Yey. This is it. The official “fist day” of my vacation. I finished the last of my examinations yesterday and now it’s V-A-C-A-T-I-O-N – te-te-te-ten – in the summer time! (Sing with me now!)
More like partial vacation though. There isn’t any real break, cuti, or bakasyon for us postgraduate students. There’s still the research, the research, and – wait for it – the research to consider. Yep. Summer time is the perfect time to make sure this “thing” gets done. I had to laugh when I saw this strip from Piled Higher and Deeper the other day:
I’ve got to get moving and start finding those companies! I will not end up like mister-nameless-guy-in-the-glasses over there. I will have something to show my supervisor and something excellent at that as well.
Anyway. I’m supposed to be creating a sem ender, talking about the sem that was, like I usually do at the conclusion of every semester. You know. Just to wrap things up. So wrap it up I will.
The sem that was. In all honesty, I feel like everything went by in a blur. A blur of papers, examinations, and projects. A friend of mine commented last night, “Parang ang bilis.” Ang bilis nga. Was it just a few months ago that I was agonizing over the fact that I’m doing classes by day, papers by night, living on coffee and simply getting a full dose of what I signed up for while everyone else is out there enjoying the sunlight? (Oh. Airconditioned rooms for my dear professional friends.) Yeah, that was just some one-hundred-twenty-something days ago. But cepat (fast) as those days were, I’m thankful I got some lessons to go with them as well.
Lessons, lessons, lessons. What lessons did I get from these four-something months? Well, I learned that coffee tastes good black. And that eating Malaysian food before studying knocks me out before I could even manage to open up a book. And that chocolate keeps me awake, but like I said before, sugar is disastrous to both my wallet and waistline. But kidding aside, I learned a couple of serious things as well.
I’ve learned that doing homework every week pays off during the final examinations. I’ve learned that Google Scholar is a friend and not a fiend. I’ve learned how important it is to read and study the instructions and to never forget to give your paper a title before submitting it to your beloved professor. I’ve learned that there are some classmates who would try to take advantage of you but then again, there are still those who’d turn out to be real friends and comrades as well.
I’ve learned that it’s never too late to get that second wind (even when you sometimes get to thinking that the race is already as good as over) because hey – that’s where the second wind comes in – when the race is almost over.
And since my life isn’t really all about acads, I’ve learned a couple of non-acad related things as well. I’ve learned the importance of family, the sweetness of being able to discover and re-discover your roots, the awesomeness of being able to connect – kahit sa FB, chat, WordPress o Blogspot man yan – with those whose blood flows through your veins. I’ve learned how funny it is that those whom you call family are still the first to post birthday greetings in your FB wall (even though you’ve already changed the birthday settings in your FB profile to perhaps fool people into thinking that your birthday is still a couple of months away).
I’ve learned (and still am learning) to just keep on giving love even though at times you don’t seem to get back any love in return. I’ve learned that love comes in many forms and knocks through many doors, but yeah, the coloured pieces of paper still put the biggest smile on my face.
I’ve learned to step out, to keep on stepping out, and to be consistent in being consistent. To simply refuse to be bogged down by anything threatening to keep you down. (I’m still learning this now.)
I’ve learned to live an unoffended life, to smile, to laugh, to love no matter what the situation or circumstance may dictate. Because the situation should never dictate how you live. It is you who dictates and determines the situation.
And I’ve learned that when it feels as if I haven’t learned anything at all – I’ll just go back to the presence of the best Teacher and simply ask to be taught once again, over and over again.
Impact, impact, impact. I’ve learned so many lessons but now the question is, was I able to make a difference? Now that I’ve stepped out of the doorways of my classrooms, did I even leave a mark? Was I able to show forth the excellencies of my God and King?
I remember how Nichole Nordeman sang it out in Legacy – “Did I choose to love? Did I point to You enough to make a mark on things? I want to leave an offering, a child of mercy and grace who blessed Your name unapologetically… and leave that kind of legacy.”
I would like to believe that I did, but I can’t really gauge it at this point.
Of course it’s still April (hey, on Saturday it will be May!). And I’ll have plenty of time to leave that sort of impact. But it would bring me such great joy to know that the first four months did not just pass without me leaving some sort of legacy.
So now with the month of May opening up, and with summer “vacation” underway – well, I’m believing for greater lessons and for a greater impact. More treasures to learn, to live out and to share. More lives to know and to touch. More opportunities to love and to give. More. Just more.
I’m excited find out what the next months have in store. And like India Arie sings out – “I wonder how life will surprise me today?”
I wonder how life will surprise me today.
Cheers. Here’s to the months that were and the months that are still to come!