Confession #1: FRAUD
When I was in DLSU, on the same year that I became academically ineligible for the next trimester (kickout would’ve made a more simpler statement), I committed the biggest fraud of my life – I faked the validation sticker that DLSU issues to enrolled students placed on their IDs to be able to go in and out of DLSU to use the library’s internet facilities for chatting (a lame excuse I know but I didn’t have a PC and internet connection back then) to feed my worsening chat addiction.
It didn’t take rocket science to be able to do it: glossy sticker paper and a colored photocopier did the job. I didn’t think that I’d get caught, so I went in and out of DLSU at my convenience. But when one of my so-called friends got caught and squealed and started pointing fingers, I decided that at the investigation, I would own up and take responsibility for my actions.
I got what I deserved: I was found guilty of a major offense in DLSU’s Student Handbook, not being issued a certificate of good moral character, resulting in a very difficult time in finding another school to continue my education.
I eventually found one, and I guess the dean of that school that accepted me admired me for coming clean and seeing the sincerity of wanting to get a second chance. And I made the most out of it.
Looking back at this whole brouhaha, I realized that had this hadn’t happened, I wouldn’t have changed for the better and would probably be entangled in much more complex problems stemming from having gotten away with a sort of criminal act (falsification of stuff). I’m actually thankful that I got caught at that stage and spent time thinking about my mistakes and changing myself to avoid this kind of decision making wouldn’t happen again.
Sometimes, our biggest mistakes initially cause us shame and feelings of regret and remorse. But when you make the most out of them and learn from them, they become your friends and reminders that without them, you may have missed out on things that would have surely made you a better person.