DREAMS don’t only visit us during sleep, they also come even when we are wide awake, and we call them ambition. The realization of dreams becomes more impactful and significant when coupled with sacrifice, patience, and perseverance.
Choosing a lifetime career is tantamount to chasing a dream. The chances of making the right decision depends on how enough thought we have put into the entire process of arriving at a well-defined career direction.
For Allan Renier Roque Mendez, eldest among the four offsprings of bakery owners Esmeraldo and Violeta from Bongabon, Nueva Ecija), nursing was a childhood dream. He fantasized a nursing course could save his family from destitution and eventually change their lifestyle.
Education was his parents’ irrevocable priority for their children. Esmeraldo and Violeta jointly persevered to defy poverty, disregarding sleepless nights and taking every stride a leap to bounty.
His parents’ modestly operated bakery was the main source of livelihood for the family and that motivated Allan to strive and dream lofty dreams to help his parents augment the family income especially that their bakery business showed signs of slowing down.
“But my mother, who was optimistic and consistently convincing, persuasively opted for Physical Therapy after having heard that the son of our barrio’s doctor was doing great with his chosen PT degree… aside from the fact that nursing during that time had diminished its demand,” he shared.
A submissive and an uncomplaining son, young Allan followed his mom’s choice and earned his Bachelor of Science in Physical Therapy diploma in 2000 from Emilio Aguinaldo College.
But it wasn’t easy to land a job as he thought it would. A PT slot was as rare as raindrops on a mid-summer day while PT graduates were great in number but jobless and displaced.
“To keep me going, I was briefly employed waiting tables until an overseas agency hired me as a spa attendant in a health club in Saudi Arabia,” Allan fondly recalled. “Being away from my family for the first time for two years was unquestionably a sacrifice but I had to endure and bear the pain for their sake. “
It took Allan six years before finally passing the PT Board after postponing it for a couple of times but with no regrets, for he believes everything will happen in due time.
His being a licensed Physical Therapist initially brought him to the 2006 Asian Games in Doha, Qatar for two months (November & December) followed by a post in the US Naval Base in Africa for seven months (2007), a six-month stint in Florida (2008), in Michigan for six months where he passed his US Board in August 2008, New York for another six months where he obtained his ESL certificate, and finally, in New Jersey from 2009 to the present.
“Providing professionals the opportunity to help patients get back to optimum condition is an opulently rewarding trade for skilled healthcare specialists but one has to consider both the benefits and challenges of being a physical therapist. I, for one, have to stand by what I have chosen and embraced,” he explained.
Choosing Physical Therapy for a lifetime career entails emotional stress, significant physical demands, long strenuous working hours, and continuing education requirements. Since constant research and advancement in the Physical Therapy field is relentlessly ongoing and new developments are being implemented to facilitate effectual patient care and treatment, physical therapists, whether a greenhorn in the field or had been armed with years of experience, are required to undergo new training, update certification, and master the latest systems and techniques to be applied in their practice.
“Admittedly, that was another dilemma I had to face after having been just issued with my job certification…but I had to abide with what the law requires for my job security and longevity in practice,” Doc Allan said, sounding judiciously with some kind of assertiveness.
“Being in the field as a physical therapist is a struggle in itself,” the amiable doctor straightforwardly owned up. “Being personally involved in such energy-draining situation should be deliberately coped up with and every delinquent status unswervingly addressed.”
Every man’s journey is challenged with perils and failures. The greater the challenge, the weightier is the valuation… and the more throbbing the failure is, the more relieving the gain becomes. The sweet smell of success could only be appreciated after a disheartening struggle. Needless to say that one could only savor the truest essence of triumph upon really holding the laurels in the palm of his hands.
“I had several failures in the past that made me almost give up. I was terribly weakened by self-pride and dreaded by obscured forthcoming occurrences. Amid all these I suddenly thought of my loved ones who depended on me for survival and a promised life-changing situation … and everything altered my outlook,” he openly stated sounding as if there was a lump in his throat as he tried to hold back the glistening mist in his eyes.
If the ultimate purpose of failure is to strongly motivate one to do something different to attain his goal, easily then, Doc Allan’s decision to shift his focus from failure to more profitably fulfilling endeavor was right. That precise move effectually stirred his concentration in to the right direction of finding the essential sources and adequate formulary to achieve what he aimed for… for success, according to him, is oftentimes the end-result of failure.
“A couple of times, I was daunted when I failed to realize and accomplish my goal but knowing that nothing worthwhile would come if I merely felt bad and regret things…so I organized my thoughts and fortified my fate. Why shouldn’t I concentrate on things that would keep me moving forward rather than stay idle and sulk in desperation?” he recounted. “To reach the apex I was aiming at I reconsidered my failures and made them the bricks to step on to grasp my goal.”
“It wasn’t failure itself that actually scared me but the mere fear of failing again that held me back,” he came to apprehend. “After overcoming such, I came to realize that I’ve used my failures as learning experiences… and ultimately comprehended that without having persistently struggled after I failed, I couldn’t have succeeded and finally achieved what I aimed for!”
The date May 13, 2012 came as a significant blessing to Allan for it was the very moment he had long prayed for…the release of his Doctor of Physical Therapy (with specialization in Sports) certificate after finishing his degree from Utica College in New York, and then, shadowed by another lifetime milestone: his being a bona fide US resident alien in 2014. It was just serendipitous that he was able to come home to celebrate his mother’s 60thbirthday.
For four years Doc Allan was affiliated with Medical Dynamics until the idea of establishing his own facility came into consideration… a status he had prematurely envisioned. Together with two other trusted colleagues, they put up Silver Lake Physical Therapy & Sports Rehabilitation clinic in Belleville, New Jersey with the primary mission of helping patients reach maximum potential for their individual physical needs and abilities with the latest techniques, patient-compassionate staff, coupled with integrity and veracity.
Well-driven, dedicated, and straightforwardly focused in his field, Doc Allan remains unassuming and self-effacing despite the mounting honors and recognitions neatly tucked under his sleeve like: Best in Medicine (PT) from the American Health Council, NJ Top Doc in Physical Therapy from the New Jersey 2018 Top Doctors, Excellence in PT Specialization in Sports from the American Board of Physical Therapy, and soon a much-deserved Award of Excellence in Physical Therapy from PACCAL.
But wait, if you think the amiable doctor is just all PT and social activities… think again, for Doc Allan is competently gifted with a distinct vocal range that could give celebrated recording artists a run for their money. Just recently he shared the stage with VYNZ-NY Entertainment talents during Ariel Rivera’s US Concert Tour.
Indeed, the roads to failure and success are one and the same but success awaits further way down the road, just accurately what Doc Allan Renier R. Mendez has painstakingly trekked and efficaciously journeyed, a personal experience worthy of emulation.
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