There was a time in my life, actually not so long ago, that I thought I had it all figured out… or at least that’s how it may have seemed. I had a great job, amazing friends, an incredible family and it seemed like I knew where I was going in life. However, in the back of my mind, there was always a little something at work. Something that kept me thinking that things weren’t quite right. Something that was telling me that there was something missing. Something that made me question my long-term goals. And, in so doing, I knew that as great as things may have seemed to be, that life just wasn’t for me. I needed to make a career change. I needed to fulfill certain ambitions. I needed to follow my heart. And that is how, after a bit of soul searching, I ended up moving to Paris and attending ESSEC back in 2012.
Today, after completing my MBA and moving back home (whether it’s a temporary or permanent move we have yet to find out), I find myself in a similar predicament. While I have crossed out one item from the bucket list of my life, I have yet to find that career shift that will render me happy. As mentioned in The Waiting Game, I do now have an idea of what my “perfect job” is, but that hasn’t prevented me from continuing my soul searching in the meantime. And there are moments that I feel a nudge, or sometimes a pull, toward a certain direction. It’s quite amazing, actually, how when you let your instincts guide you, you often end up in situations that can shape your entire future. The universe really does have a brilliant way of bringing everything together when it’s least expected. Continue reading “The Story of My Life”
There is nothing more frustrating in an MBA graduate’s life post-grad than sitting around waiting to find that “perfect job”. Trust me, I speak from experience. This has been my life as of late: Job search, job search, application, gym, random venting sessions with friends from class, gym, job search, application, interview, brief moment of euphoria when you finally think you’ve found “the one”, gym, waiting for call-back, waiting for call-back, unhappy with outcome of call-back (for a slew of random reasons which are too complicated to get into here), job search, networking with industry professionals, pig-out session with friends while whining about looking for the perfect job, gym to burn off pig-out session intake. Rinse and repeat. And there you have it. My life.
When last we spoke, it was just a few hours prior to my graduation and I was rambling on about how monumental the day felt. Since then, I have officially become an “MBA” (yay!), travelled through the south of France (and fallen in love with Nice), attended my very first football (or soccer, depending on where you are) match in Barcelona with my dad, been a “tourist” in Paris, won some (and lost some) at the Prix de l’Arc de Triomphe, witnessed magnificent fireworks along the Seine during Nuit Blanche and become enamored with the Chateau de Chantilly (and the city in general). All the while, I’ve also been trying to spend time with my friends and family, packing like crazy and playing host to my sister & parents.
I wish I could show you all of the pictures or tell you all of the stories from my trips and past few weeks… they were honestly some of my favourite moments. Seeing the look on my dad’s face when we told him that we were surprising him with tickets to the Barca game was priceless, as was seeing my mom get so excited and have so much fun at Longchamp (and winning our bets didn’t hurt either!). And then there were the moments lying on the beach near Nice with my sister, or taking in the unexpected beauty of Marseille. And finally, exploring new aspects of Paris, seeing the city of lights from a different angle and witnessing the buzz of energy that comes from Fashion Week were all moments I’ll never forget. As my sister says, I have a flare for being melodramatic… and while it may seem like I’m writing a eulogy on my life in Paris, it’s I guess my way of just accepting that I have to say good-bye (for now).
It’s a sad world when you have to admit that all good things must come to an end though. The last few weeks have been so great that even though I knew they were possibly my last in Paris, I didn’t really have time to let it sink in. So it’s finally time. Time to admit the truth. Time to face the harsh reality. My time in Paris was temporary. It’s over now. I’m heading home. In fact, I’m writing this very post while in flight (and flying over Quebec… so technically I’m already back in Canada). I guess while I kept saying that I didn’t know what I was going to do with my life, I never really thought that what I was going to do was leave Paris. And don’t get me wrong, I love Toronto and I am super excited to be going home, and I always had every intention of eventually returning home… but I guess the key word there was the “eventually”. Unbeknownst to me until just a few days ago, I had become used to calling myself a Parisienne, as snobby or superficial as I know that must sound. Continue reading “All Good Things Must Come to an End”
Just a few days ago, I sat on this very couch typing away about how boring my life has been as of late. And today, here I am again, writing about how eventful life has been in the past few days (and will continue to be tomorrow). Since my last blog post, I had my very first (and definitely not last) Berko experience, enjoyed afternoon tea at the Bristol, attended a fabulous cocktail party, finally picked up my parents from the airport, welcomed my sis & her bf back to Paris, visited an awesome outdoor exhibit and attended 2 “small” (meaning a minimum of 15 people) family events. The party continues tomorrow with my ESSEC MBA Luxe graduation ceremony at the Bristol, another family event on Tuesday and a family trip to the South of France & Spain later in the week. Needless to say, the days of boredom seem to be behind me.
