Charging Station



Photo taken when I was FDIP TM President 2017-2018 with my Officers.

“Look at this stuff, isn’t it neat? Wouldn’t you think my collection’s complete? Wouldn’t you think I’m the girl, the girl who has everything…”

There’s nothing more than my bad singing that would perk you up on this lazy Tuesday noon, isn’t it? And to make matters worse, I am even bold enough to tell you that I once aspired to sing with a live band and create my own music video. Personally, I’d blame this unplaced confidence to growing up with MTV in the 90s and here’s where you start murmuring, “Oh, so that’s how old she is.”  Don’t worry, I don’t really mind giving away my age considering that no one has actually ever guessed it right. And for your own satisfaction, I’m 32. So say it again, folks, “Ah, so that’s how old she is.”, and believe me, I’ll take it as a compliment.

Now going back to my terrible singing. It has long been established that I have a one-sided love with music. I sincerely love it, and for all these years it doesn’t seem to love me back. When I was younger I wish I was a little better at singing, dancing and playing instruments. But the universe has its own way of doing things, and it has pulled my strings of destiny somewhere else. Had I been a little better at music, I might have pursued my dream of studying Theater Arts. I might have auditioned and could even be casted for a lot of theatrical plays. I might have been singing and tap dancing in local versions of Broadway or Disney musicals. Jeez, I might even make it abroad as far as being ambitious goes. I might not even be standing here talking about what might have been, had I been better at music.

What the universe did instead was to drag me into the completely opposite side of the spectrum. When I was about to turn the knob and enter the doors of theatrical arts, I was haphazardly lured into another door, the door of chemical engineering. You see I’m good with Math, I’m okay with Physics and other sciences but I sucked at Chemistry. So the irony is on me. Catch is, my mom told me, “It paid high” in reference to my cousin’s then blooming success in the field. I am an eldest of 6 and comes from a middle-class family with parents that do not have a steady income. So naturally I tried to be the obedient and expectedly responsible child and with shaky hands, I turned the knob and entered the looming door of chemical engineering. To be honest, it was not that bad. I was glad that the universe did not allowed me to be dreary because in between those boring subjects were what you call extra-curricular activities – my comfort zone, my charging station, my closest realization to my initial dream. For me, studying and working are both essential parts of living but the most boring ones. In both studying and working, I can understand the boring stuff (and please forgive me for bragging, I wouldn’t be cum laude if I don’t) but I would always need another outlet for me to last.

Today I am celebrating my 6th year anniversary in Fluor. I am glad that the universe conspires with this company to somehow lead me to a satisfying life. It gave me the job enough to pay the bills. And, it gave me the avenue to once again be a little bit closer to my dreams, definitely I am not singing in a Broadway musical, or with a live band. But it gave me Toastmasters, which is the next best thing. Delivering speeches is somehow a soft form of theater at times – the voice control, the facial expressions and the gestures – and I love how it would save you as you deal with the boring technicalities of the life you call work. Five years of membership, 2 icebreaker speeches and 2 acquired positions had me falling in love with Toastmasters. Don’t get me wrong, I still love music and theatre and everything in between them but now I came to terms that I can only love them from afar and I am content with that. I finally found a new love that would finally love me back and I am a testament of how rewarding it can be. And as the current President of FDIP Toastmasters Club, I dream that I could influence more people to make Toastmasters their charging stations from the dreariness of everyday work – An avenue not only made to enhance your communication and leadership skills, but also an avenue to network with peers and listen to their stories as you listen to mine. Fellow Toastmasters and guests, good afternoon.