F-R-E-E-D-O-M or more Training?

My supervisor was gone on vacation for a whole week! I wondered if I should say “hurray!” Is that freedom? Nah… I told myself it was more of a challenge. She is very approachable and helpful and easy to reach when I needed a quick clarification, and it’s really fun when she shares stories about her experience here at the Students’ Union. I think I’ve gotten used to that. It made me wonder how I would deal with her being totally MIA for a week. Talk about taking working independently in a whole new level. It turns out I managed just fine. The trick: have enough work to do to keep myself occupied.

School starts in a few weeks and this back-to-school prep is the busiest one that I have experienced since I am managing school registration for two people (my brother and myself). During the day I would call high schools in Edmonton to gather information on high school classes. It’s different because in the Philippines, students don’t get to choose their classes. My brother and I had to be educated so that he can have well-informed decisions. Whenever I call him, I give him a run-down on what is different between Philippines and Canada (it’s a very, very long list). Every moment I could get I’d also look into my phone, hoping to get a message from the Beartracks Watch List that the Accounting class I wanted to get in to has an open spot.

I feel amused with this fact, but when the realization struck me, it totally made sense. Many of the events and responsibilities that I am going through right now are all ways and means of training me into further adulthood. Since I started University while working part-time, I have always worked on being financially independent and provide for myself with everything I need from the essentials (food, rent, bills) the important extras (overseas financial support, tuition, clothes) and the fun extras (partying, shopping, date night). That is training for responsible financial planning. Co-op is training me to become successful in my career by gaining technical and transferable skills while giving insight on what possible career paths will be a good fit for me. Even before moving to Canada, I have always played a big role in raising my brother, and I will do the same thing, maybe not as much as soon as he arrives here since he’s a teenager now. I always think that helping my brother with his personal affairs is my hands-on training on parenting, a training I’ve been getting since I was eight years old!

Now the countdown to the beginning of the semester, and also my brother’s arrival continues…


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