Essay, Journal, life, Uncategorized

“Same Road, Rough Boy.” (SRRB)

“The story of one person is the story of all humanity.”

That is what Paulo Coelho says in his book The Devil and Miss Prym, and I couldn’t help but nod in agreement.

We can’t deny the fact that we all reach a point in our lives where, despite all of the positivity and willpower we hold, we attenuate ourselves into just three words: lost and confused.

And I’m afraid to say that for me, now is that point in my life.

What makes the thought even worse is when we begin to self-inflict ourselves with questions such as ‘Should I go here or there?’, or ‘What should I do now?’, or better yet, ‘Is this the right path for me?’ .

You wake up the next day with a lot of questions, and boil down to the same questions right before sleeping.

Post-Graduation Syndrome. Luckily, such word exists on the net.

Well, graduation day is certainly to blame for this.

Just a month ago, I finally got my college degree in Bachelor of Science in Civil Engineering. What makes my life even more interesting and complicated at the same time (and I’ll tell you why in a bit) is how in the world I graduated with latin honors. I somehow feel uncomfortable talking about it though.

Perhaps, because looking back at those 5 longs academic years, I ought to do more than what I had done to deserve such thing.

Perhaps, it is, in my opinion, because of the tendency of people to project the awardee as someone who is ‘a natural genius’ or ‘born smart’, which I think isn’t supposed to be. I truly believe anyone could be an honor student because it is more of ‘work hard & work smart’ than being ‘a natural genius’.

Or perhaps, it is simply because I don’t believe I was born for engineering.

…Which leads me to my next point.

Poetry. Music. The Arts! That’s what I believe I was born for.

Engineering…hmmm? I am not quite sure.

And that’s what makes all of these into one big confusing thing. How in the world did I ever achieve something great when I didn’t put so much heart and passion as I should’ve?

Speaking of art, I’ve always wanted to make an impact especially in music. I had said this years ago and I’ll say it again: Music is my ultimate passion. I want to write music. I want to play music. I want to meet people through music. I have always dreamed of being in a cruise, playing music around the world.

And ever since, I always felt like the fulcrum of a seesaw, trying to raise and lower both aspects of my life. I tried so hard balancing the heck out of these two, that it had become such a burden. It was a like a clash between David and Goliath, only that it wasn’t a lopsided match. It was anyone’s game. It was science versus art, and I was the battlefield.

As I had done so much hard work just to graduate and finish my college degree, a stream of opportunities for music went along the way, unexpectedly. And I didn’t even try so hard looking out for these! These opportunities were only small cafe and bar gigs, yet I am feeling the big positive change it has brought upon me, especially in terms of confidence and social growth.

Unfortunately, in the end (which is apparently now), I could only agree to what the Bible has to say: No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other.

One summer day, I locked myself in my room in deep introspection and soliloquy (I do this quite often) and recalled two of the recent milestones I achieved: graduated Bachelors of Science in Civil Engineering as Cum Laude ; and being able to play gigs in the city, getting paid for loving to do it, and being a part of a musical community.

*To add a dramatic storyline that is Paulo Coelho inspired* — Somehow, it felt like the universe was talking to me in a certain way, but I couldn’t explain it. I couldn’t quite grasp what it was, and I felt the words coming out of my mouth.

If you hadn’t, even for a single moment, loved engineering, then why did you even try?

Duh, because I was sure I’d be able to graduate somehow since I am quite good with math and analysis; Duh, so I could make my family proud of me; Duh, so I could have a stable job;  Duh, so I could get rich and travel the world. Duh, so I could do something noble for the world.

I could only portray in my own limited imagination how the universe looks exactly at that very moment. Praise the Lord for funny memes and meme generators, it looks almost like Spongebob below:

spongebob

I guess I deserve this mockery.

Translating these words of mockery in my own understanding, it seems like the universe was trying to tell me that it was my natural drive to do something noble that had led me to pursue engineering.

As for the latin honors, I would want to believe that it was the universe’s way of saying “go on and do not stop”.

 Why though? Can I not do something as noble with music?

Can’t I?

Well, the universe can’t keep on answering questions from the same guy, apparently.

