So what is beyond the end of time? I am about to find out.
The finals of Sigaw! had been at the end of my calendar for the longest time now. It was a date I looked forward to the most. Sigaw! set a benchmark in the same way that IK2 did. The latter was whether I can design, execute and sustain a training program for students, and the former was whether I can bring a songwriting competition and concert all together. Both activities culminated in the same month, with the end of IK2 and the Sigaw! finale within one week of each other.
And in the past few days, I’ve been running on fumes. Yesterday, I was just waiting for myself to collapse and shatter into a million pieces. And now that Sigaw! is over, I feel oddly rejuvenated. I should be tired. But now I don’t feel that weight of the world anymore. I don’t feel that time and space will collapse on each other if I stop moving. Now, I can just stop. I can rest. It is over.
I am free.
Work has been a little tough lately. Calling the system out on its weakness is like falling through the rabbit hole — it never ends. And as I begin to look into the things I can change, I discover more and more that the work of change is unending. Corruption exists, I realize now, not just because of greed but because of fear (and it can be argued that greed itself is caused by fear — of losing). Now the likes of me have to choose between either standing against fear or giving in to it. It is a choice that can only be made through action, but am I ready to commit myself to what this realization demands? I know I am not impervious to fear. And over the past week, I caught myself asking, “Why do you do this? You know how bad this eventually gets, why bother?”
Because I can. I am free. And I choose to live for others rather than me.
This wasn’t any clearer than that moment in Sigaw! when I realized that all the answers to my doubts sang and swooned right in front of me, and that the work I’ve done in the past month is not just my own. IK2 would have never been possible without my partners in Ed Briones, Tin Guevarra, PEERS, and the PTA. Sigaw! wouldn’t have been possible if AKSIS didn’t believe they can make it happen, and the SocSci unit didn’t take a chance at something we never tried before. I’ve always been an optimist — everything’s possible — so I define teaching as creating situations in which all things are possible. Hence education becomes about how to use those possibilities well, and how to make them when there are none. So having seen all I’ve seen, this was really quite a night.
Over the past year, my guiding principle to AKSIS has been “Become the change you seek.” That will still guide us, but so will this: “Kaya pala, kaya pala.”
That’s why we can.
More on this soon. Now I shall take my well-deserved sleep. For while I’ve reached the end of time, tomorrow will be another day.
Thank you to everyone.