“It was sunsets that taught me that beauty sometimes only lasts for a couple of moments, and it was sunrises that showed me that all it takes is patience to experience it all over again.” ~ a.j. lawless
As I prepare myself to sign off with my last AP Hunni blog, I ask myself- what do I write about? How can I inspire and leave a mark? But honestly, I don’t know if, as Malika, I have anything left to say. So maybe instead I can attempt to help you understand the condition of my heart.
Three years ago, I sat in a 10-1 English classroom watching a film engulfed with symbolism of Adam and Eve- I couldn’t help my excitement, turned over to the boy sitting beside me and tried to explain my thoughts. Quite frankly he didn’t care. And so for the next few days as we watched the film, I stayed after class to share my opinions and new-found learnings with my teacher, having conversations that stretched over the span of multiple lunches. Very quickly, we understood that 10-1 wasn’t the place for me. There was no stimulation of thought or care towards the art we were studying and it limited my possibilities as a writer and a thinker. So my teacher and I, did what we thought was best; I enrolled myself in AP for grade 11.
And that is truly where my journey of self-growth and understanding began. I spent my summer reading the AP students’ critical and personal responses. I spent days and days overthinking my decisions, as I realized my writing was not nearly as good enough as some of the work I was reading. So I psyched myself out, promising myself to go the extra mile to prove I was capable to be in that environment.
And so day one of grade 11, AP English arrived and I realized I was not in a classroom with students, I was in a room with thinkers, readers- intellectuals. For the first few days, I just sat listening in awe. I remember hearing Siddharth, Vanessa, Megan, Queeny, Sara, Ali all share their wise insights and I couldn’t help but reflect upon all of the “bred crumbs” that had fallen from just a few in-class conversations. Inspired by these thinkers, I found myself a home, where I learned how to articulate my thinking and synergize with the brilliance of others. I’d found a family in Nilave, Joel, and Siddharth as we spent the semester debating, conversing, and inspiring one another every single day.
I remember all the conversations I had with Hunni about living in grey rather than black and white, as she guided me through my various stages of personal development. She pushed me every single day to read, analyze and reflect- to create myself through learning about the world I live in.
And so, through all of the conversing, learning, crying, and laughing- semester one of of my AP journey came to an end. I was about to write my personal response exam in Hunni’s room (a complete fluke since they didn’t have room for us, AP’s, in the gym) when the twelves came by to yet again motivate and inspire us. And right before I was to write, Siddharth came by and gave me a huge bear hug. Caught up in emotion, in the goodbye, I remember tears of gratitude falling from eyes as I began to write my piece.
Fast-forward past my summer adventure to my second and final semester of AP. I had just come back from the most life-changing summer and without much time to process I was back in school- back to routine. But the thing with AP is you’re constantly reflecting as an individual as you connect with different texts, authors, and poets from around the world; therefore, I was given the opportunity to process my summer through my educational pursuits in AP.
This semester I had the great fortune of being a twelve paired up with Rehman, Victoria, Kelley, and Judy. And I cannot possibly be more grateful for the love and support I received from these talented and wise individuals along with the entire AP family. There were so many moments I was left awestruck by the talent and perspectives everyone brought to our conversations. Be it Bryna and her emulations, Mariam and her life experience, Timi and her eloquent use of language, Emily and her logic, and so on and so forth. Every single day the passion in our classroom motivated me to continue on, even when I felt so detached from my own life.
And so, with my bundle of memories, I think of signing off- for good this time. And it scares me to think, I don’t get to live another day in the life of an AP student having a Socratic discussion or pondering about why I am so attracted to Stanley (from A Streetcar Named Desire) with the many others in the room, who are also infatuated by his masculinity. It terrifies me to think, that this is my last blog and I don’t get to sit in our class and inspire and be inspired every single day.
But this life. And we create these attachments because we love. And this is the heartache of love- when you give up a part of yourself to what and who you love, you have to be ready to live broken when it’s gone. And this heartache is also the beauty of love. It is beautiful, to live with the memories, words, and knowledge of those who have left their imprints on your heart.
So thank you- for leaving your imprints on my heart. For providing me with the love, support, and motivation I need to constantly nourish my soul.
Thank you Hunnisett, for teaching me how to live. Thank you to all of the AP students I’ve had the honour to work with, for exploring the world of love with me. And if you remember me at all, I hope you remember me as the girl who loves.
12 thoughts on “Signing Off.”
You never fail to leave me in awe, to inspire me, and to remind me that there is beauty in this crazy world. Thank you.
Thank you beautiful, I love you.
