To Every Ex-Lover And College Rejection
Start writing a post

To Every Ex-Lover And College Rejection

You are not defined by the times you're rejected.

To Every Ex-Lover And College Rejection
Carrie Wood

Growing up, I was taught to view universities as an indication of a person's intellect, work ethic, drive, and, if I'm being honest, the amount of respect a person "should" get from me (I cringe too, and I don't actually feel this way anymore.)

I was taught that the university I would eventually go to, and the reputation it would have, would brand me as a certain kind of person. It would be an indication of how far I would go, and how successful I'd be in life.

In the spring of my senior year of high school, I wrote this poem, of sorts, because I was afraid of knowing which university I would finally be attending. Eighteen years of wondering: Who will I be? Am I Ivy League material? Am I a liberal-arts-college type person? Am I more East Coast or West Coast? What sort of university vibe will I choose and what will that say about me? What if I'm left with no options? Will this university be good enough for everyone else?

I knew I could do well in school, but I didn't know who I really was - as if a college acceptance would be able to tell me that. College counselors told me to aim lower, as if I was worth less. One by one, rejections would roll in, and I was left thinking that the smart, hard-working image I had was all a facade. I was nothing special. I didn't work hard enough.

So yes, I wrote myself a poem as a reminder to believe in myself, and to try to break myself from generations of societal beliefs that I wasn't good enough if I didn't get into a Top 20 school.

This is "To Every Ex-Lover and College Rejection" (because in retrospect, handling a rejection from a college felt like a break up):

I'm trying to recover and find the version of me that is okay with not being part of this rat race, where the finish line is my own satisfaction that only you can give me. When I look back and all I see are the stresses and missed opportunities, I can only tell myself it was worth it because I know I can't go back and change it. I'm trying to stop viewing my worth as something I can only get by your acceptance. I am more than what you say I am, but your name will be something I carry with me for the rest of my life, and everyone will judge me for it. I'm trying to re-discover the me that is unattached to you. And I know she exists.

Poetry has always been special to me as it was able to capture a moment in time. Looking back, I've realized that everything is relative, and because everything is relative, nothing really mattered. Someone's "back up" school could be someone's "dream" school, and someone could dislike your school just because of its location. Just as long as you work your hardest and you love what you do, it doesn't matter... Honest.

(Well unless you have ambitious goals in a difficult field, perhaps this isn't the wise and useful tip you're looking for?) High schoolers are under enough pressure at such a pivotal time in their lives that they don't need people judging them, or need to judge themselves, by numerical results and their college rejections.

Have pride in what you know is true: You are an amazing human being.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.

The Plight Of Being Bigger Than A D-Cup

"Big boobs are like puppies: they're fun to look at and play with, but once they're yours, you realize they're a lot of responsibility." - Katie Frankhart, Her Campus


This probably sounds like the most self-absorbed, egotistical, and frankly downright irritating white-girl problem... but there's more to this I promise.

Keep Reading... Show less

An Open Letter To The Younger Muslim Generation

Fight back with dialogue and education.


Dear Muslim Kids,

Keep Reading... Show less

The Mystery Of The Gospel

Also entitled, "The Day I Stopped Believing In God"


I had just walked across the street from the soccer field back to the school. I turned around and saw the cars rushing, passing each other, going fast over the crosswalk where I had been moments earlier. “It would be so easy to jump in front of one of them,” I thought, looking at the cars. “I could jump, and this life that I’m stuck in would be over.”

Keep Reading... Show less

College as Told by The Lord of the Rings Memes

One does not simply pass this article.


College as told by the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit memes. Everyone will be Tolkien about it.

Keep Reading... Show less

A Tribute To The Lonely Hispanic

In honor of Hispanic Heritage Month, I’d like to share a few thoughts about being Hispanic in a country where it’s hard to be Hispanic.

Veronika Maldonado

Just a little background information; my dad was born in Mexico, came to the U.S. as a newborn and became a citizen when he was 25 years old. My mom was born and raised in the U.S. as were my grandparents and great grandparents, but my great-great grandparents did migrate here from Mexico. I am proud to classify myself as Hispanic but there are times when I feel like I’m living a double life and I don’t fit into either one.

Keep Reading... Show less

Subscribe to Our Newsletter

Facebook Comments