It has been more than a year since I graduated from college and transitioned into the “real” world. At first it was quite overwhelming. After years of being a student, I was faced with a different kind of freedom. There were no course outlines, no subject syllabuses, no class schedules, and no extra hours of homework (do I hear a yay? hahaha). I was faced with a blank sheet and it was up to me to create my own path. This time, it was not just about a college diploma but the whole course of my life.  While some of my batch mates entered the academe again to earn their master’s degree, I jumped into the bandwagon of the corporate world. As I write this, I am currently an employee in my “dream company”, which took two months of applications and interviews ‘til I finally landed the spot.

As I continue on this journey of mine, I have discovered that learning doesn’t stop in the four walls of the classroom. I may not be enrolled in a class but I became I student of life. The world is now my new platform. The lessons have become more practical for daily life as well. Nowadays, it is about computing my budget, learning how to make ends meet, savings and investments, balancing time between family and friends. Whenever time permits, I take part in extra-curricular activities such as Calligraphy and other art related activities. I admit I may have neglected cultivating my passions when I was too focused on finishing my studies.

In every aspect of my life, I have come to see that learning never stops. Each season of our lives brings us different things to learn; it is up to us how we master each. Learning is not confined in a course syllabus or a class schedule. It goes beyond the university. In fact, it is endless as long as we are alive because these lessons are the ones that allow us to grow as persons. As the famous quote goes: Once you stop learning, you stop growing.

* * *

The essay above was submitted as an entry for the Feature Writing 101 workshop contest of The Coffee Bean and Tea Leaf along with Writer’s Block Philippines.


There are moments in my life that makes blogging superficial. Parents fighting, family conflict, failures, and my never-ending-shortcomings. In my previous "home" in the world wide web, I often wonder if I'm being real. I often find myself thinking if I'm being true enough to the words that I write. I know that I can't divulge every little detail of my life in this small space, but still I want to be authentic. There's a desire within me to write more honestly than before.

It was one of the reasons why I stopped blogging for a while. I felt like I was posting stuff just for the sake of posting. I didn't care about the content anymore, as long as it looks alive and active. There were bandwagons of entries that looked appealing to a lot of people of which I joined; Who wouldn't love the likes, reblogs, and followers that one can gain? Even if I hate to say this, but for a while I was blinded by the promise of being famous and recognized by the online community. As what I have said countless times before, maybe it's because of my desperation to become a writer that I need a few nods to prove that I can be one. So, I took blogging seriously but forgot the essence of it along the way.

It took a lot of thinking if I should start another blog, or even transfer to another blogging site. I was attached to my Tumblr because I met some bloggers there who eventually became my friends. It was also a record of my college life. But it was a necessary move on my part, because this would push me to express my thoughts seamlessly. To create something original and what truly interests me. To forgo the norm and tell stories, no matter if they came out of pain or happiness.

I don't want to add more "noise" in the online world. I want this blog to be an avenue to share my story to people, even if my life is far from perfect. Hopefully, I'll meet like-minded people as I present the pieces of my life, and maybe meet persons who are going through the same season as me. It's time to go beyond the surface.