May 22, 2007

Yet Another Thing To Go Crazy Over

Last night, shortly before work was over, I made the requisite call to the house to find out what was on the dinner menu. My youngest brother Matt answered, and I asked him how he was, how things were going, etc. - I was bored out of my skull at work, so I was intentionally trying to prolong the conversation. I asked him if he had heard anything from Berklee, not expecting him to have heard anything... "Yeah, I got in."


See, Matt auditioned for admission to the elite music college, Berklee College of Music, way back in January. Originally he was supposed to hear if he was accepted back in March - then when he didn't hear anything, he checked back and they said May. Bizarre. So as it passed the half-way mark in the month of May, I really didn't expect him to hear anything. Part of me thought they had sent him an unfortunate decline letter, and that my father might have hidden it to shield him from the discouragement, but thank goodness I was way off!

Matt received an email on Friday evening that he had gained admission. Woo hoo! I called my brother Kevin after I got off the phone with Matt. Kevin had attended a summer session at Berklee and is a professional musician, so naturally he'd be the next one to call... and he had already heard the news... and he didn't seem too excited... and that kinda pissed me off.

So I raced home afterwards, I wanted to get my eyes on that email asap to see what was what. Berklee is a very expensive school, and it had sounded like Matt had already settled himself on the fact that he wasn't going to be able to go - that everyone around him all weekend might have talked him down about it. Urgh! So I got home, and before sitting down to eat I made him log into his email account.

Funny, there was a NEW message from the school. He opened it and we read together that in addition to being accepted, they were also extending him a yearly-renewing $7000 merit-scholarship. O.M.G! Matt seemed in a daze as we got the unexcited Kevin back on the phone. His response? "Are you fucking kidding me? That's fucking great!" Kevin changed his tune, and we then went to our respective dinners and lingered in the waft of Matt's glory for awhile.

Then, I sprung into action.

I noticed Matt had FINALLY hunted down the necessary financial aid form (the infamous FAFSA, which normally gets turned in months before now). So we spent the evening hunting through all my father's personal paperwork for his tax forms, info on when he and our mother were divorced, etc. etc. - heck, when the tax forms proved incomplete, I even called our tax preparer to have him help with the numbers! I was unstoppable!

We got to a place where we could find no more of the necessary information, and I fell asleep with the financial aid process on my brain. When I woke up I went right back to it, requesting my father spend a little time getting his savings & checking account balance information for us. Then at work I phoned the school to speak with someone in admissions. I managed to succeed in acquiring the name and phone number of his admissions counselor, and left her a voicemail - alas, I have yet to hear back. And then I went and signed Matt up for a Department of Education PIN number, which we'll need to turn in the FAFSA online (which quickens the process two-fold). And now I wait, with my list of questions and contact numbers and a spring in my step. And this isn't even for ME! This is for Matt!

So, as you can see, I've gone a little nutty. This happens to me a lot. I get a goal in my head, and I just push-push-push until it's dealt with in some manner. It's probably not good for my blood pressure! But I have a feeling that if I weren't here to push like this, Matt wouldn't have a chance of getting the necessary stuff done to make actually attending the school (or any other, for that matter) a reality. And this is too important.

posted by julie at May 22, 2007 11:02 AM