It has been a bit of a whirlwind of crazy emotions around our house for the past four months. Specifically, Joey has been suffering from "senioritis". I'm sure, well and have actually confirmed, that this is the case with most other high school seniors we know.
It all started with the college application process. Deciding which colleges to apply to in the first place was step one. We tried to get Joey to some of the colleges in person because, seriously, how can you decide to attend a school and spend four years in a town without ever having visited first? Last year at this time, Joey and I spent spring break in a frenzy, visiting 2-3 schools a day. Of the nine schools we visited on the east coast, by November, only two remained on Joey's list. Some of the schools we had visited purely because of convenience and so that Joey could confirm that he wanted a small school in a small town. In that respect, our trip was a total success. He was able to eliminate NYU, Columbia and Brown and in all honesty, Columbia and Brown would have been extremely difficult for Joey to get in to, so that took some stress off. He was able to really solidify his desire for the school to be in a college town and preferably have only undergraduates and less than 3000 students, but it had to have a rigorous core curriculum and a visual arts program. He decided a dedicated art school was not for him, so RISD was eliminated. Sad good-bye to Providence, RI, home of Brown and RISD--I adored you :( ! Oh yeah, I should probably throw out here (since this is MY self fulfilling blog anyway) that I really want him to go to some awesome town that I will want to visit often and hang out, just outside the walls of where Joey resides--I wouldn't want to be a bother, or anything...
Of the remaining six schools, another three were eliminated because their visual arts program wasn't strong enough or their core curriculum wasn't intense enough. And that left three viable school options: Bard, Wesleyan and Vassar. Vassar finally got eliminated from Joey's list late in the game, literally right before he started the application process. Although a beautiful school and very attainable for Joey, their visual arts program just wasn't quite strong enough and their male to female ratio was a little skewed (although Joey claims this wasn't a problem ;). Vassar does have THE most beautiful library, but you can't base a decision solely on a library, right? Just as quickly as Joey eliminated seven of the schools from the east coast tour, he added six schools spanning from Minnesota to Maine. Wow, Minnesota, not high on my list of places to visit often, but hey, as long as it fit Joey's criteria--I could make some concessions. He also visited two schools in Ohio, hmm. But he also kept my personal favorite school on his list. A school in Maine. We have been to Maine. I LOVE Maine. It's not about me, it's not about me, it's not about me. This has become my mantra.
The application process was intense... deadlines around every turn. November through December became all about the essay, and all the mini essays, the letters of recommendation, the transcripts, the scores. Not to mention the fact that his school's intense academic expectations weren't letting up just because he is a senior applying to college and his Presidential duties were mounting as well. So, January 15th was THE day... the day all the applications were in, sent, done, paid for. I really thought everything would calm down. Things would start to return to "normal". I was totally unprepared for "senioritis". Joey went from being a totally dedicated high school student spending hours on his homework and pretty much talking about nothing but school--to a somewhat lazy, periodically angry, often disinterested, almost totally preoccupied pseudo adult. Things came out of his mouth like... "if I don't get in to any of the schools, I will just travel for a year". What happened to my totally confident 18 year old? No way was the college application process going to eat him alive. We became very impatient for the first week of April to arrive. This is what we were told... for regular decision applicants, letters would be mailed the last week of March and received the first week of April. But then, other kids started receiving their acceptances--way before the last week of March? Really? Even regular decision? What was happening. Sometimes things you "hear" or "read" aren't actually true--why can I not learn this lesson once and for all!
Joey has now received back 5 of 8 responses. He has received 1 denial, 1 wait list, and 3 acceptances. We expect at least 2 more acceptances. Life is grand. His choice will be a difficult one, but his hard work has paid off. His decision will need to be made by May 1st and this chapter of his life will be closed. Glorious relief!
And I am happily planning a trip to Maine ;).