Thursday Thoughts: Stabbing in Taiwan

Honestly, I wasn’t going to post anything for awhile until I revamped my site, etc. but as I was writing a status on Facebook in regards to this tragedy, I realized I had a lot to say and I cannot be quiet about it.

I was born in Taiwan and my family currently all still live there, which is probably why I’m quite affected by it. I first learned about this tragedy from my sister last night as I got home from work. My first response was, if my family was ok. Thankfully my family is fine but my heart goes out to those who have been injured and killed.

This morning, I checked the news for more information about what happened. I read The Globe and Mail article on the stabbing and it just broke my heart to learn that the man has been planning to do something big and shocking for awhile and that it started in childhood. I can’t imagine being the counsellor that reported nothing unusual, how hard it must be on them to know that someone they saw and didn’t suspect to do anything do something. I don’t blame the counsellor. I blame the society which shames those with mental health problems, the society that cares more about appearances then a persons well-being because that is what mental health is about, these people are mentally unwell. If you were sick, you go to a doctor, but in a society that care more about face, when you have a mental health issue, you are either told your crazy or to suck it up or they put you in a corner and hope nobody talks about you.

These are the reasons why we need to talk about mental health MORE. I said all of those things, because being an Asian wanting to learn psychology, I remember being told that I’d become crazy dealing with the crazies like it’s a bad thing. Luckily, that didn’t change my mind instead it opened up a forum of discussion within my family. I am very fortunate that my immediate family is not very traditional and I am blessed to have had the opportunity to grow up in Canada where mental health IS talked about at least more so than in Asia. I don’t know if I would have been able to have come out of my depressive episode if I had lived in Taiwan versus in Canada. To be honest, one of the factors that got me out was my hatred of being forced to see a school counsellor when I didn’t want to and it made me suspicious and distrusting of them. It made me want to change the system and thus, I started studying psychology and got hooked on it.

Back to the stabbing, I’m not sure what made the attacker attack nor am I sure if he had a mental health issue but from what I have read, it sounds like he did and he was calling for help. It reminded me of the story of the boy who cried wolf, we cannot forget that one of those times, the wolf might really be there. I won’t speculate what mental health problems the attacker might have had, but I hope it comes into light for all us Asian’s that it is OK to have mental health problems. Mental health problems aren’t contagious, you aren’t all of a sudden going to have a panic attack because you know someone who has a panic disorder.

So #letstalkmentalhealth

December 31, 2013: to: me

to: me

This year a lot of big changes had happened. I moved back to Vancouver where I grew up. I took courses on counselling. And lastly, to end this year, I have decided to apply for my Master’s in Counselling.

Ending this year with the decision to apply for Master’s, just means that there are more changes to come next year and I am excited. I have a lot of plans next year, not sure how I am going to do them all but I will.

This year has taught me more and more about myself and shown me just how much I have grown since growing up in Vancouver and going to Toronto for University. As much as we stay the same, we still change and grow and that is how I feel I have ended the year.

As Aesop’s Fable once told us, slow and steady wins the race. I could have applied for Master’s earlier but as I have said in the past, I need to do things at my own pace and not someone else’s and that is what I did. I had to come back home in a sense before I took off again. Vancouver will always be home in my heart because this is where I grew up. Knowing that I can make the move to Vancouver on my own, makes me feel more confident in moving elsewhere in the world.

This year may have been a stepping stone but my motivation and passion for counselling has been reinvigorated. One thing I have learned this year is that some times things will work out and some times it won’t, you just have to know when to end it. And when you do, it doesn’t mean that you failed, it means that it just wasn’t working for you. I will never let anything put a damper on my motivation to be a successful counsellor and do the things I love.

This year has been one amazing year, it might be ending on a down but that just means I have higher to go next year.

I have no regrets because the experience of each choice is worth more than living a life of regrets. I believe one can only grow from accepting one’s experiences and learning from them rather than rejecting them and blaming oneself.

That is what I will leave this post at today.

I wish everyone a safe and Happy New Year! Wish everyone all the best in 2014 =)

<3 Sarah

PS: Hoping to revamp my blog in the New Year so watch out for that ;)

November 26, 2013: to: present me

to: present me

Girl, you’ve been slacking!

And yes, this is how I talk to myself in my head. I’ve fallen off the wagon again sort of, but after attending an amazing event put on by the lovely girls of Digitally Yours. I am once again motivated to blog, honestly, to just be part of their lovely community that is soo welcoming and amazingly helpful. Seriously, if you are a blogger in Vancouver, you have got to check out one of their events some time.

Swag from Digitally Yours

Swag from Digitally Yours

Sorry that was off topic. Anyways, originally, I started this blog to be focused on my career but honestly, in order for me to have the quality posts about Psychology and Counselling that I have in mind, I need the time to do the research and with a school that requires finishing a textbook and course in 3 weeks that is nearly impossible. So, what to should I do?

Should I stop this blog altogether? Or should I start posting about other things in my life on this blog as well? I don’t want to lose the focus of this blog but I also need something easier to blog in a way. I had started another blog under the same name on blogspot to blog about everything else but I am wondering how I can turn everything else into something related to my field.

How does going out to eat relate to Psychology and Counselling? How does attending blogging events relate? Can I make everything I do relate to Psychology and Counselling?

I think yes but at the same time, I may be stretching it. To blog all things? Or remain a postless blog?

I guess, we’ll just find out and see.

Lots of love,


October 29, 2013 – to: future me

to: future me

I wonder what you will think when you look back. Will the changes I make today make a difference tomorrow? I often think whether I have done enough to get myself to where I want to be. I wonder if I will end up where I wanted to be. What else should I be doing or changing so that my future will be better? Future me, what would you say to present me?

Sincerely yours,

A note about this post:

I often look back and see how things have affected and changed me but I never think to think ahead and look back to see what I can change now that will affect how I am in the future. When thinking about what I would say to the future me, this is what came up for me.

October 22, 2013 – to: child me

to: child me

Where did you go? Why did you leave me so quickly? I miss you. I miss your fearlessness. You aren’t afraid of anything but me, sometimes, I feel like I am afraid of everything. You walking in to a class where everyone spoke a language you didn’t really know, but nonetheless, you just started playing with everyone. How did you do that? I wish I could do the things you did, trying everything at least once without fear. Now I can barely try something new because I am so afraid. Afraid of what? I am not sure. Sometimes, afraid of failure, afraid of making a fool out of myself or maybe, I am really just afraid of being me. How did you do it? Just be you. You never really cared what others thought, did you? Oh, how I miss you. I don’t want to be afraid anymore. Come back, and save me from me.

Miss you lots,

present me