More accurately, I was going to be someone at 16.
Yes, I feel a full-body-shiver looking back at how optimistic I was at 15.
But again, I am done weeping over the fact that at 24, I am at a low-paying office job, in a field I swear I never once imagined myself in. IN-SU-RANCE. Or, that my peak seems to have started and ended during my last year in university. A good three years since, and I haven’t published anything. Or that my love life will forever be followed by the pun, lack thereof; therefore causing both great concern and happiness to my brothers and parents (respectively). Yes, I am okay with all of these. And yes, not a tear was shed while delivering this long list of what makes me a failure.
I wonder whether this declaration of acceptance makes me mature, or a loser. But for the sake of uplifting my ego on this day that I turn a year older, let’s just call it maturity. Please.
Yes, there is a long list of things I should’ve already done but haven’t, and I’m not an inch closer to being the person I wanted to be at 24, BUT there are other things that I’ve accomplished that I never thought I could. I feel like I have matured so much in the last year, that I caught up with all those years that I’ve turned a year older and none the wiser. I haven’t traveled, haven’t written anything, haven’t gone out and seen the world just yet. Instead, I have had my heart broken, worked at an assembly line for a car factory (first day of which I didn’t know whether to laugh or cry, and I went home everyday smelling like burnt metal and exhausted to the core), moved jobs, met new friends, learned to drive, worked as a stock person getting cuts from handling boxes and muscles from lifting, bought a car, took care of my parents. This big big world that life put me into when it decided to take me away from the Philippines, no matter how many times I reject it, actually provided me all the space I needed to grow.
Today, I saw a real Chagall. My parents took me to AGO to see the The Great Upheaval collection, and I saw things that are far greater than me. I felt small, and overwhelmed and awed and inexplicably happy. I never ever thought that I would see a real Picasso, or Matisse, or Modigliani. And there they were, making me feel things I would never be able to explain. So I wouldn’t even bother. Except maybe to say: here’s one that wasn’t on the list.
And there will be many more to come.