Three strangers and hot porridge

It’s me again. So my flight to Penang landed safely at the airport last Monday. A late night flight? It was never a priority to me which in a nutshell Mom bought the tix for me upon a last-minute promotion a month before, or for whatever probable reason behind that. Ah, don’t ask me, of course I was a bit terrified even though I couldn’t express how it felt like. It wasn’t about the new semester I had under my sleeves, well, I was pretty sure it was going to be a slow start of the week, anyway. But if you ever happen to encounter this situation, getting stuck at the airport overnight with no one to accompany you, I wouldn’t have to explain myself over again. But there I was – I decided to head straight to the prayer room like I would usually do, take a rest and stay there until I get to grab a cab in the morning for my next destination. More often than not, I would have someone to accompany me since we go the same university. It was easy that way. For some reasons, my friend already confirmed it to me that she couldn’t make it. She got early flight to catch on two days before me. As much as I wanted it to get over soon, I didn’t want my parents to take care of everything or blame themselves for any uncertainties. Simple, there was no other choice but to convince my parents that it’s going to be okay, that I could handle it well. It did sound like a joke to me. Of course my parents would get worried about it although I’m a big girl already.

So I walked into the prayer room with my luggage. The place was empty – only me – until few minutes later someone entered in a rush. I tried to maintain and cover my anxious. Later then she finished her prayer and we had a little chit-chat. Nothing serious, just to kill time. She thought I was there waiting for the last flight of the night – where do you come from, where are you heading, are you alone, she asked surprisingly – so I simply explained to her about my situation. No empathy intended, really. I wasn’t sure if I was being nice to someone I just met but it wasn’t like I’d meet her anyway after that, right?

After some time she came back into the prayer room. Apart from thinking she might have left her stuff, I saw a concerned remark on her face. “Would you like to come over to my house? Not too far, I can send you tomorrow. I have daughters too and I wouldn’t leave them alone this way. Too cold here.” She asked again if I’m okay with that and her husband too was waiting outside. We both knew well to never talk to strangers but I myself couldn’t resist the offer. She sounded just like Mom. I guessed I’d just follow my heart, so I struggled to pack all my stuff with her leading me to the bench outside where her husband was. “Uncle Azizul too is a Mechanical Engineer,” she introduced him to me. I nodded and introduced myself back. “Just call me Auntie Zarina.”

Then I texted my parents to inform them regarding the invitation only after we got into the car. Mom too had her flight to KL an hour after mine had departured. She didn’t reply to my text – though she was supposed to arrive earlier than me – because her flight got delayed for some time. It was midnight as the road was already empty. They asked if I wanted to eat something so we went to McD drive-thru and ordered porridge for me. It was such a nice ride because they really wanted the conversation to go real between us so I didn’t feel left out at the passenger seat. She reminded me these for many times, “If it wasn’t because we decided to delay to perform the prayer before our flight back to here, god wouldn’t let us meet each other.” She was sad and really wanted to send off her daughter to NZ but their flight came off first so they couldn’t make it. “And then I found you.”

I think that would be the first time since forever that I thanked god for sending kind people to me – not because I deserve such kindness or I truly beg for it or I rush into making decisions. Probably because I was tested to be more grateful towards anything people have offered to me. Also the prayers I got from my parents, well, without them I won’t become the person I am today.

So here’s to many more years and the lessons I’m willing to learn from any strangers I’d call family.

Against the Clock

Time goes so fast. It orbits my energy pace and may yet accuse me for putting the blame on lucky stars and asking people to have all the time in the world for me. There isn’t so much to tell. I assure you in the name of those who forget to have their priorities set above the water. Don’t ask me what it was, or what it is – it won’t make sense anyway. The way the clock keeps tick-tock-ing echoes all over this empty house, the light that peeks through the curtains makes it obvious for me to slowly pull the sheets over my head and the name my parents would yell off at the top of their lungs – oh, I just figure it out, this house is never empty. It just sounds empty. It seems empty. Somehow I wake up and find myself conquering my mind barely taking off the seat belt that is supposed to secure my sanity.

Another Hope in Hell

Dear goodness, I didn’t come back here only to realize how I intended to leave this piece of shit as something people would come (again and again) to read, justifying the fact that silent readers do exist in this parallel universe of mine. But how do I put that nicely, seriously. Apart from thinking I might have inserted something absurd that I don’t need to pull out wisely, some people really can’t take it with a grain of salt. They don’t need to understand though, even if they are wiling to take the risks I have already given up to long time ago.

