I never had much materially growing up. My parents are immigrants from the Philippines and they never failed to remind me of their hard past of farm life and poverty. My parents worked 2 jobs and were not always home, so I learned to take care of myself and my little sisters while they were away. Imagine an 8 year old child cooking a simple dinner of rice and eggs for 2-year old twins. That was me. I always remember working hard as a kid and I always thought about others before myself.
I did my best in school to make my family proud.
My hard work paid off when I was able to go to school with a full tuition scholarship. I wanted to major in Art, but being the person that I am, one that always thinks about others, I decided on something that was a little more practical, and on something that would allow me to contribute to my family and to society. I decided to become a teacher (big pay raise from being a starving artist right?).
My passion has always been to help others, to inspire others, and I felt that teaching would allow me to do that. I have been working as a high school teacher for almost 5 years now, and it is so rewarding just thinking about all the wonderful students I have taught and seeing their success.
Despite having my innate quality of always having to put others first, I always had something that was just for me, which was art. Art was my escape. When I get started with a piece, hours seem to go by as if it were an instant. As a teacher, I hardly have time to work on an art piece and I never really share it with others. Although art is my own personal escape, when I am finished with a piece, I don’t want to keep it to myself. I want to share it with others and in addition to inspiring people as a teacher, I want to inspire people with my art.