As a kid, I did not grow fond of my name. I was teased as a child and teen for many reasons; Some pertaining to my femininity, others with regards to my physical appearance. That really stunted the development of my self esteem. When I hear my name being mentioned, I didn’t think anything good was going to happen.
Usually followed by less than ideal things, with the rare exceptions of course e.g. winning awards for English in primary or being discussed in things. Not every thing in my adolescent years was shit.
In secondary, things got better for me in my SPM years. I was nominated and elected as secretary of the peer counselling club and that involved drafting, writing and signing paperwork with my name on it. That sense of pride and character development is probably indescribable. I relished in the moments when I had to sign letters, minutes and reports. It’s likely that it attributed to my interest in doing paperwork and submissions.
“Bryan Yap, Secretary”
I relished in the moments when I had to sign letters, minutes and reports. It’s likely that it attributed to my interest in doing paperwork and submissions.
Fast forward to the end of 2016. I love my name. In college, I was quite the talk of the school, be it for my grades or my personality. It was where I developed most if not all of my confidence I have today. Being able to stand up for myself, and for my friends, when I need to. Being able to act as a voice to can be heard.
I am proud of how well I handle adversity, and how I get back up after being knocked down. The fighting spirit that was not evident to me until recently. We all cope in different ways.
I had just attended my ICAN College convocation ceremony, one year after I finished my diploma studies. Throughout the years, I had been consistently the top scorer for my programme, across batches probably. Since the inaugural convocation in 2013, which I had the honour of attending as part of the journalist team, I had already aimed for the academic excellence award for the highest CGPA of a graduating year. It took some persuading from the college for me to attend this year’s convocation but they baited me in with the security of receiving the aforementioned award and an increase in the monetary prize. I guess you could say, sometimes good words can inflate one’s ego. However, I don’t think there is a wrong in that if: 1) You don’t put others down, and 2) It doesn’t affect your future.
When you hear your name being called to received your diploma certificate is enough sense and pride. But when you hear your name being called to receive an award that you’ve been working towards for many years, to be recognised as an intelligent, capable individual, to have your name spoken by juniors and seniors and parents and the college, is a totally different level of pride.
Thank you, ICAN. As much as I detest your sloppy management and organisation, I am grateful for the platform and the opportunity you have given me to grow, develop and excel into the man I am today.
I am not shameless when I say I am proud of myself and where I have reached, and will continue to reach for tomorrow. I had worked hard for it, in my own special lazy ways, I made it.
“Bryan Yap Ju Min”
A name that I would gladly place on my desk in the future, with whatever amazing title I will have. A name I will have etched on my office door. A name I will hear people echoing one day.