short of expectation

i’ve been really down, stressed and frustrated as of late. there were multiple times when i just couldn’t keep it together inside. i feel the frustration has been eating me alive so i decided to open up part of my story

all my life, i’ve been an underachiever, always falling short of everyone’s expectations. i can’t remember the last time i felt like i succeeded and made someone proud

in highschool, i was always living in the shadow of my brother who would get ninety nine percent in math. as an asian kid, getting an A in math was never enough. i rewrote my provincial because it was not an A of respectable calibre. i get it, i’m nowhere near smart; i don’t get straight A’s like most asian parents wish for. i graduated and went straight into post secondary as expected. in university, my path was basically chosen for me based on process of elimination of what my parents didn’t want me to be. they got it all mapped out for me – i applied for environment design program, an honors program meant for architecture. i graduated from that and was expected to be an architect, but i failed to get into the masters program which accepts forty eight students out of the four hundred odd applicants

growing up, sports was something i loved dearly and what came to me naturally. i excelled in swimming, so much that two instructors granted me to skip two levels. i went on to take all lifeguarding courses before i had to wait until i was sixteen. i didn’t pick it back up when i turned sixteen which made my parents outraged. i went on to hear about it for the next six years. my parents enrolled me in skating and i did well to skip the ‘red’ level which was the first level. i didn’t enjoy skating much so i never continued onto figure skating. i was on the tennis court as a ball girl ever since i could remember. soon after, my parents enrolled me into lessons at indoor tennis facility where i played a few tournaments. at the crossroad where players started specializing and turning pro, my parents asked if i wanted a coach. i turned it down because i didn’t think i could be one in a million that turns into a tennis star. i also played basketball starting in elementary school, but my parents forbid me to join any school teams. i finally convinced them to let me in highschool and made team from grade eight to ten. however, it came to an abrupt halt after three severe ankle sprains had me on crutches and one major career-ending knee injury. my doctor did not allow me to take PE in grade eleven. i worked hard at physio and was cleared for PE twelve and tennis team, but still not the basketball team

taekwondo had it’s ups and downs but it did shine at some point. i started as a white belt thinking i’d have some fun one summer. one summer became many summers. in the early stages as a yellow-green belt, i would half-ass thinking matching the green belts’ levels was adequate. it turns out it wasn’t; my instructor wasn’t having any of that and lectured me on how it was unacceptable to not use my full potential. that next promotion test, i was the second student in school history to skip a belt level. i started competing and that changed everything. i became an instructor, a coach and eventually the branch head instructor. though there’s glory, there’s also a lot of burden and stress behind the scenes. from white to black, there’s been many bumps and bruises, breaking my foot three times enroute to my third dan today. i carry a lot weight being in the position i am in today and i feel no matter how much i put in, it is never enough. being in the position that i am, i feel obligated to continue onto my fourth. if i don’t grow, how will my students grow? how will i keep my dreams alive?

tricking is something i picked up partially because i have the aspirations to compete again, but also because i liked it. though i’m neither talented nor daring enough like some others, i still try to do what i can. i have moves i need in order to have any hopes of competing again, along with a list of tricks i want to learn just for the sake of it, but progress has been slowed by my foot and the various injuries i often have. i tried to stay patient all this time, but my patience has a limit and i’m afraid it’s running low. i’ve been extremely frustrated recently because i still have to hold off on things i really need and time is ticking. little do people know, i often beat myself up when i don’t get something that is seemingly so easy for somebody else. i know i’m not a natural at this, but i’m hoping my hard work pays off. until i know the severity of my foot injury, i’ll still be pushing hard – even if it means being on one foot. i’m no stranger to pushing the limits and disobeying commands, pushing and playing through all sorts of injuries is something i’m known for and that likely won’t change. my physio, chiro and kinesiologist knows me well enough that very little will stop me

i started lifting weights for rehab purposes, but soon grew to love it as something that compliments my sports and enhances my performance. i picked up olympic lifting four years ago only because i saw a trainer working out and thought it looked cool. for a couple years, i would always stay within my comfort zone just enough for maintenance. for that reason, i plateaued lifting the same amount of weight and wasn’t making the weight my kinesiologist expected. i remember disappointing him every time he checked on the weight i pushed, be it squats, deadlifts, bench, rows, pullups. it wasn’t until the beginning of this year i got serious about it and started an olympic lifting program to improve my technique. through the program, my technique improved significantly and my strength really took off. only recently, i made a couple personal bests, but even those numbers are not quite the numbers that’s expected out of me. if i can one day exceed any of those expectations, i wouldn’t rule out a future competition