And though the universe had given me an answer(?) of some sort, still, it is a hard thought to swallow. I mean, I know what noble means, but in a wider and deeper sense, what does noble really mean? More so, what does noble mean with respect to my earthly existence?

The story of one person is the story of all humanity. Right now, there’s nothing I could do to make myself feel better but feed upon the superficial consolation I get from knowing that millions of people are experiencing the same dark hole as I am.

But I guess this life is a game of choices. A game of chance. A game wherein everyone is too late to realize whether it was the right choice or not.

But for the universe, Maktub. (Paulo Coelho reference again *wink*)

I’m planning to pass the Civil Engineering board examination this coming November, probably gain a few years of work experience, then pursue a master’s degree abroad. Afterwhich, I’m not yet sure what to do next.

As to where and when the whole ‘noble’ thing comes in, I certainly do not know. It might come naturally or unexpectedly along the way. Better yet, it might reveal itself as another Mocking Spongebob meme, or even better.

So, what happens to my music life now?

I never want to tell myself that I’m giving up music, although in reality, I have to at some degree in order to focus on engineering. On the bright side, I’d like to revel on the fact that it was never I that searched for music. It was music that searched for me. There’s nothing that I could do more but be hopeful that it stays that way.

And whether I can do something noble with music, perhaps yes, and most probably even without knowing it. I want to believe that noble acts come naturally by doing things with passion and love.

Then, I guess I have to give the same passion and love for engineering.

And because it gives me little joy, I decided to name this WordPress entry as such.

“Same Road, Rough Boy.” (SRRB)

Who knows, it might just be the perfect title for my very first Extended Play (EP) or Album.

P.S. If you are a civil engineer or a civil engineering student, you might have immediately realized what I did there from the start, lel. 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Christian, life, poetry, prayer, Uncategorized

Arms Raised In Supplication

Dear Father,

 

In front lays a pen

And underneath, a sheet

Empty yesterday

Emptier today

 

And so shall it be thru eternity

For the pen, though firm and able,

Remains lame without the bearer

 

Therefore, my Master

I ask thee for divine aid

Grant me the ways to create

Let my words be Your words

And Your words be mine

That I may exclaim to it,

“Rise!”

And its purpose be realized

 

Lest in time, the ink dries

And my spirits falter

And my right hand

Could not any longer

 

Henceforth, I fully resign

I am myself no longer

And You shall be my Bearer

Him by which all things

Be redeemed

 

“…in order that henceforth at every moment of my life, and in each of my action, thou mayest deign to be my director, my guide, my strength, and all the love of my heart…”

 

So shall it be done.

 

 

 

 

 

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life, love, nature, prose, random, sadness, Uncategorized

Eternal Sorrow

As I drew nearer the massive rock formation, I hear something. A strange whisper, none so quite haunting I’ve ever heard before.

I set the wooden oar at the side of the raft. Then I closed my eyes, and in a brief moment deciphered the words.

“My child…”

Although her voice was pure and soft, it resonated sadness within the walls of the temple. And all that was loud – the roars of the rapids and the rustles of the leaves — they faltered.

And I trembled.

“My child…”, she spoke once again, but now in a melancholic motherly tone.

“Why are men slaughtering my children?”

I opened my eyes, and saw dripping water from the cracks down the tips of the stalactites. They fell like tears upon my face.

Then I realized who she was.

Mother Earth.


 

Suddenly, she let out a strong wind that forced the rafter towards the violent rapids. They caught me before I could escape.

And all I could do was pray I won’t be dead by the end of day.

My lungs burned. I was desperate for air, and the rapids were too strong to overcome

I was about to give up.

With the little life I had left, I slowly opened my eyes, and an image appeared from the blur.

I saw the face of Mother Earth.

She was beautiful, stunning, and smiling. But she was welling up in tears.

“My child, your tears are now mine. Live with sadness no longer. I’ve stripped, from your skin to the bones, everything that hurt – those that make you insecure, unloved. Those which you think make you happy, but in its truest form, are manifestations of evil crafted by men.”

With a moment’s hesitation, I asked. “But aren’t those who kill, the same men for once you’ve called your children?”