I can’t recall whether I ever mentioned this in a previous post, but I can still remember the graduation ceremony of the previous class, just one year ago. We had just started our program and were invited to attend the graduation ceremony as one of our first “networking events”. In attendance at the ceremony were several industry professionals, alumni and, of course, the graduating class. As we watched the graduating class go up, one at a time, to receive their diplomas, I actually teared up (yes, I know, I’m a bit of a sap) as I thought that this was going to be us in a year. It was a bit overwhelming, to be honest, because of all the emotions at the time – excitement, fear and anticipation. And now, in just 15 hours, it’s actually going to be our turn to dawn a robe and hat, and walk away as an ESSEC Alum.
The last couple of weeks have left me a bit silent. Unlike the other times when I just go MIA for a while because life is too busy and I have no time to write, this time it’s been somewhat the opposite. Life isn’t all that busy, but there really hasn’t been much exciting stuff happening to chronicle here. My life these days has consisted of daily trips to the gym, museum visits, job hunting, seeing friends and going to Noisy-le-Grand weekly to watch Secret Story with my cousin (I know, I know, it’s a trashy reality show – but it’s SO addictive. Seriously, my Friday nights have gone from nights of partying, to nights of sitting in the living room of my aunt’s place, eating delicious home-made ice cream and trying to guess who’s going to get kicked out of “the house”).
Anyway, so all that being said, a few days ago something super exciting actually did happen. My sister and her boyfriend came to visit! 🙂 Sadly, they were only here for a day and a half (though in that day we had an amazingly fun picnic) before heading off on vacation (to which I tried to invite myself, but my sister quickly nixed that idea). They’ll be back this weekend though, along with my parents (whom I haven’t seen in about 9 months and I swear that everytime I think of them coming to Paris I feel like jumping up and down). I’m SO excited to see everyone… and the reason they’re all here is for my GRADUATION! That’s right, graduation… I can’t believe it’s already here. The festivities start this Friday with a cocktail party which is organized by the Alumni to both congratulate us and welcome the incoming class. Then, Saturday morning my parents get here, and Monday is the big day. I’m really excited (in case you can’t tell). It’s going to be an amazing day… I’ve bought this gorgeous new coral BCBG dress that I can’t wait to wear. I also cannot wait because on my desk at the present time is a pretty wrapped up box which I apparently am not allowed to open until Monday, courtesy of my family. It’s part of my graduation gift. However at the present time it’s more of a torture device. Seriously, like imagine waking up every day to see a beautiful gift that you’re not allowed to open. TORTURE!
One year ago today, I was celebrating (and also mourning) my move to Paris with my friends at my Going Away Party. At that time, I was convinced I would be moving back to Toronto, while my friends (always the wise ones) were telling me that they were sure I’d end up somewhere else in the world. Tonight, I’ll be “celebrating” the uncertainty in my life while I go out with new friends I made over the past year. Sometimes I wake up and feel like I’ve slept through the entire week, month and even year. Time seems to be passing so fast, I can’t believe that it’s already nearing the end of August. But then, at the same time, sometimes I feel like an entire month has passed by when it’s not even been a week (yes, I am aware of the fact that I’m contradicting myself here).
2:22am. That’s the current time, and by force of habit it’s hard for me to stop looking at the clock. I remember when I was little, one of my cousins used to tell me that when the clock had all the same digits (i.e. 2:22 or 11:11, etc.), I could make a wish and say a little prayer 3 times, while looking at the clock without blinking, in order for the wish to come true. Unfortunately, I don’t actually remember any of the wishes I ever made so I’m not sure if they ever really came true (odds are that I wished for a new Barbie doll though, and I’m pretty certain that came true! 😉 ). It’s funny, but even now when I look at the 2:22 on the clock and don’t make a wish, somewhere in the back of my mind I wonder if I’m letting the chance for a wish to come true pass me by.
Today was one of those days that I just wanted to stay home and do nothing. I had great hopes of sleeping in, reading in the park (the Tuileries really is one of my most favourite places) and going for a leisurely stroll along the Seine. Of course, none of that actually happened. Instead, I woke up to my phone ringing early in the morning, after which I tried to go back to sleep. When I eventually did actually get out of bed (feeling UNrested I might add), I ended up spending the majority of the day returning phone calls and FaceTime-ing.
It’s probably not a huge surprise that I’ve been spending a lot of time in my own mind these past few weeks. As I think I’ve probably mentioned, being officially done school (woohoo – I can’t believe I’m done my MBA, crazy) and not having a full-time job right now has left me with a lot of time to spare. Though I admit that it’s not been without its share of ups and downs (as my friends can attest to with emails of frustration followed by Instagram posts of having the most amazing time), the time has actually been nice. After all, when else in life will I really have this much time of “freedom” (yes, I know, you’re probably hating me right now… but seriously, it hasn’t been without stress).
As a follow-up to the last post, I really wanted to do a sort of photo look back at my favourite moments over the last year. This turned out to be far more difficult than I thought it would be (I suppose this is normal when I take a gazillion pictures of everything!). I have spent pretty much the past 2 days going through photos from the year, trying to narrow it down to a manageable level. Finally, with what I think best represents the most memorable moments, here is a little photo collage of my favourites (and please don’t make me ever do this again because I swear I will end up with 150 more pictures than the 55 I already have).