I normally write my feelings out. Whenever I get too emotional about certain things, I write them on a piece of paper, pour it all out, tear them to pieces then throw ’em away. Or sometimes I keep them hidden in a folder on my laptop. That’s my personal way of dealing with stress, I guess.
A few weeks ago, as I was browsing through old photos and files, I came across this particular journal entry. I remember writing this way back May 2015, a few hours after receiving back our final draft of thesis from our adviser. We’ve had it revised for like, twenty? Thirty times, maybe? All I can remember was the countless number of nights that we didn’t sleep just to beat the deadline of [thankfully] our last semester [back then]. So as not to ruin and confuse the timeline, I’ll post it as it is. So let’s go back to that night of May…
“For binding. Congratulations!”, Sir Zeke wrote at the very first page of our thesis on the Rhetorical Analysis of Leila De Lima’s Speeches on Human Rights… a note which officially ended my life as an undergraduate. I was extremely happy and relieved. Damn, that was the hardest requirement I’ve ever had to accomplish. Finally, I’ll be marching on the 25th of June. I’m gonna wear that sablay. My parents will be proud of me. Graduate na ako! Then it hit me. Ga-graduate na ako…
I’m nineteen… and about to graduate college in a month. And this fact really really really makes me sad.
Don’t get me wrong. I want to graduate. I mean, that was basically the reason why I’ve spent 16 years of life in school, right? To study. Get a degree. Have a job. It’s pretty much the same with everyone else, I guess.
This cycle of life terrifies me. A LOT.
Four years ago, I thought having a high-paying job is all it takes to achieve a stable, secured and happy life. Yes, maybe it still is true. But the older I get, the more I realize that there’s a lot more to life than just having money. I realized that the essence of life is to get the most out of it. As cliché as it seems, we really do have just one shot at this, so we better make it right. And by right, I mean to be the happiest you can be.
The bottom line is: I don’t want to leave. I’m not yet ready to leave the people who made the biggest impacts in my life. I’m not yet ready to come back to where I was before and be enclosed with all the rules. Somehow, I find myself enjoying the independent life.
Maybe I’d travel the world or maybe stay where I am. I want to try different jobs even if it isn’t related with my degree. Maybe I’d get rejected, but it’s gonna be okay because I know that I tried. I want to get a lot of experiences, meet new people and be friends with them, get wasted then regret it, make a mistake and then learn from it. Maybe I’d be a teacher or a restaurant owner or a production assistant or a writer or a Starbucks barista or a photographer… I could be a lot of things, you see. I just want to make my own choices in life. Is that too much to ask?
A year later, I found myself still not doing what I exactly wanted. Believe me, I tried… and failed a lot of times. But there are these circumstances that I can’t simply get away from. Sometimes, it gets tiring, too. There are days that I consider to just give it all up and simply go with the flow, follow what they want since that is the easiest way out. The only downside to that is I don’t get to be happy and contented. But at least they do. 😦
For now, I’m still summoning all the courage I could get before finally pursuing my own dreams. Am I making excuses? Well, maybe you can say that. Until then, I just have to get through this internal struggle day by day… as of the moment. But I do hope that someday I’d be brave enough to stand up for myself again. I guess it’s okay not to have it all planned out just yet. I’d like to think that this time next year, things will be a lot better. 🙂
To those people who managed to stick with me, I am beyond thankful and blessed to have you in my life. You all make it worthwhile somehow. I hope you’d still be there when I finally figure it all out.