She responded with a mournful smile.

In a blink, she disappeared into thin air, and I found myself once again, staring at the stalactites where Her tears dripped.


 

Now, I understand why they say there’s beauty in sadness. Because whenever I see the sunset, I see our Mother – sorrowful for all eternity.

Sorrowful but always beautiful.

And in Her eyes is where I see the sadness of men reflected.

Oh, how could we betray our Mother who loves us so dearly?

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Insights, Uncategorized

“What’s In It For Me?”

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Photo by Princess Pepito

 

I could already hear explosions everywhere, and it was just an hour before 2016. The scent of excitement and anticipation was beginning to fill the evening air, and I marveled at how it got heavier with every tick of the clock.

Facing nothing but the dull outburst of the firework, I decided to put myself in a reflective state with these words as an appetizer:

“What’s in it for me this year?”

Immediately, my thoughts went on like a roller coaster ride, like books rammed haphazardly into the bookshelves. But a sudden realization hit me.

‘What’s in it for me this year?’… that’s the same question I’ve been asking myself New Year after New Year.

And now, I have come to an understanding of this phenomenon, and it is that it stems from my tendency of being too patient for things to happen.

…Which apparently, in simpler terms translates to:

Waiting for nothing. 

I admit that I am certainly good at being patient, may it be for something or to someone (I prefer to call it having a high-tolerance to someone). Perhaps, because I believe that, ‘good things come to those who wait’.

But a lot of things remain unchecked in my bucket list. My goals from last year and some from the past years stay as goals. It’s like what I wanted to happen remains as is.

And I am stuck.

Hence, waiting for nothing.

Or was it that I made the waiting an alibi to stop myself from taking risks? Or that I allowed my fears to consume and paralyze my spirit to avoid ‘defeat’?

There are always two sides of the same coin, and I’m a bit thankful that the other side has come to manifest itself.

I’ve never been a fan of New Year’s resolutions. Why wait for the new year, when anytime is always an opportunity for change?

But I guess I shall have one to start off. Just one.

And hopefully I wouldn’t be asking the same question next time.

Get up and start moving!

(seriously)

(I choose to format it that way for more emphasis.)

And by that, I mean to make my way out of turtle express and take the first few tiny baby steps of making things — my dreams, goals whether short-term or long-term — happen.

And as to how to do that?

Wish me luck.

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poetry, prose, Uncategorized

Christmas Solo-bration

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Photograph taken and owned by Fran Veale (07/12/2007)

 

Footsteps and footprints all around town

Sounds of impatience, horns, and rumbles

Smiles passing by, lights shining down

Souls elated by gifts that tumble 

Except for one sitting on the corner

Foiling up his leftovers 

Six pm, but he unrolls his covers

Saying,

“Gon’ save this for later,

…for the 25th of December”

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life, random, Uncategorized

The Question We All Share

We’ve all heard this question before, and I’ve realized I never really had an answer up until recently.

The question is, “Are you happy?”

Three simple words, and yet, more than enough to send us into a perpetual cycle: walking down memory lane, with a cold bottle in one hand… Afterwards, insomnia, which is why the staring up the ceiling for hours and making friends with shadows on the wall (that’s what Rob Thomas said) happens.

“Am I happy?”

A simple sentence yet, for me, evokes a mix of emotions, just like that of a volcanic eruption.

And the more I think about answering the question only leads to more questions needing to be answered.

“What is happiness anyway? Why am I bothering myself with this question?”

What actually bothers me more, is why, long before, I never really have had any answer, until now.

Is it that I was avoiding such question after all? Or perhaps, is it because I feel a tinge of sadness everytime it hits me every 12 am of any random night?

Then finally I ask myself, is it really necessary to answer this question?

Obviously yes, because unfortunately, I have to answer the question for this post’s sake.

And to answer the question, “Am I happy?”, I have only one word.

Content.

Not happy, definitely not not-happy.

Just content.

And so far in life, I can say that for a long time I’ve straddled the fine middle line of contentment.

Maybe not the answer you expected, but I hope someday, on this journey,  I may find the true meaning of genuine happiness.

Because honestly, is it not happiness which we are all looking for after all?

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