What a crazy, intense week it’s been for me! An emotional roller coaster ride, if I ever had one! Over the past couple months, I’d started to really want to be a Res Life Advisor for a floor in one of the first year residences. The more I saw how awesome my RA’s had been for encouraging growth, friendship and fun, the more I wanted to be just like them; I could already see myself in their shoes, thinking about what I would do, how I would act. I had my entire second year of university planned out. All I’d heard from all the RA’s I knew, and all my friends was how I was definitely going to get the job, and be a fantastic RA the coming year. I was pretty sure of that too, but I knew the hardest challenge would be getting past the resume– once they saw me in an interview, I was pretty sure I would get the job.
But, I didn’t get that far. To be honest, I really have no idea what went wrong here (warning, vent time): I was a leader of two retreats, I taught English to refugees in an inner-city school, directed a Totem One Act this fall, editor of my high school newspaper, and spent the entire application giving a very heartfelt (and very truthful) account of why I wanted to RA. It’s really hard to comprehend that I didn’t get past that, and it really shocked me– all everyone ever told me was how I was definitely going to get in. Now I was, for lack of a better term, stranded; the lack of an RA position also meant I would have to devise all new ways for living near campus, since on campus housing is probably too expensive for me the coming year. I gotta say, it hurt, a lot, and I wasn’t even sure if I wanted to come back to UBC.
After a day of sleeping on it, I was hired by an amazing RA in my building to do a reading of a poem of mine, after she heard me perform at a previous event, for Night of a 1000 Drawings, an aids awareness night who’s theme was Second Chances. Second Chances, I like that. It seemed to fit that it was only a day after I found out about the rejected application, and I really took heart in the theme.
I am one of those annoying optimists that believes “everything happens for a reason”. This is definitely one of those times: something happens that’s so random and unexpected to me, so out of the blue, it couldn’t have just been a random chance. Now I’m obsessed with trying to find a meaning for this setback– a path I can take now that, in retrospect, will make me happy I didn’t get that RA position for second year. There’s already a couple opportunities: people are telling me I should start a poetry club (nice thought, already been done), and working on my writing will be a big thing for me in 2012; I can now apply to be a MUG Leader, since I know I will have time to do it with RA-ing not filling up my time, and I can really get involved in Campus-life that’s not tied down to ResLife. ResLIfe, after all, has a tendency to be somewhat insular: you can join other things, but it’s easiest to stay within Res. Now, I’ll be gladly forced to look at a bigger, University-Wide, picture. The Student Leadership Conference really inspired me, to make a difference. Back then, I thought it was to be an RA. And hey, maybe I’ll re-apply for 3rd year, and maybe I’ll actually get in, but maybe I’ll find a path now that actually will make me thank ResLife for turning down the application. It’s crazy, but hey, I’m an optimist.
Second chances, new beginnings, new opportunities. It’s scary, but, like on the first day of UBC in September, quite exhilarating.