For 25

I had the most splendid birthday last August 25;

I became a lawyer at the age of 25;

I will take the lawyer’s oath this June 25; and

What’s next for 25?

PHOTO FROM sc.judiciary.gov.ph | You can catch us take the lawyer’s oath on June 25, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. (Philippine Time). The live coverage will be aired at PTV4. Please stay posted for updates! ๐Ÿ™‚

SCD

Follow your Dreams

On the same day last year, I almost decided to follow a different path.

I thought everything would be OK like that.

But an ‘inner voice’ told me to revive my dream and go back to the previous path where I was cut for.

And it wasn’t even a mistake.

๐ŸฆŒ

SCD

A Day that Changed my Life

“Passing the Bar is, truly, an extraordinary feat of which, you should all be proud of…always be reminded that with the distinction you gain as lawyers, comes the concomitant responsibility to further the ideals of justice and the rule of law. Our society, especially during these most trying times, beckons you to not only become learned experts, but more so, to fight for the cause of the oppressed, to advance the pleas of the helpless, and to inspire others as a living example of integrity, above all (Omission, supplied).” – Senior Associate Justice Estela M. Perlas-Bernable, 2019 Bar Exams Chairperson

(DISCLAIMER: This is a re-post of the Supreme Court Public Information Office’s official video last April 29, 2020)

Three weeks ago? Yes, three weeks ago, this 3:34-min. long video became the genesis of what changed my life. The announcement of the results of the Bar put me in high spirits and, until now, nothing has changed.


I was clueless as to what would happen to me after the month-long exam last November 2019. Nothing’s certain. All I had with me were hope, faith, and prayers.


My life was normal for 6 months since the last Sunday of the Bar exams until COVID-19 transitioned every person’s life from this to that. Fast forward to a week before the announcement, I couldn’t sleep, properly. Honestly, like every other Bar 2019 candidate, I was nervous. But a day had to pass, I know. The day of the announcement would, surely, come. There was nothing I could do but to surrender everything to Him.


Until the day we’ve been waiting for came: it was a peaceful day. Everyone’s on quarantine. But 7,685 souls knelt down that morning, hoping and waiting for their names to be included on the list.


I didn’t get the chance to watch this vid. But a text message, plus a chat, brought chills to my whole being: “CONGRATS, ATTORNEY!” and “666. DE GUZMAN, SAMANTHA C.”

Time stopped! I couldn’t fathom that inexplicable, flabbergasting moment. I went outside without double-checking my name. “All I needed was the number,” I thought.

Then, the rest was history.


Every day was a roller-coaster ride!


The journey has barely started, I know. But I would, always, remember this day. On Apri 29, 2020, the heavens rejoiced. Ora et Labora!

Congratulations to the 2,103 successful examinees! We made it! And for those who didn’t, this is not the end. Continue soaring! We all become lawyers in God’s appointed time. ๐Ÿ™‚

SCD

Slippery Slopes

I am irritated by slippery slopes. People, unaware of one, pose these queries: “Where do you work?”, “What are you studying?”, “How much are you earning?”, “Where did you go today?”, or “When are you getting married?”

More appropriately, the questions:

  1. “Where do you work?” must be “Do you work?” because the person you’re asking might, still, be a student or he’s unemployed because he has just graduated or he’s into that gap period of his life.
  2. “What are you studying?” should be “Do you study?” because he might not be studying or, again, he finished schooling, already.
  3. “How much are you earning?” to “Do you work?” because like the first number, you might be talking to an unemployed person or a student.
  4. “Where did you go today?” to “Did you go out today?” because it’s obvious – because he might be staying at home all day.
  5. “When are you getting married?” to “Do you have a boyfriend/girlfriend?”. Hello?! Asking for one’s future spouse is, also, mean because the person might be single by choice or single by vocation.

“Be polite/courteous at all times.” My younger self never imagined this would be essential for everyday living. As I got older, I knew this badge of courtesy must be worn at all times apart from being hanged in every wall of homerooms back in my elementary days.

So what is a slippery slope? Plain and simple: Asking another question to a question that has not been asked, i.e. “How did you install the doorknob (without even asking if the person installed it or not)” or “So you think you can steal my spouse?” which sounds more as an accusation in the form of a question. I repeat, when you ask these questions, you are skipping a step-by-step procedure. Sadly, you end up sounding arrogant. Yes, you do. You offend the person, intentionally or unintentionally (anyway, unintentional harm is not an excuse because one must be prudent at all times). “Manners maketh man.” Slippery slope, as a fallacy, then, makes it illogical. If you want to sound smart, at the same time, courteous, do not resort to slippery slopes. If you do not use slippery slopes, you don’t utilize fallacies, also. Ergo, if you’re not fallacious, you could be logical. A logical person. How cool is that?

The thing is, we are accountable to every word we say. What we say and how we say it reflects the person we are and even our upbringing. I slip into slippery slopes fourteen times a week, more or less, depending on the number of interactions I have with people. And, honestly, it’s offensive to me, frugal for the person who asks, and annoying to other listeners.

I know this may sound petty, but sometimes, the pettiest things, really, matter. If you’re offended by the random person who asked you, “Do you drink your coffee hot or cold” before asking if you drink coffee or not, well, I am offended by those who ask me, “How lovely are you?” without even confirming if I’m lovely or not. LOL!

Here’s my advice: Are you trying to win a person? Be sensitive and prudent. The way you speak is the way you present yourself to the world. And I’ve got to tell you, a well-spoken man/woman is more pleasing than a brawn/beautiful, but rude man/woman. You’re welcome! *pun intended*

Love,

SAM

โ€˜Sweetest Thingโ€™

The sweetest thing I heard today was when Pops said, “I am happy that you’re happy.”, randomly, at suppertime.

He looked me straight in the eye and smiled.

“Thank you, Papa.” Then, I was dazed to discover how my father could fathom the real feeling I have inside.

๐Ÿ’Œ,

SAM