I have been pretty sad since my last post. The first step toward the vision I had for, well, the rest of my life, started with that June residency. As if that wasn't enough, I have been hit with other heartaches relating to my daughter and the love of my life, with whom I am now, no longer in contact.
Marlon. It's because of him that I stay single. I know no-one who moves me as he does. But I gave him up, sent him away, because he's not mine. After some six years of never quite making it, it turns out he belongs to someone else...
So two nights ago, I stayed up all night, after receiving yet some more disappointing news. I have cried recently more than I had in years. That night, two nights ago, was just more of that same unusual flow. My restlessness was compounded by calls of concern throughout the night that ensured that any chance I had to be taken over by sleep was consistently and thus permanently interrupted. My loneliness made me feel as if my head was under a blanket, I kept grasping for air, and fighting the urge to block my number and call him. This was too much to have to deal with by myself, but he couldn't be here for me anyway. I had no one who could satisfy my need for true, connected, immersed support.
I figured I'd have to let something go, and it would not be my baby's future. I wouldn't be compromising the dedication of time and self to her. I'd have to give up everything related to music - which is a big part of my life. Another loss.
To make up for my sleepless night, I slept throughout the day yesterday. First, however, I hung in my mind, sorting out the problems, and beginning the solutionary process. It was time to get it together. I sucks that I have to do this by myself, but that's the reality, so I just have to do it. I began to map out a plan, set a schedule for writing it out and beginning to implement it. The process of finding solutions is comforting to me. It let me sleep.
I love Edwidge Danticat. Maybe, I thought, I could approach her to mentor me as a writer. My circumstances may allow her to consider that. My acceptances may ensure her that my writing has reached a level that would warrent her consideration. As a fellow (amazing) writer and graduate of an MFA program, she'd know the significance of my situation, may be sympathetic. I would be. I have and continue to mentor, why should I not expect that someone would be interested and willing enough to mentor me?
I spoke to the lawyer representing NYU today. He said that NYU will allow me to use my transcripts to apply to NYU's MFA program. Their program is awesome, but doesn't have Non-fiction. I wonder if I should apply anyway. I write in poetry and fiction, but I really did want to go into a non-fiction program. I'd love to strengthen my poetry. I was accepted in poetry as well as non-fiction, so it's possible and applicable. I didn't apply in fiction, because I feel so weak in that area, but I really am very interested in developing my fiction chops...
I intended to study all three: poetry, fiction and non-fiction.
With my transcripts, I still don't have a BA, I simply have enough credits to qualify for federal financial aid. Will NYU even consider me without a BA? That is what I thought was the big question when I began the process of applying to Bennington and Lesley. But the challenge lay elsewhere. What are the hidden challenges to these new paths, should I choose to forge one of them?
And really, as far as that goes, do I really have a choice?
Some will say I always have a choice. Those would be people who don't know me as one driven by compulsions, such as the compulsion to fight,and never give up.
I haven't fully processed it yet, with my life being so busy, but it seems I have come to the end of the road. Having secured no funding, I did not send a deposit again to Bennington by the March 1st deadline. My deferment has been withdrawn and I have been invited to reapply in the future.
I really don't have any more to say at this time. I'm on the verge of crying about it, but I haven't really given myself the time.
It's at times like these that I wish not to be single, but to have someone to whom I can pass the letter after reading it, who knows just how significant a blow this is, who will simply lie me down and lie behind me, or on top of me, and hold me, so I can cry.
The first scholarship for which I applied was that offered by the R.O.S.E. Fund... I completed the online application, which when submitted, didn't work. I had my transcripts and two rec letters sent to them, forwarded my private (and embarrassing) financial information. I completed the short essay questions, and made the application a Word document that I sent as an email attachment.
I was told I'd be notified in December, and that they fund in January. This made them my first priority, for all other funders focused on the fall. This was the one that, should I receive the scholarship, could get me the funds in enough time for me to start when I was supposed to - also in January.
There were some issues with this. I'd be pushing it close to the deadline to pay my bill, and would have to negotiate something around when I paid based on when they announced and exactly when they would fund - I really was pushing it close. Also, they did not specify how much they would fund, but my impression is that they give you what you need. So, I was super psyched about this particular grant. I felt I had a good chance.
In December, I called to find out when they were announcing. January, they told me.
Well, that changes everything. I didn't even bother to belabor the fact that he initially, without a doubt told me they would announce in December. January would have been entirely too late from the giddy up and I would have deferred. And now that I have been informed that they will not announce until January, guess what I have to do?
Bennington had awarded me a $2000.00 scholarship for my January semester. That has been lost. I have no funding, and lost my $500.00 deposit.
There are actually a lot of reasons that June is a better time for me to start than January. My daughter will have graduated from 6th grade and won't be in the middle of school while I start school. There are five residencies, and so if I start in the Summer, my extra, or fifth residency will be in the summer too. I don't like winter, and Vermont is colder than Philly, so that is also appealing. It would give me more time to secure greater funding and rearrange my life so that I would be able to focus most of my time on my academics.
However, I completed my writing packet, researched and created my reading list, had been reading literature of the faculty, and made my list for choices for my faculty mentor. I was ready, and so I wanted to go. But I couldn't, and I didn't. I'm hoping to report something different for June, but right now, it's looking less promising than I'd care to admit.