Life of Discovery (September 14, 2022)

Audrey Cheng
4 min readSep 15, 2022

It’s been just over 4 months since I wrapped up my Year of Discovery and I continue to experience an unfolding of life’s mysteries.

In the last few months, I’ve experienced a number of identity shifts — starting a new role at a new company, moving to a new city (Miami from Kampala), and building a new community. There have been days I’ve felt vibrational energy from mind- and heart-opening conversations and deeply inspired by the creative energy around me. Other days, I’ve grappled with the shedding of previous parts of my identity and a sense of loss. I’m in a period of great exploration — taking on more practices to move my attention from my mind to my body, learning through a new vantage point and cultivating new human connections.

Recently, attending the weddings of two soul friends, which brought me back to my home state and the country I last experienced Vipassana, I felt a converging of my past and present with time folding upon itself.

In my break from writing online, I realized how much I missed consolidating my observations of the world. As my perspectives continue to be challenged and stretched, I hope my writing practice can continue to engage all of you in emerging trends and thoughts. In this renewal, I’ll try to share new types of writing as well, including poetry, which I’ve often kept to myself. As always, I’ve loved the thoughtful perspectives I’ve received from many of you, so please continue to share your ideas as I engage in my musings.

Another Year Around the Sun

Yesterday was the anniversary of my dear mother’s incredible pain and joy on the day she birthed me. In the afternoon, I found myself nested in the shadows created by an awning of tree leaves. After I took a deep breath, my pen began to scribble: More tuning into myself. More trust. More changes to my inner voice. At home within myself. A stillness. Curiosity and kindness.

My stream of consciousness helped me tune into my present state. As I look at life today, I trust that I will continue to change with the world — change which is neither good nor bad. It just is. Each moment carries an opportunity for us to practice non-attachment — to let go of material things, possessions, expectations or memories, to ease into the ebbs and flows of life, and to live at peace regardless of circumstance.

This last year, there were many changes to my external world — where I lived, who I spent time with, and how I was spending my days. And what’s shifted internally has been as significant. In the middle of my Year of Discovery, I was buried in piles of anxiety and discomfort in what felt like aimless days. I was caught up in the constant fear of whether I was spending my time well or optimally. I was in search of something beyond myself and without being able to find safety and a sense of home, I externalized my fears and searched for solutions outside of myself. As I’ve eased into more routine this year, I’ve felt an emerging shift grounded in an internal knowing. My home is inside of me. I have a beautiful support network outside and inside of me. As I grow a kinder relationship with myself, I feel myself softening with others as well.

Yesterday, I also noticed a shift in my value of time. Last year, I grasped hopelessly for each moment as I rushed against time. Every passing minute was one of doubt and uncertainty. And this year, I find myself befriending time — stopping in the middle of a walk to admire a leaf changing colors or allowing awe to overcome me as I observe a kingdom of clouds in the sky. Observing, hearing, seeing, smelling, and sensing change all around me has given me constant reminders of the uniqueness of each moment.

The average pace of life we allow for ourselves shapes our ability to appreciate what we have and what’s around us. Slowness elicits gratitude and presence. Quickness enables a projection of our vision and inner world. Both are equally as important and I’m learning when to allow one to lead.

To a new year of growth, learning, patience, and presence.


Are we these skyscrapers
With glass rising into the sky
Mirroring what’s outside of ourselves
Without revealing the interwoven layers within.

Monuments and Fleeting Meaning

What do monuments of men long gone
Mean to us today
Are they truly reminders of our past
Teaching what not to do
Or reminiscent of better days
A time we deem to be more simple

We search for a certainty from the past
Impossible to project for the future

The half second glances we steal to look at the lion
His mouth gaped open
Towards a serpent
Held down by the cat’s claws

A pigeon perched on the lion’s mane
Adding his own color
To the bronze statues

These are all but fleeting
The meaning created from our internal projections
The weight of the statue
Contradicting the lightness of time
Nothing to hold onto



Audrey Cheng

Taiwanese American. Curious about ideas and solutions that support human flourishing.