Ariana Magliocco

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How do you define failure? For me, it's a feeling in the pit of my stomach that grows quietly and quickly until I’m a ball of tears on the phone with my mom while she tries to remind me that “no, this failure is not the end of your life as you know it.” That’s exactly what happened a few months ago when I missed a VERY (and I mean VERY) important meeting with my professor and the president of a local organization I was hoping get an academic placement at.

I hadn’t been feeling well that week, wrote the wrong date in my agenda and slept right through the meeting. I woke up to a very unimpressed email from my professor. I was immediately flooded with an overwhelming sense of failure. How could I miss a meeting I had been preparing for for weeks because of such a stupid error? How could I be so stupid. That was all I kept thinking.

I’ll be honest, I got lucky. My professor covered for me with the organization and I was able to reschedule the meeting. That didn’t shake my feeling of failure though. I remember being sick to my stomach for days after. I frantically wrote numerous emails to my professor, apologizing time and time again. I knew I had to prove myself – and I did. I showed up 45 minutes early to the next interview and ultimately had worked hard enough to earn the placement.

I have no advice or insightful tips on how not to miss important meetings (besides DOUBLE CHECK THE DATE). All I will say is that sometimes it works out, even when you’re sure it won’t. Sometimes, it’s purely because of the kindness of others. Sometimes there’s nothing more you can do but apologize and hope for the best. I know that not everyone will be as lucky as I was in the same situation, but when you’re freaking out and thinking that there is NO way things could possibly work out in your favour, try to remember that sometimes, they will.