Saturday, May 1, 2010

Well hello there, Labor day

I just realized that we’d still have to work during the weekend—but I don’t really mind. Well, I just remembered last night that we told Sir Jerry we’ll start conducting the research after the Summer Camp. And then, we told Sir Richard that we’d present our proposed revision of the Life Skills Module by Wednesday or Thursday next week. So yeah. Hello, work! Haha.

But like I said, I don’t mind that much. They say that when you love what you’re doing, it doesn’t really feel like work. It’s more of fulfilling something you’ve always wanted to do. In my case, to apply the things I’ve learned from school to something that would be of good use to society, so matter how small it might be. But also, like I’ve said before, it still overwhelms me. The research, for example: we only have three weeks left. I would first want to do pre-tests, but I still have to ask Sir Jerry if there’s time for that. My problem is that the main question they want answered (why is there an increasing number of first time youth offenders and reoffenders) is a big issue to grapple with. And yet, at the same time, we were told that this research is not really something big. When we were first told about it, I was thinking of doing a comprehensive research and of using lots of different data gathering methods; I was also thinking of including a good number of sub-issues to deal with. Then again, we were asked to keep it as simple as possible. Hmm. I’ll probably be spending the morning pondering on how to go about it. I hope I won’t have a hard time. In college, we faced similar dilemmas. Maybe it’s just that it has been more than a year since I last worked on a research project.

Definitely, we have to have some questions ready by Tuesday. I’m not going to be the one constructing the research instruments—Sir Jerry wants it to be a collaborative effort, which I don’t mind at all. But just like in all the other group research projects we’ve done in college, I have to come to that meeting prepared.

I wonder where I can stay to think about things without having to spend much. I’m on a budget. Haha!

Happy Labor Day! ^_^

(On a side note: Super Happy Birthdayyyyyyyyyyy to Joseph Andrew Nicholas, my good friend since elementary :) )

On getting easily attached and emotional

April 30 entry

I get easily attached and emotional. Yesterday, when we went home early from the summer camp, I realized that I miss them already. And then I thought, if I get more attached to them, I’d probably be crying on our last day with them, when we bid them goodbye. Of course I miss home. I miss my family immensely. But I will definitely, definitely miss those “kids” as well.

I’m looking forward to learning to play the guitar again, care of them. To group dynamics that would double as bonding sessions. To being an older sister and a friend. To helping them realize their potentials. To being closer to them.

I love how they smile at us and greet us maayong buntad / maayong gabii. How they say, ate, mangaon ta. How they ask for their pictures to be taken, shamelessly (hahaha). How they turned us into “package counters” at the beach while they were engaged in different team activities with kids from other NGOs. How open they are to pointing us who their crushes are. How they can joke around with us without showing disrespect. In a nutshell, I love how they make me feel needed, important, and special.

Inasmuch as possible, I don’t want to be too attached. It’s hard, especially since Cebu is not exactly some place I could visit regularly, given the distance and given the time constraints brought about by law school.

I can only hope that we could maximize our 5-week internship by being able to contribute valuable things to our host agency, and more importantly, by being able to make a difference in the lives of those young boys. So help us, God.

On living within one's means

April 30 entry

Jori and I have been talking about how we both don’t know how to live within our means. The Ateneo Human Rights Center gave us P2000/week as allowance for our basic living expenses, and yet there were days when we spend over a thousand bucks. Thank you, extra allowance from parents. Haha! We both agreed, though, that we should both learn to live within our means. We’re both used to spending more than what was given to us as allowance for the internship. But then again, that’s because the allowance from HR is really just to cover basic living expenses. Hahaha, those who know me and/or Jori would agree that our “basic” necessities are not so basic, after all.

But I must say, I’m also quite proud of us. We regularly eat in carinderias. We walk daily to and from work. And we’re really trying our best to save. Maybe we spent too much on the first week because we were still trying to adjust to a new environment, and we had to buy quite a number of other things we need. I’m hoping that in the days to come, we’d be able to spend less.

I suppose that aside from learning more about the law and the situation of the CICL’s and trying to be of help in any way we can, this internship is also an opportunity for us to learn how to live simple lives. To not be bratty. To get out of our comfort zones. To be more independent. To learn how to deal with situations we are not used to. To grow.

I’m hoping that the money I asked from my parents yesterday would be the last that I’ll ask until next sem. And yes, I am claiming that I’m still going to be a law student next sem ^_^

April 27 entry

Today, it’s official. I think I’m becoming more and more of an introvert. The thought partly bothers me—I love being an extravert; and at the same time, it doesn’t—I’m appreciating the fact that I find contentment in being alone, that I can amuse and preoccupy myself with various things. It is somewhat a liberating feeling---you know, not needing to be in a crowd, or being the center of attention.

Just a while ago, I was sitting by the window. It was raining. Raindrops were trickling down the roof of the nipa hut in front of ours, in a singsong fashion. The waves below were hitting the shores like crazy. The breeze was both cold and humid, like the evaporated salt water is sticking to my skin. Then, I focus my gaze on the different shades of blue water, dancing merrily, and the different shades of the blue sky, pouring endlessly. A medium-sized spider was spinning a web. I was reading The Time Traveler’s Wife. When not engrossed in the love story of Clare and Henry, I was either: (a) thinking about my own future, both with a sense if security and mystery, (b) thinking of how much of an introvert I’m slowly becoming (and reassuring myself, from my psych lessons, of the advantage of introverts, teehee), or (c) just living at the moment, marvelling at the simple things I’m witnessing and noticing, which, put all together, are Awesome personified. Reminiscing the past and planning for the future—these are two of my favorite activities. That’s why I consider it such a blessing to just be at the present time—taking in various stimuli through various senses, and being able to pay attention to them.

This is good. I think I’m slowly becoming comfortable in my own skin. I used to always seek reaffirmation from the people around me, but I don’t feel that need now. I am me. I am here. And I am enjoying.

If you ask my old self, she would probably say that the Rhea now is boring. Right now, I can still here her, scolding me now, for spending time alone instead of mingling with the staff. Well, I did try to visit the “kids,” but one of the staff said some of them are changing clothes, so I was forced to go back to our room. But right now, I want to write. I will spend time with the staff later. But right now, I want to contemplate and write. And that’s what I’m doing. I used to try so hard to please everybody, sometimes even to the point of being who I’m not.

So yay, cheers to me! For slowly gaining more and more of that confidence to be just who I am and do what I want to do. For (almost) not feeling the need to please people. I’m still in the process. But I like the progress :)