On top of my sixteen years of existence on this Earth, I was at the lowest point of my life. Someone from my past reached out to me. He unlocked the door to my hell. Slowly but steady, I saw darker and darker. Life didn’t matter anymore. Death took place. Colors faded. I have never been that deep into a negative feeling since my third year of middle-school when I fought against someone who has openly mocked me. It was ridiculous. Both times.

My way out of this depression was simple : I’ve decided to feel better. My philosophy teacher at the time said something that struck me. ‘Life is made of waves. Sometimes you’re at the top of the waves; sometimes you are in the trough of it.’ As I heard those words, I choose to climb at the top and stay there. To face the ups and downs that make life interesting, I started to train my brain to think and see differently. I looked at the world as if it’s new, searching for details that make it beautiful. I changed my point of view to see my environment like a child again. I opened my mind to others, tried not to make a quick judgement on anything or anyone. It was the beginning of my awakening. Life became easier, brighter and funnier.

At eighteen, the final step of my arousal was complete when i realized the nature of my anchor. Even if I couldn’t stand her behavior, I still loved… Love her. I started the process of finding myself. I defined my dream – which is not a secret tonight anymore – thanks to four characters : Trevor McKinney, Ben Thomas, Moritaka Mashiro and Tetsuya Kuroko. They might be fictional, but they gave me strength to walk through my own path. Two of them lead me the way, one of them motivated me and the last one showed me how.

From that moment on, I worked on myself to become who I am today. I dedicated my life to help those in need and support them to accomplish their wildest dream. The process wasn’t easy. I had few downfalls. This dream almost killed me some times to times, it’s reality that speaks. Few people didn’t understand my vision and called me naïve, simple or a dreamer. But you know the song. They said I will have to grow up one day – I don’t even know what that means – And because of that I spend most of my time in loneliness. But it was worth it. All of it.

I am truly honored to receive this award, but I have to say : this shouldn’t be in my hands. I shouldn’t be here. This belongs to all of you who made this place a better one. Who showed others by your talent, courage, goodness and behavior that the world isn’t as screwed as it looks like. I am a shadow. You are the light. My life wasn’t the toughest, on the contrary, I had an easy life. All I did was to ease the weight on your shoulders so you can shine brighter…

And I walk out. Arf, I can’t do this.

– ‘Why?’

– ‘Like I said : I am a shadow. I don’t feel comfortable being under the spotlight.’

– ‘But you are honored. You have to make an acceptance speech.’

– ‘Ergh… I have an idea! Let’s not go!?’

– ‘Come on! You already spoke to a large group of people before, this isn’t any different.’

– ‘But I won’t be talking about me. That’s the big difference… I’d rather stay in the shadow. How did they found out about me anyway?’

– ‘Someone must have told them… Hum, by the way, did you pay your rent this month?’

– ‘Nope, not yet, I’m working on it. Well, I have to go! See you later.’

Thank you, Sykes, for the kind words. The idea was inspiring, loved it. Although, sublime may be exaggerated.


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