Recent Thoughts

Monday, October 31, 2005

Quiet Desperation

It’s funny how one’s life can be so full of shit and blessings at the same time. This realization dawned on me the past semester. It got to a point where everything was spinning out of control. Problems here, there and everywhere, be it acads or personal life. Solutions were futile. I felt so stressed out. It was a time when I always wanted to sleep but it’s not because I was deprived of it. It’s just that sleeping became an escape from reality for me. At least when you’re asleep, things had a great chance of getting better.

I’ve always thought I was strong enough to handle any kind of problem. I'm not saying that I don't need anybody’s help. It’s just that I knew that I have lots of friends that I can depend on, from whom I could draw strength from in case I'm not strong enough for certain dilemmas. You see, I am a firm believer that one should invest on many friends. No man is an island, remember? Note that I'm referring to real friends, the type you’d still invite to your house on the first birthday of your first grandchild, not just mere acquaintances. So in effect, I was indeed strong. But in the last sem, I've proven myself wrong. I am not as strong as I think I am. And with all the friends that I had, not one could help me out with the problems that hounded and kept me so stressed out the past few months that every now and then I felt like vomiting for no physiological reason.

The past sem will definitely be the most memorable sem for me. It may not be very fulfilling like the sem when I would finally graduate (Ha! So near yet so far…). But in terms of extreme events and not to mention emotions, nothing beats the past sem. I make it sound like it was one hell of a sem for me, right? After all, one can always see me laughing my heart out, joking around, thinking of another punch line that I could throw on the next unsuspecting victim. Who would think that deep inside, I'm helpless and desperate for a solutions. Yes, desperate is the perfect word for it. It’s either that or I've been listening too much of Mary Alice. They say that when jolly people feel hurt, they feel it quite badly.

I don't want to go into the gory details of why the past sem was such a hell for me. Frankly, I'm still ashamed of myself. It’s so out of my character. It’s the kind of stuff that only happen to people that I normally consider losers. I never foresaw such things would happen to me. But they did. Well, that then definitely makes me the loser that I always looked down upon. At first, I thought it’s just one of those times when things get bad but still get better in the end. I mean, after all, I'm a senior engineering student. I'm trained for these times. But no, it wasn’t one of those times. It was worse, way, way worse.

I guess by now you get the picture. There I was, at such an all-time low state. Whenever I get to sleep, I half-wished I would never wake up and face the world filled with problems left unsolved and whose answers have yet to be unearthed. I quarter-wished that in my sleep, God would whisper to me the answers I needed. I also quarter-wished that if don't dream about the answer and I wake up (which, apparently, I always did), things will get better on their own or that someone else will come by and give me the answers. But no, none of my wishes was at least partially granted.

And as if finding the answers to my problems wasn’t enough, more questions bothered me. Why is this happening? Why to me? Why now? While I have learned to accept what was happening, I still can't find the rationale of it. Answering the whys may not necessarily provide the more important answers, but they only added to the confusion. I was in deep shit – holiest and crappiest shittiest of all. (Okay, the last –iest word was a stretch. I know that my problems were nothing compared to the problems of the starving and malnourished children of Somalia. Not to mention it is grammatically incorrect. J)

Amidst all the depression and desperation, still, there were lessons for me to learn – lots of them.

The positive realizations came at an ironic time. There I was, cursing the past few months and wishing life is like a word processor where I could easily press Ctrl + Z each time I make mistakes. Or maybe, I could just exit without saving and reopen the file 1st Semester AY 2005-2006. But what if in the name of God, it happens? Do I really want to redo the past four months? As in everything? Including the good things that have happened? Of course, the answer was no. It was right in front of me, written on my graffiti wall – everything sucks, but you’re doing just fine.

As much as there were lots of things to cry about in the past sem, there were things to smile about as well. While I already have a good set of friends, more people entered my inner circle of trust and I couldn’t be more thankful. I got closer to some of my friends the reasons for which I can't say in print. Let’s just say there were a lot of issues to talk about and these issues brought us closer. And I owe it to them why I got through the past sem alive. They made me smile, they encouraged me on. They uttered words like, “Things will get better Kuya, you’ll be okay” even if they’re not sure how or if things will get better indeed, just to give me hope. I know that they’re just saying it because it’s the right thing to say. But I appreciate it nevertheless because they cared enough to say anything at all. Even promise that things will be okay even if it really was out of their control.

Last sem was filled with opportunities to help other people on different levels and different aspects. And for me, it was the best part of last sem. It was during these instances when I felt that finally, what I was doing was yielding a positive outcome, whether it was for me or for another person. Besides, you’ll never get a failing grade in helping someone. No matter how little or simple the assistance you extended, you’re sure to get at least a 3.0. The unsolicited words of gratitude were priceless. Making a difference in another person’s life is something. It’s not something you get to do everyday. But I was blessed with many opportunities to do it a lot of times the past sem. Fulfillment doesn’t only mean achieving your greatest hopes and dreams. For if it was, then the past sem was the disappointment that I felt it was. Good thing fulfillment is also knowing you have made the lives of other people worth living.

A little more than a week from now, another sem will start. Alas, there are still problems from the past sem left unsolved. And alas again, I still don't have a clear idea on what to do. As much as the problems will be carried on to the next sem, so will the lessons I learned. I will still do the things that keep me happy because I deserve to smile every now and then, in between frowns or tears. Maybe this time around not only should I help other people if I could but also help myself for a new start – simply because I should.

Quick Thoughts