GRATITUDE JOURNAL #3
What I am most thankful for this 2017
THANK YOU, NUVIZ!
They don’t know it, but this is the second time the Nueva Vizcaya Football Club (NuViz FC), has saved me from serious depression.
The first time was in 2007-2008, when I was battling grief and suicidal tendencies after my father died.
This time around, they helped me through my depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), coming home from the UAE.
There were only a few left from the original team that I knew, but the new faces had the same NuViz spirit in them.
My hometown football team is a mix of oldies and youngsters, from different classes and gender. They have struggled with funds year after year, but their passion for playing has kept them alive for over 3 decades.
THANK YOU, KIDS
Sometimes, some of these kids would wait in my street just to get a ride with me to the field. I felt their enthusiasm for the game taking roots and growing.
We have so many promising children.
THANK YOU, LADIES
This year, I tried resurrecting our Ladies team, in hopes that young women would find a safe place to learn discipline and teamwork, to grow emotionally, battle insecurities and discover their worth.
For the first time, we were able to form a team and travel outside the province for a futsal tournament. We lost but the experience was worth it.
Because of this, I was able to convince my younger sister that football is the most beautiful game of all!
THANK YOU, SPONSORS
I appreciate all the sponsors who supported Operation #KickOffToNuViz. Your donations have gone a long way.
THANK YOU, NVGCHS
One of the highlights I had this year is the privilege to partner with my Alma Mater, Nueva Vizcaya General Comprehensive High School.
Thank you for opening the gymnasium for our futsal trainings and games during the weekends.
THANK YOU FOR THE 1ST VIOLETOLOGY CUP
#BethStrikes18, my sister’s birthday debut was a success because the team went all out in support.
We had 70 players, 20 organizers and a whole bunch of energetic spectators!
Thank you to all the sponsors who said yes to my short notice. I wish you could have seen the smiles on their faces that day.
I am challenging others, especially our alumni players to fund or initiate friendly tournaments like this. Nothing beats the joy and satisfaction in seeing the younger generation play with intensity and savor their wins.
THANK YOU FOR ALL THE GAMES
Rain or shine, from barangay courts to the Clisoc field, from the narrow streets to Capitol lawns, from Lamut to Tarlac, you made it happen.
THANK YOU FOR THE COMPANY
It’s the after-game hang-outs and travels that made my days worth waking up to.
THANK YOU FOR THE LOVE
What I’m most proud about this team is the friendship that extends outside the field. Because of its long history in a small town, everyone takes care of everyone. The pioneers (I call them The Thunders) make the extra effort to connect and pass on traditions to the next generation of players.
They are like family who support each other in time of need – from donating blood to volunteering as driver, from grief support to love life counseling.
THANK YOU FOR THE FAREWELL
When I was about to leave for New Zealand, they surprised me with tear-jerking farewell messages.I felt so much love and for a moment even considered not leaving at all.
I believe in the philosophy of grassroots football: football for all, in their own environment, whatever their age, sex, physical condition, skin colour, religion or ethnic origin.
I hope someone would care enough to make this a continuous reality for NuViz FC.
I am not an exceptional player. All I have is this unexplainable pleasure and satisfaction when I play.
I am grateful that somehow, in the most unexpected way, God ushered me into the football world.
He knew this game will help me stay alive for my many troubled years.