it’s really been a lot of back and forth with constant struggles. i know for a fact that my mom is disappointed i have yet to settle for someone. i’m disappointing them because it seems like i have no urgency to get into another relationship after being removed from one. maybe the previous brought bad experiences and many disappointments and the last thing i want is to get into one that will not make me happy. coming as a joke or not, it bothers me every time i’m being badgered or questioned about my choice; i’m more than positive of my answer and i need not to prove it to anyone. i can only apologize for the disappointment that it hasn’t happened yet, all i know is it’ll happen when the time is right and i meet the man of my dreams

my life has been far from a walk in the park and it’s been a rough stretch that’s consumed more of me than it should have. lately, it strikes me that i have more often than not fallen short of expectations. i’ve failed many people that had any hopes for me and i’m deeply saddened to have failed in so many regards. it seems i can’t ace any test given to me, but i can only promise i’ll keep trying. i know for a fact i’m not a person that settles for any less than what i want. in the meantime i’m just trying to keep it together

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day 2125 – wimbledon tour

i’m ecstatic to have the chance to tour and walk on the same grounds as many of the tennis greats. i get to be in the centre court, practice courts, broadcasting station and press conference rooms where i can freely take photos. it’s definitely one of the top priorities on this trip and will likely be a top highlight when it’s all said and done. i wish i could take my parents to see this lawn tennis centre. the least i could do was take back a souvenir for both. also wished i could spend more time here, but other sightseeing duties call. hope one day i can afford to be a ticket holder of this grand slam

day 1841 – small gestures

i do a very thankless job where i’m always expected to do things right. it’s one that does all the work in the back end and allows others to shine. usually i don’t get called out unless something isn’t done perfectly or when something goes wrong. this is one of the rare times i do get noticed on a personal level. this card i received on my desk definitely put a smile on my face. the gift is a small gesture, but one that makes me believe i do my best to service others

林奕匡 – 有淚多好

it’s a good song, but a sad one. a song that looped and looped over hundred times in my car and on my computer because it speaks for my heart. i can’t explain and don’t want to try to explain why tears just keep rolling uncontrollably. all this is just wreckage to my soul, and i’m ready to pull out to end the misery. every day i tell myself that this will all be over some day. i guess i’m just waiting for the moment to speak and get it over with

day 1370 – handling business

the scope of work i do is often done behind the scenes and not always seen, but i take pride in what i do and doing my job well. my manager shared something with me today that i never expected. apparently my coworkers have been impressed with the way i’ve handled myself and quietly gone about my business. it’s great to be singled out and appreciated for what i do. i think i’m holding myself fine and i’m more than happy to step it up when opportunity arises

2015 at a glance

pulled together snapshots of some of my favourite and not so favourite moments of 2015. through this unfiltered eye, it pieces together my year and the things that took place behind the lens. it was 365 days of ups and downs, but having survived it all made me realize and learn more about myself. i have grown on many levels, taken strides to step out of my comfort zone and in the end, all that made me a better and stronger person more readied to tackle greater challenges. i will take all the lessons learned and head into the new year with the mindset of continuous progress and self improvement. 2015 had it’s moments – building the foundation and laying out the backbone necessary for success. i have a good feeling 2016 will be a year of many breakthroughs and personal achievements

resolution series: [fourteen] personal space

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having a busy schedule is good because that means i am always productive and proactive. my schedule is usually packed seven days a week, twenty four hours a day, and often needing more time in a day to squeeze everything in to accommodate everyone. it can also be very tiresome because i am always stepping on the gas pedal as hard as i can dashing from one errand to the next. but is accommodating and meeting everyone’s needs my top priority and the sole purpose of living? sometimes, i do wish to have more time for myself away from the rest of the world. aside from taking care of business in the public scheme of things, there are also planning, thinking and number crunching tasks that goes behind the scenes that often gets overlooked. these things tend to be handled in my spare time, which so happens to be time sacrificed from eating and sleeping. i like my personal space and enjoy time alone but it’s very hard to come by. when i am alone, i am able to sit there in silence and reflect on things while putting things into its proper perspective. i find being at the gym gives me that sense of privacy where i can plug in my headphones and shut off the rest of the world. the same can be found when training at taekwondo outside of class time, when all those annoying people don’t interfere at all the wrong times. it’s one of those moments that i will do my thing so don’t you dare come into my bubble while i am in my zone focusing on myself