Most people who know me personally have always seen or viewed me as a happy maverick. Now, just like my usual catch phrase, please don’t get me wrong about this. Being a maverick may look awesome in some countries, but, in the Philippines and even inside Christianity circle, it is a quite a minus factor growing up. We Filipinos have what we call pakikisama. Digging through the theoretical definition of the word, it’s difficult. However, putting it operationally, it’s still difficult. Pakisama moves beyond getting along with others. It’s getting along well with others because of compromises. There are members of orthodox Christianity who sometimes takes pride that they don’t compromise. They’re not compromisers as they say. However, looking closer, the mere fact that they have friends lobbying for them proves otherwise. I believe in compromises. In fact, one of the conflict resolution tools used in organization is compromise. However, blending in is only applicable on certain customs, but not in all walks of life.
There are certain times in my life that I have compromised a lot. I have compromised my belief system, especially my faith. Just imagine being punch figuratively right and left just because hindi ka daw marunong makisama. I tried and did my best. I tried blending in. This is an indication that I am not bull headed, and have the capacity to listen to advices. I have to admit that it felt good at certain extent. There are positive feedbacks. Some say I loosened up a notch.
However, despite that, people that mattered to me never saw the efforts or never appreciated it verbally or by actions. I’ll only hear those positive words when I confronted them, which is rare. At times, it’s such a drag. Still, despite my discomfort, there were certain people that I need to get along to the point of compromising even my own faith and own belief systems because certain people that mattered to me will either give me guilt trips, fault finding, and never ending blah blahs on their view of life and more.
Recently, certain experiences have hit me once and for all. I don’t know if it’s God telling me something or it just sprouted from my innermost feeling. Certain recent experiences made me conclude that, more often than not, people, even those that matter to you, oblige you to do certain compromises, not really for your own good, but because they’ll be the beneficiary. Besides, it might be self-serving, but what I know with compromise is that it should be two-way traffic. However, it felt that it was not reciprocated well. Despite the pakisama, there is no belongingness. It’s a one-two punch. It was not reciprocated, and my Christian testimony marred. This time around, I’ll be once again the happy maverick you once knew, even if those people don’t care anymore. For instance, I’ll continue to wear generally acceptable attire, even if people will start calling me names. I’ll still sport that school boy haircut (sometimes crew cut), and I will not mind being called names. After all, my attire and haircut are generic. Nothing’s wrong with that. Call me names because of my certain actuations. At least, I don’t twist heads and use people. Do the guilt trips and indifference as you please. If they truly appreciate you for who you are, then why the difficulty in pleasing these certain people that mattered to you?
Yes, on certain extent, I will compromise, but not to destroy my belief system and my faith inside out. It’s better this way. After all, at the end, people stick to their own beliefs without compromise, why won’t I do the same? At least, I have no person to point my fingers when the going gets tough.
Happy maverick, that’s who I am.