December has always been a time for get-togethers, for families and friends. This year was special because a lot of our US-based friends came home for the holidays. Some of these friends, we have not seen since we graduated from medical school. It was truly a great experience to be together once more.
Last month, Trixi was chosen to represent her school in the Regional Division of the MathScore Quiz Bee. The school fielded one contestant per grade level from Grade 3 to Grade 9. She was the Grade 6 representative. Two of them, Trixi and the Grade 7 contestant, placed in the top three in their field and went on to the Nationals.
I had mixed feelings about going to the competition with her. I wanted to provide moral support for her but I didn’t know if my presence would distract her. We ended up asking her if she wanted me there and she said yes. So I accompanied her to the Nationals. We met up with her Math coach and the other contestant from her school. She was cool the whole time, just trying to answer the questions in the other grade levels.
When it was her turn to compete, I was a nervous wreck. I tried to focus on the questions but I couldn’t think of anything. I was just looking at her and admiring how cool she still was. If she was nervous, she sure didn’t show it. After a couple of mistakes in the easy round, she was on a roll. She aced the average and difficult rounds, where correct answers carried more weight. She won first place in her division! I couldn’t believe it, and for a while, neither could she. So proud of you, our Math Champion!
I do not get to see much of my friends from High School. I am only able to catch up with them through social media. Since we graduated from High School, I have attended only two reunions. Most of my former classmates, I have not seen since we graduated. It’s not that I didn’t want to join. The reunions were held in places that were quite geographically challenging for me. I couldn’t leave the kids. But I always hoped to join them in one of their fun gatherings.
Sometime in November, one of my classmates, Pinky, decided to host a gathering in her house to celebrate her birthday. It was in far away Alabang. Then Tere offered me a ride home. Marilette offered to pick me up and bring me to the venue. Bong agreed to stay home to be with the kids. Things somehow fell into place. I was so excited to be with these girls again.
We had so much fun tonight. It seemed like we just saw each other in class. It didn’t feel like a lifetime had passed since we were actually in the same room. There was so much laughter my cheeks hurt. I had not laughed like that in a long time. We were just as crazy as we were back in High School. I am grateful that they did not give up on me after all these years.