Wednesday, October 22, 2008

the making of me {chapter 2}

"i got an interview at Des Moines." s.mac triumphed.

"oh, honey, if only you could get in there, it is such a good school. i think that is still within driving distance right?" i questioned.

"oh, hon. i can't believe this, they are ranked pretty high and i hear the cost of living is pretty low there, i bet we could get away with out too much student loan debt." he chimes.

"can you believe it? i mean, wow. this is so awesome." i said. i was reveling in the whole process and mostly glad the prospect of pocatello was on its way out the door.

we scrimp and save and purchase the airline ticket for the interview date. the night before he is supposed to leave, the stomach flu hits him harder than an american gladiator. he can't stop throwing up, all night, all day, shaking violently and fevered into delirium. getting ready to leave, with insistance from loving family looking from the outside in, i look him in the eye and say,"not worth it my dear s.mac. call and tell them the circumstances. if they aren't human enough to understand, we don't want to go there."

he cries, and finally agrees.

they rescheduled 3 weeks later because he needed to be here for the birth of his first son, they graciously understood that part too.

right before the flight to iowa, he got the letter from midwestern in arizona. please come, we think you are neat.

"that one is definitely within driving distance h.mac." he lovingly says.

"sure is." i am happy, very happy.

after the des moines interview, our lives will be complete with iowa in it. we can't live without it and must get in there. we tell everyone, we even feel like maybe we should flag down the post man and tell him.

then, the des moines acceptance comes. right before the midwestern interview.

"i got it, i got in, i got in." s.mac rejoices.

i had a very inexpensive apartment picked out, ready to call on.

then he gets back from glendale, AZ at midwestern.

our lives must have midwestern in them, we can't live without it and yes, here is where we are going......

then, the rejection letters from OSU, Oregon Health and Science and Duke. they didn't consider his current job in the medical field....sigh. they don't allow scholastic merit alone........
{he was crushed but never showed it......i only found out years later}

then, the letter from wake forrest in NC. oh mercy, we are in heaven. they want an interview.

then, the acceptance from midwestern. oh, we tell the postman and the grocery clerk along with everyone else we know, this is where we are going. this school is amazing and we CAN'T LIVE WITHOUT MIDWESTERN.

then, the interview with wake forrest. he comes home and wants it bad. real bad. they are amazing, we know some folks out there and i got an hour long video of the place. yes, this is where we will go if we get in.

no immediate acceptance at wake forrest and he gets put on the waiting list. sad, sad, sad.

thru these months there was one place we hadn't heard from. and quite honestly, it was going to cramp our style if the rejection letter from yale came. our conversations wouldn't be the same.

we couldn't say things like, "well, i wish that mailman would hurry and get here, the yale mail is so slow."
"well, since we haven't heard from yale yet, i guess we better go to ____ to interview."
it became our common ground for joking and humor. little did we know....

he sits down in the library one day and opens his email only to be greeted by this snippet about YALE UNIVERSITY WANTING AN INTERVIEW! he stood up in the middle of the library and whooped....loudly, in the library, loudly whooping.

then, he calls a very post partum wife and tells her the news. she cries, and replies,"the interview is reward enough for all of your hard work." then, she called everyone she knew, as did s.mac.

i, at this point, knew being post partum in the middle of winter contemplating a large move was going to be emotional. add all of the stress of the school roller coaster and i was a mess. i was mostly alone at this time. s.mac was gone, a lot. tying up loose ends making sure graduation was inevitable. the demands placed on him were just as heavy as the ones placed on me. i am quite sure i was battling a large bout with depression but wanted to get through it on my own. i wanted to work through it and not depend on a pill to get me through. looking back i don't know if that was wise. i was very fragile and the birth of our little guy took a huge tole on my body. it took weeks to be able to walk again as the size of his head has never been on any charts the pediatricians measure by. through many prayers, our own and others, we made it through.

one thing that came up during the whole interview process really made me think hard about who i as a person am.

all my life i was taught we honor and respect the sabbath day. it is a day of rest and worship.
we weren't able to get away much but when we did, i think on our honey moon, we went to an amazing brunch in the park city area. we saved and talked about that being our reward once he got into a school and to celebrate in our own little way, his graduation. after all, i earned a PHT {put him thru}. the only day this particular place hosts this brunch is on sunday. it certainly wasn't common for us to do this but it didn't seem that big a deal as it was a once in 4 year event.
i remember giving that up thinking, if we want great blessings and miracles in our lives we have to live great lives. we can't go to that brunch.
sounds silly, maybe stupid. i'll take it. but i could feel the weight of living right during this critical time. i knew if we wanted great blessings, we had to live worthy of those, even if it was as little as a sunday brunch.

so we never went.

he called me after his yale interview and told me how amazed he was to be there and what an honor the interview was. told me about the beautiful architecture and the buildings in the city. he was telling me about his interview with the program director, mary. he said her questions were straight forward and were really trying to examine who he was as a person. she asked him one particular question that provoked a heartfelt answer. he threw aside all of the interview coaching he had received from numerous sources and gave a heartfelt answer with a very personal meaning too tender to share here publically. he shed some tears, but mostly he conveyed to her who s.mac was. why this career meant everything to him as a husband and a family man. he told me this later in a private and quiet moment. the day of the interview, when i got off the phone with him i went to the computer to balance the checkbook, when i was greeted with our email i saw something from yale. weird, i thought, he just finished his interview, like 3 minutes ago. i clicked it open to see the words acceptance and s.mac in the same sentence. the tears flowed....

i got to make a very important phone call......


The Ballard's said...

Just so you know I hate waiting for the next chapter to come. It is funny, with this book I may actually still keep touch with the reality of my family. Usually when I read, I only read. It takes 2 days to get through a book, but the family is set completely aside.

Brooke said...

you know, i'm learning things about you i never knew. this all happened right before our "real" friendship began.

Coty said...

that's precious. what a wonderful piece of mac history.