It was 2016. I got out of college. I was confused, broke, and jobless -wallowing in the depth of misery.
My sister saw my post-graduation blues. Her maternal instincts kicked in and thought of a way to comfort me. One day, she asked me to go to Baguio with her. At first, I was resistant to going. I didn’t have the means for a trip then. Yet she insisted that I needed a break from overthinking. “That can wait, for now. The future is a long stretch,” she said.
I agreed to go and I am happy I did. That trip gave me a lot to remember and provided me the break I never thought I needed. Most of all, it brought me to the life-changing habit of journaling.
I remember this event a little too well. The cold wind whipping in my face. The scent of pines wafting in the air. The sight of strawberries everywhere I set my eyes upon. All these remarkable places that make me say, I am back, Baguio City.”
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It was memorable but I realized no matter how special the moment is, I will only remember bits and pieces of it. That is when the thought of starting a journal sparked.
I decided to immortalize these events in a notebook. My way home was the perfect time to flirt with the concept. My brain was busy crafting ideas. I was planning layouts, outlining content, and thinking of the stories to share.
When I reached Bulacan, I delved into my project right away. My hands are flying – cutting, gluing, and writing. I didn’t stop because I am afraid to skip a detail.
My drive to record these occasions made me go on. Accompanied by the exhilarating feeling of being somewhere else, I was motivated to finish this activity.
At first, I only thought of it as a travel diary. But the notebook evolved to be a record of my achievements, dark thoughts, and mundane days. I decided to wing it and baptize it as my gap year journal.
I am thankful for keeping it with me on this journey. Going through my past entries brought me back a series of memories, like a TV scene playing in front of me. I laugh, cry, and long for the moments otherwise forgotten if I haven’t documented it.
The spark that started on that Baguio vacation is a fire that burns bright. It illuminates my way – making me focus on the progress I made than the journey ahead of me. As a wise woman said, “The future is a long road, anyway.”