Sunday, April 01, 2007

First Batch, Graduation, and Tears

De La Salle Canlubang Integrated School had their first graduation ceremonies last March 30, 2007, and I am just glad that I am part of that historical moment.

After weeks of hardwork, practices with the students, polishing the movement on stage, stapling hundreds of programs and mass guides, it is finally over.

I somewhat predicted that I would cry on my students' graduation ceremonies. But I can't help running around during the whole cermony to make sure people are doing their jobs right. I am such an obssessive-compuslive (OC). I can't bear seeing dull moments. I want everything in order and at the right pace for the 1st graduation ceremonies. Reflecting on what I was doing, I thought again, I don't think I can cry anymore being stressed out by all the coordinating I was doing. Oh well. It's not a problem, in fact, it's a relief that I won't be able to cry -- I mean, I am soooo ugly when I cry!!! :D

The last part of the program is when the students sing the alma mater hymn and proceed to descend the stage. As for me, I was hell-bent on congratulating my students because I don't want to regret not being able to congratulate them. (I hate regrets!) So I welcomed my advisory class at the side where they would go down from the stage, and one by one, I shook the hands of the boys, and embraced the girls. As I embraced one of my students, she whispered "thank you, miss" to my ears with her voice cracking, and when I let her go to look at her, I couldn't help shedding my own tears because I was moved. I continued to congratulate the rest. I offered my hand to another student, and instead he offered me his arms and we embraced each other. Another gallon of tears flowed. Then I embraced another student, and I found myself huddled in the middle of a crowd of students. It is the closest to heaven I could get here on earth: those 30 seconds in my students' embrace.

I looked around and saw no teacher and administrator left among the students and the parents. I was all alone, but I still continued to congratulate the students.

I cried at the "congratulations" I receive. I cried at each "thank you" I heard. I cried at each invitation from the parents to have a picture with their son or daughter. (Golly! I wonder how I looked in those pictures!!!) When I finally thought that I have given my congratulations enough, I proceeded to the venue where the teachers and administrators gathered for a celebration dinner.

Our brother president asked if I was okay, but I was still sobbing (hagulgol in tagalog) a bit so I couldn't give him a straight answer. I couldn't tell him I was crying not beccause I was sad, but because I was happy, I was moved by all the sentiments, and I was relieved that the graduation is over. I lined up for the buffet, and a student strayed in the midst of teachers and administrators video-taping each teacher, and when my student reached me, she thanked me for the carabiner I gave them last Christmas. She told me that in 10 years, she will show me that she will have her own car keys hanging in that keychain, and even perhaps her own house keys. She also thanked me for teaching her about time. Again, I poured another gallon of tears.

I cried gallons that night. And as i write this very momentous event, I can't help crying another pint more.

Congratulations to the First Batch of high school graudates of DLSC! I will surely miss each of you. Just remember what the red pen symbolizes. Each of you is unique, but we are one in revising our lives to make the best novel we have ever written.

Monday, January 08, 2007

This is why I don't join women's rights advocacy groups

Don't get me wrong. I definitely hate it when men consider women as "mere" women. We are not mere women. We are women. They are men. Women and men (or men and women) are both persons of equal dignity but of different functions. Their dignities are on the same level. This doesn't mean that I hate it that women are considered "mere" housewives. Women are not "mere" housewives. They (because I cannot consider myself a housewife yet) are housewives. They are executives. He is the CEO. She is the CEO. He is the breadwinner. She is the housewife.

If there were only one thing I'd fight for is to remove the adjective "mere" before women. That's it.

For your reference, I particularly like the article I read in the Inquirer today. Below is the full article.


<a href=""<"Faulty math of women's right advocates"></a>
By Honesto General
Last updated 08:56pm (Mla time) 01/07/2007

WOMEN'S rights advocates continue to fight for a bigger share of the national landscape. But, their arithmetic is faulty.

Their claim is based on the fact that the population is 51 percent
female. To be fair, they say, the female participation in every line of
activity--whether in the professions, in politics or elsewhere--should
be at least close to this figure. Four lady associate justices of the
Supreme Court are only 27 percent of the total 15; there should be
eight lady associate justices.

The arithmetic is faulty. The advocates have not considered one
factor: by God's plan, child bearing is a woman's strict monopoly.

As a result, child rearing, thank heaven, is still a woman's noblest
profession. We should stop using the adjective "mere" when describing a

I wonder if the National Statistics Office has any data on how many
of our women, with college degrees from the best schools, choose not to
pursue a career outside the home, and instead enjoy taking care of the
children. Are they wasting away their college education? Of course not.
At the very least, the mother helps the children with their homework.

The equation changes when the number of women who stay home to take
care of the children are deducted from the total female population.
Perhaps then, four lady associate justices of the Supreme Court are too
many. But if a woman is brilliant enough to be the chief justice,
that's fine with me.

Don't misunderstand me. I want the Filipino woman to pursue a career
if she will be good at it. Once I was at a court hearing. The witness
was a woman, about 30 years old. The private prosecutor and the defense
lawyer were both women, well-coifed and good-looking. The elderly male
judge was thoroughly enjoying the show unfolding before him.

In Asia, if not the world, the best place for a woman to be in is
the Philippines. The rice farmer's wife helps her husband in the field,
but she is never allowed to carry heavy loads. At a restaurant, the
waiter serves the women first; in other parts of Asia, the women are
served last. The Filipino woman won her right to vote 80 years ago; the
Kuwaiti women first voted last year. Even if she comes from a poor
family but is bright enough, our universal educational system allows
the Filipino woman to earn a doctorate degree; in some parts of Asia,
girls are allowed only six years of schooling.

The numbers game that the advocates of women's rights play is not
only fuzzy arithmetic, it is unnecessary. Women can carve their
rightful place in the sun by sheer persistence. This way, they can even

Let's take the life insurance industry. Fifty years ago, the
Filipino male ruled the life insurance business. At Insular Life, there
was only one lady section chief. Today, most of the vice presidents are
women. There was then a handful of lady insurance agents. Today, 80
percent of the agents are women. This table of organization is repeated
in every life insurance company in the land. The life insurance
industry continues to grow by leaps and bounds.

Fifty years ago, the few actuaries in the country were all male.
Today, Filipino female actuaries, all good-looking, entirely dominate
this profession.

The non-life insurance industry has not been safe from the inroads
by women. Women occupy executive positions in many companies. More and
more lady insurance brokers qualify for licenses every year.

My concern when a woman pursues a career in the professions or
politics or business is that the family is possibly being sacrificed at
the altar of success. That can be tragic.

Monday, November 06, 2006

On Business Nightly

So I waited drowning in a bombardment of TV ads before the segment actually began. I was prepared to wait until 10PM for the clip, but thank goodness, it came in 9:13PM (ANC time). The clip didn't mention our names, but at least the "ADB study" was mentioned and quoted it at least twice. I mean, what could be better than interviewing Dr. Federico Macaranas himself about brain drain? He's THE expert on the topic. He is well quoted in our research, too. I couldn't have done -- not even slightly -- a better job than him!!! I'm not even a Ph.D. holder.

Anyway, so much said and excitement poured over my "30 minutes of fame"*, and I have to go back to reality now: a noble English teacher in the suburbs and still loving it. :)

*My fame totalled 30 minutes = talking and chatting with 3 friends and my sister about it. :)