Today, June 12 marks the 123rd Independence Day of the Philippines. It’s an annual national holiday observed in the whole country to commemorate the country’s independence. It was 1898, when the country’s first president proclaimed the Philippines’ independence from the Spaniards after more than 300 years of being colonized.
When I was a student, I always thought if our country really achieved its independence. Well maybe from the Spaniards but not from other countries. Because after the Spanish colonial ended, here comes the Japanese and the Americans. Both also conquered our country in their own ways. Even in these days, I still not consider our country a fully independent nation. Because our political leaders let the other countries like China to interfere in our own government. And I think, our country’s sovereignty is being compromised, so as our independence. But I won’t erase the fact that our country still need to depend on other countries to survive. So as a Filipino, I don’t think our country will still become true independent.
I couldn’t avoid to think of my own independence, as an individual. I couldn’t remember anymore when was the time I become less dependent from my family. I only remember little things where I could do independently. When I was in the 1st grade, I could already prepare myself to school on my own – bathed, dressed and walked myself to the school. I grew up doing things on my own as long as I could do it. I guess, I truly got to stand fully on my own when I started to work and live on my own. I started to take care of myself alone, make decisions on my own and control my own life. I wore whatever clothes I desire, eat whatever craves me and go anywhere without someone to interfere.
But of course being independent comes with responsibility and accountability. Being responsible in every decisions I made in my life. Being accountable in all the mistakes I’ve done. Being in-charge of my own growth. But there are times that I still need someone. Someone to rely on in times of being down. Someone to remind me of my limitations. Someone to listen to my story. Just someone who’s always there when I need a shoulder to lean on. I admit I still need to depend on others, sometimes.
Then I realized, being a true independent doesn’t exist. Because being independent has a broad meaning. And I should accept the fact that true independence is really hard to achieve.