“I can accept failure, everyone fails at something. But I can't accept not trying.”

He’s no Michael Jordan but listening makes one look at him taller than the 6’6” Bulls shooting guard. Though not alien to the game, Solever G. Fajardo seldom plays basketball. Entering first year high school at 17, he just could not afford to tarry with precious time. He has another reason though. Sofronio, his father, suffers regular bouts of arthritis that Solever has to work young for the family to earn their keep. He realized at a young age not to rely on fate alone. He also realized that he liked numbers. He excelled with numbers winning him top honor in Math contests while in high school.

No number, however, can quantify how much Solever lacked materially. Only his two sisters and Pacita, his mother, complemented what his father inspires him to keep on trying – the love of a family. His life has been one trying after another. He tried continuing Grade 6 and passed. He tried studying always in the dark and learned. He tried providing for the family and providing he did. He tried high school and graduated in 2004 top of the class in Cawayan National High School. He always tried because life has not guaranteed him anything more than the mere act of trying.

soleSolever tried to qualify for the Municipal Scholarship Program. He did not just pass; he topped the 24 other hopefuls. Because he liked numbers, numbers he did use to chart his career path. This time he failed but he just could not accept failure. He asked the scholarship board for him to try treading another path. Like Dorothy’s yellow brick road, it brought him home. This year, Solever is a proud graduate of Bachelor in Secondary Education, major in Mathematics from the University of the Visayas – Dalaguete Campus. This 25 year young man cannot just get rid of numbers! His brick road has never been smooth though, but the support Solever enjoyed from the scholarship program eased his rough sojourn.

His journey of trying would finally be over. His success, however, has not been without trying. “Gusto ko matabangan ang akong pamilya.” Who can blame Solever for saying so? His future now is sure as 9 the square root of 81, as sure as parallel lines not intersecting and that the square always has four equal sides. But just as the fourth quadrant can be very negative, life can move from right to left, up then down. “Basta maningkamot lang g’yud. Dako kaayo ang akong pasalamat sa scholarship program.”

…and like geometric line that stretches to infinity, Christopher’s life now is full of endless possibilities.


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