Thursday, April 3, 2014

On Bravery.

Hiking in Peru.  The physical and mental journey there helped prepare me for my life journey.  Photo credit to Nancy Lindo (one of my Inca Family members).

A while back, I did this post about the book Daring Greatly.  I still often think about the book and Theodore Roosevelt's speech stating:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly...”

Well I really took this to heart and my New Year's resolution was to "dare greatly" and be vulnerable.  I took a risk in applying to PhD programs.  I applied to six schools knowing full well that they have hundreds of applicants and each program takes about 10 people.

Well, I got rejected from each. and. every. program.  It stung receiving each rejection, as any rejection does. However, the hardest part was seeing the disappointment in the faces of the people who were rooting for me.  

I decided to share this here because so often we discuss how we bloggers only present the happy/perfect versions of our lives.  In many respects this is true.  However, I am human, and like all humans who take risks, I fail too.  I am not upset about this and I truly believe that down the road I will see what God's plan for me is and why this didn't work out.  In fact, I feel like I am already starting to see it.

I hope that someone will read this and know that there is no embarrassment in taking a risk and failing, but especially in being vulnerable enough to share it; that is bravery.  I will never look back and wonder how my life may have been different if I had tried to get a PhD.  This brings me great peace.

I have some changes coming up that I will soon be sharing.  I am really excited to see what God has in store for me because I know it is so much better than anything I could dream...

Like climbing 13,800 feet up into the Andean mountains.  On top of the world!!


  1. This is such a wonderful post and you are so brave. In all honesty a lot of times I shy away from things because I'm afraid of failure. But if you don't try you will never know. I wouldn't call your experience failure at all though. I think it is growth. I'm sure your path will reveal itself soon if it already hasn't. :) You are very strong, so never think of it as failure.

  2. Girl you are so amazing - to even APPLY to PhD programs is amazing!!! I can't even believe you made that trek - I hear the altitude alone is hard for many people!! I'm really excited to hear about the wonderful things that will be happening to you!!

  3. I think it's great that you shared this story on your blog. You are completely right, it's important to show that a blogger's life is not all pretty peonies, happiness and successes all the time. We all go through moments that are a little bit difficult. As for your PhD program, first of all congrats on applying! Second of all, I'm one of these people who strongly believe that when things don't happen according to plan, it's simply because there is a better plan about to unfold. Keep positive and trust that something great is on the way ;-) xx

  4. I really liked this post. You are right about bloggers needing to be honest about the ups and downs of life. I can't wait to read more about your upcoming life changes.

  5. Chantal! This is amazing. I love that you shared your experience. I live my life the exact same way as you do; I moved 4000 miles away from my family, lived in 5 different states in the past 7 years all because I don't want to do the "what if" crap. A similar story to your PhD experience, all my friends got into Ivy League schools in high school and I got rejected from each and every one. 11 years later, I got accepted to a Masters program at Cornell - so never give up! It's never too late :) xoxo


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