That was what I texted him after my presentation was done.
Approximately 150 adults sat before me as I stood alone on the stage. When they were streaming into the hall earlier, anxiety and excitement washed over me – “Like omg, the largest crowd I’ve presented to was probably 90? And now, there’s a lot more of them? Omg.” I made some small talks with a few of those I’m chummy with to calm myself down. And then, I took the centre stage and spoke for slightly more than an hour. I have to say, it was by far the most successful presentation I had in the past two-ish years!
Honestly, the experience was quite surreal. I’m still grasping with the idea of giving more matured adults (especially those who have been in the same job for 20 odd years or are at least 30 years my senior) instructions but I believe I have gained credibility and trust over time. And I was overwhelmed by the awareness that this was the first time I spoke to a crowd that large, and at least 90% of them were actually listening to me and taking down notes.
As I ended delivering my final important notes, I realised that it was going to be the last time I would present to this group of people. I had mixed feeling about it, but amidst it all, I am glad I will be leaving them on a good note.
I will miss this. I will miss the rush of preparing for the new tuition year, of ensuring that I make everybody’s lives easier at HQ and on the ground, of feeling proud that everything went better than what I’ve planned.
And I will miss this: I will miss having someone, intentionally or unintentionally, being a cheerleader at the side and making it obvious on where he’s sitting in the crowd despite being a “low profile”. It’s a shame we didn’t get to say a proper goodbye since he had to rush off, and as I’ve shared with Tiramisu, it’s a bigger shame that I have regrets about not being more me the last time we met.