Sunday, 24 July 2016

The day before graduation

Credits: Google Image

Graduation day was not particularly memorable for me but the day before that was.  While other people were probably busy planning what to wear for d-day, my parents and I were on the way to my late grandma’s house, which is a 20 minute drive to the graduation venue.

I have always loved road trips but this one was different. This is the kind of road trip where I cried silently at the backseat, thinking about sacrifice and love. It was a slow and relaxing drive. My dad was driving my brother in law’s second generation Proton Saga and the car is not really suitable for a long journey, so he could only drove 70 km/h.

We talked about life most of the time, and food occasionally. Dad talked about his business, his friends, his business partners, his late father, his life in army and his future plans. With Dad, it is always about opening your own business. He worked in government for a few years, 15 years as a contractor but eventually he came back as a farmer. He loves to plant and he sells only the best fruit to his customers. When he is not farming, he cooks. Dad has cooked for a thousand people and he has been cooking for me since I was 5. When he is not farming and cooking, he manages a friend’s fish farm in the middle of the sea. I, on the other hand listened and occasionally asked questions. I took his advices, his experiences, his pain and his happiness and started crafting my future.

But everything he does, he does it for his family. For a traditionalist like Dad, when you get married and have children, carrying responsibilities over your own blood gives you a distinct purpose in life. My parents’ love knows no bound, it is moving, happy, sad, heartbreaking and complicated. Love, these past few days, is when your dad calls a few of his friends for extra money to send his daughter to graduate. Love is when you ask your mom not to buy any graduation bouquets because they are costly. Love is when your dad keeps looking at your certificate with shining eyes.

And that is only the beginning of more love and pain.



After you kids came along, your mom, she said something to me I never quite understood. She said, "Now, we're just here to be memories for our kids." I think now I understand what she meant. Once you're a parent, you're the ghost of your children's future.
Joseph Cooper, Interstellar (2014) 

Wednesday, 25 May 2016

Why I don’t want to be a parent.


I look at myself as a daughter, who turned 6 years old, then 15, then 20 and now 23. 23 years being a daughter and I know I have been a constant worry for my parents.

Does she have enough money? Is she being a good girl? Does she take care of her prayers? Is she eating well? Is she studying hard? When is she coming home? Is she working hard? Which guy is she currently dating? Are we sure that she is not sleeping with him?

As a parent, you discipline yourself and your children. You teach them what is right and what is not. When they disobey, you probably get mad, be disappointed or you even cry. You think to yourself, is it my fault? Did I not raise them properly?

As a daughter, you think about your parents a lot. You think of how they would react to the secret things you do behind them,  you think of their faces when you tell them about your success and failure, you think of their face when you ask for money, you think of their words when you tell them your worries. You think, you worry, you blame, you hate, and then you love again.  

Now, I am not fond of the idea of being a parent because I don’t want to subject someone under certain expectations.  I don’t want to expect anything from my children, I don’t want to get heartbreak when they disobey me and leave me forever, I don’t want them to hate me because they can’t live up to my expectations and I certainly don’t want them to hate themselves when they disappoint me. I don’t want them to live in fear of my rejection.

I am simply voicing out my concern and fear as a 23 year old woman who knows nothing about raising an actual family. I have been a daughter to my parents and the reality is not that beautiful. We don’t know who to blame, so we don’t play that game, we don’t know what went wrong but we know that shit happened and we swallow the shit. We do, however, go on living, with expectations and with those familiar feelings of love and security.  

Will I be able to subvert the same old pattern and the same old expectation for myself and my future, with no strings attached?

Time will tell.


Monday, 16 May 2016

Reel-ationship


Very few people understand what is it like to love being alone. Often, they dismiss it for being emotional, abnormal or downright depressed. I don't know if there is a personality term, medical term or whatever term for it. They don't matter anyway and I hate terms because they fragment, judge and discriminate. But I know I love being alone.

I love being around people but I have my limits.
But with myself, it's limitless, infinite.

"God is always with you, you're not alone". No, not really for me.
I'm not very spiritual, in fact I'm starting to leave my faith because it has not really helped me.
Some things that happened did prove to me that god exists but more often that not, they didn't.
Speaking from experience, to question religion is to destroy your relationships.
So, I often keep it to myself and talk to people who are kind enough to tolerate.

I try to be as independent as possible. Often, people frame being independent as a positive thing. "She's an independent woman" "Learn to be independent"
That's actually bullshit.

I try to be independent because I want to be alone. I don't ask people about assignments because I want to be alone. I don't ask people what's for dinner because I want to be alone. I don't ask parents for unnecessary shit because I want to be alone. And to be independent, you put 100% effort and patience, no whining, no complaining.

You can't be alone when you are dependent, because you are expected to be in a relationship and this relationship exhausts me. With women, it's mostly dramas. With men, it's mostly sexism. But I find that strangers without attachment are sometimes kind, maybe, just maybe this is the exception.

Of course, when I'm caught between people, I try to accommodate as much as I can.  You don't whine in front of them, you do what they want you to. You don't curse at them, you be nice to them. You don't ignore their difficulties, you help. That's common courtesy. My parents taught me to give, give, give and that's what I precisely will do.

But when I'm not caught between people, I'm at my most optimised self. I'm the happiest. There's no room for loneliness because lonely people are lazy people. And I'm not lazy.

Saturday, 23 April 2016

Ending



"Everything's going to change now, isn't it?" - Hermione Granger


I decided to write again. I was reading a lecturer's blog and at some point
, it made me cry. Adult life is such a scary thing, isn't it?

I'm at my most comfortable position to write, on the bed while listening to Yiruma on repeat. Ceiling fan on 5, half naked with no underpants. Dissertation at 6000 words and yet, here I am worrying for other things. Boyfriend texted in the morning saying that his grandfather has died and all I could offer was condolences. Watched Harry Potter again and cried for someone's death. I can't really remember whose. Queued up for more than half an hour to get the book vouchers. Been eating salad and instant noodle for the past few days. Balance, am I right?


A few more weeks, then all of these will be gone. Unspoken things will be left behind, then I will spend countless hours looking for a job. I'm not really scared about work. Work is easy if you have passion, patience and perseverance. Of course, if you aren't privileged enough, you will have it rough but you persevere because fucking capitalism.  Life could have been easier if work is the only normal thing people should do.


I'm scared about relationships. I'm in a relationship but I don't see myself beyond that. How could I break it to people that I don't want to ever get married? I could never. After all, I'm the obedient type and obedience eats me but people are happy. Isn't that what this era is all about? Making people happy, performing what people want and ignore yourself until it manifests into something all-consuming? I'm so looking forward to that.


For now, I still have time to enjoy.