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lucid thoughts

A Few Mistakes Oct 9, 2009

A Few Mistakes

Before
Back in high school, I know of this hot chick who used to be in every man's hot date list. Curvy, attractive, sensous, snob, with a cheer leader attitude to match, she knew she was in high demand. Condescending and aloof to those not at her popularity level, only the confident of jocks and campus figures could be seen in her company. Obviously, she wasn't for everyone. She personified the high school cheer leader bitch, juvenile movies are made from. Well, that was high school.

After
Fast forward to the present, I bumped into her again...not in Manila but in a small provincial capital in the south...a homemaker in a middle class neighborhood, 3 kids from different guys, currently living with what urban snobs call a "provinsiano" (guy from the rural backwater). This was shocking for me. In her heyday, she wouldn't be caught dead being seen with guys like him! She now makes money on the side depending on what racket is available. The Coke curve is now replaced by a semi-pear...the sardonic attitude is now tempered by a stoic resignation to her lot. I couldn't distinguish her from the other homemakers in the neighborhood. She blended in quite well...not special in any way, shape or form. There was virtually no trace whatsoever of who she was, when life beckoned at her feet.

Huh?
I was with company then. I narrated to her what "this chick" used to be.... Her suspicious look was followed by, "Yeah, right! But hey, really?". I, too, could not hide my disbelief. I thought she'd be on the fast track and would make it as Manila's socialite at some point. What the hell happened during the intervening years?

Her Story
In the course of the conversation (and research...heck, call it gossip with common friends), I learned she got pregnant in high school and barely managed to graduate...but college was no longer an option. The high-flying boyfriend married her and it would have been fine...until she was caught cheating on him. She was cast out of the house and was literally on her own, her child taken from her. A mother in her teens with no degree, the world got a little tighter and smaller. She ended up living with a cabbie...and bore him a child. That didn't work out. Now a mother of 2 in her early 20s and still no college degree, her life options just got narrower. She was forced to live in the province and eventually met this provinsiano, who despite his not-so-lofty station in life, is a first rate guy who took her in and her kids. Now, she lives a simple life in the province with her 2 kids and her man. She never saw her first child again.

Ending Thoughts
What do I come away from all this? That we create our destiny. That the here and now is not an indication of the future. That a few mistakes can take your present course out of whack and spiral into an abyss. Yes, just a few careless mistakes is all it takes. Let me take inventory:

  • she got pregnant in high school (having sex doesn't mean you get pregnant...this was careless)
  • she didn't opt for a college degree (maybe it wasn't possible anymore, given the tolls of motherhood)
  • she cheated on her husband (hello?)
3 mistakes radically morphing a promising life into one of could have been and should have been...tragic.

Another example that comes to mind? Nora Aunor and Vilma Santos. There was a time the 2 of them were the country's superstars. They both enjoyed a fierce loyal following...fans even lashed at each other with belt buckles at the slightest misplaced comment about their superstar. Every fan was either a Vilmanian or a Noranian. Fast forward to the present, Nora Aunor was arrested for drug possession and ordered to undergo a detox program. Vilma on the other hand became a much loved mayor of a town with impressive accomplishments to wit. Currently, she's now the incumbent governor of Batangas province.

Yeah, we architecture our destiny through work, luck and sadly, mistakes.

--- TheLoneRider

Metro Manila Blogs by TheLoneRider


Oct 9, 2009

Reader Comments:

Bruce IsabelleBruce Isabelle
(Dec 6, 2009) I have read your website and I find you to be a high energy, very intelligent young man. You may be one of the most interesting men I have ever read about, I love you story of the cheerleader!!! Life is what you make it. My wife and I have the same hobbies you have, we have been driven since mid teens. Raised 2 boys one intellectual like you and the other loved by all. It is refreshing to see someone elses outlook on life and agree 100%. You are a credit to our race!


"Yeah, we architecture our destiny through work, luck and sadly, mistakes." -- TheLoneRider
Derdo
(Oct 16, 2009) I like the last statement. You couldn't have said it better. It's so true.

Sally
(Oct 9, 2009) a few too many...

Nazgul Queen
(Oct 9, 2009) Hmmm. And then you get the stories of the big NERDS and goths who...fast forward to the present--didn't do too bad for themselves.

»» next story: Riding Taal Lake by Chance
»» next Lucid Thoughts story: A Zeitgeist Social Enterprise

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