Isn’t it funny that day by day nothing changes, but when you look back everything is different…” – C.S. Lewis
Being in my early twenties is difficult to imagine myself worrying much about the future. This stage in my life seems to be a carefree one. I guess, I never got to that level. Every day there’s more and more of the reflection that I have actually skipped some or jumped from being young to adulthood. There was no teenage life in between. It was a clear cut line from young to adult self. Many of life’s circumstances and challenges made me grow up a lot faster than my peers.
Now, it seems much clearer that it truly was a jump (or maybe the genes).
The eldest child in a brood of three, my parents showed me the call of responsibility early. At five, I had to help take care of my younger sister and baby brother. It was a fun challenge. However, it didn’t stop there. As I was growing up, other opportunities came into place- school, friends, family.
In school, I tried to excel and be the best possible. Getting the honor and recognition made school more colorful and dynamic. But still, inside, I was shy and quiet. The only long conversations that I could handle were with my group mates. I wasn’t really that outgoing. This continued until high school.
However, high school was a little more difficult because of the distance I had to travel just to attend classes. This meant taking two jeepney rides from home to school and back.This brought new experiences which helped me grow up to be independent and more confident in passing through the busy streets, facing numerous unfamiliar faces. I was left alone to deal with a much bigger environment and a lot of memories to treasure.
My heart beat faster for an unexpected day. I was with the best people of my age. I competed, failed, but stood up again. I learned to mingle, build relationships, and appreciate different types of people. Gradually, competition became a familiar situation that my classmates more of helped each other rather than bringing them down. It was another form of family. Top honors were out of my reach, but I still did my best to bring recognition that I deserved: making memorable life experiences. It opened my eyes to the world beyond my comfort zone. It gradually built my personality, myself. After four years, I had to go a step further. This time to a more distant place, with a huge pool of the unknown, what ifs, and what would bes.
University life came as the unfolding, mending, coloring, and finding my core stage. This gave unimaginable experiences, unforgettable people, moments of mind-opening scenarios, and a well-spent four years. I wasn’t the wild, young college girl, but I made my own kind of life. I grew up fast and became sensitive to the events happening around me. Even though at times, there were doubts and even fear, I walked through them. Dodged a couple dozen of obstacles, built and re-built lasting relationships. I might not have had the chance to bring home an honor, I did receive way better lessons. I gained knowledge, wisdom, and a family.
There were times that what I wanted never really happened. But when I look back, it actually did, just not in the way I intended it to be. I may have skipped some of the wild parties, strange activities, explorations of the young, but I survived. Life is just starting, as others would tell me. But I know that it had started long before. Life started when I first breathed air. Not everyone has the same path to take and to choose in life. Not the same standards to define what a real and full life is. We simply have to live, be thankful to God, and do the best we can, to appreciate this gift.
Now, I’m trying to find my purpose. It can be extremely frustrating at times, but I’m writing down my dreams little by little. If failure ever visits me again, I shall welcome it. Then I’ll say thank you for it teaches me something new. Then I know that other things shall come into place, I just have to strive and do my best to continue.