I got everything I need right here with me. I got air in my lungs, a few blank sheets of paper. I mean, I love waking up in the morning not knowing what’s gonna happen or, who I’m gonna meet, where I’m gonna wind up. Just the other night I was sleeping under a bridge and now here I am on the grandest ship in the world having champagne with you fine people. I figure life’s a gift and I don’t intend on wasting it. You don’t know what hand you’re gonna get dealt next. You learn to take life as it comes at you… to make each day count.
I should warn you...there is angst upcoming. I'm sorry. I have a really pleasant music-y draft thing stored away but not today because I really cba.
So I have a Cambridge interview in a week tomorrow. I should emphasise this is no big deal - about 90% of applicants get one, so at least I'm not in the 10% but like I say. No big deal.
But I'm starting to realise how much it means to everyone. My mom: "Emma I'll never want anything ever again if you get into Cambridge." My dad; singing to himself wandering around the house, an interview at cambridge, an interview at cambridge. Both of my parents are taking the day off work. My godmother has literally told everyone she knows about the niece she has who's applying to Cambridge. My friends all think I'm going to get in. EVERYONE THINKS I'M GOING TO GET IN.
I mean, what the actual fuck? Yeah, I'm alright at English, I write decent essays, I get a kick out of analysing books. But there's no way I'm Cambridge material. I hadn't even read a Jane Austen novel until last week. I don't know anything about the literary canon; I barely even know anything about war poetry, which I'm writing a 5000 word EPQ on. And Cambridge LOVE wider reading, I can't even explain.
Basically, I'm inadequate, mediocre-ly efficient, like I've always been and I've never tried to hide that but now all of a sudden I'm the academic, prodigal genius who lurrrrrves her subject to death. I don't even mind that, it's just the pressure to get in that's rising like a lump of volcano in the back of my throat and making my eyes a bit watery.
I won't be disappointed if I don't get in, but everyone I know will. That's not something I've felt before: even when it was a case of race to the A* at GCSE, I did not feel that pressure and it's horrible because all I've ever wanted is for my life to be my own.
Air in my lungs and a few blank sheets of paper, that is all I want and need.