|In that envelope was my test permit.|
It was the last day of our senior retreat when the results came out. And just like that, I lost all the calmness in my body and soul. I was shook and freaked out! It was the next most important day to graduation day. It was today-your-future-unfolds day. So it's either I make it or break it; I go or I stay; I succeed or I fail.
As soon as I got home, I ran with all my breath straight to the computer. And then fudge, internet's down. My next move was to text my closest friends to kindly see if my name was on that goddamn list (I was mad already). Finally a friend replied.
That photo was the result of her reply. When she told me my name was not on the list, well I guess what happened to me is pretty obvious in the picture. Passing the UPCAT meant the whole world to me. Good thing that before I passed out crying, I received another text from a friend saying I did pass. UP Los Baños, Communication Arts.
Did you notice the bracelet that I was wearing in the picture? I think it was a rosary-bracelet, something very holy and religious. I also wore a red-colored shirt because back then I considered red a lucky color plus it was a collared shirt - fit for the occasion and I was really comfortable in it. Every detail seemed very significant and delicate at that time - from the Mongol No.2 pencil I used, the what-brand-was-it eraser, that two-holed (doesn't sound right) sharpener, my healthy snacks, the prayer books, the Holy Rosary, St. Peter's robe I slept on the previous night, the mind-booster breakfast, and the list goes on, including all the churches I went to and prayed at. Heaven knows how desperate I was to pass the UPCAT.
Big day came, I did what I had to do. Pass the exam. ☺
The thing is, from the moment I heard about UP being the No. 1 university in the Philippines, I built my dreams around it. I had no plan B. Why, is there a UP version 2.0? It had to be UP or my future is good as over. Call me mad and crazy, but maybe I was. I dreamed the biggest, wildest, and most insane dreams, and I still do. But if there's one thing dreaming has taught me, it is this: Dream with your eyes open, not closed.
"Just do your best. May luck and God's grace be with you."