“it is with regret that I inform you…”

Yesterday was supposed to be the first of my two days leave that I had to clear in NS. It was supposed to be a well deserved break, before embarking on my final week and ORDing for good. At the same time, the leave was meant for rest and recuperation, after losing my voice to a terrible cough that had been plaguing me for weeks. The free time was also meant to wait and anticipate the call from MOH and determine the outcome of my scholarship application.

However, I received a mail instead. And in it, they regret to inform me that I would not be getting the scholarship. They dropped a bomb in front of my face. It was so unexpected. I hadn’t had the mental capacity to deal with the rejection.

And it did. It all came crashing down. Months of preparation, effort and anticipation went down the drain when that one singular email came arriving to my desktop. What went wrong?

I had all the signs. The good signs. The good vibe that I had a better than decent chance of getting it. I had a place at a prestigious university, in a course that is aligned with the scholarship requirements, even paid the initial school fee deposit to keep the offer till the outcome of the scholarship could be determined. But apparently it wasn’t enough. So how did I feel when the news dawned upon me that I won’t be going to London to further my studies?

I literally cried for a good half an hour in front of my desktop. I think I read the email a hundred times to ensure that my eyes were not playing a trick on me. Suddenly I felt helpless, distraught, and filled with disbelief, that they would close the doors of opportunity right in front of my face. That they would blatantly place a road block right in front of me, stopping me from pursuing the course at Imperial. A road block that is simply impossible to overcome at this moment in time.

In the aftermath of the news, I felt numb, and at the same time, mellow. Suddenly I had nothing to look forward to. Months of planning and anticipation, down the drain. It felt like I had betted on the wrong horse. On the horse that I knew it would win, I knew with my gut feeling, this is the right choice made at the right moment. And it lost. It just lost. What I betted on; everything, putting my entire weight to this whole endeavour, this horse that I knew would win, simply didn’t. Doesn’t that make you filled with anguish and despair? Does that make you question how in the world could someone make the biggest blunder of my life? Was it overconfidence, blind to the fact that you were never meant to embark and take on this opportunity in the first place? The signs were everywhere, but it was wrong somehow towards the end.

So what now? I guess it is back to square one. Finding a job, reflecting on my life again, and reorienting my life, my priorities. Searching myself again after getting lost walking down the path with a road block. Finding the things I love doing, getting that drive back to aim for something bigger. In other words, picking up the pieces.

It is gonna be a difficult journey. 2013 was looking so good, so bright, so beautiful. Now its just ruins and desolation down the road. And I had to work down that path, salvaging whats left of me, making sense of where I am, what I have left and make the best use of it.

One thing for sure is that it is going to take a while. It is going to be difficult. When life gives you a hard blow to your stomach, you will definitely fall down to the grown gasping for air that was violently expelled from your lungs. And it will several deep hard breaths to come back to your senses and find a way out of this terrible situation.

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