A few days ago, I went to my old high school to accompany my parents. In that particular day, they were celebrating what we called Teachers’ Appreciation Day. They had a program all set to thank the teachers. Students performed, some parents had a dance number, and food was prepared for the faculty to enjoy.
As I witnessed the whole event and as I saw some of my old teachers, I could not help but look back at my time when I was still a student in International Christian Academy (the name of my High School). There were teachers that I did not like at the time, and I’m pretty sure that there were some teachers who didn’t really like me. But time and time again, there is this one memory that always stands out when I think about my experiences with my former teachers.
I think it was in my second year of high school (I’m not really sure). Back then, I wasn’t really the best student. My goal was just pass the subject. I was lazy. I put little to no effort in my studies. I was content with being a mediocre student. I had that mindset for so long that I started to believe that mediocrity would be my limit.
So the almost the entire year by, and as you can tell, I mostly struggled through my classes (Especially Statistics). When the school year was almost over, we were mandated to take this national diagnostics test (Forgot what it was called). So, I took it. I kind of took it seriously and took my time with it. I thought about my answers (for the most part) and finished it.
On the day that the results were sent back to our school, my adviser at the time called me into the faculty office. I didn’t know why. In my mind it couldn’t be good. He showed me my results, and to be honest, they were pretty good.
He started to talk to me about potential, and how I was wasting mine. I can’t remember the exact words that he said. But that his moment stuck with me until now. No teachers ever took me aside just to talk to me about my potential–to just encourage me.
Whenever I remember that moment, I always tell myself that I would thank that teachers every time I could. Well, Sir Matthew Aleta, thank you once again for what you did for me. I don’t know if you really remember it, but I’m really grateful. I hope one day I would also be able to encourage others like how you encouraged me. (P.S. I’m pretty sure if you’re reading this that you’re checking my grammar and writing skills. If there are mistakes, please let it slide for now. Hahaha!)
I hope this post will also be an encouragement. To all the teachers and mentors out there, you have the chance to touch people’s lives. Don’t waste it. Don’t take it for granted. You can, and are making a difference.
To the people who think their limit is mediocrity, don’t think that way. You have potential. You can excel.
And to everyone, encourage one another. Build each other up. You can also make a difference in someone’s life.