Vocation

October 2001. Our librarian went to our classroom and asked who would like to take a test to know if they can go to a seminary. Since I love ad hoc tests and I know it wouldn’t affect my grades, I raised my hand.

The exam involved cognitive, mathematical and abstract reasoning tests, which are the requirements needed to become a priest. I passed the test. Did I just take it because I want to test my ability? Definitely not. When our librarian asked the question, my mind focused on the word “seminary”. During my four years in high school, I became religious and somehow closer to God. I’d always go inside the church first to attend mass or pray before going to school. I also started reading the daily scriptures being read during the mass. Whenever we have prayer meetings, I’d always try to share my thoughts as if I’m delivering a homily. All of these made me happy. Happiness that’s different than anything I’ve felt before. A feeling ¬†of warmth and lightness coupled with a clear mind and vision. Thus, I thought and felt that somehow priesthood was my calling.

After the test, the passers were invited to a search-in workshop a few days later. During the workshop, we were given another set of tests. It only focused on abstract reasoning. An interview with a priest followed. The big question was thrown. “Do you want to go to our seminary and take up priesthood?” My answer was a no. I said that I wanted to take up a four-year course first and then I’ll decide if I’ll pursue priesthood. Of course with that answer I wasn’t invited anymore to the succeeding activities towards the entry to the seminary.

I thought I knew that I wanted it but I realized I wasn’t a 100% sure about it. It was a coincidence that the congregation, OMI (Oblates of Mary Immaculate) was related to the church celebration that my birthday fell on. That also added a reason why I thought it was for me. I didn’t regret that decision because I believe that God was guiding me at the moment I made that decision.

Looking at the pictures of my wife and kids made me realize that God indeed had something in store for me. =)

 

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Just Like High School

November 2011 is proving to be a busy month. Dance practices left and right (I don’t even know how I’m gonna manage this one), mixed the dance music for the contest, video editing (which will be done in 2 days) and then the usual part-time jobs. It’s a good thing that we’re just doing bug-fixing in our current work schedule. This reminds me of my high school days. Club meetings, Talumpati contest, Sabayang Pagbigkas practice, 1st reader for the Wednesday mass, school paper writer, etc. I loved it back then even when I still had to do assignments and projects when I get home. Right now, I’d prefer quality over quantity on my extra-curricular work. Good thing I was removed as one of the hosts for the year-end party this year.

I wonder if my kids will be as “bibo” as their Daddy.

Drowning

I got drowned once in the last 25 years of my life. It was during the summer vacation after my junior year in high school while we were having our CAT officers training. Actually, we just decided to go the beach after our morning jog.

The beach has a port nearby so the guys decided to jump off near the farthest edge and I joined as well. I can swim but I’m not that really experienced and I don’t even know how to tread that’s why I was hesitant but jumped anyway. When I reached the surface after jumping, I couldn’t swim anymore and I was grasping to breathe. Fortunately, my schoolmate was able to rescue me.

What did I learn from that experience? Never do anything you’re hesitant to do in the first place. You need at least one small bit of confidence before doing anything.

Emcee

How I miss my emcee days in high school. There was never a year that I didn’t host a program in our school. I think it was by being an emcee that my public speaking skills were improved the most. The thrill of making an ad lib and the excitement with panic of knowing how to speak in a manner that would captivate the attention of the audience are just so priceless and memorable.

What I love hosting the most is the Search for Mr. & Ms. Healthy Kindergarten. The kids are just so adorable especially during the Q&A portion, even when I just secretly give them some answers to the question when they’re not speaking for 5 seconds. Hehe.

Feast Day

It was 8th of September year 2000. Our 3rd year class had its feast day on that because our section’s name is Nativity (Nativity or birth of Mary). It was also on that day that Digos has been declared as a city effective that date. Hence, there were no classes so we’re the only who were in school at that day.

It was one of my most memorable times in high school. I can still remember how we prepared food and arranged our classroom. The most memorable part of that day is when we played “agawan base” (steal the homebase) game at the open grounds of our school. Our class adviser joined us and even played with barefoot. It was so fun! I have never enjoyed a game like that during my elementary years. What made it more fun was the fact that we are free to do anything at that time.

One thing I learned when playing is to not rush into things and always have a strategy mixed with a little bit of spontaneity. And even if you are overpowered, always try to make short, simple goals one step at a time.

I can’t remember who won though, but it really doesn’t matter because the memory of how happy we were on that day will never be forgotten.

Class President

I’ve been an active in taking leadership roles back in elementary and high school. I was the class president from grades 5-6 and 1st year to 3rd year high school. I was the vice-president during my senior year because I was already the battalion commander of our CAT class.

How was my performance as a leader? Definitely, I’m not good at it. I have the passion and eagerness to execute actions but I was never really good at being the class president. I know it’s my weakness back then that’s why I tried my best to improve. I think I’m better at being the second fiddle. One who can assist a leader. For by being the second fiddle, I can assure to myself that I really know what I’m doing.

Fatigue, Astigmatism, Hallucination

When I was still in school, I always make sure that I maintain high grades or high enough based on my standards. So when I get lower grades in a subject for one grading I always bounce back and get a higher grade in the next grading.

It isn’t as simple as it seemed. When I was in junior year of high school, my grade in English lowered by 3 points. I was devastated. Due to my frustration, I studied so hard in all of my subjects especially in English from 6pm-11pm then wake up at 3am to study again. I didn’t eat much during recess in school and so after a couple of days, I got sick. I had fever and a very terrible headache. In fact, it’s my first time to experience a headache. I can’t focus on what I’m doing. I feel nauseous from time to time and I feel dizzy while walking.

I visited the doctor and recommended us to visit an ophthalmologist. Result, I have an astigmatism. The doctor had me wear eyeglasses (my 1st one). After a few days my brain stabilize to some degree but before I got any better, I experience some short moments of hallucination. I sometimes feel itchy or see ants in my bed (it’s quite impossible to have ants since my mom just cleaned my bed and she’s such a clean-freak). And there were other moments that felt too dreamy.

What I learned from my super extra efforts? That I should never stretch myself too much unless I’m also taking care of myself at the same time. After what happened, I realized I needed to be more balanced. And so is my new philosophy, if I want to stay up late and work/study harder, I need to eat and eat and eat. =)