So I end my internship at Citibank on Monday.

What’s changed? I’ve grown. As simple as that.

So what’s it been like? Unpredictable and unexpected, as always, as always. I anticipated it to be formal, cold, rigid, professional, exciting only in the educational kind of way. And I was, as usual, wrong. Truth be told, I’m startled. I am startled by discoveries, by long conversations with people, by 15 minutes of prayer, by snide, hilarious comments passed around like a baton in the cubicle, by the array of PowerPoint presentations and Excel documents, by everything. I am startled by the range of things that so transparently cross people’s heads and mouths and eyes sometimes, fleeting, but surely there, by the things people say on and on, by the fact that people can care and appreciate so intensely (whether for themselves or other people), by the fact that sometimes I feel special and blessed, that I can

be more than this now. In every way.

Why did I say I love the taste of finality? Because only then can you savour the bittersweetness of the entire journey. Oftentimes things don’t reveal themselves to you until the very end, when you’re on the verge of finally stepping out into the cold new beginning of another chapter. I sometimes imagine situations in vivid imagery; and I have this image in my head. I’m stepping out of a yellow, dimly lit store into the snowstorm, and I turn back to finally see the bright, blinking, orange sign above the entrance. And as I shiver in my mackintosh, I remember how warm it was inside. And I hesitate, like I want to step in again, but I know I would never–it’s time to weather that storm and leave the warmth behind. But still the reluctance to let go claws at me. It is that in-between shifting of shape and heart, between comfort zone and the scary outside, that you form your most coherent thoughts. Maybe you were so deeply buried in immersing yourself in the little things that it slipped your mind to step back, and question, and ask yourself, the many questions to which you seek the best answers. About people, about life, about yourself and what you want. Unanswered questions about change and uncertainty.

(Sometimes asking brings you to a conclusion. Sometimes it adds to the uproar whirling in your mind, the usual fragments of love and people and ambition.)

About people? They love in the most unexpected and contrasting of ways. Gestures that carry the most weight, that strike you from behind, really do come from the strangest places, the grimmest-looking of places, and sometimes I feel I understand what it means by being ‘in love with life’. I’m amazed by how some people can really find it within themselves to reach out to people and say such kind things, even more so when they seem to ferociously and systematically fall into place, like marbles being thrown at a spinning wheel and hitting the right spokes. Such intensity, too. I marvel at life’s coincidences. God’s plan? Is that what I’m supposed to think?

I prayed before the morning of last Thursday. Because I didn’t want to be selfish, and I really do want the best for Alex, and hence I didn’t want to let my rock-hard stubbornness get in the way of what he deserves. I didn’t want the consequences of my pride to extend to him. I mean, if I were to be punished for being proud, at least let me be the only one, right? Well. So I decided to humble myself. I don’t know what to think. Once I start thinking, thoughts twist and curl all over themselves and finally I end up with nothing but a tangle of monologue.

Whatever it is: hope. Inevitable and dangerous, but inevitable all the same. I can’t wait to let go.