First impressions may last but far lasting are the lessons you’ve taught me and emotions you’ve made me feel.
You were difficult, dilapidated and demanding. You made me walk so much on uncomfortable shoes and under the scorching heat of the sun. You made me wait on endless lines… for nothing. I had to suffer a traffic Armageddon of biblical proportions to get to you and far from you. For someone who claims on being accommodating, I had to prove so much of what I lack to get what I need.
For most of the last five years, I had to wake up at the crack of dawn just for you. I skipped meals, which was okay, but you made me skipped dates as well. (Friendly dates, that is.) I stayed there late and even overnight until that one time became a series of sleep deprived nights while I was there. And sometimes, my time at home is not mine at all! You’d still want it and demand for it until 11:59PM.
But I would admit it was not always like that. It actually started as a fun-filled experience. New faces, new places, new friends. But that was only until you gave me my first failure.
And it affected the remainder of that five years.
My once positive outlook about life with you came tumbling down. I started to doubt my choice, my abilities, myself. Very few really understood how I felt. Time and time gain, you made me want to give up just to get it over with. Other people want you so badly not knowing how difficult you could be. I’m there! I’m living the dream! But somehow I felt it was more of a suffering.
You introduced me to the kind of hardships I’ve never experienced before. You introduced people that I could never get along with. Silly to the point of outrageous professors, impossible schedules, numerous tasks, and even an unseeable graduation: yup, I was given all of these.
Without knowing it, I started persevering. I worked hard and studied harder. I no longer think of myself atop the highest pedestal but amongst novices and the mediocres. I listened better and soon developed opinions, ideals and love for and about my country and countrymen. When I thought of just shelving it, I think of the years that would be wasted, the money and the effort. I think of the people expecting me to be the best that I can be.
All of a sudden, what I thought of as a lie that I kept telling people (That I would graduate, five years from whence I first stepped inside the vast land that you are) was no longer a lie. It was coming true.
And it did come true.
For the friends made, lessons learned, tears shed, laughters, and the all-nighters, thank you!
Thank you… for the last five years. 🙂
(Originally written June 23, 2016.)