Forgotten dreams through faith

So my blogspace has been pretty much the only online outlet where I overshare my life stories. Yesterday I leveled up and decided to share a bit on my Facebook with the hashtag #raremomentsioversharemylife. lol.

I spent a good 15 mins staring at the post and proof-reading before hitting ‘post’, stark differences to my wordpress behavior. I just click ‘publish’ without even proof-reading.

I did it because I felt like I needed to share that aspect of my life, also a sorta little thanks post to the people around me who helped got my dance project in church going.

However, my oversharing was only 50% of what really happened so here I am to ramble the full bits.

I remember the exact moment my parents told me that being a dance teacher as a profession was a terrible idea. We were in the car, in the shopping centre carpark basement in 1 Utama shopping centre, I was in the backseat, I had just finished my ballet class of the evening.

Ballet teachers don’t earn sufficient money. That was the main gist I got from the talk. I wasn’t a fantastic dancer anyway, my parents only sent me to ballet classes because they just wanted me to have exposure, a hobby, an experience, not a profession. They said there were far more better dancers than me in this world and I would never be able to reach that competitive environment, “our family isn’t made of athletes, there has been no family history of good athletes”. Basically, there has been no successes in that area, I shouldn’t try. Funny fact was that my dad’s elder sister was a part-time ballet teacher at the time but my dad dismissed it as being just a side hobby… again. They finally agreed that I can do it in the future after I get professional degree and get a professional job and just do it as a side hobby thing like my aunt.

I was hurt. But there was some truth in their message. I wasn’t the best in my class, my teachers would forever critique my technique instead of complimenting it. There were girls built with far better ballerina bodies than I did with the technique quality of pretty much close to principal dancer. I would fail to qualify even to audition for the Australian Ballet, okay maybe I would but I would be kicked out 1st round. Professional ballet training was out of the question.

Reality slowly crept in and I continued the ambition of being a dentist growing up. I then joined a new class where my new ballet teacher, who was an architect by day and ballerina by night, blew my mind. I told my mum, “I’m going to grow up and be like Ms Boon”. She was so boss as, she was the only teacher that saw the gift in me and when my mother wanted me to stop classes to concentrate on my academics, she persuaded my mum not to.

I got my ACL in my teens. Pursuing something of a dance nature was completely out of the question. My dual work-life dreams completely shattered. I took some casual classes in ballet later one but my knees never felt the same again and grand-jetes makes my knees cry instead of joy.

Then the church told me to make a dance group in sunday school. It was years after all those dreams and ambitions, I was over it and completely thrown them away to the extent I had forgotten about it. I was so hesitant at the offer but took it anyway. (mainly also because he announced to the parents that there was a dance group happening before I gave a proper ‘yes’).

Yesterday my girls performed during Sunday Service. The gush of joy I felt when I saw them nailed the moves. For weeks I did not know if it was even possible, 90% of them not from a dance background. Simple steps took them weeks to grasp, my co-leader and I were stressed to the core. But they nailed it on performance day and the feeling was so much better than receiving a distinction in my exam. No joke.

God made it happen.

He remembered that dream I had even when I tucked it away saying it wasn’t possible to reach it again. It wasn’t the professional teaching I had dreamt of but more. It was the sharing of His gift of dancing nonetheless and it made it so much more worth it because I witnessed the growth in every single girl over the weeks of practice. I was given the opportunity to be more than a dance teacher, I became a role model. I felt Gods work through every single moment of the process and it didn’t hit me until performance day, that this had been my dream as a little girl.

I was at the bottom of the stage smiling at the girls and telling them to smile back to the audience, the same way my teachers did when I was younger. “You don’t want the camera to take a sad pic of you dancing”. I realize that I was saying the phrases my teachers use to tell me, this time to the younger girl, my girls. I was living it, the dream of being a dance teacher one day and God made it possible because He knows the yearnings of our hearts. He gave me more than I imagined.

The world can say it’s not possible but if Jesus says yes, nobody can say no. He will make it happen in due course, no matter how long it takes. Have faith.

‘You don’t have enough faith,’ Jesus told them. ‘I tell you the truth, if you had faith even as small as a mustard seed, you could say to this mountain, “Move from here to there,” and it would move. Nothing would be impossible.’” Matthew 17:20




Beyond the cubicle

I’ve been wrestling with myself for the past few weeks if I should continue writing. There had been many occasions where I’ve entered the site with a blank page in focus, gazillions of ideas flow into my mind and I just don’t know where to start… in the end, I will close the page and tell myself to get going with life instead of lamenting on them.

It hasn’t really been intentional avoidance either, the past few weeks, despite being 3/4 of them holidays, I’ve been so occupied with church work and paid work and everything in general. God has provided me so much over the holidays with productivity, but for some reason, I feel like I’m not spending enough with Him. It’s not just that, it’s been the first holiday where I did not start a K-drama on (shockwaves everywhere).

Just this  weekend, I gave 2 Sunday School messages in 2 consecutive days in 2 churches. I’ve never done anything like this before, along with the added activity of cooking within the message (we were doing a kind of Masterchef series for the kids to be engaged with the message). I agreed to do the 1st one as a ‘rehearsal’ for the second day. Everything went as plan, my boss was happy with it and I received pretty good feedback. Mindset was feeling that I can bring on my A game the next day.

Sunday early morning, we got a text that my boss/leader had to go to the hospital for an existing health condition. My head swirled a bit as I hopped off my bed. I was the speaker today, my leader is not around, the utensils will be half gone, oh my…

I rushed my Sunday morning self-prep for church and dashed to the kitchen for all the pots and pans and ingredients for the lesson and message. Not to mention I also had a dance rehearsal before Sunday School with my girls dance group and my co-leader and I were meant to be doing their masks for the dance.

I could feel my heart rate pumping as I drove to church, I could feel the tears welling but I didn’t know why. My car was playing me Kpop songs about ‘happy endings’ that shouldn’t be playing, so irrelevant, but I couldn’t reach my iPod to change the playlist.

I kept repeating to myself that everything was fine, that I will be okay. I regretted the lack of devotions I should be doing during the holidays instead of burying myself in work. If only you did those, read the devotion books instead of the daily verses from the app. You wouldn’t feel this way.

I unloaded my pots and pans, got to my kids church area, I saw my friends. Everything will be okay. Then I realize I left my phone in the car and ran back to retrieve it.

On the way back, it came, I could not catch my breathe and I could my heart pounding. Not Good. fear fear fear and my anxiety attack was back. The toilet. It was the only place I knew that was safe since a child, these things can come and go there without anybody knowing it happened.

There have been occasions during these moments where once I’m in the toilet, I do not come out, it can be hours. It can’t happen, not this time.

Nobody ever knows about what happens to me during a nervous breakdown/crazy attack. It’s one of those terrible weaknesses I feel ashamed of, like I wasn’t strong enough to carry on and suck it up. Of all days, on the day I had to preach about the Holy Spirit, it comes.

I had to tell someone or else the day would be worse than expected. For the first time, I texted, I texted for help. Help came and help came with prayer and I felt God telling me that it’s okay to let it out beyond the toilet cubicle.

Yesterday I gave a message about the gift of the Holy Spirit and how it gave me courage. Yesterday it gave me the courage to step out of that toilet cubicle.

The Holy Spirit knows what to do. Trust. Faith. Guidance. He provides all that.

The cubicle is no longer my sanctuary.