Walking Shoes

One step, two step, two step, three; Step one, step two, step three.

Baby steps, big steps, big leaps.
It’s like watching a baby grow up. First she lies innocently on the bed, eyes wide with wonder and amazement as she takes in everything for the first time. Somehow she memorises your face and eagerly laps it all up.

Then the baby finds her own way to use her own muscles and starts turning around and crawling. They start finding fascination in being able to move on their own and express their emotions through actions. They start interacting with the environment.

A little while later, the baby begins to take baby steps. First she sits in a walker and elatedly rolls all around the house to adorably entice everyone with her infectious smiles and energy. Thereafter when she picks up the skill, she finally stands on her own. She takes one step, two steps, three steps towards you and beams with the brightest smile you’d ever see.

From the little steps she waddles, the baby starts gaining her own energy and begins to walk a little faster. Her feet go pitter-patter all around and leaves tiny footprints on the ground. Those are the marks of development and growth. 

Going through life is taking it one step at a time. Most people go through primary school, secondary school, junior college or polytechnic before they enter university. It’s one phase at a time, one chapter of our lives at a time, one step taken to reach maturity and adulthood. The entire process of learning, of development and of growth requires one to take one step at a time.

I say this because I realise I’m about to step into the phase of being in university. Life has definitely not been smooth, especially not in the past few years, but there has been so much maturity and strength gained from it that sometimes, I appreciate whatever’s happened and how it’s made me into someone like this. Starting a new chapter is not easy because while I want to make new friends and enjoy the last four years of my student life, I’m also hesitant about socializing and becoming busy with school work again. After all, school is stressful and socializing tires me out. There’s an air of malaise that’s holding me back and I’m fighting against it. It’s best to be comfortable in your own skin and I know that too well.

I wonder what adult life will be like. In the past, I could escape from reality with my innocence. I didn’t have to think about relationships, work-life balance, pleasing both sides, or having to plan my own schedules and dare to venture out into the unknown. That was all part of childhood. University means the opposite of what I’ve been trying to shelter myself with. Even if I am innocent, I have to know how the world works and what it’s like. At the same time, I have to abide by my own principles and beliefs and fight against temptations and negative influences. I started realising the truth of this in junior college when everyone around me threatened to influence me to be like them. Emerging as a stronger character then resulted. I’m relieved I didn’t yield to them although the outcome wasn’t entirely desirable either.

Anticipating the next one month of freedom before I go back to school, I want to be able to sleep whenever I want and yet enjoy myself. I want to be able to make plans and spend my free time well. I’d like to try new things before I go back to the daily grind of student life.

I don’t like goodbyes either. Goodbyes always make me sad and make me want to cry. Just yesterday I finished watching a drama series ‘Forensic Heroes III’ and the last episode was so sad that it made me want to tear up. My favourite couple in the show split up because the girl tragically died. It was not the type of ending and goodbye I wanted between them since they had just started out and we’re really sweet together. It wasn’t the way I wanted them to turn out.

Yesterday was also my last day at work. I can call myself officially unemployed but I find that there’s not much genuine joy in it. During the last few moments at work, I was feeling bittersweet. I was glad to be able to get out of that job and having to endure all the nonsense that came with it, but I couldn’t bear to part with the people that I’d met and that I’d fostered stronger bonds with than with my JC friends. They made me feel appreciated and I really treasured that. I also like how I’ve met people I could be more open to and more like myself instead of being closed up and putting up a facade that I didn’t fully enjoy. Clearly, the people I’ve met, especially the promo team, were the best people I’d met in my past six months that I hope to be able to stay as friends with. I’m willing to work for true friendships that share understanding and make both of us happy. Saying goodbye yesterday hence left me feeling forlorn and yet relieved. I was vacillating between my emotions and opinion but in general, I felt happiness because the past six months had been spent well.

It wasn’t the most painful goodbye and I appreciate that. I still clearly remember the most painful goodbye I’ve experienced, with loud wailing and sadness that overwhelmed me and my sisters. I couldn’t believe it back then; I couldn’t grasp the reality of the situation. It was my whole world breaking apart. Until today when someone mentions her, I still feel uncomfortable because it has grown to be like that. I can never feel too at ease with her in the picture and the goodbye from my past has stuck. We would never be the same again and I don’t think what I sometimes secretly hope for would ever happen again. Since I was young, I didn’t cherish it as much as I would have wanted to because I was immature and childish, and I have only myself to blame for that. 

I don’t like goodbyes. I want to say, “see you again soon”. 
So with that, I’ll see you again. Soon.

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