I remember I was very 𝒆𝒙𝒄𝒊𝒕𝒆𝒅 and 𝒐𝒗𝒆𝒓𝒘𝒉𝒆𝒍𝒎𝒆𝒅 when I received the date of our graduation day.
Proudly sharing here with you my photo on stage receiving my academic hood.
It was a momentous occasion that I had been looking forward to for years! I couldn't wait to share this special day with my parents.
I had dreamt that one day: - I would make my family proud, and I did! - I was going to finish my master's degree, and I did! - I would walk across the stage, feeling proud of myself, and I did!
On the day of my graduation, my parents were not able to be there, but my 2 Sisters Leceria Velasco and Nena Cataylo did. - Financial constraints - Personal responsibilities - And many other reasons behind it
It was a bittersweet day.
Hugs, tears of joy, and words of encouragement were exchanged. I couldn't help but feel proud of myself and I wished my parents were there to witness and celebrate with me.
I served tables at night and continued my studies during the day. I spent working on school assignments during breaks at work or on my way to school on a jeepney ride. I overcame the struggles and pain along the way.
As the ceremony continued, I focused on the pride and joy I had earned with my sisters around me.
I share my story to bring motivate others, and to learn to never give up with your dreams.
Together with the people who support you, with hard work, focus, and determination, you will get there. And I am proud of myself.
"𝒀𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒋𝒐𝒖𝒓𝒏𝒆𝒚 𝒊𝒔 𝒂𝒔 𝒖𝒏𝒊𝒒𝒖𝒆 𝒂𝒔 𝒚𝒐𝒖𝒓 𝒇𝒊𝒏𝒈𝒆𝒓𝒑𝒓𝒊𝒏𝒕, 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒊𝒕'𝒔 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒅𝒊𝒔𝒕𝒊𝒏𝒄𝒕 𝒑𝒂𝒕𝒉 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒄𝒓𝒆𝒂𝒕𝒆 𝒕𝒉𝒂𝒕 𝒍𝒆𝒂𝒅𝒔 𝒕𝒐 𝒖𝒏𝒑𝒂𝒓𝒂𝒍𝒍𝒆𝒍𝒆𝒅 𝒔𝒖𝒄𝒄𝒆𝒔𝒔."
You have to create your own path, listen to your intuition and go from there.
My graduation day was just one chapter in a much larger story I have.
P.S. I'll share my kind mentors on this journey in another post.