Lord Willin’ An’ The Horse Don’t Die

When I thought about the title for this post…

I decided to Google the phrase. I knew I’d heard it before as “Lord willin’ an’ the creek don’t rise…” proceeded by some statement of future intent, and as such found a really interesting discussion on a Wiktionary talk page that you should really check out after reading the rest of my post.

But what am I asking for and of whom?

Well…if you happen to know any deities, you’re welcome to put in a good word for me. Maybe we can combine their mystical musings with my strong sense of inner self and the power of gray-scale–or whatever ’80s toy, comic, and cartoon reference I was trying to make–and we can start with the following that I sent as an email to a classmate in one of my graduate courses as part of an ongoing discussion of end-of-semester woes:

I just have to retake one of the exams in April, but I’m hoping things have settled down a bit by then. I think I’m done with my online class (just have to upload the final when opens it). I still need to finish my work for , but I seem to have misplaced some notes so I’ll have to wing it. I’m not really worried about either of the two I just mentioned, though. It’s ‘s course that concerns me. I haven’t gotten any grades back from and I know that all of the short papers were sub-par, but never indicated that I should drop the course, so I am determined to put in a good effort for the final paper and hope for a C (although with one F on my transcript, I’m not sure if the “you can earn two Cs” rule still applies to me). seems to be willing to work with people, but I fear I’ve unintentionally taken advantage of ‘s kindness in my summer coursework. I only actually need one of the three courses I’m enrolled in for Spring, so the worst-case scenario would be that I earn an F and have to convince the chair and the dean to allow me to make up those two Fs (the one from summer and the the one for this semester if I get one) with two courses in the Spring. My current GPA is π (with two Bs, one F, and four As), so I’m hoping that works in my favor if I need to do some post-grade-post groveling.

The exams I referenced were the MA exams I spent $500 flying out to Arkansas to take in early November. As it turns out, in addition to bringing back the wonderful souvenir of a speeding ticket when I tried to push my rental car to the limits of its speedometer so I could get to the exams on time after oversleeping–damn you Holiday Inn Express near the airport in Little Rock for not giving me the requested wake-up call–I also failed one of the exams and must retake it. If you can read past all of the author notes in that email excerpt and get to the crux of what the pre-censored version had conveyed, you’ll understand my predicament. It is not that I am unintelligent or incapable, just that I am an easily distracted procrastinator with more on my plate than me at an all-you-can-eat Asian buffet…

First, there’s the two adorable children. I will never put anything above them, even if it is something I’m doing for them. So when an adorable 4yo comes meandering into my room insisting that she needs me because she’s become recently convinced that if she doesn’t hug me six times an hour I’ll somehow evaporate, I’ve no choice but to oblige. And when the only person in the world who can simultaneously cough and smile shouts “maaa maaa baaa baaa” from three rooms away (that’s really actually less distance than the trek from the front door to the restrooms at your local McDonald’s…), I must get up and make said baaa baaa (AKA bottle), as well as check for and correct any issues with diapers, clothing, room temperatures, cuddles, puddles, snot, or whatever else she may have wanted or needed. This is my job. I am their mother. When you become a parent and your children are still in that vulnerable phase of life (roughly birth to age fifty…), you must put them above all else or you’re not doing your job and should be fired from it.

Second, there’s my new old job. I say new old job, because long-time readers of my blog may well remember the internationally renowned retail establishment that comprised my first serious long-term full-time job when I started this blog. These same long-term readers may wonder why, after I am a snail’s fart away from finishing my MA coursework (lord willin’ an’ the horse don’t die), I should even be reemployed at this wonderful corporation in any position below corporate or top managerial and why any position I did take with corporation should be part-time…well…así es la vida and such is the economy.

People with my level of education are competing for entry-level positions. At the same time, employers are looking for people who have real-world experience on top of educational background. So while I still persistently send off resumes and job applications, I find myself doing the same tasks I was doing almost a decade ago, only with more pep (because I’ve adopted the personality of a cheerleader on speed to keep me from bawling my eyes out at my lack of upward mobility as of late).
Third? Job searching. Yes, I’m still doing this. And not just for jobs in my field. Also for jobs far afield of my field. Also for jobs I had once given up on attempting to land (do any of my really long-term fans, i.e. people who’ve known me since I was still draining my mother’s energy through my umbilicus, remember how I’ve always wanted to be a singer? Imma keep that dream alive, yo!). Also for jobs I wouldn’t tell anyone about if I got them because even though they’re perfectly legal and there’s nothing wrong with the people who work them I’d be ashamed that I had to do them considering how utterly pointless my pursuit of higher education would have become upon landing such jobs and if I took the jobs I’d be living a stereotype of liberal arts/English majors but I’m still looking for them because I have to care for the aforementioned babies and I have an interview at such a job tomorrow afternoon as a matter of fact (by the way, would you like fries with that?).

But I am still pushing and trying. I am still reaching de las estrellas, because I don’t want to give up entirely. I don’t want to be that person that’s still delivering pizzas postmenopausal because the well of ambition ran dry. I don’t want to be the person who stops over in a one horse town and stays there til she and the horse both die. I certainly don’t want to be a bitter old woman getting drunk in a bar whining about how the ex ruined my life–he didn’t, by the way. He gave me freedom to explore new possibilities, including meeting a better man who will treat me and the girls ten billion times better (Te amo mucho, boyfriend!).
songs for this post

George Strait–I hate my job, I hate my life and if it weren’t for my two kids I’d hate my ex-wife.
Theory of a Deadman–I hate my job, all of my rich friends.

Tim McGraw–Do you want fries with that?


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2 thoughts on “Lord Willin’ An’ The Horse Don’t Die

  1. @zelda, as far as I know, there are no family housing options in Russellvile and–at any rate–I wouldn’t want to return to Arkansas at this point. I have contacted the instructor in charge of the failed exam and am awaiting a response. I can also simply choose a different topic/instructor is need be. The retake will be in April.I am not sure about replacing Fs but will ask the chair or dean. I already know I am too small-fish for PhD programs I’ve looked into but even UAFaye said I could only be nondegree seeking.

  2. PS: I am unsure what you meant about syntactical shifts but welcome the feedback. Also, I am already maxing my loans but don’t know of any available grants other than the welfare which everyone seems to thinl makes me a lazy mooch.

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