“I’d be surprised if you graduate on time, Gabe.”
Our high school principal, a nun, smirked at my father and I as we discussed the sanctions for the offenses I committed. I was in my last year in high school, fearing the possibility of expulsion because my grades in conduct were below 70 for the entire school year.
In the end, I was suspended for a week.
My father and I left school with my head hanging in shame and despair. My father noticed my gloomy face and grabbed my left shoulder and gave it a hard squeeze.
“Huwag ka mag-alala. Nag-hihintay ang UST sa’yo,” he told me.
Before that meeting, I already submitted my requirements in UST hoping to make the cut. Of course, it’s absurd to think that one of the most sought-after universities in the country was waiting for someone like me. But my father, who is a Thomasian alumnus, believed I could make it.
My high school life was a mess, I admit. It was all computer games, basketball, fights, and other things Bart Simpson could think of doing. Still, I graduated on time.
When I went up on stage to get my diploma, my principal did not smile at me. But I smiled at her just the same. From that moment I knew my second chance at life was about to start.
My first year in college was great. I got the chance to meet other students from different schools. I made new friends. I had the opportunity to know different opinions about certain issues. My block was really diverse in terms of thinking.
But I knew I had to make the most of it in college. It is not just all fun and games. So I told myself to get serious and did what I never did before. I studied, jotted down notes, and worked on all my assignments. Well, most of them anyway.
After my sophomore year, I had this thirst of wanting to be better. I became ambitious. I was not satisfied with only studying and going out with my friends. I wanted something more. I wanted to do something besides going to school.
I joined the University’s official student publication in 2015. I became a writer for a respectable campus paper, and later became an editor. Before entering college, I never though of being entrusted with a position full of responsibilities. Neither did I believe of holding one.
To those who are still in their early college years thinking that college sucks, think again.
Things might be a little chaotic and complicated for now probably because of failed subjects and unfinished requirements.
But there’s such a thing as second chance. The people who make the most out of their second chances and succeed are the ones who rarely fall again because they know how it feels like to be at the lowest of lows.
I would like to thank God, first and foremost, for giving me second chances more than I deserve.
To my parents, sisters and relatives who have helped me financially, I’d like to thank you to from the bottom of my heart. Your patience with my past nonsense is amazing, considering my attitude toward you.
This gratitude also goes out to my friends, who also had to deal with my annoying behavior from time to time.
UST will always be my second home; it gave me a chance to invigorate and prove myself; it helped me prepare in dealing with the real world and the people I will meet in the future; and last but not the least, it taught me how to be rational. I will always love UST.