To the doubted dreamers,
Today is the day for you.
I have been watching you for quite some time now, and to tell you that my heart aches when I see you being hard on yourself would be an understatement. I wish these words could hug you once they reach your palms.
It is the time that you usually wake up. But mornings begin after your alarm goes off. You could spend five to ten minutes in bed—contemplating your life decisions and whether everything is worthwhile. At this point, you started to question if this college degree is still for you to pursue.
The cold water hitting your bare skin makes you sigh in disbelief. Covered with the things you need to do, your mind cannot contemplate the real essence of being a student — entering a classroom full of diverse characters would be nice, but listening to discussions, answering quizzes, and interacting with people might be draining.
It’s like running a mile with not enough water on your side. You are exhausted.
People I have known told me that great things take time, but right now, a little voice in your head says, “You need a break. You need to be gentle on yourself.”
These thoughts have been overpowered by the power that you have to do better and be great. After all, what’s the point of everything if you will be bad at it?
By the time you finish taking a shower, you feel like you’re running out of time, not just by the school bell but also in your life.
As you take your first sip of coffee, tea, or whatever warm beverage you take every morning, you envision again when you trusted your potential and believed in yourself.
“It’s just college. How bad could it be?”
Nothing could have prepared you for the battle you must encounter with the next step in your academic stint. It was as if you bumped into a battlefield, and it was too late to run. All you have to do is face the chaos and fight the opponents that come your way.
But what if they’re too strong to hold down? What if you’re running out of stamina and want to quit? What if you want to run away and be on a different battlefield? And if you’re on a battlefield, how can you stand still?
“You don’t have to win. You have to survive!” says the voice in your head. That little voice you have ignored but never gets tired of reminding you to be gentle with yourself.
Maybe winning is something that you have your heart set on, especially if it’s a dream of yours. A dream that you painted colors with when you were in third grade; a dream that you have written on a piece of paper that you kept under your bed along with the letters unsent.
It is more than a matter of winning or whoever gets the most applause. Sure, winning and getting the bread is majestic, but ask yourself, is it worth losing yourself and the sanity left in you?
As this little piece of paper touches your palms, I hope these words reach the deepest parts of your soul and are loud enough to silence the doubts in your head.
My fellow dolphins, you’re doing a great job.
LAYOUT ARTIST: TRIESHA MAE GALANG