Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Poop and relationships

One of the things I must do on my application for vet school is to write a personal statement. This statement must be no more than 5000 characters in length and should explain the journey that I've taken in my decision to become a veterinarian, and what experiences and circumstances make me unique.

You guys, I thought I would rock this. Seriously. I mean, I write a blog. I write about myself all. the. time.

Um, you may or may not have noticed, but my style of writing is....wordy. As in, I like to use a lot of words. You know, for emphasis. I like to go over and over a point to make sure everyone understands it with the depth of passion that I do. This particular trait does not marry well with a character limit of 5000 (with spaces!)

So I just wrote my story and then edited. Or, more specifically, zlionsfan helped me edit. Then I redid some of his edits and made my statement too long again. Then I re-edited MY edits, and, well... now I have a statement that I feel is choppy and sounds like a toilet being flushed.

Still, I've emailed it to a couple of people whose opinions I trust (never fear, cousin, I'm coming after you next) and as I anxiously await their feedback (they are not early morning people) I am mildly freaking out about my personal statement, my future and of course, my life in general.

I never said melodrama didn't have a place in my life.

So, a few days ago I was having a mini-pre-writing-my-personal-statement breakdown. I had this particular breakdown in the car with the boy. After venting all of my fears and frustrations, the boy sat silently. I turned to him and said, "Now is the point in the conversation where you say pretty words to make me feel better. Sort of like zlionsfan does."

He thought for a second and said, "You shouldn't freak out."

He said no more. No matter how much I harassed him (which was plenty) no more comfort was forthcoming. He is not zlionsfan, he said. And apparently I didn't really need comfort for my theatrics. He felt no need to coddle me.

(Don't worry - this is all related.)

Last night the boy stopped by after work to check in on my personal statement. I was in the midst of erasing my fifteenth draft, and I won't lie - I wasn't in a good place. I mean, it wasn't the depths of despair that organic chemistry brought to me, but it wasn't happy-go-lucky either. The boy sat silently, read what I had written, gave me feedback and then left.

But then this morning? We had the following text exchange. (And I swear to you, I haven't altered a single word.)

E: It is written and it is crap. I may as well poop on a piece of paper and submit that instead.

B: poop WOULD be an attention grabber

E: Hmmm. Maybe I dismissed that option too quickly...

B: there you go... I mean... nothin' says "Look at MY application" like a big pile of shit.

E: Soft smeary shit, or hard little turds? Ooooh, what about corn poopies? It shows that I eat my veggies...

B: it shouldn't be your shit... it should be some kind of exotic animal shit to show how much you care about animals... the more exotic the shit, the more you care.

E: Tasmanian Devil?

B: black mamba... invokes a little fear into the panel

E: Black Mamba like Kobe Bryant, or like the snake? Honestly, I can't decide which is scarier...

And just like that, I was laughing. Not brooding and sulking, but actually laughing. And now I can re-read what I've written for the gazillionth time with an editing eye, instead of despair and hopelessness. Because maybe sometimes? I want to be coddled, but what I need is to be reminded that life is not so serious. That perhaps I may be overreacting. And that while I'm allowed some of that, I need to snap out of it and get shit done. And sometimes you get what you need instead of what you want. (Wouldn't that be a great song?)


Jesse said...

I am shocked - SHOCKED! - to learn that you might overreact to something! ;)

Abra said...

its nice having someone who knows you well enough to know better what you need than yourself, yeah? My boy is also very good at that as well and has successfully brought me back from the dark place many times.

zlionsfan said...

Well, no matter what happens this year, we certainly can't say you don't know shit.

Candace said...

One of the reasons I enjoy reading your blog is that you write with emotion and I can tell what you are feeling. Make sure you leave some of your emotions in your personal statement. I think that will make you stand out from the drones and make the admissions person give you a second and third glance.

ems said...

@Jesse - at least I can recognize that trait in myself and make fun of it, right? That's my saving grace. I think.

@Abra - agreed. I just wish that what I need was more in line with what I think I want. It would be nice to get what I want every great once in a while.

@z - I know you at least smiled when you read this. For all your smarts, you can't help but laugh at a poop joke.

@Candy - I'm trying. I really really am. But there are only 5000 characters man!

punkinmama said...