Sitting at the edge of the old, wobbly, and familiar bed, we talked through the night about life, hopes and dreams. About our parents, about our future, about the confusion in it all. Even about God. Finally, I was able to share the Gospel to him, and he prayed with me, for the first time. I've always looked up to him being an older brother, though I tried to deny it before. Tonight, there was no place for sibling rivalry. Tonight, there is nothing but honesty and vulnerability.
"I'll be delaying graduation for two reasons," I confessed. "One is because I'm scared. Don't think I'm ready yet. I can't imagine myself filling out application forms, even wearing corporate attire, job hunting. I don't even want to be employed. Two, it's because I want to learn the skills it take to be what I wanted to be--to learn exactly that: journalism and business administration. Take courses and learn to start a business and write This extra year in college will be some sort of retreat for me. A retreat while at school, simulating what I'm supposed to want to be doing and then decide. I really need time to think. I need time to learn."
"You don't understand, Sam," Kuya said softly. "You have what it takes. College will not teach you everything you'll need in the outside world. You can learn those skills on the spot, while working. If I were you, I would work too. It's just that I had to choose Law. You don't know how sad it is to still be dependent on your parents for your expenses at age 22. If I had the choice, if I didn't have a scholarship, I would work. You are at the point of your life when there are so many windows. And you have the talent. You can write, you can manage a business. You're even doing those even before you graduate! What makes you think working will be any different? You have to stop seeing yourself as if you're an inadequate ignorant. Don't let that undermine the independence you already have."
Earlier over dinner, Dad and Mom have been convincing me of the same thing, but I remained steadfast with my decision. I am NOT ready yet. I will NOT graduate yet. But the way my brother said it, it was different because it came from someone who has been in the same situation recently. I sat there quietly. Here he is, telling me of his loneliness, the way his ex girlfriend left her, the way his bestfriend recently got married, leaving him feeling all alone. Here he is, seemingly hopeless yet having high hopes... for me? "You are strong and you can stand up for yourself," he said, "the way you stood up for your faith. God will be there for you until the end."
Wow, God. Thank you so much for giving him as my brother. You know we had the nasty fights and shameless brawls in our childhood. But to be supported by him through both of our tough times and confusion is everything. It's just what a brother means.
I still have no resolve over the direction I'll take. What a relief to know my family is there supporting me.