December 10, 2018
My dad once said…”You have 3 choices. You can either be a doctor, a lawyer, or…a failure.”
I didn’t like any of them. So I wrote in my own answer to that multiple choice question.
I spent 2 days struggling to write my acceptance speech for one of the biggest achievement awards of my life. But…just a couple minutes before I stepped on stage, I ripped it up. I decided to speak from the heart.
To be honored with the Digital Influencer Award in front of so many people I respect and admire – directors, actors, writers, authors, singers, and fellow creators I’ve watched for so many years – my body was shaking, my heart was racing, but my soul was flying.
Choosing to follow my passion was scary. I tried to ignore it, but as the days passed on, my heart became more hollow, more fragile, and more lost. I wanted badly to make my parents happy, but I didn’t know how it would be possible if I wanted to be fulfilled too. There were times I even thought of ending it all…
Eventually, my soul couldn’t take it anymore…so I took a risk…on myself, on my family, and on my future. I dropped out of Organic Chemistry, sabotaged my perfect Pre-Med record, and followed my heart to where I am today.
If you grew up Asian American, you’ve probably heard this story. Maybe you ARE this story. Perhaps you’re still trying to figure out YOUR story.
My parents gave me an extremely rough time growing up, but I owe it to them for igniting this INTENSE fire inside me. Their blockades taught me how to FIGHT HARD for what I wanted. We still have a lot to work through, but I love them so much for helping me become the woman I am today.
Thank you Kore Asian Media for this incredible honor and for bringing together so many inspiring people in our community for a moment to stop, dress up real fancy, and celebrate! Thank you to my fellow creators for your genuine friendship and enthusiastic support. And thank you to YOU GUYS, my POPsters – you are the reason why I’m living my actual dream. THANK YOU.
2018, what a year.
Now…here are some photos from this year’s Unforgettable Gala at the Beverly Hilton, which honestly feels like prom – but like, MUCH MUCH BETTER 🙂
Me holding my award! It’s so pretty! And actually, dangerously sharp!
On the cover of this year’s KORE Magazine with some VERY influential people in our community!
Here’s me on the Red Carpet wearing my Sherri Hill ballgown. Guess what? IT HAS POCKETS.
Incredibly honored to share the same stage as author of my favorite book series, Crazy Rich Asians! Yay go Kevin Kwan, John M. Chu, and the cast of CRA!
Me and da hubs! He didn’t want to go on the red carpet but I made him 🙂
Ballgown life with Jen! Can we wear ballgowns all the time!!??
Okay Jeannie Mai and Mama Mai are HILARE. I can’t even.
Eugene Lee Yang basically winning red carpet fashion.
And finally, Sam Tsui being the friend we all need.