I know I am a bit late for my series of tribute to the significant women for the International Women’s Month. Please bear with me for I have been very busy lately. I don’t know how I manage but by the grace of God I can still keep up. I don’t know how I can juggle being a wife, a parent, a working mom and a church volunteer but somehow there is a sure strength from God.
In addition to my series, I would never go far in searching for amazing women. I would like to include my high school friends who had been with me for the longest time. Looking back at how we started I thank God for giving me such a wonderful blessing called my high school best friends.
It all happened during the last year of our high school. It was our orientation when I found out from the official school list that I was moved from a different section. Moving from another section means, goodbye to my group of friends (who I’ve been friends with the longest time in high school) and goodbye to my crush (Haha!). I feel so rotten being transferred to another section. During those days I feel like I’ve been sentenced to be exiled at St. Helena. After the orientation, I went home and I cried my heart out in my room. For a fifteen year old during those times, I felt defeated and miserable. I was already racking up on thoughts and fears about adjusting again and fitting in with my new classmates. When my father found out that I have locked myself in my room and was crying the whole day, he talked and coaxed me that life must move on. He did not laugh nor scold me for my misery. Instead, my father encouraged me not to feel defeated but think of the “failure” as a blessing of disguise. He even told me that I might find a new set of friends and God has a better plan for me. Little did I know, my father has a way of predicting good things to come and it had happened.
During our first day of class, I feel rotten about my transfer but I attended my classes. There I met my “classmates” that were also moved in our section – Lyn, Isabel, Grace and Riza. We knew each other because were all classmates since second year high school but we have different set of friends. Adjusting to new section was bearable because we were familiar with each other. After that, we became buddies in our class. We began sitting together and hanging out during breaks and recess periods. In our group, I knew Lyn longer from the rest of our friends because we were classmates since elementary days. Gradually, I learn how to accept my fate in my newly assigned section. As time goes by, we became close to each other and our group was formed. We were inseparable during assignments, projects, PE classes, exam periods and even during lunch. At school we love to hang out at our favorite bench under the mango tree beside our library. After school we love to hang out at Lyn’s house because it was a few minutes walk near our school. At Lyn’s house, we love to talk, cook and watch movies until late in the afternoon. Aside from hanging out we also love exchanging stationary letters, calling each other on the phone, and strolling at Pavillion Mall for Goodwill bookstore and Olivarez Plaza for National Bookstore. At the mall, we would spend hours walking, eating snacks or just sitting in the bookstore aisle reading books.
When I thought my last year in high school was a failure, it was all soon became a blessing. School activities and classes became bearable with my friends. We watch and support each other’s back. I used to remember we all have different crushes but we did not mind not having any boyfriends or going into a relationship because we enjoy each other’s company. For us life was easy and simple because we enjoy our friendship and we even planned to go to same college if our selected degrees are available.
One of my memorable talk with my friends was when we visited Saint Claire Chapel to pray that we will passed our National Secondary Achievement Test (NSAT). It was three months before graduation from high school. While seating in one of the chapel’s bench, we were discussing our dreams and plans for the future. Isabel or Mommy Bhey as we fondly call her, shared that her dream was to travel to different places in the Philippines and nearby countries. Lyn and I agreed too that it was also our dream to travel. That afternoon, we agreed that when we finished our studies in college and had our careers, we will travel the Philippines together. During that time, we didn’t even knew if those dreams will come true but we were hoping for the best.
As our friendship tread through college, got our degree and even had our careers, Mommy Bhey and I worked together in our first job, while Lyn decided to go full time in their family business. We still manage to see each other and catch up. It was our yearly tradition to visit Lyn in their restaurant at Tagaytay and have a good laugh at our experiences in our job and share different stories in life. When things get rough or each of us just wanted to breath or relax, we text or call each other just to talk or sit together doing nothing. When we have enough money to travel, our meet-ups became an out of town trip to relax and have fun. Lyn’s spontaneous call would result in an unexpected booking of flights, spur of the moment road trips, overnight at different places and sleepovers. Our families were so familiar with our group that sometimes we don’t bother to ask permission anymore because we established trust with our parents. We also grew close with each other’s relatives because we get to see and meet them during special events and celebrations.
What I always loved and appreciated in our friendship that it stood through test of times. We support each other dreams and happy for one’s achievement. Our characters and personality blended perfectly well. We never compete and compare with each other but rather we support each other’s back. When someone experiences heart break or loss, we cry together. When we feel happy and giddy, we laugh and dance together. When someone got tripped, we laugh at her (haha! Just kidding!). When we feel like eating out till our tummies hurts, we just go anywhere to satisfy our cravings. When we feel we just want a break, we go together wherever our feet brought us. We support each other’s life events. We never hide or sugarcoat our opinions to each other and knew each other well to feel that something is amiss or wrong. We knew each other’s quirks and temper. During our younger years when we were dating or going out with someone, we were so comfortable with our friendship that we share the details of our observation and opinion about the person our friend is dating. We always have no-holds barred conversation and we knew each other’s preference and taste. We know how a certain situation or things that made us go ballistic. In short, we were sisters who will always be there for each other no matter what time and event is coming.
As I wrapped up this entry, I am always and forever grateful for meeting and having such good friends from high school. Since our friendship has been growing including our dear Fourth Year High School adviser, our husbands and kids, it was our ultimate dream to have an out of town getaway / get together. I know by God’s grace, we will be having one. Looking back our little girl’s dream became a reality and happy for the experiences we share in bonded across different islands in the Philippines. Our small talks became an inspiration for us to do better and reach for our small dreams. My friends are such an amazing women and inspiration in my life!