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Always Young and Wild (Not)

If there is anything my daughters (especially my eldest girl) cannot imagine is a young and wild me. True, I was once young (still young), a 105 pound slim and anti-social girl who’d rather pour over her school text books than gallivant around with her roommates or officemates. I never considered myself “wild” , not wild enough to party out during weekends. Not wild enough to bend a few rules here and there.

I am the sister who admonished her siblings NOT to stay out late. The only time I ever went home late was at 2:00 AM only because my ex-boyfriend drove me all the way from Quezon City to Las Piñas. To think that I was then 24 years old, living independently since college graduation and I had the freedom to go out anywhere I wished.

I was like the manang.

I am the sister who shook her head and berated her sisters whenever I see them scurrying off like rats over to the door as soon as my dad fell asleep. If only he knew.

I am the sister who got appalled whenever her other sisters climbed over the gates of our house after curfew hours. Of course, I never tattle-taled on them.

The two “wildest” things I ever did in my life was smoking (yes, bad!) and oogling at cute guys while abroad during a conference I attended with my sister Lorna and dad. The year was in 1984, a year before I got married. Butch told me that I should take this vacation because once we got married, he is not sure if he can bring me around the world. (He still hasn’t.)

young me
I thought that it is my last time to “appreciate” the cute guys (I still do!) without the guilt so why not? My sister, the sociable one always broke the ice when we met these cute guys. I can’t remember if I flirted or not. Maybe not because one time, a British guy stalked me as I loitered around the trade hall. Of course I snubbed the creep because girls don’t like to be stalked no matter how cute they are. The temerity of this guy! He had the gall to say that I was racist, just because of his color. Oh wow. I could have slapped him right there and then.

young me
My ex-boyfriend must have been attracted to my boring personality because one day he suddenly blurted in that sexy voice, You are like a rock to me. I must have also been attracted to his wild, reckless and unconventional ways too. We easily complemented each other. Sometimes, I see a little of myself in my second daughter (she’s more sociable than I was at her age) and my husband in Lauren though I know they are their own unique persons.

Do I regret not being a bit more wild?

Yes and no. No, because my personality is probably like that and Yes because I should have been more easygoing. I’ve evolved to a more laid-back person in the past years. Though I might have aged and grown bigger the past 29 years since those photos were taken, I still feel young and in every essence, happy. Age is not a factor to be considered “wild” and carefree.

I have never been happier in my life. I don’t pine for the good old days of my un-reckless lost youth. When I look back at my life , I don’t think in terms of my losses. I think of all the experience gained. And I look forward with enthusiasm about experiences that have yet to be enjoyed with my husband, my  daughters, my blogger friends, the citizen advocates of Blog Watch and my wonderful, loving siblings.

It’s one reason I want to venture into new activities or cultivate new friendships. There is always something fun to do.

To be young and wild is all about attitude.


13 thoughts on “Always Young and Wild (Not)”

  1. i truly enjoyed this post (very honest, opinionated and entertaining). well, it’s maybe because somehow i can relate to your story. i’m not outgoing and wild, either. i’m not anti-social but i’m a bit shy when it comes to meeting new people. that’s why i don’t have many friends. blogging has given me friends, and i’m happy for that.

    keep the spirit of your youth alive in your heart, ms. noemi! 😀

    edelweiza’s last blog post..Summer Adventure #6: Cebu, Bohol and Negros Oriental

  2. @lady cess- I was fixing my photos when I chanced upon these and I am amazed at how fat I’ve become or is it how thin I was then. either way, it’s good to reminisce.

    @witsandnuts- aging graciously is fine with me.

  3. Noemi, Birthday Girl, where did you find our photos from Boca Raton? Goodness, I had lost 45 lbs. by then (how I look almost as skinny as you are, all 123 lbs. of me! Vanity ruled!)…

    I swear I still have the address of this Korean friend we had at Rotary International. If he is still working there, I’ll find out for us… Hey, could you find those old photos please (since you kept the photo album) and scan them for us at our private family blog? I remember my sulky face because everywhere we went, all Dad wanted to do was take our photos — and all I wanted to do was check out what interesting activities there were for the 20-something crowd. I have no regrets, though. Our experiences with Dad helped us become more “ambassadorial” in attitude especially when it comes to community service advocacies and intricate business politics.

