I always remember that when I was a child back at Zamboanga City, my parents would always prod me to become a lawyer or a doctor or a politician, saying that “these are the three ways to be filthy rich quick and fast”. We did not have a lot of money back then; we were just a lower middle class family trying to find a place to finish our university education. Surely, things changed when I got a scholarship from the Philippine Science High School (I could have easily became a biologist back then, get a few scientific prizes and have a good amount of money on research), but then, getting another scholarship to a Turkish charter school and going to that particular school had probably changed my life in a much profound way.
Well, I always dreamed of being one of two things: being a biologist and/or being a pilot. I imagined flying the skies using a Boeing Jumbo jet; I imagined creating something that would change the world. And all this time, people told me that I was crazy…well, that was the kindest of words that they ever used, to be honest.
I saw adulthood as a time to work; a time to have a bit of fun, a time to experience the reality of life, maybe get fat and realize the better things in life other than money. Sure, I’d like to have a house, a vehicle, a family, a something…but life is pretty content. That’s what I supposed when I was back in high school, living in an era similar to the Dark Ages.
Well, I never supposed that I’ll have to deal with my own insurance bills when I became a college student. And right now, I’m 20, I’m about to graduate from Middle East Technical University here in Ankara, I’m about to pay off my yearly insurance, I’m taking up summer school, I have plans for this and that, I’m expecting that I’ll break out into the literary scene one day, blah blah blah.
The truth is that you think adulthood is easy, but once you get there, you’ll realize that you want to go back to childhood at a certain degree. Why bother with problems (or other people’s problems) when you can have an easy and smooth life, right?
The thing is this: I believe that a victory without struggle is a hollow one. I believe that stars won’t shine without darkness, and the real value of the sun is never appreciated unless the night comes and “devours” it. Surely, young adulthood is pretty hard, with all the responsibilities and the catches that come with it. But at least I’m quite thankful that I don’t have to get into the “9 to 5 rat race” just yet, which, at that point, the whole dimension of what “adulthood” means changes once again.
There are times that I just don’t want to do anything, but I force every nerve and every muscle to do that thing…maybe because it is important or it is something of value. There are times that I feel frustrated and I’d just like to throw my body over the wall, but I keep on going, maybe half-blind, maybe half-broken.
Because I know very that at the end of the day, the harder the hardship, the sweeter the endings that happen. And oh, it does not just happen in fairy tale stories!
I’m 20. I have nothing but a couple hundred of dollars in my pocket. I’m a college student in my senior year who is trying to be idealistic-realistic-modernist-westerner-blah blah blah, and who eagerly wants or wishes to be admitted into a MA/MFA program in Creative writing somewhere in the US/UK/Australia/the Philippines. La-la-la.
And I know that I can do something not just for myself, but also for the ideals that I fight for. Oh, by the way, wish me luck in my forays into the world of work! Shouldn’t be that hard, no?
For more angles…Thanks for reading!