We, humans, are complicated creatures. We want a lot, we dislike many things and we are most of the time bias with what we say and think. We want to achieve many things in a short time, we expect more from people we love and we criticize other people so easily or unconsciously? .. We’re never satisfied of what we have.
I noticed from early on that I didn’t fit in my family customs. My maternal side families are Sumatranese and my paternal families are (Central) Javanese. So it’s like either you are vocal or you are super polite and charming, I was none of those. I remembered it was hard when I was growing up. Because people expected different things from me. I wasn’t like my younger sister who was very vocal and social. I was more of a loner, a thinker, and secretly a dreamer.I was not trying to be a charmer like what Javanese girls did when they were growing up..like be diligent in serving the guests, be chit chatty (basa basi) or any traditional norms most parents expected. I used to feel very guilty, because no matter how hard I tried the outcome was not natural, just like a boy who tries wearing on make up. Messy, unnatural and awkward to look at. I got bullied by my own family members due to my introvertism.
When I finally moved out from my parents’ house to live in an all girl boarding house..the same problems occurred. I could not get along with the rest of the girls in the house. They accused me and told me that I was too clean ( read: cleaning freak. I was and still am ), too blunt, too weird, too different , rude and hateful, and voted me out. Or maybe they just hated me. My interests were odd enough for them, my music was too dark for them and we did not have anything in common..so, after 2 years of living together with those girly girls I decided to move out and commuted every day from house to my college. It was hell of a year. Felt so rejected by my housemates, I compensated my anger in other positive things. The incident didn’t hold me down, in fact I got flying marks and good GPA in the end of the school year. However, I admit that I held grudge for several years and swore I wouldn’t be friends with them anymore. Later on after I left Indonesia, I became friends with some of them again..think I forgave them and forgot all things behind 🙂
Despite all bullies and hurtful memories for being different in Indonesian societies, I loved my family and friends. There were people I loved and accepted me the way I was and I loved them so much. But, I missed being me. I always thought there was something wrong with me…that I was not cut out for this fake politeness culture.My mouth was a tad too dirty, I spoke blatantly too people about what I thought and I was just too lazy to fit in. I was tired.
I began to accept myself when I started living outside Indonesia. Finally, there was a space to express myself and I found people who were sharing the same interests with me. And there was a void in my heart, however, strange enough, I felt relieved. I felt that some burdens had been lifted off my shoulders. Many friends and family often ask me, don’t I feel lonesome there? Deep down inside, I do sometimes!!
…and as bizarre as it sounds, I feel ..delightsome by the loneliness.I am grateful that I am given this chance to be living far from the usual custom that has been suffocating me, and be able to see and to experience another way of (life) acceptance. Everyday I learn new things, and grow from mistakes I made.
That’s why I took it as my motto (also for this blog), accept who you are and your life becomes easier. It means something for me…and not just as a stupid blog motto 🙂 I hope you also can accept yourself, your quirks and your flaws..cos you are unique, and you are your own treasure!