No emails again. Nothing. Heaving a deep sigh, Elise felt panic rising from her stomach. She tried to shrug it off but she couldn't. Would she never find an internship? For months now she had been sending emails, writing open applications, making phone calls, asking around. How many times had she cancelled dinner dates and missed nice parties in order to perfect a letter of application? And no one seemed to want her. No one!
She felt the tears in her eyes and decided in despair to call her mother. 'Darling, what is it?' asked her mother, shocked. 'Mum, I know you are at work, but I still haven't had a response.' She suddenly felt so powerless. Her mother sounded distracted but tried to cheer her up. 'You are doing such a great job. Just keep calling them all up and emailing them to let them know you are there, with all your talents. It will be alright.'
'No Mum, it won't be alright. Nothing is happening, nobody wants me.'
'Of course they do, darling. You are my clever, beautiful daughter. Strong and ambitious. Just keep going. I've got to go now, dear. Bye!'
Elise's stomach went into a cramp. She wasn't so amazing at all, otherwise she couldn't have managed this simple feat. 'Strong and ambitious': the words rang in her ears. That's what she wanted to be like but it seemed beyond her. Not good enough after all. Exactly what she had always been afraid of.
She called her study advisor but he didn't pick up the phone. Then she thought of two classmates who had made her do all the work on the last group project. They already had a place, and in Australia too. In the depths of despair she whatsapped another fellow student who still didn't have an internship place. 'Fancy a coffee? I need to get something off my chest.' She got a response within a minute. 'Good idea, my treat. I've got an internship!!!'