So, this is it eh? 25 years. Already. Unbelievable.
This weekend marks the celebration of reaching an important milestone: reaching 1/4 of a century of life. HA!
There’s so much to celebrate, and the last time I remember having a ‘grand’ party, I had turned 18. In the Filipino culture, it’s at 18 years that a girl officially can be considered an ‘adult’ – also known as a Debut. In essence, it’s the ‘debut’ of a girl becoming a woman. There were probably about 100+ guests present for my Debut, whereas for this milestone, there were only a selected few. Those that were there/really wanted to be there, I consider to be the most important in my life.
From strangers, to friends, to sisters; brothers, cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents; room mates to best friends – they’re all counted because they’ve each equally contributed to whom I’ve become.
On the evening of my birthday, I lay afloat in my cousin’s pool, really just reflecting on the woman I’ve become from 7 years ago. There are countless life events, experiences, and downfalls that have allowed me to become this strong, confident, bubbly, witty, and compassionate young lady. Back at 18, I honestly thought that I knew what I wanted for my life, whom I was, and everything seemed to be nothing less than perfect. But truly, I was wrong. Within 2.5 months of my ‘debut’ of university life and living away from home, I got really homesick and gave up. I gave up on everything I thought I was ready for. I left everything I’ve worked for behind because of fear. Fear of not being good enough, not fitting in, not eating properly, not sleeping enough, not socializing with the right crowd, not balancing my responsibilities, and not prioritizing effectively; I was living life in fear. I fell hard and thought I would never get out of the hole I had dug for myself.
Note: This post will probably be one of the most personal.
Within the first months of being home, I cannot describe to you how restless, worthless, purposeless I had felt. I thought I was a failure – a drop out. (hard to believe eh?)
Well, for one, it was extremely difficult to move forward because my vision was so clouded with the negativity fogging up my view of life. My lens were constantly being blocked by the voices of incapability. The sad part of it is, I allowed it to consume me. So much so, that I even let go of my first love because of it.
Secondly, it was honestly through attempting to fill in the empty void that I had found myself and the purpose of my life again. My feelings were played with and I played along because it made me ‘feel’ good. I went out with several guys, one after the other (yup, embarrassing but true); didn’t ‘date’ them nor was I ever courted by any of them, but like I said, I played along. It was fun, at the time.
Thirdly, I kept myself busy because the pain of my negativity nearly numbed my heart to anything meaningful. I thought I knew exactly what I needed to make things right, but I was wrong. At one point I had 4 jobs (one full time and 3 part time) because I wanted to be busy enough to forget the thoughts and feelings I had brainwashed myself to believe about myself and what I was capable of.
So how can I stand here today and say that I’m “this strong, confident, bubbly, witty, and compassionate young lady” ? Through FAITH. Everything in my life has led me to the step I’m currently stepping on. 7 years ago, I thought reaching the top step was as simple as flicking on a switch. I was wrong.
The past 7 years have been the worst and the best of my life. They’ve taught me the most about myself, what it’s like to work in fast food, how to adapt to my surroundings whether it be to people or situations, but most importantly, I’ve learned the importance of trusting God with all I’ve got. It’s only because of Him, that I’m able to confidently say that I am ready for the next step. God has always been good to me, and in the dark times of my life, He was always and forever will be present. In His word, it says “‘Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet of the nations.’Alas, Sovereign Lord, [Jeremiah] said, ‘I do not know how to speak; I am to young.’ But the Lord said to me, ‘Do not say ‘I am too young.’ You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you. Do not be afraid of them for I am with you and will rescue you,’ declares the Lord.” (Jeremiah 1:5-8).
So you see, as Jeremiah thought he wasn’t good enough to fulfill his purpose – to be a prophet, God reassured him that even BEFORE he was born, he was ALREADY set apart. Similarly, each of us are chosen for a particular purpose. The only thing that can hinder us from discovering what that purpose is and fulfilling it, is ourselves. It comes down to our attitude and what we decide to be the drive of our lives.
I hope my short story here, well testimony, is an inspiration to someone out there searching for purpose. My upcoming posts will be centred towards this topic – discovering
and yearning to fulfill your life’s purpose.
‘Til the next post.