Sunday, January 01, 2017 @ 3:43 am
2016 has been an unforgettable year. For all the transitions that I had to go through, I am kind of amazed that I got past everything and managed to welcome 2017 with open arms.

Adjusting back from exchange, final sem and having to deal with finance mod, part-time internship, Japan grad trip, official graduation, transferred to Chinese district, first full-time job, problems at work, struggles in SD, having to resign, brief unemployment, onto my second job at the most unexpected place i.e advertising, Thailand trip with the BFF, lots more family time to end off the year.

One year flowed into the next in a way that I had never expected. Halfway through the year, I found myself becoming resentful of everything that was happening to me. I was simply living day by day, unable to think of the future at all. Whatever that I had idealised had derailed so much I didn't know how to react to the reality of my situation. At one point, I wondered if there was even any use in planning for anything because life is able to throw you to somewhere you have never imagined- sometimes amongst the clouds, other times into the abyss.

To sound a little more dramatic, I thought adulthood was the death of everything until real death comes. However, during the last month of the year, I started to realise that nah, I was really too dramatic about stuff.

Adulthood is in fact the beginning of everything.

Looking back, it is fascinating to actually reflect on the emotional rollercoaster ride that I had gone through because it was a ride that I had never experienced before. A whole new spectrum of feelings emerged, and my perspective on various aspects of life started to shift as well.

Perhaps the Thailand trip really revitalised me because over there, I found that my youthfulness, my zest for life and sense of adventure have all remained intact. If I would like to summon forth this self, I can do so if I want to. This, and knowing that I can pick myself again and again in spite of all the changes and setbacks, have given me a different kind of self-confidence.

My appreciation for my family has grown exponentially as well. It turns out that maintaining family harmony and actively forming deeper bonds with our loved ones are really important because they are one of the greatest pillars of support that Man can ever have. I never really considered myself a family person because for a long time, I have sort of given up on family gatherings and having happy family time. Thats how I came to prefer hanging out with friends. But when I was down, each family member supported me in a unique way so that I could find the strength to stand up again. And they celebrated my milestones and mini progress as well. 

And as my entire family did midnight gongyo together to usher in the new year, I really felt the family spirit. I want to always work hard together with them and for us to create more victories together. 

Something that I also determined during the last 10 minutes before 2016 was over as an important 2017 resolution: to truly see, respect and help to manifest others' Buddha nature. From now on, I need to do everything not just with my heart, but with this conviction in both my own and others' existence of Buddha nature. If I help others, it should not be about me being the saviour and the other person being the victim; that happiness can only be realised if others follow my way that is supposedly superior. We help not to make others reliant on us or to make ourselves needed by others. We should help because we treasure this person; we believe in their goodness and potential in the first place. So our help would be a step towards them eventually securing their own victories. When I chanted in this way, everything felt a lot more natural and joyful.

I'm grateful to people whom I have gotten to know and grow closer with over the year, and to the constants who have been by my side and have seen more of me in this year alone without running away. The entire year was often brightened up by the presence, powerful words and actions of these people.

The year has also been an unexpected journey for the both of us. It has been an incredibly bumpy ride, and there are many things that have remained unspoken. The biggest reason why I have felt this way is because of my refusal to view reality for what it is. Yet as you allowed me to understand your circumstances better, things began to make more sense. Your actions don't seem as foreign as they were to me during the start of the year. But I am still learning to grasp this reality fully and to find a way to move forward. Nevertheless, I am thankful for this bond that we share because I don't think anyone outside of my family has ignited so much human revolution within me, and that you have also impacted me in many positive ways. I want to be even stronger this year so that I can play my part to overcome this otherwise challenging reality.

Oops it is almost 4am now. But anyway, this has been one hell of a ride, and I am ready for another intensive but adventurous, exciting and meaningful year ahead!
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