Years ago, I associate September as the start of the Christmas season. It also marked as my workversary. I became an official member of the labor force on September many years ago. Last year changed everything. September would always remind me of the day when me, Dad and Kuya started to rebuild our lives without her. 

I was conditioning myself that September was all about my mom's death anniversary. It remains as this month's highlight. But somewhere along the way, some aspects of my life made its presence felt.

I was given additional work, as always, without an extra pay. :p - I was tasked to spearhead the Gender and Development Committee activities at the workplace. Our objective is to conduct at least one activity every month. I'm proud to say that we were quite advanced. We finished two events this month. One of our main projects is the establishment of a Gender and Development Learning Resource Hub. We wish to start with a library that offers books on Gender and Development, through donations or book sponsorships. 

Admittedly, I'm not equipped with skills related to sales or strategies convincing people to donate. I underestimated the work. I personally approached people and so far, the feedback rate is so low. I sent almost a hundred of emails, the few responses I received are either automated messages, read receipts, forwarding the email to another person and rejections. This didn't come as a surprise but as always, it does not feel encouraging. What made me feel rather frustrated are rejections within my own workplace. I didn't directly ask colleagues to donate. I sought referrals from this particular department, I requested if I could secure email addresses of our suppliers. To my surprise, I was rejected. I was told they were reserving suppliers for solicitations for the annual Christmas party. As it appears, they see me as a competitor. But the thing is, we are in the same organization. My program could still benefit them because our institution can save money from books being donated than purchased. 

I guess it also does not help that I have been doing a big favor for the department that rejected me. I'm helping them achieve something. I'm investing my own time, effort and patience for them. Yet in the end, the little support I'm asking was rejected. It still frustrates me, even if it happened a week ago. 

With a heavy heart, I decided to redirect my energy to seek external book donors. This experience has been teaching me a lot. I learned that..

1. When seeking donations or sponsorships, don't target people within your immediate environment. Colleagues, friends, families and acquaintances are not necessarily supportive beings. It's best that relationships are left on that level.  

2. The rule of favors - It feels like, scratch your back you scratch mine. It does not guarantee anything but tbh, it worked to some extent. I invited people who once sought favor from me. A few responded, but the most ignored me. I'm thankful to the few who positively responded. For the rest, I have to teach myself to forget. :p 

3. The challenge is finding people whose vision in life is aligned with your program's objectives. It took me one email to successfully invite an international Filipina author to sponsor books. She values education and support local authors. A former client who loves books and also values education was the first to sign up. While this is not a guarantee, I noticed that finding people of similar interest or vision will most likely translate to results.

So much about my rants on work, some other things that happened this month...

I finally paid a visit to my dentist and the fees surprised me. This was the first time I spent a five-digit rate for one session of dental services. I was satisfied with the results, but the cost still haunts me this day.

Seeing my CK sisterhood after two years - Thank you Leah and Mother E. Time flies, it's been 8 years since we first met

Always receiving encouraging words from Terra

A better weather on Monday - The typhoon scared us last Sunday. I woke up with a better weather on Monday morning. 

Wishing everyone a great week ahead. Hopefully, a better one for me too.