The year is fast approaching the end. I must say, it was quite the interesting one. I learned that life doesn’t allow you to drive on its paved road for long. Every now and then, it cracks open a pothole. This year, I guess I’ve hit another one of those big ones. 2011 started off with nothing more to wish for. I entered it with the most wonderful friends of my life. The family time was great, school was going well. There was not much to worry about for once. After all the highs and lows of the past few years, I finally found myself on peaceful grounds.

The new school semester came and went very smoothly, I went on a cruise for the first time, something I have always wanted :) I did research during the summer, my “dream” since high school. I met some new, amazing friends and developed a stronger friendship with others. This was also the year that I really deepened my relationship with my mom. Although we do talk whenever we get a chance (when moods are good), for the last half of this year, I’ve learned to spill out my all. And it really feels great to have someone you trust completely, that knows you better than yourself, share some of your burdens with you. Whether it’s bliss or despair. I’m very thankful for her understanding.

But as life would have it, when  things cannot get any better, it naturally gets worse. When mid-2011 turned the corner, my mind was bombarded with confusing, helpless and frustrating thoughts. I was half devastated and discouraged. It was a very heavy feeling that lasted for many months. It felt like wanting to give up, but there was nothing to give up for. There was nothing more to lose. So the feeling persists until it drains you out and even then, it lingers. There are so many things we have no control over. But it’s also true that our attitude can make the difference. This was not the best year, but in a way it made me a lot stronger. When one door closes, you just have to open another one yourself. You drop yourself down, and eventually you have to pick yourself up. Looking back, I still don’t know how I lasted through the fall semester! In that regards, I’m very proud of myself. Things are still not great, but it’s coming to an end and there’s nothing really to complain about. I’m finally getting some closure on all the uncertainty I was struggling with. The unknown is very scary… when you can’t find the answer, it literally drives you insane.

When you say that life is unfair, it’s also very fair. It gives and takes and when you really open your eyes to your surroundings, most things do balance out. At my lowest of 2011, there was a friend I recently got to know that just brightens up my day. As the cliche goes, he made me laugh when I didn’t even want to smile. There were days when I was so out of mood, but somehow he provided the energy to help me carry on. Tough times bring people together. Whether it’s friends, families, enemies even. It brings out the best in people. No matter how bad things are, there is still something to smile about. This is a message that cannot be reminded and emphasized enough. It’s important to know how to be happy, even when you’re sad. It’s possible. I would say this is what 2011 has enforced in me, and I’m glad.

I can’t wait to say goodbye to this year, haha. I wonder what 2012 has in stores (Graduation… the end of the world?) Well, come what may :)

I hope everyone had a warm Christmas, and wishing y’all a Happy New Year!

– R.Kiu


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