My father is an OFW for the longest time. In the past, he was always away working abroad to provide the financial needs of our family. His absence made a significant impact on myself and why I became the person that I am today. Growing up, I yearned for my parents to get to know me on a deeper level, but since they were very busy to provide for me along with my 5 other siblings our needs, it became almost impossible.
Financially, my parents were able to provide the basic needs of us and even sent us, their 6 children to good schools until college. Yes, we do have good jobs now but emotionally, something is lacking in us. Inside, we are broken.
I have felt that brokenness even when I was young. When I was a teenager, I made a promise to myself that if I will have my own family in the future, we will stay physically together in richer and poorer, in sickness and in health. Hence, I told myself that I’m not gonna settle abroad and in the Philippines is where I want to live. What the Youtuber Arvin Orubia has told in his vlog is true, he said, “I did not choose to be in this situation, but the situation chose me.” So I shouldn’t ignore this. If I will shut off this feeling, I will just continue to lie on myself.
Growing up, I have my cousins whose parents had stayed together in the country and seeing them, their parents were able to provide their needs and good education, and not only that, as a family, they are happy.
That is my “REASON” why I want to go back to the Philippines and settle there for good –why I only want simple things in life. Being a simple person that I am now, I do not long for material things. I dream of having my own family in the future, settling in the Philippines and to be physically there for them in every milestones in life.
Thus, on 2015, I found myself applying for an employment in London, England and was offered a job in nursing for a 3-year contract. After the 3-year contract, we have a choice if we would like to renew the contract for another 3 years and by the end of 2 contracts, we can already apply for a permanent residency in the UK.
My other colleagues are aiming for a permanent residency in the UK, but not me. My contract in the hospital will end on October 2019 and I have to think long and hard if I would want to renew it or not. I already have made my decision and it’s something that I want to keep to myself. Anyway, I still have 10 months to go before my contract ends.
Working abroad at the expense of being away from my family is no way of living for me. As what the life coach Chinkee Tan has said in his vlog, “No amount of success in your profession and career can compensate to a failure in your family.” I have to invest and prepare now for my future family.
If I will go back to the Philippines, people will raise their eyebrows once they hear about this decision. They will say, “Sayang naman. Ang daming tao sa Pilipinas na gusto mapunta sa position mo na yan, tapos ikaw, nandyan ka na, iiwan mo pa.”
Luckily, the only opinion that matters are my parents’ and they are 100% accepting of my decision. I did not hear of any panghihinayang from them.
In taking a big leap in life, people always have 2 fears.
- Fear of failure
- Fear of what other people will say
I learned about this by watching the vlog of Bianca Gonzalez. As you noticed, one of my hobbies is watching inspirational vlogs.
I love the answer of Catriona Gray (Miss Philippines Universe 2018) in Bianca Gonzalez’ question on how to deal with fear of what other people will say.
She said, “I always reason with myself that, not everyone knows the length and depth of your personal journey, no one knows what you’ve been through, your experiences, so their judgement cast upon you, it’s just a shallow perspective, they don’t know what you’re fully capable of, so why would you take their judgment to define everything that you are.”
Working in the UK has provided me with big salary, the opportunity to travel, watch West End musicals, eat in the fancy restaurants and hotels and an opportunity for career growth. I know I don’t have my own family yet and that I should enjoy moments like these especially now that I’m still single but I think I am already past that stage of my life.
I am not a wanderlust, I do not wish to travel the world. Just a few countries and when I feel that I’m already happy and contented, I stop. Remember when I traveled to Australia on 2014 with my classmates, I did really enjoy that. I know my priorities now, and traveling is not my priority anymore but saving for my future is. As with one of my favourite bible verses, Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, “There is a time”. -For every thing there is a season, and a time for every purpose under the heaven.
Family commitment is real. At this age of mine, I can trade all those luxuries for family commitment. I remember, there were days of travel wherein I did not fully enjoy the experience because it is only me who can see the beautiful tourist spots. I told myself back then, I wish my loved ones are here so they can also see the wonderful sights that I was seeing.
Careerwise, I am already happy with what I’ve accomplished and I was able to reach my financial goals by working in England. The fears of other OFWs on why they haven’t decided to settle for good in the Philippines is because they are not yet ready financially.
But how much is enough?
As for me, it’s not much but I know it is enough. I also worry about the future, what will be my work after coming home, and how will I be able to pay the bills in the future, but there’s a strong voice deep in my heart that says, I will be fine.
God will provide. Eventhough the future is uncertain and scary, with my unshakeable faith to my Father in Heaven, I know I will be okay.
No matter what failure, heartbreak and mistakes I will encounter in life, knowing that I have an eternal Father in heaven who accepts me and has an unconditional love for me, I have nothing to worry.
You my readers, what is the REASON for doing what you are doing now? Please comment below.