.
It’s a lie. The part that really kills you? Waiting.
I’m presently on my break for the spring semester — my last semester as a high schooler — and I am just sitting here in a constant state of existential crisis and panic about my future and about these schools. I’ve gotten some acceptances and some rejections, but some of my top choices have yet to release their verdict. It feels like being on trial for murder and waiting in suspense to hear what the jury has decided will be your future.
Realistically, I know that I am so lucky to be able to even consider going to college. It’s an expensive, selective, difficult process, of course. But college educations are not something readily available to all people around the globe. Especially not women. It would do me and all others going through the process some good to remember that particular factoid.
So it feels incredibly selfish to me that I am sitting here complaining about the wait and the suspense. I applied to a lot of schools, and I had to do it all by myself with no help from my high-school-educated parents who’d never heard of half the places on my list. My poor dad has sat here trying to figure out how to help and keeps coming up empty handed.
Rejection letters suck. Even from schools you weren’t super set on going to, they totally, absolutely, 100% suck. And acceptances feel great. A SCHOOL WANTS YOU! WOO! But for me, what is far less pleasant than a rejection letter is waiting for one.
It’s tremendously difficult. But there is also the question of how you’ll pay for it, where you’ll fit in, what do you want to study, are you going abroad, what classes do you want to take, do you have a plan for the future, are you going to grad school? The list goes on and on and on.
I think for me, I always have had pseudo-inklings of what I wanted to do with my life and with my college studies. As odd as it is, I had an existential crisis of the highest order halfway through my junior year, and ended up sitting at a sports bar with my dear ol’ dad hyperventilating. My future was looming and I was terrified. Funny enough, he had a solution this time. He made me start listing things. Not the things I wanted to do. No. He made me list everything on the planet that I didn’t want to do, and it actually left with a pretty narrow list and a pretty clear head.
I highly recommend that strategy if you’re dealing with a similar problem.
I’ve grown up with the BeautyByGwyneth community I’ve built, and I love all of you. I still talk to the first subscribers I ever received from time to time. But I want to share this journey from childhood to adolescence to adulthood with you guys in the rawest way I can. So I’m going to try to share these choices and experiences with you over the next few years of my life because we’re a family and you’ve all be so wonderfully supportive of me since the start of my channel and my website.
I only hope I can return the favor.
To all my readers and viewers going through the college process, please leave me a comment and let me know what you’re dealing with, what decisions you’ve made, and what content you’d like to see from me on the subject!
Good luck and xo,