I remember when I was in grade school, the teacher often asked their students what would you want to be when you grow up? I often wonder what would I be when I grow up? I always ended up with no clue at all.
When I was in fourth year of high school, I still haven’t figured out what I would be taking in college. A lot of my friends back then knew and decided what school they will attend or what courses they to take. But for me, I’m still having a vague idea.
I just decided impromptu minutes before the entrance exam that I would take up architecture because I’m fond of drawing and I know how to draw. 18 months have passed and I’m still having doubts and still not contented on what I’ve accomplished so I decided to shift course, I took up Nursing.
I weighed the chances between Architecture and Nursing. What would be the course that I would be easily land a job with? What would be the most practical of the two? So Nursing it is. One of the things that I love while studying nursing is that we can be in different places. Our school does not have a hospital of its own so we were affiliated to different hospitals either in the province or in the city. Every week I was in different places. I love exploring the places that we come to. Luckily, our clinical instructors are not that strict to prohibit us on going outside besides our dormitory. I would take up pictures of everywhere and go anywhere my feet can take me.
Besides being everywhere , nursing also taught me how to be humble and to be considerate to the people who are less fortunate. During community duties, we were immersed to the town’s folk. We lived with them and taught them health eduction. There is this kind of fulfillment when you take care of someone who’s sick and will get well because of you. Above all that, deep inside of me, there’s something missing.
After graduation, I thought it would be easy looking a job but I was wrong. I attended different kinds of seminars and trainings for the time being. I even volunteered in a hospital where I was the one who payed not the other way around. I got tired of always being broke so I decided to apply abroad.
I worked in Kingdom Saudi Arabia for 2 years. I met a lot of friends and a lot of different kinds of people. Good or bad. I learned that when you are away with your family, you will learn how to be independent and fend for yourself. You can count on other people but the only thing you can trust is yourself. At first, I was “Yes Mam” to everyone, I was really determined. I worked very hard doing things that were not even in the scope of my job description. Sometimes I felt so used. I also learned that the attitudes, culture and religion of this new country can be a whole lot different from what I got used to. As time passed by I realized I’m becoming a completely different person. I learned to fight back, I became rude and impatient. That was when I knew I can’t continue working in that place. The negativity can sucked you up to a whole new different you. Going on that place not only helped me realized not to renew my contract, it also helped me realized that nursing is not for me. I should be happy doing my job rather, I was not.
I came home to the Philippines. It was also the time when my older sister got a job in Cambodia. After a month of relaxation, I decided to come abroad to go with her for a while. Every weekend, we visited the nearest tourist spots. We even tried cross-country, to renew our visa. After a month, my sister decided that she can no longer continue working in Cambodia and so she resigned. The following weeks, we decided to travel the countries surrounding South East Asia. It was very exciting and interesting and I was really happy. We also met different kinds of adventures. That was when I realized what I want to do and what I would want to be, a traveler.
It’s been 26 years and I only just realized what I really want in my life. I want to travel and explore the world. I want to capture moments, scenarios and preserve it through photograph.
I want to learn new cultures and how people live in different places. When looking back at the past, I was the one they called “Lakwatsera” or wanderlust in English. I’m also the person who always have a camera and collects photos. When it comes to it I was that person I want to be a long time ago. I just didn’t realize it yet.
It may be too late just to found out what I want in life. At least, it is better late than never. From this day on, I will try my best to pursue what I love and will continue to go for it whatever happens and do it all over again.