11:11 PM Pia San Felipe 0 Comments

Since kidergarten, I studied in a Catholic school. I was told what I should and should not do. I was told that 5inches below my knees is the decent length for my skirt. I was told not to show skin, hence, no sleeveless dresses or tops when in school or even for a school event. I was told not to wear too much accessories. I was told not to dye my hair, to keep it black or brown-ish black or close to black. For thirteen years, I was told what I should and should not do regarding my appearance. Yes, a strict upbringing brought to me by my school. I actually didn't mind because I was young and I needed guidance and I still weren't in that stage of self-discovery. I went along with the flow and followed the rules. I didn't even think of questioning the rules. And then college came.

I applied in different universities and colleges most of which are run by priests or religious sects. I enrolled in a Catholic school not knowing it would be like the past thirteen years all over again, only this would last for just four years. During my freshman year, it was fun. I felt free because everything was just so new to me. I was stepping out of my comfort zone. Come my sophomore year, I was starting to grow. And that means I started wanting to experiment with my appearance. Our uniform consists of a vest over a 3/4-sleeved polo. Too hot for my sunny country. So I decided to fold it twice, just a little above my shoulder, half an inch to an inch just to ease the heat. Upon entering the school my ID got confiscated because my sleeves were folded. I even got a violation slip because of it. And of course, I was like "WHY?" I was mentally cursing my way through the prefect's office and wow, a long line welcomed me with students who has the same violation as mine. So again, why? It's against the school rules they said. Okay. But do you know what I think? What I really really think? What I've been keeping inside me for such a long time? Here it is.

Being in my school feels like being a robot. I thought being in college means having the freedom to actually be myself, I guess not in my school. It's all don't do this and don't do that. Especially, WHAT IS THE RELEVANCE OF A STUDENT'S APPEARNCE TO HIS ABILITY AND/OR CAPACITY TO LEARN? Does having pink hair somehow lessen my brain cells? Does having a mohawk suddenly turn a student into a gangster? DID MY FOLDED SLEEVES SOMEHOW OFFEND SOMEONE? What if I was born with blond hair and I decided to enroll here? Do I have to dye my hair black because it isn't decent or because it's too loud? What can I do if it's in my genes? Would that mean I have to spend my parents' money just so I could fit into your standards and stereotypes? And of course some people would say I could just transfer to another school. Believe me, I WOULD. But that is if I COULD. I'm down to my last two years and I wouldn't want to waste the two years' worth of tuition that my parents already spent. I couldn't wait for the day that I would graduate and be finally free from the shackles that is my school.  I would still be studying after that, with med school and all that still comes with school rules and policies, but I shall make it a point to find a school that would let me be myself and let me express myself whichever way I want(i.e. hair color and clothes). Probably a school that isn't run by conservative, religious people unwilling to accept that times have changed and that this generation is now all for freedom of (self-)expression. 

I have now said my piece. I am now wondering of this blog post would somehow land me in front of my school's administrators for a talk. Or if this would lead to most of my schoolmates hating on me or bashing me and looking for grammatical errors in this post. Either way, this just has to be said. I just had to get this out of my system.