Before I start this post, I'd like to share a recent stupidity I experienced at work. The Big Boss has been telling me to organise the plan for another documentation / accreditation project. If there's possibly a specific position specifically designed for documentation for accreditation, I'm probably one of the few persons who can qualify. "Of the few," because "only a few" people have fully embraced the role. More often than not, only a few schools designate one person to perform this role. All these years, I have learned to translate the real meaning behind vague accreditation requirements. It's like having a customer who simply said "I want diet spaghetti." Everyone will surely feel rattled, "how in the world shall we cook and prepare "diet spaghetti?" This has been my role over the past years. I do the tedious job of identifying the resources needed, specific steps and ensuring that everything will steer to the creation of the perfect diet spaghetti. I don't call the shots though. There's another person who will drive the entire execution. When the customer is pleased, credit goes to the chef and and the executioner. If everything fails, you can probably sense the ending. My instagram account will be filled with food uploads, McDonald's delivery will get additional earnings for one month, Watsons will experience an upsurge in their sales of tissue, Johnny Air will have additional income and this blog will become the screaming evidence of everything. Hahahahaha That has been life for me over the last years. I will never say that I've gotten used to it. I've just learned to always expect the unexpected. 

What an introduction, I haven't even started yet. Hahaha As I was saying, the Big Boss told me to organise the plan for another accreditation project. My stupid and obedient self started the work. I figured out how to work my way so I started to create and save a word file. I was about to save the file when I was told, "do you want to replace an existing file?" WTF?! I checked the existing file and much to my biggest surprise, I HAVE ALREADY PREPARED ALL THE DOCUMENTS SINCE LAST YEAR. I was surprised to see an entire folder of detailed and organised files. As I further scanned my documents including my email, I discovered that I have submitted everything to the Big Boss last year. The heck. :) How could I be this stupid? Weeks ago, I was even feeling quite guilty for not accomplishing this task immediately. Turns out, I have done my part. The stage now belongs to the executioners. And just like that, remember this post? Yup, I'm an idle and useless being again. Award!

My initial plan was to identify at least 11 lessons I gained from my 11 years of working. Somewhere along the way,  I found the idea cliche, useless, uninteresting and probably, will look like a copycat of all those preachy and self help articles constantly shared in my Facebook newsfeed. As I was typing the title, 11 things I learned from 11 years of working, I realised to simplify and focus on 11 things instead. I intend to compile the most memorable 11 things that made up each year of working. 

1. When I was finally hired - It took me 4 months to land on my first job and first company.... to which I still belong today. I was interviewed by the former President & CEO for a post in the research team. Back then, I can't figure out if I made it or not. After the interview, I was asked to wait in the HR Office. In a few minutes, the HR Staff brought me to the school clinic. Joy to the world! I'm no longer unemployed!!!

2. When I got my permanency status - Six months went too fast. I finally belong! This was important for me, my family and my plan of pursuing further studies. 

3. When I started writing producing my own researches, which I discovered was even read by the former President & CEO. - I used to believe that my reports only go to my department head. There was one incident that made the President & CEO implement some disciplinary measures. I never knew that my report was partly instrumental until a senior colleague told me about it. I may appear as the antagonist, but I had a silent proud moment at that time. 

4. When I started to present my own research works - One of the reasons why I'm thankful for my first boss. She trusted me enough to present my own output. I conquered my stage fright. 

5. When I entered Graduate School - The perks of working for a school, I got a considerable discount for my Graduate studies. I gained friends but unfortunately, no one remained. Hahahaha Everyone went on with their lives and I lost the energy to organise reunions and get togethers. 

6. My short stint in Taiwan - I will be forever thankful to the two superiors who trusted me with this opportunity. Likewise, the former President & CEO who approved my financial assistance. 

7.  I gained freelance works - It's all on me but I wouldn't deny that my working experience gave me the access to freelance works. 

8. When I started teaching - Contrary to everyone's belief, you can teach in college even without a masteral degree. In my case, I waited for my time. I wanted to fully equip myself with knowledge and skills before I ventured to teaching. I finished my masteral degree before I applied for a teaching post. 

9. When my past documentation project became a successful endeavour - Thank you PQA Committee and as much I don't want to mention it, big thanks to His Excellency. 

10. Friends that come and go - The heartache of being left behind and seeing your dearest colleagues turned friends having the time of their lives. And me? (insert background music) Hold on for one more day. :p Amen

11. All the seminars, trainings, learning opportunities - Much of what I have today are products of years of work and this "after school" learning opportunities. Thank you to all my superiors who allowed me to venture to these learning opportunities.

11 is surely not enough for my 11 years. There are other things I wanted to write. Some I can't remember. Some I can remember after I published this post. Some are too shallow but in the future, I will realise how it shaped me today. Some I don't feel like sharing. Some still give me tears and pain. Some I prefer to be kept unsaid. 

Add 11 more years, I would be in my 40s then. I don't know what it is for me after another decade. What I know for sure, I don't want to live my life accumulating bitterness and regrets. Otherwise, my life can already replace the existing alamat ng ampalaya (legend of the bittermelon) :D.