So, You Left the Philippines, Why?

By , on February 1, 2014

Pangarap: So, Our Journey Begins

Destiny is where you are. What you will be is the result of what you do where you are.

My book on immigrating and job hunting opens with that thought.

We have always believed that destiny is destiny. Nothing we can do about it. Or, nothing we do can secure that destiny. But if that were true, then what about all the dreaming, all the hard work, all the struggles, all the prayers that we had done?

Destiny was my decision to leave the Philippines. There’s the irony.

But first, I had to reckon with the first question that was thrown at me.

So, you’re leaving, why?

So, I had left. Or, you had left. Why?

What happens when you leave? You leave a good job. You leave friends and family. You leave the food, the places, the stuff you used to enjoy. If life had been good back home, you leave the luxuries, the comfort and the ease of the daily grind with all the support and help around you. Whether or not you are leaving a good job or a good life in general, leaving the Philippines means having to turn your back on most things that made you somehow happy on a day-to-day.

Well, leaving might also mean not missing the heat, the traffic, the pollution, the noise, the roller-coaster politics, the meddling neighbors and relatives, the dwindling take-home pay, the high cost of living, an uncertain future.

Whatever the reason or reasons,  something you think really important – these reasons must be clear and compelling. Clear enough that you know what leaving the country and living abroad means. And compelling enough to make you believe that leaving the country and living abroad would enable you to find answers and may be solutions to what you had set out yourself to do.

I would say, immigrating is also like a good marriage.  You should know what you are going into and there is no turning back.

If you had been in Canada for years, may be it is good not only to look back to that time when you first came over and thought everything was not going to be as fine as it is with your life today. What was your own dream?

One thing I did, when I decided to leave, I made sure I enumerated my own reasons to want to live abroad. Apart from the heroic part of it, my children being at the center, I had to make sure I was about to fulfill some of my own dreams, too, when I do decide to leave everything behind me by going.

Even if we parents are trying to be heroes or making sacrifices after migrating, I for one, personally decided that I was not about to sulk in self-pity or blame my own children later if I end up getting depressed or feeling like a loser in this next chapter of my life.

Luckily, I found more than one reason to do this for myself. Within 2 years of having migrated, already, one reason had materialized in the form of enabling myself to fulfill one childhood dream; in fact may be a lifelong dream for many writers – to write and publish my own book.

Migrating was not even a dream for me.  I don’t know. May be because we were so poor that I was too busy trying to get a good education. Thus, in the process, I did not have time to dream or figure out what I wanted to be when I grow up. Ironic. But that is the truth. Unknowingly, I seemed to have just moved with the flow.

Then we go back to what I said in the beginning – destiny is destiny. It is just that everything that happened and went through had led me to this destiny -all the struggles, the hard work, the prayers and may be even the dreams that I thought I did not have.

In  launching this column,  I wish to add more significance to a decision that led me to my destiny in Canada – sharing my thoughts, my ideals, my life experiences, my readings, the prayers of my heart and my continuing hopes for my personal triumphs and more successes for my fellow Filipinos journeying into their dreams in this country.

Nobody ever said that our journey, will be easy. But as I write and as you read, we share our strengths and we can hold to the promise that “Where two or three are gathered in My name, there I am in the midst of them,” Matthew 18:20.

Bolet is a marketing communications practitioner and dabbles in writing as a personal passion. She is author-self publisher of the book:  The Most Practical Immigrating and Job Hunting Survival Guide, proven simple steps to success without the fears and the doubts. The book is available in, Barnes & Noble and other online bookshops worldwide, and in National Book Store and Power Books in the Philippines.