So today I got a big news.
I AM GRADUATING!
After almost two painstaking years of juggling work with academics, reading books, riding daily the killer-chamber disguised as an MRT, riding precariously on motorcycles just to make it to class, forgoing night-outs, forgoing sleep, cramming paperworks, reading overnight, reading at work, reading on different moving vehicles, reading in the toilet, and generally, not having a life… I AM DONE.
What’s up with that?
Just when I have prepared myself to be delayed, to graduate one year later, and to bear the shame of telling my parents that I will not be marching in two weeks time, I got the good news! Yay!
So… why is it that after a brief moment of joy and triumph, I retracted into this dark, cold, guilt-filled place?
Was it because I know you will have no chance of seeing me march and accept my diploma? Was it because my very inspiration for getting a Master’s degree is no longer here on earth?
But really… the bigger reason, I realized, is that I find it extremely odd to feel victorious when I know that that very first 1.0 I got as a student was a monthsary left uncelebrated because I chose to spend it studying. And the second 1.0 was equivalent to a day in our Boracay vacation that went wasted because I spent that entire day in the hotel finishing a term paper.
That with every new body of knowledge I gained (and I gained with euphoria) was equivalent to a date I needed to cancel because ‘I really needed to finish these readings, I hope you understand‘. And that every evening class I attend was equivalent to a lonely evening you needed to endure by yourself while waiting for me to come home.
The journey to getting this degree involves repeatedly ignoring you even when at times I know you badly needed me. It involves me studying overnight in the garage, while you sleep on the wooden chair in the living room, simply because you cannot bear the emptiness of our apartment unit two floors above. And it involves letting you chatter to yourself about how your day went at work, whenever we dine outside, because I was so busy submerging my head in my books.
So yeah, I don’t feel too victorious at the moment, even when I know that I should be.
Ga, I kept on telling myself that I will get a Master’s degree, and I will strengthen my expertise in the field because I wanted to make it big someday. I wanted to become filthy rich so that I can get us a nice house. So that I can get us a car and then I drive you to places. I will give you the most comfortable life that you can ever imagine. Because I know that you deserved it.
And yes, that is what I had been reminding myself whenever I feel guilty about making you feel bad, and ignored, and less loved. Masters degree first, I’ll make it up to you big time afterwards.
But lo and behold, now that I got my Masters, you are no longer around. 😦 So yeah, what did I get this for?
The bliss is now empty.
I miss you, ga. This accomplishment is for you.
P.S. Please watch me march on my Graduation. You have to watch me from up there in heaven.