The Magic of Belief

I was just one of those girls who grew up in the Philippines from a simple middle class family. Quite ambitious but lived awkwardly through my teens years. When I was in elementary, I remembered being bullied and laughed at because I went to a private school where almost all the other kids had more than what we had. My parents struggled to pay for our schooling. Day in and day out, I would just look at how the rich kids played with the latest barbie models or how they got new things for school. I would use to go to the lost and found area and scavenge for what was unclaimed. One time, a few kids made fun of me because I didn’t know how to play badminton and so I cried and said to myself I will learn and I did. Despite seeing kids play with lavish toys, I found myself more amazed by a small pond where I would try to catch guppies. I was quite content with the things that I had but there was still envy. I wanted to be rich. I wanted to look like a million dollars. I wanted to be everything and more. I remember one dream where I looked into a mirror and I saw a beautiful lady.

When I reached highschool, I saw it as an opportunity to be open to more things close to reality and so I decided to go to a public national highschool. My fascination woth science and english helped a lot. I managed to qualify for special science class. As a teenager, I experienced a sudden change of physique. From the shortest in elementary, I found myself usually at the end of the line. I lived a carefree life and yet I still craved for success and compared myself to others. I knew I could be one of the top students and yet I really didn’t care. It was only when our class advisor told me that I was top 5 among our section that I started to work harder and yet I failed to hold on to the belief and never really got any honors.

Time went by so fast that I didn’t notice college was already knocking at my doorstep. I had too much fun during college that I never really planned. I ended up taking a nursing degree. Just like highschool I found myself struggling. I barely talked in class and I gave up an opportunity to join an extemporaneous speaking contest because I felt inferior to my classmates. Our university usually holds a pageant among the departments. I was surprised that my advisor said to my classmates that I deserved to represent our year level as Ms. Nursing and yet I didn’t believe him. I went to the screening by force and just did my best to not exist and I was voted again during my senior year but the only difference was one of our college coordinator told me face to face how I didn’t possess any beauty to win in any pageant. I just kept the hurt to myself.

My first heartbreak came a year graduating. I looked at myself in the mirror and said I will look better and make my ex regret dumping me. I decided to proceed and earn a masters degree. I was 22 and was finished with 30 units when I decided to take the plunge. After years of being told that I have similarities to Miriam Quiambao, I joined my first pageant in my hometown, Ormoc City. I worked hard, gave up rice and did trainings but come coronation night, I doubted myself and flaked out during the last question and answer. I placed first runner-up and I was quite surprised.

Pageants became one of my interests. I went on to joining several ones in hopes of winning titles which I did in some and proving myself that I had beauty. I was so lucky to have people who believed in me. Despite the victories, I felt there was something missing. I saw a Binibining Pilipinas and I remembered how I would watch it everytime it was on tv since I was young and I would dream of wearing a long gown and looking gorgeous on stage.

My 25th birthday came and I said to myself there was no more hope for being a part of Binibining Pilipinas. It was only until Tito Rodgil Flores sent me an sms and asked me if I wanted to train. It was such an honor to find out he believed I could win in Binibining Pilipinas 2013. All those years of doubting myself finally caved in. I realized how I was hungry for appreciation and how I was joining pageants to convince myself I was good enough. I realized I never believed in myself fully and I knew it was the missing ingredient. I never saw the things that the people who believed in me saw how I was extremely positive to others yet unforgiving to myself. I went through periods of quarterlife crisis and it was not yet easy. Training in Kagandahang Flores thought me how powerful the mind can be and how belief in oneself can move mountains. I can only do my best being an official candidate in Binibining Pilipinas 2013.

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