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No fireworks just yet.

It's been a week since I submitted my thesis at the Department of English and Comparative Literature. It's been five days since I last emailed my final requirement for the last semester of my college life. It's been two days since I found out I also passed in Ateneo Law. Let's just say I'm well into my vacation now, and I have a lot of reasons to rejoice.

Quite frankly, I really am overwhelmed. This was the moment I've been working for the last four years of my life - the part I can finally say "Finally!" and not bat an eyelash, not lose a wink of sleep. This is real now. It's here. College is ending. Things are finally coming to a close, and another chapter is just about to begin. It's hard to resist reveling in relief and excitement.

But four years ago, I was expecting to welcome this rather differently. I thought I was going to be partying with friends, or frolicking in the beach, or flying on a plane to somewhere exotic - something big, something grand, to actually encapsulate my feelings of happiness.

Instead, here I am in my grandmother's house in Batangas for Holy Week, enjoying spending my nights talking to my grandparents instead of staying on the Internet. (There isn't any Internet in the first place, just some... leeching...)

And I could not be more glad. Four years ago, I thought happiness meant noise. I thought happiness meant exiting with a big bang. But if there is anything I learned in the last four years, it's that sometimes the best moments are celebrated in the quietest of ways. It's in seeing the beauty of lying in bed at two in the afternoon, huddled up with only a good book and your pair of eyeglasses, and realizing you have the rest of the day to finish all the books you brought with you, and then some. Happiness is getting a short good night call welcoming the first of the month. Happiness is being at your friend's house with your high school barkada to comfort her while eating Gardenia bread and laughing about people you know, finding strength in just your togetherness.

I don't need the grand stuff to feel grateful, I don't need the loudness to affirm how much I deserve being this happy and contented. I'm thankful, really extremely incredibly thankful, for everything I have in my life right now. No one else needs to see that in high-res pictures on social networking sites for it to be true.

So no, thank you, I can do without the grandeur for now. For now let me thank the universe in my simple, quiet way - and I'll let it give me my fireworks in its own great timing.