As I see my only child amid the hundreds of graduates, happy on their childhood achievements, I remember my student days as I went up the stage to receive my reward for doing my best.
My daughter is supposed to be in college last school year, but with the new K to 12 educational system, she will be in Grade 12 instead. I am not complaining.
She's 16, but acts like 13. Still a baby. And our one and only.
I recently read a blog entry about being a parent of today's millennial kids — it tells us not to force them to become outstanding students for their parents to be proud.
Just — Let.Them.Be. True enough, for me what matters is that she grows up happy, confident, grounded, respectful, and with a lot of empathy for others.
I grew up not forced by my parents to be an outstanding student but I felt like I had to. I just thought — as a daughter of a school teacher mom, I had to be a role model for other students so my mom can be a credible teacher. It's subliminal. Deep inside I knew that I was making my parents happy and proud. Come graduation day, they pinned ribbons on me for my achievements — every single year since kindergarten.
At nine years old, I traveled with my teachers and some classmates to represent our school for division and regional competitions. From thereon, travelling around the country to compete academically became a regular activity for me.
At 16, I went to Manila for college. Finding myself in a concrete jungle, I struggled and kept a strong front to finish my college education. Away from my family, it never entered my mind to mess up my life. All I wanted to do was to complete my studies immediately so I can get a job! The first time I wandered the streets of Ayala, with all the “talahib” around, I said to myself — someday, I will work here. My wish was granted 23 years ago.
Now that I am a parent, will I ever influence and inspire my one and only? I know this class card of mine will not appeal to her (I can imagine her eyes rolling). She often asks me, why do you always have to study and enroll in different schools a lot ??? I could only say — because I want to learn more.
I strongly believe that the quest for ETERNAL KNOWLEDGE is endless. Maybe my lifetime is not enough. The daily grind can be an informal school because it teaches us the realities of life.
I have so many personal dreams along with my husband and my daughter. So the learning continues. Whatever my daughter achieves in life, I will be very happy and proud of her. She can always be the person she wants to be. For me, EQ is more important than IQ and best if they will complement each other. Every day, when I receive text messages from her: “Hugs… Miss you.. what time ka uuwi?... I love you …” I know I am doing all right. CC: