Letters of Youth


/ 1 July 2023

It was summer that day when I woke up, heart is beating faster than usual by how fascinated and allured I am by my thoughts of being able to explore another set of unexpected but opportunistic encounters.

My mother prepared my breakfast first thing in the morning, a sunny-side-up egg with fried rice and a hot Milo. Of course, I must eat that since this will give me energy and help me take on the new journey I am about to have.

After eating, I decided to get ready. I took all the usual hygienic measures I take every time I go out. Then I picked comfortable clothing to make sure that I would get comfort and delight, as this was a journey, I would take that was the first of mine.

Following all that, I am done, and all set to go there. I waved my hands to my mom as I went out and walked towards the place while being trod on by sunbeams.

As I was walking, I thought about what might happen if I could not meet the lasting requirements they needed. I thought about what if there were instances where I was not fit for this. But well, I was already at the place, not knowing because I had been thinking so much. And the moment I stepped into the four corners of the room, I saw a woman standing there, giving off a veteran aura. And I remembered that she was the one who invited me to this workshop. She mentioned that there would be an annual competition for this, which is why they are doing workshops to assess the potential skills of students.

She saw me staring at her, so she greeted me and told me to take a seat, which I did. As I am sitting, I remember what I was constantly thinking while walking earlier that time: I never knew what she would instruct me at all, and I never knew what specific things I would acquire. All I knew was that I am wary of what this requires; I am afraid, but I am ready for it, because I want to attain a set of skills that will help me in the future.

All the other students came in, the workshop started, and our instructor introduced everything about what we were going to do and stated that this would be an avenue for us children to be part of a competition where written words were our voices.

After that, the instructor told us to get our pens and paper. I did—well, that was easy. And she told us to write about where we got the courage, passion, mind, and skill to take part in this, and it was kind of difficult to grasp during that time. Still, I started writing down everything. And in my writing, I talked about my mother’s cooking. Then, I submitted it to my teacher.

Every day, it was like that; we would write depending on the instructor’s cue. Of course, I wrote every day, taking into consideration the courage, passion, mind, and skill I should have.

Fast forward, the workshop has come to an end, my instructor told me that I had the potential, and I’m going to be competing that year. And with its end, it became a start, a start of my journey to synchronize words into one compelling and newsworthy paper.

At first, I failed, and at second, I failed.

Every time I go home, I am full of negativity due to my failure. But, my mom would always cook something, and every time I eat the meal she cooked, it boosts me up to just go on and on. And it makes me want to start over and try one more time.

Following that, on my third try at competing, onset of the competition, I’ve written everything down, including all the knowledge and skills I gained and considering that I am the voice of the people. Afterwards, we were just waiting for the result. And even before announcing the winners, my instructor went to me and hugged me tightly, as if she already knew what was about to happen.

My instructor has been one of the individuals who has made me push through what I did not know existed in me. Indeed, her true essence as an instructor peaked during my whole journey to this point.

On my third try, the result was that I went home, grateful and proud. My mom cooked once again to celebrate, and the food has always given me the joy I need.

And on my fourth and fifth attempts, the result was that I went home, grateful, and proud once again, where my mom cooked to celebrate. The instructor I had during this time is not my instructor anymore, but I still acknowledged everything we had worked on together. She contributed to what I had during my fourth and fifth years, and I am still grateful for that.

Moving on to my sixth, this is where I had to stop. I was not qualified to be part of the competition anymore due to the rules and regulations as a newcomer in the place I transferred over. On my sixth try, I had the pen and paper, the courage, passion, mind, and skill—but it had to be halted due to unexpected circumstances. And I thought after the sixth I could compete once again. Unfortunately, from then on until now, I was not given the chance, or maybe I don’t have the requirements to compete.

Through the years, that new avenue I was talking about gave me a lot of opportunities in terms of writing journalistic masterpieces, meeting prominent instructors, and going to places that enabled me to explore mind-blowing locations.

This journey, about which I was so delighted way back then, was an avenue of courage, passion, mind, and skill that contributed to who I am now. It has been years, and time has passed by rapidly, a time where there is a dimension between who I was and what I am now.

My letters remained unwritten from then on, but one good thing is that I can still get to have a meal cooked by my mom first thing in the morning, such as a sunny-side-up egg, fried rice, and a hot Milo. A good meal to start anew, even with failures and triumphs.

Just like what I wrote during my first time in the workshop.