Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Day 456 - Suck It Up, Farm Girl!

I've heard that saying for years when I start musing about how I've screwed up on something or something hasn't gone my way.  Honestly, I don't know where it even came from - I think my sister Erin may or may not have made it one of her witty quips that she spits out once in a while - but it works.

It works for me getting over my disappointment in myself in regards to my GRE scores.  I really need to get over the "woe is me" attitude, get back to work on those applications, and show the admissions committees at my potential schools that I am awesome, even if I may not have the best test scores.

So that's what I am going to do.  After I came home from taking my test on Friday, I went straight to my Princeton Review book and looked at the percentiles for my scores which, of course, were both odd numbers.  The book only lists the percentiles for even numbered scores, which did not make my anxiety any better because I had to do more math on top of having it painfully pulled out of my brain for forty-five minutes.  I then proceeded to cry, hyperventilate, and do all other kinds of Ashley-is-having-her-version-of-a-panic-attack kinds of things without any rational reason behind it other than I thought that I had failed a test that no one can possibly fail.

I spent the whole weekend and all day yesterday trying to objectively tell people how I did on the test.  Every time I recounted that I got this score on this section and that score on that section and how I thought that I could have done a whole lot better (at least on the verbal section, maybe not the math,) my mom would chime in.  "Ashley," she would say, "you don't know that those are bad scores.  That book is old.  It's outdated.  For all you know, the testing pool could have changed and you could be in a completely different place on the scale."

Score one again for Mom.  She's right.

The truth that I clearly need to accept is that my test scores don't define me as a student or as a writer.  My scores are only a fraction of who I am academically, and while my academic abilities may not be accurately reflected in a set of standardized test scores, I can show them more in the rest of my application.  I am determined.  I am driven.  I am engaging.  I am curious and willing to learn, willing to pick apart everything and anything to find the how and why it works.

To top it off, I think I'm a very good writer - decent, at the very least.  I was going to word that in a slightly stronger tone, but I decided not to.  Sounded out of character.

I guess all that's left is to rock the rest of my application and hope for the best.  After all, all I can do is my best and the best is all I can do.

Why?  Because I am NOT taking the GRE again.  Ever.


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