My Failed Backup Plan

I wanted to live a better life. And I think that is more achievable if I live and work abroad. That was my mindset ever since I was young. Now, the first country where I really intended to go isn’t possible yet. So I pushed through with my backup plan: Singapore. A good ladder for my future agenda. It took me several months to finalize my decision. But when I did, there was no turning back. I eventually talked to my family and friends about it, seek advices and built my confidence. I saved money to fund my escapade. I book for a plane ticket and bought things I needed. I prepared my documents. I revised my resume several times until I think it was perfect.

I want to have the best opportunities life has to offer. So I flew to Singapore and risked. I have thirty days to look for a company to offer me a job. Good luck to me. First week I applied to several companies, using my professional working experience as a leverage. I was excited, worried, optimistic and  most definitely determined to win. Fortunately, on the second week some employers called and invited me for an interview. Wishing that they would hire me soon so that I won’t be anxious every time I go to bed. Then, few days later I was contacted by a company and offered me a job. I was ecstatic. It was as if I have to relax at the moment, leave my worries behind. My situation was already taken care of. I could now see places with an ease of mind.

The offer was good. I accepted it. And the people I was with advised me to take this opportunity. And yeah, I only have a limited number of days left so I better take that chance for me to stay longer. I was told that my soon-to-be employer applied for an Employment Pass (EPass) for me. I was hesitant because I have read that it was a pass for people with more experience. Nonetheless I trusted them, they confidently said they can handle it. I need not to worry anymore about it.

I’ve patiently waited for the results to come, checking Ministry of Manpower’s portal everyday. Status: “Pending”. Third week came. Status changed: Rejected. A slap in my face. I asked my employer why and he said that I lacked the required minimum four years of experience for that EPass. They should have known that in the first place, right? I was down. I was so sad. Anxiousness once again bit me. My thirty days was about to end. I didn’t know what to do. But they still have another move: apply a Skilled Pass (SPass) for me. They assured me again that this time it will be ok. So I waited again in vain. I have my doubts but I still have faith. On the fourth week I went to Malaysia. I have to. I was there for a day. Thinking what would have happened if I return. Will they let me in? I was nervous. Then I entered the country once again. I was lucky: another chance was given to me. I was eligible to stay in Singapore for another month. It was like I was born again. Cross fingers, I think maybe this time it will get better. I might just have to experience what other people experienced. I was still optimistic.

Fifth week. My SPass application got rejected again. How unfortunate! Singapore has a quota rule wherein a company has to employ enough local employees before hiring a foreign one. And the company I was with didn’t meet this requirement. They assured me that they can fix it but later on dropped it. I was just wrong to put faith into the ambiguous.

I have to do something. I was still hopeful that I could still turn things around. On the sixth I got another interview with a promising company. Luckily they hired me. Life vest was thrown to me and I have to hold on tight to it. I quickly submitted my documents to them. Making sure I tell them every details of my previous unsuccessful pass applications. Few days later I was told that they couldn’t apply an SPass yet for me as my previous employer omitted my middle name and it has to be amended. At least seven working days for it to change. What? Another hassle?

Seventh week. I was called again by my second employer. They have me sign a waiver for background check by MoM. I don’t know what they have to investigate about me and it will take two weeks to process it. I was devastated. But I believe that I can get through it whatever it was. But why do they have to do that? It was frustrating.

Eight week. My social visit days was about to end. I need to exit again. But this time it was in the Philippines. I don’t want to but I have to. I just have to wait patiently. Still optimistic that I will go back again. So I waited and prayed. Only to find out a few weeks later that I got rejected again because I have questionable qualifications. What does that even mean? It was so vague and I don’t exactly know how to fix it. Unfortunately my employer can’t do anything about it.

A once in a lifetime opportunity was denied to me. All those goals I wanted to achieve this year are in vain. My plan didn’t go exactly as I wanted it to be. I’m annoyed. There I was, thinking that all of these could go fine. But in the end it didn’t. I got rejected thrice. I was already there. I almost had it. It was within my reach. But fate didn’t let it me be glorious. I wanna be victorious but why couldn’t I do that?

Circumstances pull me down even though I tried hard to be optimistic in life. I thought this was the answer to the quote “the best is yet to come”. I felt betrayed. It could have been the precedent to the future I’ve wanted. I could have save money to fund my goals. I could have live a lifestyle I dreamed of. I can’t believe this. I just can’t believe it. I planned. I took the extra mile to do it. I risked. I gambled. And yet here I am again, sitting in a corner, thinking what should I do with my life. I hate it. I hate that I have to deal with the same hassles again. Ghastly traffic, inefficient transportation system, dirty flood, corrupt officials, unjustly taxes, low paying job, uncertain future. Ugh, I thought I could already escape in these dilemmas. I was angry. I was disappointed. Why this has happened? If only my country … well, I might not think about leaving anymore. But clearly, I wanted to live somewhere better.

The odds are clearly not in my favor. But at least I tried.