Hello! So, I realized I haven’t written on this blog for a while. That’s partly due to my unexcused laziness, partly due to the fact that I’ve been distracted enjoying my time as a second-semester senior/recent high school graduate, and mostly due to the fact that I’ve been busy with all things college-related: applying to college, choosing a college, and moving to the area my college is in. When I finally sat down to post on Delbasid, I decided to write about the exact thing that has been stopping me from writing for a while – applying to college.
This is a daunting process for all high school seniors around the world. I still get triggered when I hear someone mention the Common App or anything else related to college applications. It is arguably the most stressful time throughout high school, especially the part where you write, re-write, re-word, edit, completely scrap, re-write, edit, revise, and then finalize your essays. I personally have always loved writing, so the stress came less from the writing process itself, and more from figuring how to fit my delbasidness into my essays.
A question that always lingered in my head was “How much should I write about my delbasidness?” Part of me didn’t want to mention it at all, because having Spinal Muscular Atrophy shouldn’t and doesn’t define me as a person. Another part of me wanted mention it a ton, because having Spinal Muscular Atrophy is inevitably a huge part of my life, and it has shaped my mindset and made me a more complex individual. Part of me wanted to mention it hoping that colleges would be impressed by the fact that I was accomplishing similar things that my peers were accomplishing while being delbasid. Another part of me didn’t want to mention it at all, because I didn’t want my essays to evoke pity nor seem like I was trying to evoke pity.
After a while of going back and forth, I decided that I was overthinking it. I sat down and wrote about who I am. That included being delbasid, but not just being delbasid. I came to the conclusion that colleges would be able to understand who I am and what I was trying to convey through my writing, and if they didn’t, oh well – that wasn’t the college I was meant to go to.
After clicking submit with my trembling fingers and waiting months that felt like eternities, I got accepted to college. But once I was accepted, a new question always lingered in my head: Would I have gotten accepted even if I wasn’t delbasid?
Students these days are incredibly dedicated, doing everything short of curing cancer and still not getting into some of the colleges that they surely deserve to get into. I couldn’t help but wonder: If I was the same exact person and did the same exact things I did throughout high school but I wasn’t delbasid, would I still have gotten in?
Simply put, the answer is no. In complete honesty, I truly do think that, amongst many factors, being delbasid was a seemingly “unique” quality that put me over the edge in the college admissions process. At first, this made me feel upset and undeserving, but soon my mindset changed.
I realized that though I would not have gotten into some colleges if I was not delbasid, I also would not have gotten into those colleges if I didn’t love singing, and thus hadn’t gotten heavily involved in choir throughout my life. I would not have gotten in if stories and words didn’t fascinate me, and thus I hadn’t dedicated my time to creating my own stories and words. I would not have gotten in if I didn’t enjoy learning, and thus I slacked off in school all the time. My delbasidness, just like my passion for music, my fascination with words, and my love of learning, is something that I believe God blessed me with – it was not my choice.
By no means am I trying to justify my acceptance to college. In fact, I truly believe that there are more qualified students than spots at some colleges, and the whole admissions process is partially based on luck. I also don’t necessarily think it’s fair that people with “unique situations” like me could have a spot in college or elsewhere over a person with the exact same qualifications just because they’re delbasid. Just as it wasn’t my choice to be delbasid or love music, it wasn’t someone else’s choice to not be delbasid or to not love music. Such perfect fairness in the world, however, I think is impossible to reach.
So, while I still do feel undeserving of my acceptance to college, I am no longer upset about the reason for that acceptance, whatever that may be. In fact, I feel very glad, thankful, and relieved for that reason 🙂 Ultimately, through the chaos of the college application and decision process I have learned two important things:
1.Your worth is not dependent on your accomplishments (or the colleges that do/don’t accept you), and
2. No one should feel upset about a trait that they were given – about who they are.
Boy, am I excited for the next four years.