À Bientôt

My 8th year in Toronto has come to a close, and what a year it has been. There isn’t an adjective I can think of that could do it justice.

This was the year I ‘stepped out’ again, immersing myself in extra-curricular activities and opening my heart to new friends. It’s funny how agreeing to a simple request made a year ago by Hui Jun & Hui Mei to be the MSSA Chair could have given birth to such an eventful year. I still remember them standing in my living room, asking me about it. The invitation had come at a time when I was feeling I had been too insular in Toronto, and it seemed like a great opportunity to get more involved. I said ‘yes’ on the spot – something I almost never do. It was a leap of faith then, but one that I will never regret making.

What does it mean to lead? What does it mean to follow? What does it mean to bring love into everything I do, even to a committee and/or club? What does it mean to give such that the giving brings joy and not pain to the one who receives? What does it mean to open my heart to a friend and still protect our unique identities and inner-fire? What does it mean to reach out while having my own feet firmly rooted on solid ground?

I realize now that these are questions I had been grappling with for as long as I could remember, even without realizing it. It has taken this year, a year with more joy and pain than I’ve experienced in years, for me to be able to reflect deeper on these questions. ‘Like gold that is tested in fire’… It is when it feels the most painful, the heat most unbearable, that the most work is being done within me. If I stay in the furnace, I will be refined and become purer gold. This has been a ‘furnace year’ for me…still is… and so much has had to come together for it to happen, such prices have been paid, that I am determined to let it bear fruit.

Though I leave for Singapore tonight, the lessons from this year in Toronto will remain in my heart and I will continue to reflect and grow from them even as I reconnect with ‘the other half’ of my life back home.

Here’s wishing all who are remaining in Toronto a fruitful and wonderful summer! :)

Five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
How do you measure, measure a year?

In daylights, in sunsets, in midnights
In cups of coffee
In inches, in miles, in laughter, in strife.

In five hundred twenty-five thousand
Six hundred minutes
How do you measure
A year in the life?

How about love?
How about love?
How about love? Measure in love.
Seasons of love. (Rent: Seasons of Love)

This is not good-bye. And so…
Bonne nuit et à bientôt mes chéres amies!

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