Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Tall Orders and New Journeys

If I will describe the immediate past year, the title of this post would best capture it all. It was the year of turning points, characterized by tall orders that I needed to conquer bravely and new journeys to an exciting spectrum of experiences. I can only look back at all those memories with a smile at this moment, knowing that such events made me a better person today.

Here are my six tall orders and new journeys last year that I will forever cherish as part of my summer years:

Getting my Ph.D. Curriculum Studies in UP. When I was removed by destiny from the comforts of home away to a "foreign land", all I could muster were a sigh of shock. I was shocked that all of a sudden I had to get out of my comfort zone out to the unknowns. I never expected this scholarship too soon and I started packing my things and emotions early last year. But I thought about the confidence of my university to my capacity, the prayers of my family and friends, and my passion for the profession that I share with the humanity. Voila!

Learning the ropes of curriculum. An advantage when you are in a top university is the access to knowledge. When I was teaching a course in curriculum development in the college, I have always wondered how is curriculum developed from scratches. Books would tell the theories and principles but not the process based on the experience. Being a curriculum apprentice, I learned the process of planning the curriculum considering the different sources and influences. I got the chance to learn from reading books in curriculum development, workshops in our classes and frequent observations in the curriculum reviews of my program adviser. "Kung babalik ka na sa MSU, marunong ka na gumawa ng curriculum," my program adviser once told me. But honestly I am not still very confident that I feel there is still really so many things to learn out there. More!

Meeting my maternal relatives in Abra. There was another point in my journey away from home: to meet my relatives in my mother side. Some people are nostalgic about sciences; others about cultures. Are there people like me who are nostalgic about family relationships? It was truly a wonderful time finally meeting people I have never seen in my life but are people who belong to my "family". Xoxo!

Organizing international conference in curriculum studies. It is nice to rub elbows with people who are passionate about their discipline. This year, I am truly grateful for having the opportunity to head one of the committees of the 1st Asia Pacific Conference on Curriculum Studies and Instructional Designing. I learned so much about my discipline as it is one of a kind conference that is solely dedicated to discuss trends in curriculum studies. I knew great people like Dr. Murray Print who was our keynote speaker and actually the author of Curriculum Development book. The conference also opened opportunities to learn from the curriculum researches of presenters. And most of all, valuable lessons from event as organizers are well taken to experience. Longlive!

Sitting on two ancient civilizations in Thailand and Cambodia respectively.
Conquering borders of Thailand and Cambodia. I have always been a culture junkie but I really have not traveled abroad to experience the culture of the world. Our travel to Thailand and Cambodia was a blast to consider that it was a single journey but hitting two countries. My favorite historical place in Thailand includes the Grand Royal Palace located just right at the heart of the city. It boasts of old palaces and temples that show the culture of Thailand. When in Cambodia, it is like never having been to Cambodia without roaming around the ancient complex of Angkor Watt. It is big complex of cities that depict the history of the country and perhaps of the region. Traveling is education!

Moving on and a closure. Late last year, I finally had the guts to talk to the former love of my heart. Moving on from that person is one thing but I will admit that I have not really moved on from the affair. I think time and distance have their own ways of healing broken hearts, and it did to mine. After a lot of heavy ruminations on nights I spent alone, I have forgiven the person and importantly myself in that journey that had to end. The light feeling over our serious conversation recently must be a sign that I am in the right path of my emotional state. Alas!

For all these things, I thank God for all His goodness to my life and the lives of the ones I dearly love. My fervent wish for everybody is very simple that:

May our new year be filled with wonderful dreams and good madness. I wish we travel to places, hug people who think we are awesome, and read good books and stories of inspiring people. And I hope to hear surprises from everyone. 

Thank you for everything! Keep the new year awesome as you are!

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