What if you could live your life all over again? I was thirty-three, clumsy, frustrated with life and terrified of fatherhood. I went years without a steady job, which really ticked my wife off because she was forced to work 12 hours a day so she could give our daughter a better future.
Our apartment was a messy two-bedroom located on the third floor of a very old building in downtown Manila. It was filled with college kids and the landlord was accustomed to haggling over rents. She was fifty-two but looked forty. A skinny woman with short brown hair trapped in a boring, sexless marriage. I'd spent hours in that little burrow wondering if I could steal her away for a weekend.
Not very long ago, I looked at some classy townhouses down south fit for a young professional. I'd dreamed of working in a high-pressure environment filled with great minds. I was sickened and saddened by what I had become, and I was astounded by the speed at which I had fallen.
But I vowed not to give up. I told myself: "Sure it's a rough and tumble world out there...but I will prevail. Sit on your butt around here all day and you'll starve to death." I promised to do something different and reinvent myself. That's what I did.