Small things


Growing up we often dream of doing grand things. The world was our oyster and there were no limitations on what we can do. Life was full of possibilities. 

I know how to dream big. At a young age of 7 years old I wanted to a judge of the Supreme court. Of course, I knew I had to be a lawyer first. I had full confidence in my logical and deductive abilities that I thought my rise will be nothing but stellar. By age 10, I liked staring so much at the night skies and studying the stars that I have decided then to become an astronaut. The fact that Philippines did not have a space program was not even a factor in my dreams. A few months later, I decided to be the first lady president of the Philippines. I had my political carrer already mapped out in my mind complete with timelines. All of these career aspirations I drew I depicted on a drawing for class. My dreams must have been impressive enough for our teacher to recommend me for a poster contest. I did not win but hey, back then art was a hobby not a dream. By 4th year high school I wanted to be the computer genius that will change the world of computing. Papa once said that it is good that I am aiming for the stars so if I missed, I might still hit the moon. 

Inevitably I grew up and learned more of the realities of the world. Dreaming big was fun but I managed to get my head out of the clouds and listened to the wisdom of my parents. I opted, like a lot of the young Filipinos at that time, to study nursing. The fact that our eldest sister is already in the USA at that time working as a nurse was a factor to consider in case I want to join her when I graduate. Everything just fell into place and well, life happened. 

So years and miles away now from that bright eyed version of me, I wonder if a grand life is still what I want. I am reflecting if where I am now is so far removed from where I wanted to be and considering if the things I thought to be essential to make my life worthwhile are still important to me. 

Does achieving big things make life worthwhile?  Do accolades and 15- minutes of fame make my life better than it is now? I had accolades and my own 15 minutes of fame already for which I am thankful for but these are no longer my goals. Big house? Big car? I love where my flat is right now as it is very convenient for everything. I have been living here for 12 years and counting now. One of the reasons that I would move homes will be because I want to have a dog. A dog will need a garden to run around. Big job? I realised that the higher I go in my current profession, the farther I am from the people on the shopfloor. I have always been a people- person. I love interacting with people and if possible, make a difference in their lives. For the moment, I am content where I am. Big adventures like fulfilling a bucketlist? I love travelling but on daily basis walking in a park with the flowers in bloom, watching the sunrise and the sunset or even just watching the clouds also fill me with joy. Big parties, where we all get to dress  to the nines, are fun but a quick catch up over coffee or having a meal at home with family and friends where we talk for hours is more meaningful for me. Big love? We have been conditioned from early childhood to think that love happens in big ways, that someone will sweep us off our feet with grand gestures like 100 red roses or someone standing outside our windows serenading us with a boom box or a Mariachi band or having lavish dinners in expensive restaurants. Do not get me wrong, those things are lovely but love does not have to be big all the time. Small things like holding your hands or hugging you when you are upset, cooking your favourite meals, bidding you good night before going to bed and listening to and supporting your dreams… well those are the daily acts of love that do not wait for special occasions. 

Dream big and aim big but do remember that the small mundane things in our lives will fill majority of our time. Let us not wait for special occasions to do big things but do small things daily to make life meaningful. Do not keep your eyes trained for the big things all the time as you might just miss out on the small things in your lives. 

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