For Paul

It’s been a long day, without you my friend.

This song is the perfect tribute for Paul Walker. A good man gone too soon. This Furious franchise isn’t just a movie, they’ve created tradition and family – strong values that can be felt in every corner of the world. The cast aren’t just actors, they’re a real family, and their love for Paul resonates so strongly that it hurts. Call me sentimental, but damn, I cried like no other during the ending scenes because every single line was so fitting. It didn’t feel scripted, it was raw and heart-wrenching sentiments that came from the soul of the Furious family. Even now, I’m not completely over his death and the overbearing rush of sadness that resurfaced from watching the movie. I still remember when I heard about the incident on breaking news 2 years ago. It was so sudden and heartbreaking, a stark reminder that life can end any minute.

This past weekend my hallmates and I had a reunion to watch Furious 7 to honor Paul, and it was one of the best decisions of my life. I haven’t visited Socal in a very long time, and believe it or not, this was our rationale for going. Being reunited with my hallmates made me realize how grateful I am to have them as a second family. Our dorm was small (we had to write essays to get in [total nerds], and not many incoming college freshman were willing to do that) and since the beginning, we all clicked so well.

Our friendships blossomed throughout college and continue on today, many years after we have graduated. Although we may not get to see each other as often as we like, when we are reunited, it feels like nothing has changed. Silences aren’t awkward and our various senses of humor just bring so much diversity and unexpected surprises into the group.

We tend to go on our daily grind and get so worked up in work or life situations that we sometimes forget we have amazing people around us. I forget to feel grateful for having such amazing friends that I can call family, and this trip was a strong reminder that I need to take a step back sometimes and appreciate those that matter. I love my friends, and extremely loyal if you’ve earned my trust, but sometimes life does get in the way and I forget to show them how much I cherish them.

Today, I will take a step back, and remember to see the bigger picture. People add value to life, especially people that you extremely care about. Keep them close, because anything can happen in a minute.

RIP Paul – your legacy lives on and continues to influence so many people


Opportunity Knocks

An awesome friend that I really look up to has inspired me to blog again.

Lunar New Year is on February 19th this year. Since I did not make any new year’s resolutions (pretty sure I was in dgaf mode) for the new year back in December, I’m going to utilize this opportunity to make some for Lunar New Year, or Tet, as the Chinese or Vietnamese people like to call it.

1. Take my GRES – this has been long overdue. I kept pushing it off. I believe we tend to call ourselves “lazy” for not doing certain things, just like how we make excuses to say that we’re too “busy” to make time for certain people or things. However, I think that’s just our minds telling us that this person or thing isn’t a priority yet. If we cared, we’d make time — be it with a person or a goal. I must admit that I just wasn’t mentally ready to deal with the GRE and get back on that study grind. But the time has come and I’m ready now – this is definitely a priority.

2. Find a new job – this has been settled and I will be starting on the 23rd!! I’m a little sad but very excited to leave my current job at the nonprofit. It’s definitely been a great two years there — I’ve learned so much and met so many amazing people that have changed my life. I am definitely not the same person I was two years ago. My work there inspired me to seek opportunities to work for the federal government to expand my perspective in hopes of directing me onto my future career goals. You know you work with a great team when everyone is lovingly supportive of you moving on. I know it will be hard for them when I leave, but I’m also trying my best to slowly exit and transition in a new hire. Ready to start the next chapter of my life.

3. Stay healthy & active – sounds basic, but this is extremely important. Being physically active helps strengthen our mind, body, and soul so much. All I know is that when I exercise or eat healthy, I feel much better about myself, and feeling good affects everything – my relationships, work, and view of life in general. I just really wish I had a dedicated partner I could do active activities with, it would be much easier and definitely more fun!

4. Apply to grad school – YES, all those above goals points to this one main one. It’s about time.