Nevertheless, part of me still wants to do this.

So here I am obviously struggling to write down some thoughts until I’m running out of ideas. That, or when it’s time to go hiding myself under the bed again. I cannot assure you the absolute reason why keeping this blog updated is still legit while people are having their life to the fullest without even trying. There are some days I attempted to get back at writing (or just doing anything great) and give myself one more chance: hey this is not a bad life, honey. But there are still some days I couldn’t stop asking God to get rid all of this mess from my life. Funny, I’m the mess. How can my life be a mess, people asked. Ah, they are just too stupid only to embrace the good things happening to me. It does make me feel wrong every time I have to post something only to let it go. Sometimes I wonder if someone out there wants to listen to me. Am I that desperate? Maybe. Does it matter if they can only listen? Does it make me feel better? No.

Why would I want this to get better, anyway…

Until We Meet Again

here comes the chapter

in which i think of you

as a whatnot fairy-tale

each time they say your name and prayers.

there are so much of anything you ever said

the jokes you intended as honesty

the aftermath of every lullaby you’d sing

that i’d tell you to just “piss off”

but we know it only means i’d miss you more.

….

i still count the days

reread our texts

only to forget –

until we meet again.

Yang ke duapuluh tujuhbelas

“Hidup ini adalah perjalanan panjang dan tidak selalu mulus. pada hari ke berapa dan pada jam ke berapa, kita tidak pernah tahu, rasa sakit apa yang harus kita lalui. Kita tidak tahu kapan hidup akan membanting kita dalam sekali, membuat terduduk, untuk kemudian memaksa kita mengambil keputusan. satu-dua keputusan itu membuat kita bangga, sedangkan sisanya lebih banyak menghasilkan penyesalan.”

― Tere Liye, Pulang

Acceptance

Good god, I’m back.

It’s actually hard to believe as I look up to myself and reminisce all the things I have done to become the person I am today, or perhaps those things are the ones which made me, me. Compare to the doubts and insecurities I keep playing in my mind for many years – the games I did obey only to push aside my nature of running back to those who’d hurt me, not knowing when to say no to something rubbish because I’m that easy target people can look down on and they will always know when to leave.

I do believe that some people do care while others just get curious. People who raise their voice as a sign of excitement – every time they hear my name – aren’t the ones who would encourage me to pinch my own bubble and get outside that comfort zone. Why does that often bother me? I can say they don’t matter but the truth is, I really like to welcome the idea of who they are to me and what they think of me – because these people often have a different opinion and they don’t say the same thing. Or maybe we do have the same reference line, only that we see it from different angles and perspectives.

I tweeted this a day ago: I get it why you often talk about happiness only after your beloved ones sugarcoat this and that – or else, you will talk about how scary and miserable your life is. You only want to hear what you want to hear, right? You refuse to hear the things you don’t believe in and you don’t want to stay outside your comfort zone. There’s always a limit, true. But if you value your happiness only from what you get from what you want to hear, how far will you go actually?

And I got a feedback from a friend regarding this on the same day, but indirectly.

Let’s see… As far as I’m concerned, I’m not denying that our feelings and emotions do matter. We can do whatever we want to what we feel about ourselves. Of course, we got our own ways to either move on or pull ourselves together when something happens in a way we do not expect. It’s okay to have a break sometimes, or if that comforts you, just take a break whenever you want. Maybe you can drag the people who care about you into this so that you can always have someone to talk to. You don’t even remember that you start to cry in front of them or on the phone while doing the confession but after a while, you attempt to laugh at their jokes. I can say it’s a good therapy.

But what poison this nature is we often rely our expectations on people – they can heal us through honeyed words – and let them know what they need to say to make us feel okay. It’s nice to know who worths our time, realizing that there will always be someone waiting for us when things get really hard. In this situation, we might as well need some friends to prove our acceptance of being okay. Otherwise, it is just a waste of time, energy and neurons because we fail to achieve that expectation. It’s tiring for not being able to bring ourselves to that “let today be as good as ever” point after all the things we “teach” others how to say “hey come to me and tell me it is okay to feel sad and I won’t feel sad anymore if you tell me that way.”

Some people do care, others just get curious. If we keep babying ourselves that this will always work, ask ourselves: how far can we go?