Sunday, August 7, 2011

Ang Buhay Ko...

Things happened these past few weeks that have made me reevaluate my life. Some are still unresolved and involves the possibility of a health crisis involving my mom that I don’t want to dwell about because I fear the outcome; one involves my career as to what I want to do for the immediate future; and one on the path where I see myself going.

For now at least, I have the clear cut vision to work for my familial debts and to insure at least, that I pay back my mom for all she did for me all these years. That means working in the usual pace to fulfill that obligation. I just wish that she’ll be there and strong enough to see it through because losing her is not something that is acceptable. She is the anchor that holds me at this point in time to the current path I’ve chosen. I haven’t repaid her yet for all her sacrifices and pain…

I’m going back to school. This is definite. After paying off what I need to pay off, I’m gonna go back to school and upgrade myself. I talked to a townmate just yesterday asking him about an opening in the company he worked with and he told me rather pointedly ‘Baken mo bagay ay men obla asnan isuntuna ay trabaho. Ay samo men handsaw, men riprap, men grind nan kaparparehom? Baken ka peon. Nan bagay mo et mangupisina.’ (You are not fit to work in this line of work. Does someone like you operate handsaws, do construction or grind metal?  You are not a laborer. You are more fit in an office setting.) Literally, it might be insulting but in context it is rather sobering. It’s not that I cannot do manual work or that I hate manual work; it’s just that my best work comes with working with my mind than my hands. He knew this and reminded me in not so subtle words.
He is right. Not to be boasting or anything, but I am more effective as a cerebral worker than a laborer. I can weld and use a grinder and I would not back off working the dirty jobs, mind you. I can work my ass off like everybody else but perhaps I need to see first if I can use my mind to see how far I can go.

So I am going back to school. I’m gonna risk it all on a student loan or a grant (if available) and finish a science course. I think I can do it, I have the confidence to do it. That will take the next three years of my life or maybe even four. It would be a risky endeavor. I’ll be taking in debt and living off a meager allowance but the possible results afterwards might be worth it.

I can stick to my job or find a $17-21/hr laborer job instead and go get my dreams that way as a simple laborer or tech; or gamble it all for a much better rate after a few years sacrificed to school. I’m gonna choose school. In a year or so, I’ll be taking that path and pray that I will be making the right decision.

This choice is made easier by the fact that I am alone. A family man wouldn’t be able to make this gambit. Kids, bills, mortgages and other costs conspire to keep family men on a particular career path. They do not have the luxury of saying: stop, I’m gonna do this. They have to think of the food that they will buy for their family, about the gas for the car and the bottomline of their credit cards.

Perhaps it is an advantage that I am not troubled by these concerns.

I still would like to get married someday, though… but not in a marriage of the traditional sense. I want a partner who’ll be my best friend more than anything.  The reason probably that I haven’t made any advances on women is the fact that I will not be marrying to get kids or to have a traditional family setup. If I marry, I will be giving my wife her full freedom to pursue her own dreams without being restricted by the usual roles that wives fill. I am an artist (a writer, poet) with a rather liberal outlook on love.

Love does not mean that a wife will have to be home always to cook, do the laundry or to be there to coo over the husband, or to be a babymaker, or to be a full time mother. Motherhood is a choice and not mandatory. I will stand by that. Indeed, I would like a kid or two someday, but it is something that must come about because it is mutually decided upon. I prefer a woman who knows what she wants in life and is not afraid to go at it than the traditional wife who lives only for her children and her house.

Most women would not understand this of course. I’ve yet to meet someone who might want this kind of life. Most prefer to have kids and work for the future of the kids. It is noble of course, but they lose something in the process. And it is unfair on children – to pin all our hopes and dreams on their innocent shoulders.

So yeah, I’m perfectly ok with my future partner living independently from me. As long as there is mutual respect and loyalty to the vows made in marriage, I’m perfectly fine. Hehe. I’m even ok with having separate bedrooms if that will keep the peace. Hehe.

What I ask is that she returns the favor to let me lose myself in my writing for a few odd days in a month; to not mind my books and the basement clutter; to understand my fascination with anime and action figures and to let me keep my beard. Hehe. And to understand if I keep odd hours and understand that I would seem lost in thought at some moments.

And to have dinner out on Fridays at least and to meet together for dinner and talk about our day and share a few laughs. Breakfast and lunch may be within our own times or shared, it doesn’t matter. As long as the lines of communications are open and mutual respect is shared between both. And to dance awkwardly to music and laugh about it, to share a glass of wine during clear nights to watch the stars and talk…that’s my slice of heaven right there.

And maybe children will come later…or maybe not. I’m not that particular with regards to kids. When and if they come, they must be born out of love and not necessity…something like that, at least.

The worst case scenario of course, is for me to keep at the path I am currently treading. And it is acceptable.

To devote the next ten years or fifteen years of life working to pay a student debt and to help my siblings (which they are more than capable of doing themselves) and to create a financial portfolio that will support me in the twilight of my years. Where I can indulge with my interests in a rather lonely existence.

It has its downsides, of course. Every path has its own problems.

So maybe I’ll die alone surrounded by my books with my last moments wondering if I have made the right choice. Or maybe I’ll die with someone by my side be that a wife who’s also my best friend or with a loving family around me…

Whatever the future holds, at least I can say with confidence that I have made my choices and whether I’ll regret them someday or not, at least no one can ever say that I did not choose to live a full life because whatever the outcome, I am determined to live…

And this is who I am…


Jray said...

Very good posts but not too many comments. So how's your laboratory there? John Ray

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