I’ve had so many tooth extractions that I got tired counting how many times I had it. We were still living in Novaliches when I had my first ever visit to the dentist and first time I had a tooth extracted. The clinic was so white and I can remember how painful the injection of the anesthesia was. I can remember Tita Gina promising to buy me an ice cream after the visit and she sure did keep the promise. I didn’t know back then that it was helpful in the recovery of the gums. And boy how happy I was to know that because I love to eat ice cream. Hehehe.
I’m proud to have been chosen as the Valedictorian of our class in elementary and high school, but the feeling of receiving the award is not greater than the feeling and excitement when delivering the valedictory speech. It’s not because I want to show off my public speaking skills or to prove that I am worthy of being the valedictorian, but because of the message I want to say to my fellow graduates and to everyone in attendance. I want to make all of them happy by letting them realize about several things why such a momentous day is more than just celebrating the accomplishment of finishing 6 years or 4 years of studies.
My first valedictory speech was made by Uncle John, the husband of Tita Gina who is my mother’s sister. Uncle John is a British who worked as a microbiologist before. I delivered the speech beside the podium because I was too small then. Our graduation was held in a gym, which was jam-packed with parents and relatives of the graduates. I memorized and delivered the speech without a copy.
For my second valedictory speech, I made it on my own. It was longer than the first one but I still memorized and delivered it without looking at a copy, though I printed one and put it in a folder just in case I get a mental block. Our high school graduation was held in our town’s cathedral. To this date, that speech stands to be the best that I have delivered in my life.