Being upset over rejection is validity itself. I have a cool approach to it, having totally lost days being raw about rejection. But as a gesture, this latest rejection was special. In a positive way, that is, which is circumstantial. On a different day this would have pulverized.
Because what does obliterate me without fail is a non-response or having to chase for a "no." When I know an option is closed to me, I can glide away for others. But sitting around, waiting for rejection only to find that the other party did not think of me enough to tell me "no" — that only reinforces my lack of control.
That said, I've been angry with myself. I submitted my first query to the Paris Review. I love the Paris Review, I hold the editors in high esteem, and if I want to someday have work appear there, I need to submit work to it. This year's been intense, and I stressed out so much about unleashing it to the postal service that I didn't include a SASE in order to receive my rejection — which, let us be real, I anticipated. The fact that I'd denied myself the opportunity to get rejected and have the evidence that I had tried for something I'd endeavored to do for years — my patience with myself was already up at the time.
But I received a rejection from The Paris Review via email! And, even though the remark begs editorializing with the likes of "sincerely," "really," — that was a very kind, considerate thing, uneditorialized. Reading submissions takes a long time, I didn't want to submit the work elsewhere until I knew I wouldn't be putting any editor at a disadvantage — and now I can move on. Which is action, which is empowering, which is what I need. And as a reminder that I had made that query in the first place — I feel like I haven't done anything in half a year, and the reminder that I have taken steps towards what I want is reassuring.