Girl on Fire

Creative Nonfiction (the magazine) is doing a contest/Call for Submissions on the theme of Waiting. This got me pondering the topic; I think I wait for a lot of things. But I don’t know that any of them are essay worthy.

I’m waiting for so many things. I’m waiting for my student loans. I’m waiting to say goodbye. I’m waiting to be done packing. I’m waiting for moving day. I’m waiting for New York. I’m waiting for new writing ideas. I’m waiting for classes to start.

I think that the main thing I’m waiting for right now is for the moment when I am as confident and excited for graduate school as I was for my undergraduate classes. At least right now, that’s being a bit overshadowed by the sheer magnitude of my relocation. I keep seeing pictures of the house on my roommate’s Instagram, and I’m like…holy cow. I will be able to sit and do my homework at night while staring at the New York City skyline all lit up across the horizon. But I will also have to figure out schedules. And finances. And transit. And maybe someday, a social life. In a new place.

The best way I know to gain confidence for myself is to make plans. I’ve Google-Earthed my neighborhood. I think I’ve found a grocery store. I’ve figured out the way transit functioned. I’ve read every single book for each of my new classes. I’ve researched my professors, and I’ve read a great deal of their work. But none of this will prepare me for the newness of the experience. Another way I know to gain confidence is to focus on the pros—number one of which being that I will no longer be censored in my writing. No one will know me, and that’s not all bad; it will be different presenting stories to people who didn’t know before than it was presenting to people who did. Another pro—I will write, all the time, every day. I will be able to write in different places, about different things. I will have the world I’ve been chasing.

I hope this will bring with it confidence.

Someone I respect a great deal told me that if I didn’t cry all the time during graduate school, I was doing it wrong. Someone else told me that it took her at least six months to get into the swing of things. But everyone says that I have what it takes.

I like to believe that’s true. I like to believe I’m a girl on fire. I want to.

Here’s to new adventures.

Oh, and fourteen plus hours in a U-haul with an angry cat.

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