I hit my 23rd year anniversary in stepping on European soil this month. Wow, that’s more than a quarter of a lifetime for a human being!
I arrived Europe in June 7, 1997 via Malaysian Airlines flight from Manila International airport. Destination: Brussels, Belgium.
Up to that point, I never realized that I would be spending the next two decades in this continent – Europe. I never imagined that I would change my nationality, therefore, betraying my native land – my birth country.
Here is where I met all kinds of strange and beautiful humans… in private life, via online/internet and yes through work.
So, what pushed me to come here?
I was happily living in the Philippines with my family back then. Back then, we didn’t have much in life. Actually, it was more like a struggle growing up with my four siblings. But we were happy together. The trivial quarrels among us was just the normal process of growing up experiences. Then four became five. Kally, our youngest brother was born 3 days before I turned 18 leaving a huge gap of 16 years from the youngest of the girls.
Somehow, life became a struggle. My father, who used to work outside the country intermittently, decided to stay at home and tend for our youngest brother. My mom became a career woman and everyone else was busy with their High School or College life. My siblings just came home from their dorms or apartment rental during weekends. I was left alone at home with my parents and our youngest brother. I simply assumed that was my fate. That is how my life was dictated by destiny.
The million dollar question is: is Destiny predetermined? Or do we achieve it by the actions and decisions we make along the way?
What if it is true that a human being has 4 cycles of life? In each cycle my destiny is predetermined, then there must be four paintings hanging on a wall depicting the stories of my life. The paintings tells the story of my Fate. Every action and decision big or small, is already painted. I just need to live it. If I do decide to have a change of heart along the way, then this is also already pre-ordained. I cannot escape it. IT is the FATE that my lifeline is bound to follow. If I go against that line, then is it destiny playing its part? I think i am confusing myself.
What is Destiny? What is Fate? Are they both connected to each other? Or are they two separate lines pulling against each other depending on the life cycle being lived at the moment?
Next question is: Am I at my 1st, 2nd, 3rd or 4th life cycle?
At the age of 16, I thought I should also get a job to be able to help my parents financially. It was not hard since, at such a very young age of 12 I was already doing summer jobs in one of the most popular Publishing company in the Philippines. Hence, getting into the bandwagon of working and studying at the same time was not hard to imagine for me.
Time flew and I was slowly earning well enough to contribute to the family’s monthly income. Back then, while we were all happy and healthy growing up together, we had to face the reality that the earnings were not enough to send all four kids through college almost at the same time plus having to tend for a baby.
While everyone struggled to finish studies and slowly graduated from college, the air at home was getting lighter. At this point, my other two sisters were also ready to help the family have a better standing, hence, the planning to go abroad started. First was the third child, then I left and afterwards, the youngest of the girls with her daughter . . . one at a time we migrated to the land of french fries, chocolate s and lace embroidery…. that is Belgium!
Twenty-three years later and 15 kilos heavier, meet the new me… mind you, looking only 10 years older, hahaha. (I only wish it were so).
But yes, I am still in Europe. Not anymore in Belgium though. I finally settled my roots in Germany.
In the Northeast part of Frankfurt am Main is where I set up my roots together with hubby.
Perhaps, here is also where I will grow old and wrinkly. Till then, one day at a time… Living contented, happy and healthy!