As a high school student, I was excited about the idea of leaving home. I was thrilled with the thought of moving into a new city, meeting strangers, and doing things on my own. Well, I wasn’t totally on my own, I moved to Baguio City from Pangasinan with my sister, we were roommates with our high school buddies on our first semester. Everything was so new to me; The weather, mode of transportation, people’s faces, and even the way how people approach strangers. It was all new to me, it felt surreal.
My first day in the university was a flop, I slipped on the stairs on the way to class, Luckily, no one saw me except my friend. I wasn’t very friendly before because I always observed people first before approaching them, the first few weeks were tough for me because I was usually alone during breaks. It’s not that no one wanted to be friends with me, a lot of them actually invited me to join them. But a few weeks after and I felt like I knew who I wanted to be friends with, I started joining them and spending a lot of time with them. We worked together on group projects and even individual activities that we had a hard time doing, we helped each other with everything.
College was indeed a roller coaster ride; I met a lot of temporary people and I’m glad I let go of some of them. It was the second year of college when I started feeling something I wasn’t able to understand, I wasn’t my usual self. I suffered from depression; depression and college? not a good combination. I wasn’t able to express what I was feeling or what I was going through, I was lucky I had friends who understood what it was without telling me telling them. Because we knew we all feel it, we may not be able to help each other but being there played a big part in making things a lot better. I was also lucky my mom was willing to listen to all my rants, and no, I didn’t fully tell her everything I was going through. But she was very supportive in everything I do, I joined the school’s theater club and the dance troupe which made my college bearable. I wasn’t always a good student, I had my social life, of course. It helped lessen the stress that my subjects are giving me.
Having supportive friends and a mother that values your mental health over your academics is truly a blessing for me. For the mothers who might be reading this, please listen, that alone is more than enough. I am in a happy place now, I survived college. But that does not mean it’s the end, I know it’s only the beginning and I will strive harder so I can make my mom proud and be able to pat myself on the shoulder and say “I’m proud of you, you did well.”
- Jaira Denosta