So far this is the third (and hopefully the last) post I’ve written about my upcoming move to Subic. I never really realized until I was writing things down how significant this is for me. I think this is the biggest change I’ve ever allowed myself to make in my whole 30 something years of sheltered existence.
But like I said in my last entry, although I looked at the transition with impending doom initially, I’m actually at a point where I’m beginning to get excited about it.
Here are my reasons:
1. I’m beginning to love Subic
When my fiance first started working in Subic, he was telling me about the ” Subic Magic” that residents allegedly experience: Apparently if you visit often enough, you would never want to leave. For the life of me, I couldn’t imagine why. But shockingly, this magic also started creeping in on me. The more I visited him, the more I loved life in the Bay.
I mean, activists, you could say anything you want about these “arrogant” Americans, but they sure know their urban planning. Not only did they pick a perfect spot to build their base, but they also made everything so easily accessible. You have the central business district where you can work, do your shopping, have coffee with friends (I just really don’t have any at the moment) then a stone’s throw away you have the forests and the water. It’s pretty awesome.
I may be indifferent to the trees and the animals, but I sure as hell love the sea. So I’m kilig at the prospect of hitting the beach any time I want to. I can even imagine myself driving to Zambales and surfing (must learn how to properly drive and surf first, but those are minor details).
Aside from the beach, there is also duty-free shopping (do you know that they have a Mango outlet store that sell clothes at 50% off?? 50%!! I almost fainted with joy when I discovered it) where you can buy those coveted PX goods for cheap. There are also a lot of great restaurants (I don’t think I’ve ever eaten a bad meal in Subic).
To top things off, the roads are in great condition and there is no traffic!! I can get anywhere in minutes!!
So in a few months time, I went from whining about mumus and monkeys, to raving about everything else Subic has to offer.
2. We were starting to be okay
I’ve mentioned quite liberally in the stuff that I’ve written that my boyfriend and I were pretty rocky for a long period of time (months, years depends on when you start counting). But miraculously, things just started getting fixed. We didn’t go through a dramatic a-ha moment where we ran into each other’s arms and vowed not to hurt each other again. Gradually, things just started stabilizing. We really just both reached a point, although not simultaneously, that we were sure we wanted to be together. (I got to give him props for really pushing and fighting for it though, I was so ready to throw in the towel during the last stretch).
And take away the emotional drama that pervaded our relationship, I was able to think more rationally and clearly:
We were both sure we wanted to get married. His career in Subic provided us with financial stability. My business in Manila, because it was not close to stable, provided us with the ocassional mani-pedi. Umm… kinda a no- brainer.
3. The stint in Subic is my chance to re-evaluate my career options
Unfortunately, my work life is pretty dismal. And I don’t think I have anyone to blame but myself. I’d like to think I’m an intelligent, discerning and introspective person. However, I’m a total dud when it comes to figuring out a decent career for myself. Ever since I graduated from college, I flitted from one job to the other without really thinking things through. And it’s not as if failed miserably in any of the work that I stumbled on, I actually did a fairly decent job in most of them. But I have to admit, I make a lot of decisions without thinking things through so I get very shaken when problems arise and lose all enthusiasm. I can be quite determined and resilient with personal matters, but I easily quit when I encounter difficulties at work.
And what makes matters worse, I usually find a legitimate excuse to give up. Whether it’s my dad getting sick or financial constraints, I find a way to squirm out of my latest endeavor.
The thing is, in as much as I pretty much have a stable personal identity, I don’t think I have a clear-cut career identity. If that makes any sense. I even wrote a Masteral thesis about it (finding your identity in your twenties). A thesis that I also never finished. Hehehe.
When the move to Subic becam a given, my then-boyfriend made the most touching generous offer: He told me he was willing to support me financially until I finally find my career-footing and figure out what I wanted to do. And if I end up wanting to just run the house and not find a job, then he was ok with that too. I was dumbfounded. I always had this mindset that taking a break from a job was not an option. I would always just plow my way through them, thinking if this particular one didn’t work out then I absolutely had to find the next one immediately.
Needless to say, I was incredibly moved by the offer, especially since we’re starting our marriage life with absolutely nothing- no financial help from either of our parents, no backups, just the two of us trying to really figure things out. It was really heartwarming to know that he was willing to support us while I try finding myself.
So here’s our gameplan: Once I move to Subic, I assess what’s there for me career-wise. Then I take my time, do my research on these options before making the decision. In the meantime, I play housewife to my very driven, very career-assured husband.
4. Subic could be a fresh start from both of us
In as much as I have a lot of love and social support in Manila personally, at least at one point, there was also a lot of negativity surrounding us a couple.
The ordeal that we went through left us with a lot of bad memories. Certain places, events, people were just a constant reminder of issues that we were trying to let go of. Sadly, we also experienced some backstabbing and gossipping and had to deal with strained relationships while we were trying to move forward.
And although I was far from blaming anyone for things that happened (there were probably certain things that we did to contribute to the mess) and was determined to just roll with the punches, it was draining to deal with the constant bad vibes.
From being a place that I dreaded, Subic became a haven – a place where we could heal from the toxic things that happened to us in Manila.
It’s funny how the Universe works, a good friend and our future ninong told me that sometimes God doesn’t answers your prayers the way you want Him to because He has something better for you. And because as human beings we have a limited capacity to fathom His infinite plan, we don’t immediately recognize these blessings and sometimes even see them as obstacles.
That’s exactly how I felt about Subic. When I was praying for clarity and peace, my boyfriend was offered a job in Subic. I initially saw this as another challenge that we had to go through as a couple. And another sacrifice I had to make as an individual.
But once I opened my heart to all the possibilities, I saw it for what it really was: An answer to my prayers.