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Cheerleader

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This outfit that I’m wearing today gave me so much high school feels. I loved dancing when I was a kid—I still do today but, well, my time has passed. I loved it so much that when I got into high school I decided to come out of my shell every night after class to join our batch’s cheering squad. It was the only place where I felt I was accepted and needed. My then-scrawny, tiny figure was perfect for lifting and throwing stunts, and I remember not feeling any ounce of fear whenever I stand on my teammates’ palms and shoulders or whenever they throw me in the air.

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I loved it, or should I say, I lived for it—I felt like I was on top of the world every single time. The high I felt during practices and competitions were magnified whenever we take home the champion’s trophy. We were fearless, from our stunts down to our costumes. Despite my dark complexion, I didn’t mind wearing mini skirts and midriff-baring halter tops. IDGAF, AMBIDEX won twice in a row; we were a force to be reckoned with.

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Indeed we are. Until today, students from younger batches would tweet me and tell me they know who the AMBIDEX are, that we are legends in the school—not just in sports but also in academic competitions. It feels great when they say that because that means we left an indelible mark at Naga City Science High School. Afterall, nobody wants to be forgotten by their own alma mater.

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Years later I coached my own team of cheerleaders in the school where I first worked, Ateneo de Naga University High School. I still remember how ruthless our trainer was, I was too but a little lenient. My girls and I would make routines, invent cheers, and decide on their uniforms together—and this teamwork eventually led us to bagging the first place. The girls (+ 1 boy) were so happy, and I can only imagine how much that win boosted their self-confidence.

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Cheer and dance did wonders for my self-esteem; I will always be a supporter of the sport.

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Runway Dreams dress | Forever 21 purse | Faridez shoes | Persunmall bangle | Ring from bazaar

Taken in timer mode using a Canon AE-1 film camera with Kodak Pro Image film

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