I'm in my third year of probationary membership, which means I'm eligible to apply for full connection in the UMC. We had to request the questions/forms/paperwork in July and then had to have our reference list, bio, and transcripts in by the end of September. The papers are Due December 1st. Due. Not post-marked. Due. I started working on the papers early and got about 1/4 of them written back in September. The plan was to do the slow and steady approach through October and November and get them sent off before Thanksgiving so I could enjoy giving thanks on the day of gratitude rather than muttering about how much I hate the Methodist system and all the hoops of ordination. Well, that day is 2 weeks away tomorrow and I am so NOT ready! October flew by and was packed and I wrote hardly at all. November was full and I spent time during vacation to write and wrote over 70 pages (hand written) in my writing book. So now, I have 32 of 43 papers written and sent out to editors (Thank you editors! You rock!). That means there's still 11 papers to write as well as ALL of them to edit and revise before I send them in. I also still have to make 3 copies of all the papers, collate, and double check the pages.
Oh yeah, and then there's the minor issue of the sermon--we have to have a DVD and CD of the FULL SERVICE including our ordination sermon (3 copies to be precise). We have about a dozen different texts to choose from and I have done a handful of them throughout the fall each time thinking we could record that service and each time being disappointed because it didn't happen for one reason or another. So now there are 2, count them, 2 Sundays left to get the service taped and then make copies. Just for the record--that is FREAKING me out. My blood pressure is high almost around the clock and I'm simply wigging out! I had called the media center at the conference to have them come out and never heard back. I've contacted them again and we'll see what happens. I've also contact parishioners. I thought two were going to bring their cameras last weekend....one went on vacation and the other couldn't get her battery to charge and then decided it wouldn't be what I wanted. So, now I'm back to square one.
For the record, I am so not thrilled that I might not pass this year because of the friggin' sermon. I preach EVERY WEEK! There's no good reason why I shouldn't have a sermon/service to send in. None. Which, for the record, makes me a pure schmuck if I don't get them sent in. I'm not good at dealing with my schmuckiness.
Being deferred would be one thing--not a happy thing, but that would be one thing, but being a dork who couldn't get her ducks in a row, that's not a good reason to not be ordained this year. Not a good reason at all.
Okay, enough fussing, it's time to get back to those papers. Can't you just feel the joy radiating from me from the amazing learning process this is?!!?!!