Friday, October 5, 2012

My Brief Prophetic Autobiography (Revised)

My God will fully supply whatever you need, in accord with his glorious riches in Christ Jesus - Philippians 4:19

This is my last year of being a twenty something. At my age, one of the things that I have learned to accept about life is this "Change is inevitable." Three years ago, I had a post entitled My Brief Prophetic Autobiography. I rewrote it a year later with a bit of twist. For the third time, I'm looking at my past, present and future quite differently. And it's even more exciting and more challenging since I think change is happening even faster than before. Or maybe it comes with maturity? Change has always been part of one's life but we have to be mindful to notice it and move forward.

Two hours ago, I blew two numeral candles, a double no. 9. Yes, today is August 12, 2082. Surrounded with people from generation Y to the babies of the 21st century, I am celebrating my 99th birthday.

Some still get surprised when they discover my real age. They thought I am only in my 70’s. Thanks for the compliment, folks. I owe the current formation of my human anatomy not to any modern surgical operation or to any advance medicine but to people who has never failed to bring life in my life through the years. However, I must admit that my eye sight is getting dimmer and my bones are becoming weaker each day. Thus, I can feel that I am about to reach the end of my journey. Before I finally bid goodbye, with a joyful heart allow me to share with you my brief autobiography.

I was born in 1983. My parents, Baltazar and Evangeline, named me  Joan. I was the second and only daughter of three children. My father is a high school graduate and never entered college. But his dreams were bigger than his failures. From being a kargador he became a seafarer. My mother was a college dropout. She was a wife, a mother and a best friend. My parents were the epitome of Good Samaritan of their generation. Their compassion for each other and for others is pure and true. It was through my parents where I learned how to love others.

I started studying at the age of three and graduated college at twenty with a degree in Bachelor of Arts in Management in a state university. I had a lot of wonderful memories as a student. I experienced being a student in both private and public schools. This opportunity opened my eyes about some life's harsh realities.  That even at young age, bullies and nasty people do exist. But along with the bad side is a good heart hiding somewhere. And just like any other, I'm far from being a saint. Most of the time, I was one of the most behave pupils in class. My mom never experienced a meeting with a guidance counselor. But I have my share of naughtiness specially when I was at home. At times, a totally different person. You wouldn't imagine I was a Best in Conduct awardee for a number of times. I struggled severely to get high grades but still I failed in several subjects. Math was my most favorite subject and Science was a curse. But it was ok. At the end of every school year I got passing mark and was even recognized on stage a few times. It is in school where I met a lot of friends. My relationship with my closest was not perfect. We had many petty quarrels and a few quite serious disagreements. We had a lot of ups and downs. We were so different in many ways. But we love each other no matter what. They are my friends up to this day. Although some of them went to heaven earlier. They all had a prosperous lives.

When I finished college, I would move from one company to another after few months or a year of service. I wandered for a long time. It was frustrating. Because of this, it came to a point that I suspected myself to have Attention Deficit Disorder or ADD. To confirm my notion, I met a psychologist. On our second meeting, she told me I was 100% normal. With that, I was a bit relieved. Our relationship continued even after I finished the required sessions. She continued to inspire me until she died of old age. She was a terrific woman.

In 2007, I experienced an incredible twist in my life when I attended the Kerygma Feast, a Catholic prayer meeting of the Light of Jesus Community. I experienced a spiritual renewal. I also instantly became part of the Kerygma Family which was formed only through exchange of messages in a Catholic virtual forum. They were composed of young men and women with the same desire to restore their lives through Christ. After almost a year, one of my ultimate dreams happened before my very eyes. My family finally decided to join me in the fellowship. Our relationship significantly changed as we encountered God’s presence in our daily living.

In 2010, my family finally had a serious micro business after a number of failures. It was a sari-sari store just in front of the apartment that we rented owned by a relative. Two other sari-sari stores were born in a span of two years. Due to ballooning expenses and other personal issues we decided to close our first store. The third one turned out to be the most successful of them all. It became a mini grocery that eventually became the commuter's favorite last stop before going home.

In 2013, I trudged an unfamiliar road away from the people I loved so dearly. I worked in Canada as hotel staff for four years. It wasn't an easy life. Miles away, I faced the world with so much faith in God and in myself with high hopes that the world will conspire to make good things happen. Working overseas turned out to be very beneficial to my growth and developmentLittle by little I was able to make my other dreams into reality. I was able to help put up different businesses for my family and relatives in Quezon Province. I engaged in food, auto shop and computer services. My natural affection to numbers also led me to take risk in financial investments such as stock market, mutual fund and insurance. After relatively long years of patiently waiting,  my hard-earned small money eventually grew into bigger chunks. Because of this I became a traveler enjoying magnificent places that I thought I would only see in television, internet and magazines. I was ageing rich and happy. Indeed, financially worry free while continuously doing my ultimate goal in life which is to create jobs and give my employees opportunities that could change their lives for the better.  I was also doing my advocacy to help poor people and various organizations that I already had in mind since I was in my twentys. 

Before I reached 31, I met a man that changed my point of view about growing old with a significant other. Never in my wildest dream did I think that love can conquer me. It’s funny because at a time when a lot of people no longer believed on true love, I did. We dated for more than a year and got married when we both realized we couldn't imagine ourselves becoming old without each other. We were blessed with one beautiful child. Our bond was so strong and genuine. I became a senior citizen with even sweeter relationship with my family, relatives and friends. I loved my sister-in-laws, their kids and my grandchildren. I was a mother, a wife, a daughter, a sister, a friend, a grandmother, an aunt, a godmother, a student, a corporate leader, a businesswoman, a traveler and an evangelist. I retired at the age of 55 but continued to serve God through my family, my friends and my advocacies. The rest of my days were even more fruitful. 

Having said all these, God indeed has showered me with blessings beyond my imagination. As I look back, I am thankful for all the failures and triumphs for they were essential to my journey to self discovery. To everyone, thank you for loving me and understanding my weaknesses and shortcomings. Thank you for always believing in me. Thank you for helping me fill up what is lacking in my life. I became who I am because of your love. And I thank God for having you in my life. Soon, I will die and meet my Creator. May you continue to love each other as you have loved me. If you think you are a big failure and a nobody, bear in mind that God has plan B, plan C, plan D and so on for your life. He wants your life to be very blessed. Because you are His child and He loves you so much.

Always young at heart,

Joan aka Rej

Note: This is an activity inspired by Bro. Bo Sanchez. . Have your own too. It's fun and the rules are so simple: 

1. Include the bad experiences and the lessons learned. That’s part of your life and there is no way that you can erase it. Do not be afraid to be judged. Keep in mind that you cannot please everybody. Be open-minded and know that you are loved. What you consider awful part of you might serve as an inspiration to many.
2. If your present is something that you want to continue, imagine how you want it to go on. Otherswise, develop a new scene.
3. Remember that the future may not happen exactly the way you imagine it. Remember this is just a vision. Nevertheless, keep on imagining. It will motivate you to reach your dreams. And know that dreams do come true with the help of others and our God.

I would love to know yours...

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