Navigating the Turbulent Waters of Adolescence
Lucy Lin, Vancouver
“My most vivid memories from age 16 to 18 are all related to CYEA [Canadian Youth Elite Associanon],” said Lucy, bubbling with enthusiasm.
Her crystal-clear eyes and wise demeanor give the Impression of one poised for success. The 19 year old Is studying psychology at one of the top 10 universities In the world — the University of California. She said meditation has given her the strength to be
unafraid of challenges and the inspiration to reach for her dreams.
Before turning 16, Lucy was timid. After immigrating to Vancouver with her mother when she was 10, her life became more challenging as she coped with an unfamiliar environment and a language barrier. She lacked confidence, was anemic, and often experienced dizziness. She lacked the energy necessary to make friends. In the eyes of many People, that quiet girl was unapproachable.
However. this unhappy situation changed after she joined CYEA. In October 2010, Lucy’s mother, who hod just started meditation classes, brought her to Vancouver Bodhi Meditation Center. “When I stepped into the CYEA office. everyone welcomed me warmly and unconditionally. The warm feeling that come over me is still vivid in my memory. We have since turned from strangers to family.”
In just over two years. CYEA has given Lucy many unforgettable experiences. Like many teenagers, Lucy regards CYEA as a light in the darkness. And Master Mu-Yu , head of Vancouver Center, is a superb guide for those navigating the turbulent waters of adolescence. “The first time I laughed loudly at 16 was after listening to Master Mu-Yu s humorous lesson. I was really surprised as I hadn’t laughed in a very long time.’ Master Mu-Yu praised her expressiveness. Since then. Lucy has learned to share her happiness and embrace life with a smile.
To Lucy, the most important change took place in December 2011. With encouragement from Master Mu-Yu , she mustered her courage and gave a speech. But after speaking for a while, her mind went blank. Everyone was quiet. Lucy panicked, her head filling with self-critical thoughts. She wondered why everyone else seemed to be able to express themselves with ease. A sense of despair brought tears to her eyes.
But Master Mu-Yu burst into applause. Everyone followed suit, steadfast n their support. Her peers offered her tissues. encouragement and guidance. They reassured her that they, too, had once struggled to express themselves.
That day. Lucy told everyone her fears. It was that same day she understood that at CYEA she can be her true self, no matter what her weaknesses. Regardless of her vulnerabilities, she will receive unconditional acceptance and encouragement. Slowly, she learned to face her fears and challenge herself in new ways. She eventually managed to stop labeling herself ‘limid and shy.”
“Before coming to CYEA, I never imagined myself being a leader or applying to American universities. But Master Mu-Yu kept telling us that we’re leaders. He said that everyone has their own strengths and should strive to bring these abilities out.” Gradually, Lucy felt her world broadening and obstacles falling away. In her second year at CYEA, when she was in grade 12, she bravely participated in many national competitions. She was elected a reporter for the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC). Even more amazingly she managed to score over 2,000 on her SAT examinations with just 3 months of preparation and received an admission offer from the University of California.
Lucy says that CYEA has sent her on an incredible educational Journey, gently ushering her into maturity and success. It has opened up her world in ways she never dreamed possible.