My Life Overview: What is Yours?
I ask you to read on, and respond to my case. Feel free to identify with me.
At age one to six, I trusted on my parents and people around me in molding me to be the child they wanted me to become. They told me to water plants, raise goats, and clean/scrub burnt rice pots —I did.
At grade school (for six years) I was told to be a good student—to have the discipline to do my home works without supervision, wash plates in school while my classmates cheer at the sports fest, bring home awards that could make my parents glad, my teachers smile, and the name of my school known. I did.
In high school, I was trained to be a good leader. Encouraged my student body co-leaders to clean the comfort rooms hands-on to aid our janitor; and worked out a “battle of the bands” event despite our amateur efforts, to come up with the proceeds for a library television. I had to represent my parents during PTCA meetings, because hard-up, busy life could not permit them to come—and so I did.
In the university, after accepting the lesson that my high school graduation impressed to me (judged second after three consecutive years of being ranked 1 in the honors roll), I embraced lowliness and learning at the humblest seat; after all, I thought, I have tasted success. I served as a meek support to friends, a submissive assistant to the university library just so I could spend more time with books, a quiet admirer and learner to eloquent classmates, and then prayed to leave college with an award—I earned one, piece quoted by the sponsors, cheered on by the experts, until I walked home quietly, thanking God.
At age twenty-three, I found myself quick to marry, influenced by poor attachment to my immediate family. And in about nine years, had survived three childbirths, multiple adjustments, heartbreaks and confusions, two escapes to the mountains, many to the city, and countless arguments with my spouse—until we understood what being a couple before God is all about.
At twenty-seven, I made a decision to set aside an opportunity I so love, because I believed in the dignity of giving your hundred percent to bigger responsibilities at your hand, at that time: a mother to a new-born son, a breadwinner to a bedridden mom, an on-call to the schools publication and significant reports, and everything else in between. I saw the need to let go of one thing that centers on my satisfaction alone—and that is, to be a full-fledged teacher. I still taught, I had license, I earned the requirements they asked of me, but the position I let go. I thought that was fine.
At thirty-one, I quit work. It dawned that workplace has forgotten about the other good things I did. One mistake of having the multiple leave of absences (approved) due to childbearing, caring for the sick, and overcoming by myself the bullies in the workplace, had erased all the good things I once labored on with commitment and passion. I took a year to focus my attention to my children, who reminded me of love and appreciation you get for littlest things you do by heart.
Now, in writing this, I am trying to reflect back and add courage to my surrendering faith. Where did I go wrong? Why do some people persecute me for the actions I have taken? Why am I thought of unfavorably, that feels even worse because I can’t see the good side of defending myself? I have been asking—why do the good things happen to bad people; and oftentimes those like me who simply managed to face life trusting God’s heart, experience otherwise? Why has it become easier to those who put aside their ethics or what is moral and right, to celebrate on their quick benefits, and laugh about or mock the misery that beheld the poor in spirit? Are we in the constant test of character? Have we been forgotten by Justice? Yes, this is reality but where is fairness, where is goodness? Do we just act like the bad people who care less? Or do we remember not to forfeit our soul?
Thank you for allowing me this life review today (with the vague details as with the vague circumstance I am currently in, pardon me). I just needed to hang on.
I still hold on to one assurance, though—God allows me to complain as I know my stand before Him (perhaps like his friend Job). And He is merciful and not mocked. He will not forsake.
Buenaflor Laoang-Rosete is a mother, freelance writer and a public administrator based in Tarlac, Philippines. She writes her thoughts on her website Fragrant Lives. You can contact her via email at firstname.lastname@example.org, facebook, or subscribe to her blog.