gmat

Breaking

Last week, everything I touched broke, and everything I did went wrong.

Well, not everything, I suppose. On Monday, I celebrated my birthday with mimosas and good company. I didn’t break anything then that I know of. Unfortunately, Tuesday was the start of a bad week.

I managed to knock over two big displays at work, breaking a good amount of merchandise. My boss never cares, and we don’t have to pay for what gets broken, but I’d much prefer that I didn’t mimic a tornado. In addition to that, I broke something I was trying to clean for a friend, ripped the sole of a pair of shoes, snapped a broom in two, and dropped my hair dryer. It almost feels like the destruction will never end. Maybe it’s in my blood.

Oh, and I’ve been so busy studying for the GMAT and working Christmas season in retail that I forgot to mention the Master of Management Practice is still available if I get in for next semester. And considering I aced the GMAT, it wasn’t much of a surprise when I got my email of acceptance yesterday.

My mom is so happy to have two daughters going into masters programs. My older sister studied biology, however, and she is pursuing it even further. She’s already in a successful career with her own house and car. I have a feeling that owning a small business or editing won’t get me to the same point as quickly. Then again, I have no idea what lies ahead–in any category of life. Everyone seems to celebrate their 20’s as much as possible: drinking publicly, wearing youthful clothing, meeting various partners. To me, at least for now, my 20’s are unstable and confusing.

I don’t mean I’m unstable. I’ve never felt better in my life, actually. But I don’t know where I’ll be in sixth months, let alone in several years. The ground shifts constantly beneath my feet, and while I have decent balance, it’s starting to make me uncomfortable. It makes me dread the ground falling out beneath me.

A pretty personal example of this is my relationship. It’s great. We’re a strong couple, but we discussed long distance and won’t do it. Rob graduates in May, and by entering this program I know for a fact I’m staying where I am for at least one more year. Already, though, he is applying for jobs around the country, and he knows he plans to jump around before settling down in one place. It’s likely that I’ll spend several years saving money before opening my business, but I don’t know if I’ll be jumping around with him. I want to ask him to wait just a little longer for me to graduate, but I never want to hold him back.

So for selfish reasons, I pray he gets a job in Colorado. Because I love him more than words and want him to succeed with joy, though, I plan to urge him to do what is best for him, even if it means him moving to Texas or Illinois. So that’s one reason I consider my 20’s a time of instability. I have no control over my future in many aspects.

Rob and I did get a wonderful gift from my boss, and Sunday night we had dinner and rode through Old Town in a horse carriage. Here we are:

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And now?

Last week, I was told that the graduate program for which I applied is no longer available. Admissions asked if I wanted to apply for a different program, but every other business program takes two years and is meant for corporate aspirers. Getting an MBA is definitely something to feel accomplished about, but a lot of the classes would be irrelevant to my goals. So I asked another woman at Colorado State University for some advice, and from what she said in response, I might still be able to get the Master of Management Practice if I get accepted for Spring semester. The downside is that the business school likes to take its time in responding.

My biggest tension right now is in the fact that I don’t know whether I need to sign up for the GMAT, and whether I should keep studying for it. I did a good amount of studying before I found out the program may no longer exist. Now, though, I’m operating under the depressing assumption that I can’t actually get into next semester’s graduate school.

If I can’t get the MMP, I’m just defaulting to community college classes. Based on the curriculum, I should be able to get an AAS in business in about a year, maximum a year and a half. It would be much less expensive than an MMP, but if I’m going to open a business, I’d prefer the best education I can get.

I’ve been brainstorming businesses lately, thinking of how I’d like to arrange a shop, what I’d like to sell. There are so many things about retail I love, but I need to narrow my vision. I started out thinking about a cafe, bar, and bookstore. I still like this idea, but I’m not entirely sure I want to work in food.

Inspired by this, however, I would like to have coffee-, tea-, beer-, and wine-themed gifts at the front of the shop, with a central display of coffee samples to draw people in. My current job at Alpine Arts: The Colorado Showcase, as well as past jobs at Colorado gift shops, have inspired me to support local artists, as well. In that spirit, I would very much like to open a Colorado Boutique. I would most likely carry some of the same artists as Alpine Arts, but I might also pursue some vendors she never did. I’ll also try to work with other contacts I’ve made since I started working in Old Town, Fort Collins.

Similar to Alpine Arts, everything for sale in my shop would be made in Colorado, but I would target a slightly wealthier audience than souvenir shops do. I would probably have a smaller shop with less selection, but everything would be incredible quality and absolutely beautiful. Ranging from hats and jewelry to wall art and pottery, I would want people to feel as though they are investing good money in my product.

In order to find vendors, I’ve been browsing Etsy and looking at catalogues from work. It’s a good use of my time, I think.

I suppose, for now, I just have to wait and see how things unravel.