When to do what?

I keep finding myself in situations where I am forced to ask myself: Should I quit or keep going? It’s always so tough to know when to gracefully bow out and when to push through and keep on fighting. It’s happened to me with friendships, with job searches, with knowing when to say what. Right now, though, it has all been about grad school apps. I finally put on my big girl pants and sent out the emails that I worked on for about three days asking professors for grad school letters of recommendation. The first one that replied was so kind and “honored” to help me that I was elated and sure that the rest would follow suit. However, much to my dismay I got another reply that said the professor was on sabbatical and had very limited access to email. Then another from a professor saying he would be happy to help, but he felt that I should maybe try asking other professors with whom I took classes more directly related to my future studies. And he’s absolutely right. While I briefly considered that fact, it was largely outweighed by my discomfort asking other professors (who I’m convinced won’t remember me) for such a huge favor.

So far, I have sent out 6 emails and gotten 1 “yes”, 1 “if you can’t find someone else”, and 1 that I’m sure won’t come to fruition. It’s a terrifying process to go through, and I once again find myself wondering if I should continue hoping and working as hard as I can on the applications, or if I should heed the signs from the universe that it’s not the right time. How do you know when the universe is kicking you to the ground so you’ll fight back VS. when the universe if making you fall so you realize it’s not meant to be, at least not yet? I think that for now, I’m going to keep on keeping on. And if I don’t have the three (!) recommendations that are required by December 5th, I’ll reconsider my current position. Either way, I can keep asking professors for much longer because of the time strain it would put on them. Damn me and my tendency to procrastinate as a coping mechanism!


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