    Wasn’t I the one who took the photo of you at one of the Cloister Inn’s lobbies at the very ritzy-ritz Boca Raton Hotel — the one with the leg over one chair?

    Anyway, thanks for giving up my secret (Belen was the other one; Myrna was more like you — real goodie two shoes) because I certainly did break many rules all in the name of debunking stereotypical expectations of what women can and cannot do. In fact, Joji Deduque and I were chatting the other day on skype (he’s in Canada) and he remembers me being the “sosyal” activist, and here I am, thinking that I am a “social” activist. Dang, what old friends can remember — including my naughty sense of humor!!!

    Here’s an up-side to my rebel streak during my younger days… Today, our nieces and nephews cannot get away with it when I grill them with questions. I would say, “You’re talking to the original rebel in the Lardizabal family — been there, done that, did this — minus the drugs! So, if you think no one understands how you feel, that’s not true.” It feels good being able to empathize with rebellious young members in our family — and having open discussions with them, helping them grow as empowered, responsible individuals.

    One incident I remember was when Oscar went home at 4:00 am after drag-racing. As he went up the stairs, Dad was waiting at the top of the steps. Dad hollered, “Do you know what time it is?” and Oscar drunkenly looked at his watch and replied, “One o’clock,” to which my dad became even more mad and yelled, “Stupido! It’s four o’clock!” and the scolding would continue while Oscar made his way to the Boys Room… Memories!

    As to your being a manang, you really haven’t changed much in some respects. Every time you ask your daughters if they’ve made the beds, I recall when you always asked us to make the beds — and I’d totally ignore you (and I’d fill up my bed with more books and novels, believing that through osmosis, I would get good grades and find my Prince Charming)…

    What I do enjoy is observing your metamorphosis into one of the most incredible, amazing women in my life — so keep moving forwarding, beloved sister! Our adventures are just starting… and I know we’ll keep our families rocking!

    And heck, if you’re turning 51, I’ve just earned my 32nd birthday (remember, 50 is the new 30)… It’s wonderful being 50-something. You don’t take S4%@ from anyone!



    P.S. Noems, we actually didn’t climb over the two front gates. We knew how to put our fingers through the gate and fiddle with the latch. Then, we’d creep toward the maids’ quarters’ window and knock for one of them to let us in… Later on those early dawn hours, Dad would check our door. If the door was locked, it meant we were inside the house. Poor Dad, that was probably when he was finally able to get some sleep…

  4. He actually said that?..( you are like a rock to me?)..hee! hee! hee!..This made me remember something similar said to me by an ex…..ha!ha!…

    I must say though that you haven’t lost any of your charms..though hmmmm…I have a feeling you are even more spunkier now than you were ever before ;>

    And it truly is quite refreshing to hear someone so positive and settled and looking towards the morrow with a bright chirp’..truly inspiring..

    I pray that you always always always have this peace in your heart..this peace that has settled in mine as well just by reading through your posts ( I should really be finishing my training materials coz’ I have a deadline but reading here is more fun he!he!)…

    Happy birthday…:)

    The Lady Prism’s last blog post..I saw Happy Today

  5. Nice to see your photo when you are young…Anyway, I thought you are early 40. I guess now I know your secret…Always feel young 🙂 …I’ll do the same to keep me stay young too. Happy Birthday Noemi…

  6. This is a very honest and positive post.

    Now as to the creeping out of the door, drinking and going home at dawn-though I was the manang of the four of us, I did my share of that.The gate-climbing and pushing the motorcycle silently down the driveway at 2am-one of my sisters did that. The only goodie two shoes was our eldest-except that she had a bf during college and earned the wrath of our dad.

  7. @lorna- maybe not you . hehe. Ugh I cannot stand staying out late. How do you manage?

    @Lady Prism- yes he said I was like a rock. At that time I thought it was so sweet

    @Viona- thanks for thinking I am in my early 40s

    @Lemon- sneaky siblings eh? I never sneaked out. I was not interested to partying out late at night.

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