Sunday, July 15, 2012

Applying to Graduate School

You know what is stressful?

Having a husband applying to graduate school.

It started in January.

I woke up one morning and turned to Matt, “Honey, my whole life depends on where you go to graduate school, and that’s only like a YEAR and HALF AWAY!!!”

Matt was still half asleep and told me that if I didn’t like having my life depend on where he goes, I could go instead.

I didn’t like that solution either, and reminded him that it was in our mentally written marriage contract that he HAD to go to graduate school if he married me.

After a few weeks of fretting, I asked him if he was okay with me researching information about chemistry graduate programs. He said, as long I didn’t expect him to do anything, until school ended in April, I could do whatever I wanted.

And I did.

I researched schools, the requirements to get it, what it is like to live there, grocery stores in the area, etc. I made a nice powerpoint for him, with a cliffnote version of everything I found. I even asked his professors which ones he would get into. The more I researched, the better I felt about him going.

Until he started taking the test.

That almost killed me.

The chem GRE was in April. He had been studying for it, and honestly he felt pretty good about it. The practice test had showed promising results, and according to the forums online, only Asians did better than a 70%. Since my grandmother died, I was in Arizona when he took it, but he reassured me a bazillion times it would be fine, and that he would call me as soon as he finished it.

He called me after and told me that he thought he did good, and now all we had to do is wait for the score to be sent.

6 long weeks went by, and one Saturday, Matt was happily fixing his bike, when I checked the mail. There all by its self was the innocent look envelope with his test scores. My heartbeat sky rocketed and my hands starting shaking. One of the two test scores that would decide my fate was contained in there!

I ran back to Matt, and told him that I would be in the house, when he opened it. Then he could come in and break to me the news about how he did.
He thought I was being ridiculous, but did what I asked. He came into the house a few minutes later and told me he got 97th percentile. I was sooooooooo happy!!! I proudly put the paper on the fridge, where it sat, until last month.

That’s when he got the general GRE score.

I was here for that test. Matt was a bit more nervous for it, and I was a lot more. While he took the test, I called my mom 50 times, and cleaned and organized our whole apartment. I could not sit still or get my mind off of it. I felt like I sent my sweet husband off to be killed.

After the long 5 hours, he finally called.

After I finished freaking out and feeling better that he was actually still alive, I asked him how it was?

He said, “It was fine -- actually I couldn’t have done better. I got…”

“Ahhhh, don’t tell me!!!! I don’t want to know yet. Just come home and tell me.”

“Uh…are you sure..?”


When he got home, I still couldn’t prepare myself to hear his score, so he ended up typing his score on the computer.

Verbal             170
Quantitative    170

“Wait, isn’t that a perfect score?”


Excited again.

Okay so fast forward to this weekend. (Sorry this is so long.)

“Matt, you need to start working on your personal statement.”

The weirdest thing happened. He curled up in fetal position around my foot, and started whining! (No joke.)  Then he kept asking if I loved him. I was so confused.

He was totally fine with taking the completely terrifying test, and completely owned them. But an essay, which he can revise as many times he wants and has a deadline 5 months away, that makes him want to cry?????

Well apparently, Matt’s kryptonite is writing his personal statement. It took him downing 2 lbs of strawberry yogurt, a 3 hour nap, and phone calls to his mother and brother,  before he could even get himself to start.

I’m proud to say there are two paragraphs written now! J

So if you are wondering why there hasn’t been very many blog posts.

You can blame applying to graduate schools, and me being pregnant.

Because really, this is all we have been doing.

(Oh… and Matt works 40 hours a week.)

PS. If you are willing to read Matt's personal statement, let us's only 1000 words long.


  1. As one who's applied (and been accepted to) grad school, I know what this is like. Yuck!

    But if you need someone to look over Matt's statement, I'd be happy to. I was an editing minor, so take that as a reassurance or a warning, whichever you prefer. :)

  2. That sounds wonderful!! I'll let you know when it's done...