In retrospect

It’s the time of the year again, where we all look back upon what we’ve done in the past 365 days and come up with resolutions that we are most likely not going to carry out, yet we still do them every single year.

2014 has definitely been one of the most eventful years of my life. I was very blessed to have been granted with two exchange opportunities – a month in Korea and 4 months in the States. I must say that I’m indeed very lucky, as I got to experience living, studying and playing in not just one, but two foreign places.

Being in Korea really ended 2013 and started 2014 great. I clearly remember the last night of 2013, when we all gathered together to watch one of the Gayo Daejuns in the freezing common room below our hostel. I still remember the very last few days I spent in Seoul, running between the stores in Myeongdong to buy whatever I needed, then running to and fro between the post office and our guesthouse, and packing whatever we could into a giant box and shipping 25kg worth of stuff home! I am still very impressed with EMS up till today because the parcel got home before I even flew out of Seoul!

Coming back to Singapore was somewhat depressing because I really enjoyed living in Korea, and I was seriously contemplating a future there – a stable job, a house etc. But I realised how difficult it would be (many reasons that I’m lazy to explain here).

Then in August, I flew to the States and spent a good four months there. In those four months, I think I’ve grown, learnt new things, as well as learnt new things about myself and it was definitely a wonderful experience to have. From learning how to cook, to working out (even if it wasn’t regular and I needed a push) – I was glad that my parents gave me this precious opportunity and I would be nothing without them.

Who knew that I would learn some interesting defense tactics from the self-defense class eh? 

It was a dream, to have been able to travel to Toronto, Florida and NYC. All my life, I’ve been dreaming and anticipating the day that I would go to the Wizarding World of Harry Potter and it always felt so distant. Even when I knew that I was going to America, it never did cross my mind to travel to Orlando, simply because I thought it was going to be impossible. But yet, the impossible happened, and before I even know it, the plane tickets and accommodation had been booked. Everything felt like a dream, a wonderful dream indeed, and I can’t wait to be back again in the future. Going to NYC was a dream as well, because I wasn’t supposed to be travelling there, when my family decided that they were going to travel on their own. Looking back at the photos I took at Brooklyn Bridge, Rockefeller Centre and Times Square, I know exactly how lucky I am.

Besides the school exchanges, I’m also extremely pleased with my results for the year. Knowing that I’m so much closer to my end goal for University really makes me feel accomplished… Even though many say that results is not everything, can I just say that it is everything to me (at least from now till I graduate) because for the first 12 years of my education, I have never prioritised studying nor having good grades. It was simply about doing the bare minimum, scraping a pass, just making it to move on to the next year. Getting out of that phase and being someone that wanted something more really helped me put things into perspective and strive to be better. Even though I’m a little late, at least I’m doing something in my final lap as a student, before I officially step into the working world.

I can also proudly say that I learnt a little of another language, even though it was just a short four month period. And I also attained my Basic Japanese certificate.

Apart from all the good things that happened in 2014, there were also a fair share of minor hiccups, however, I feel that all these are small obstacles that are put in place for various reasons, perhaps to test me, to be stronger and better.

For 2015, I simply wish to be in better health and shape, to be wiser, to be better at handling relationships as well as cutting away toxic people from my life. I also have so much more to learn about life, such as letting things go, and to not let small things (like being compared to others) get to me.

2014 has been nothing short of awesome, and this wouldn’t have been possible without my family, friends and loved ones. You know who you are – the ones who’ve stuck through the bad times with me, who’ve listened to my woes, who’ve pushed me when I needed encouragement. Thank you so much, and I love you guys!

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