“It’s okay to admit you’re not there yet,
but that you’re getting there.”
I did it. I gave my speech, finally, on poetry.
To be honest, uploading and sharing this recording makes me feel super embarrassed – I’ve just never been someone who likes recording myself in any form – but I’m genuinely proud of myself for going through with this and doing so well. Dare I say, a solid finish. I’m just… really happy. More than anything else – this is a personal achievement, testament of me coming full circle. I can’t even begin to describe what I feel — relieved, happy, grateful; gosh, just everything.
For the longest time from my first day here at Stanford, I’ve been trying and wanting to express my most authentic self. So choosing to give this narrative – my forte – speech for a class that has given me lots of stress and anxiety, no less – this is me going, “hey, this is me, all me.” This place… does little to my soul, we all know that too well by now, but on that same token, by exerting pressure and whatever else, this place has also challenged me and with that, allowed me to grow.
So hey Stanford, all that you are and aren’t — thanks for the past two years.
The TA who I’ve gotten pretty close to and who has watched and heard me from Day 1 i.e. when I was all over the place (“To be honest, you were a hot mess when you started out,” he admitted to me the other day to which I jokingly went, “GEE THANKS”) to the me now — he actually surprise-hugged me at the end! He was so proud and happy of how far I’ve come. Not gonna lie, I really feel like I hit a milestone tonight. Champ.
And so, here it is! “Can Poetry Save Your Soul?” by yours truly :) I recorded this when I practicing the speech this evening and it turned out okay. I am unmasking myself too, in a way aha, because I’ve only ever revealed myself in writing – now you get to finally hear what I sound like …and only for 8 minutes — I hope you enjoy!
PS This speech IS unscripted! Hence the random errs and grammatical errors here and there… also, accent — oh gosh, I sound so Malaysian! And I have to say, it’s also unreal, creepy even, how similar my voice is to Third Sis…!
Disclaimer: The poem I recited at the end is by Kharla M. Brillo — I’ve featured it before, here.