Today, I put my good champagne in the fridge. I recently learned that champagne should be stored in the dark/at room temperature to allow for further fermentation/aging, but that it will stay drink-able in the fridge for about a year. In general, the only occasion I need to drink some champagne is that it’s a day ending in ‘y’. But this bottle, a 2009 Dom Perignon gifted by my little brother Alec, after my college graduation, is extra special. For a year after I graduated, it sat imposingly in the corner of my bar cart; I was continuously reminded that I had no occasion for such an impossibly rich celebration. It was as I began my initial applications in June 2019, that I decided the fate of this bottle of champagne: I’d drink it when I got into medical school.
Needless to say, it’s gotten to age substantially more than I had imagined. Too uncertain about my fate during my initial application cycle, I left it on the shelf of my bar cart. As I hung in limbo, grappled with the rejection, then picked myself up by the bootstraps, the bottle sat on its shelf, mocking me. It’s become a symbol of my initial failure; the black, shadowy bottle lurking in the corner, like the doubtful voice in the back of my head.
As I settle into my second application cycle, I think about this bottle a lot. I’m not going to open it until I get that acceptance, but I took some control over my destiny today. I put the bottle in the fridge. Are you thinking what I’m thinking yet? I am manifesting (and, desperately hoping) that this application will work out. I have spent the last year reflecting, working, and evolving, to make this work out. The parts that I can control are mostly behind me, but the journey ahead is looking brighter than the last. The rejections are coming more slowly, and the radio silence is feeling more thoughtful than judgemental. Or at least, that’s the reality I choose to live in. Within the next 9ish months, I am going to get that news. And I am going to need that champagne to be cold.
Who knows if it’s already turned into vinegar, but nothing will ever taste as sweet.