This is hands down the blog that has impacted me the most thus far in AP. To be honest, I got a little teary eyed, partially because reading about your experiences in 10-1 was like reliving my own, and because, I’m rather sad to see you leave us. I am so moved by the words you had to say, and to be honest, I think that if I were to explain what AP has done for me, it would sound just a little like this. Your grace and wisdom has forever inspired me Malika. I look at you through rose tinted glasses my love. I feel extremely inspired by you every day in AP, and I hope to follow in your footsteps and help maintain the legacy you grade twelves are leaving behind.
So, here’s to a new adventure!
You are destined for great things Malika.
With infinite love and gratitude,
(aka, your biggest fan) <3
Reading your comment has once again brought tears to my eyes. Thank you, for bringing such light and love to my journey. Enjoy and soak in all the knowledge, wisdom, and love around you as you approach you last year. I know you’re going to be phenomenal, you always are. Thank you for always making me smile and inspiring me to live life to the fullest.
Always stay unique and pure-hearted. If you need anything, I am always just a call away.
Love you Chuck <3
I’m touched by the amount of purity of this blog – purity in all your writing really. I have to say that I feel so honoured to truly get to know you this semester via AP and Drama. Us and our intellectual conversations in LA and speaking to you in Drama with your innate ability to just tap into someone’s soul and emotions. (You being my director for See You Soon has had to be one of the best experiences I’ve had this semester, and it was all thanks to you.)
You’re truly one of the most enlightening people I’ve ever met, and I’m so very thankful to have met you and have gotten to know you even more so this semester. Thank you for being you. And I only hope we’ll be just as tight in the years to come.
Thank you for your loving comment. Honestly, I’m so grateful I got the opportunity to get to know you this semester. If you didn’t do grade thirteen, I wouldn’t have had the amazing opportunity to learn from you as a writer, director, actor and a human-being.
Thank you for putting up with all my chaos and madness throughout the semester- I too hope we continue to be great friends and learn more about and from each other in the years to come.
You’re my favourite fool <3
My dearest old soul,
Like Malika and Sajan, I am profoundly moved by the gift of your final blog for us – gulp (well, not so final if you choose to write to us again). You have embodied every dream I ever had for teaching AP – great conversation, a love of learning, intellectual thought – a world with you offers LOVE, LEARNING, and LAUGHTER – true enlightenment! I wish for you to always be filled with these hungers as you continue to offer your inspiration.
Remember to breathe.
Thank you for always loving me and helping me find a calm amidst the chaos. I love you so so so so much.
To the lovely Malika,
Thank You. Thank You. Thank You.
Thank you so much for reminding me that there are kind and good people in this world. From the 15 years of living on this earth, I have not met anyone else quite like you, you’ve been nothing but understanding, caring, gentle, and wise – you possess so much human kindest that not many are able to contain. Like a guardian angle, you emit a very distinctive light. I honestly cannot express the amount of gratitude and respect I have towards you – there is no use trying to sum it up in words because I will undoubtedly fail. I truly hope that you KNOW how SUBLIME of a human being you are in my eyes, please please don’t ever stop being the incredible angle that you are.
Through this post, you have brought to me a stream of tears and an inner hurricane, thank you. Thank you for making me realize how grateful I am that I have met you – even if the time was too short. Although this comment may not be long, please know that it contains my heart.
Until we meet again,
I cannot thank you enough for your beautiful words. My eyes are watering right now- I hate goodbyes. But this isn’t a goodbye, whenever you need me I’m just a message or call away.
Thank you for making my life feel so complete and beautiful. I will miss you.
Although we have not conversed this year as much as I may have hoped for, I can only blame myself for being too shy to walk to the opposite corner of the room. So I stood from afar, admiring your every graceful move and thought. I’m glad I came into AP this year. I would have missed out on such a great group of individuals, and I have to say, this is the very first time I’ve shed a tear over the thought of someone I love go away.
Your blog was definitely something I could relate to. Every word seemed so real and pure, I definitely know that feeling from somewhere. That feeling of thirst. To satiate your thirst of literature, 10-1 clearly wasn’t enough. Well, for me, I didn’t quite have a love for literature until I joined this class. I just joined so I could feel better about myself, and because my brother joined it. But people like you showed me that there is something far greater in literature than fancy words. And for that, I am eternally grateful.
All I can ask is that you come back next year to visit us. I can’t help but shed another tear as I ask of this, but please, don’t leave your family. We already miss you.
Thank you thank you thank you for making me feel so loved. Inshallah I’ll be back visiting you next year. I hope you continue to fall in love with the world through literature and continue to explore the fragility of the human condition.
Stay unique, stay pure-hearted- it’s your trademark. I hope you always remain as honest and continue to grow in the next two years of AP. Cherish the time, friends, and knowledge you’re receiving. It’s truly a once in a lifetime kind of chance.
With much love,
Your older sister