15/05/2015


Saya ngga ingat betul seleb mana yang mengatakan, "biasakan untuk menghitung setidaknya tiga berkah dalam hidup setiap hari sebelum tidur" tapi saya tidak pernah lupa untuk menuruti kata-katanya. Bahkan jauh sebelum saya berfikir soal "kenapa?", saya sudah terbiasa untuk berterimakasih tanpa instruksi, meski bukan lewat cara-cara yang biasa dilakukan orang-orang pada umumnya (atau cara-cara yang disugestikan oleh Mama).

Saya punya ritual saya sendiri. Biasanya saya akan melempar diri saya jauh ke belakang. Saya bisa begitu saja menghempaskan diri ke samudera memori selektif untuk menyelam, jauh dan dalam, tanpa pernah perlu merasa takut tenggelam. Dan ketika saya kembali ke permukaan, saya akan selalu bisa menemukan diri saya yang berterimakasih. Tanpa pretensi, tanpa ketakutan.


Malam ini sebelum berangkat tidur saya ingin berterimakasih untuk satu hal yang selalu ada sejak 20 bulan kebelakang. Lalu, karena saya yakin saya tidak akan pernah merasakan hal yang sama jika saya tidak pernah tahu rasanya ditendang, dibanting, dan dihantam, saya juga ingin berterimakasih atas 20 bulan sebelumnya, dan 20 bulan sebelumnya, dan sebelum-sebelum-sebelumnya sampai di momen ketika mata saya bertemu dengan mata Mama untuk kali pertama.

Ada sedikit penyesalan yang tertinggal disana dan disini; tapi biarlah mereka menjadi gravitasi yang mengikat saya untuk tetap berpijak pada bumi. Toh, saya sudah tahu apa jadinya kalau manusia terlanjur terbang terlalu tinggi. 


Untuk hal-yang-selalu-ada-sejak-20-bulan-kebelakang itu: saya ingin berterimakasih karena telah dipercaya dan dipilih, meski resume saya jauh dari gemilang (tapi kalau saya tidak pernah gagal, kita tidak akan pernah ada, bukan?). Saya ingin berterimakasih karena selalu dianggap sempurna dengan segala kecacatan yang saya punya. Saya ingin berterimakasih karena selalu dikritik, ditertawakan, dan ditantang untuk melakukan yang lebih dari yang saya bisa.
Lalu kembali, pada Yang Segala: saya ingin berterimakasih atas sifatnya yang tidak mudah menyerah dan keras kepala, atas seleranya yang tidak biasa sehingga dia mau berurusan dengan kasus rumit seperti saya. Saya tahu ini bukan pemberian cuma-cuma; saya tidak boleh lupa untuk memberinya bahagia karena dia berhak mendapatkan setiap detiknya.

Maka buatlah saya pantas untuk memberikan setiap detiknya.



16/04/2015

Let The Shipping Begin

One of the most exciting yet undeniably stupid hobby I tend to keep on doing is shipping. 


Shipping is a fan act of supporting a unison of a couple (celebrities, fictional characters, your classmates) sometimes to the point of having delusional hopes, collective prayer sessions, to fighting counter-shippers through endless arguments both in the internet and the outernet sphere (the ship war).  


And here's why I think it's stupid: more often that not I do not know the proposed couple in person, have never met nor spoken to any of them, yet I'll fully support two seemingly 'perfect for each other' human beings to be together. As if I'm sure that they are good for each other, as if I know each one is capable of bringing out the best in the other person. As if its certain, as if I've just had this hyper-realistic dream in which I got a text directly from God Almighty Himself, writing to me in all caps saying that #ITSREAL the two were made a couple (in which us shippers refer to as 'canon') when obviously, I know nothing. 

What's more stupid is that I'd still ship, even when I truly believe that the wish for two people, especially when they're only just girlfriend and boyfriend, or boyfriend and boyfriend, or gilfriend and girlfriend, to always be together-forever is a very egocentric wish. I'm sure that's the exact prayer of hopeless romantics who says/post things like:


Bet these people also write "don't you dare ruin my hopes and dreams"  on 
wedding gift cards, too.

*

It's hard to make this next sentence to not sounds bitter: I know better than expecting a together-forever from a bond of mortals. I put it this way simply because I'm quite sure I know just as much as all other couples out there know about the future: nothing.

Now why wouldn't Steve Jobs trade all of his technology for an afternoon with Socrates?

Still I'm sailing with many ships.
I ship a dragon that breathes out crazy hip-hop beats with a Japanese model slash Titan slayer. I ship a guy who carried around gigantic sword with a beautiful flower girl (may their souls rest in peace within the bright green streams of life). I ship a ginger wizard who has an emotional range of a teaspoon with the most brilliant witch who's also a kick-ass feminist. I ship my big brother and his wife who have been together since their 2nd grade of junior high school.
And I ship myself with the soul I love.
There is no helping it, even if I know. 

(And whenever someone asks me if *you*'re the one, first I'm going to tell them, "I ship us both", then I'd also say, "but I know.")

By knowing, shipping for me has become much more of a simple deal than rigorously rooting two people to get to their "happy ending". Me, I love seeing random cute couples (they don't have to be old in particular) on the street with their hands intertwined; in a restaurant exchanging the look of admiration in between their meals, without actually having any wishful thinking towards their future as a couple. I do hope for all loving couples to be happy and have a fulfilling relationship, but I also know that happiness is found within moments and not within years.  

And even if all my ships sink I'm still gonna think true love does exist because I do. I might not gonna live to see one that literally took forever to prove that it's "true" but I know there are kinds of love -- like one Mother's love to her children  -- that could last a lifetime.

So is it the happy ending, or the fateful meeting, that is more of a beautiful thing to witness in our brief visit to earth? I think I'm gonna go with the last one. 

 "But what else can we do than hoping, praying, say that we'll get by? Better be prepared to be surprised." -  Sondre Lerche

29/01/2015

There's always gonna be an infinite loop of us,
playing on the side as I step into tomorrow.

I have been writing letters for you in a language you'd never understand.
I have walked with you longer and further since the day we part ways.
I have been holding you close at night, alone. 

Tonight I shall wave my hand to both of us in our younger years.
Where they will be safe forever,
untouched by the uncertainty of their future,
unknowing of what's been decided on the day we were born.

21/12/2014

The Rubber Band Theory

Pertama kali saya diperkenalkan pada Rubber Band Theory, atau Teori Karet Gelang (saya lebih suka menyebutnya seperti ini) adalah melalui memoir Morrie Schwartz yang ditulis oleh Mitch Albom, Tuesdays with Morrie, ketika Morrie mengatakan pada Albom:
 “Life is a series of pulls back and forth. You want to do one thing, but you are bound to do something else. Something hurts you, yet you know it shouldn’t. You take certain things for granted, even when you know you should never take anything for granted.
Teori yang sederhana, namun sangat relevan dalam membantu memahami berbagai fenomena pertentangan, baik yang sifatnya personal maupun interpersonal.

Teori Karet Gelang dapat digunakan untuk memahami mengapa dalam sejarah terjadi repetisi; mengapa peradaban manusia dapat dilihat sebagai sebuah siklus yang dinamis dan tidak akan pernah selamanya cenderung pada satu sisi, mengapa undang-undang negara terus-menerus direvisi, mengapa kelompok-kelompok manusia akan terus saling beroposisi (selain juga karena, mengutip Nikola Tesla di film The Prestige“society tolerates only one change at a time”).

Karena baik dalam hitungan hari, tahun, atau abad, manusia-manusia yang mengeksploitasi akan membangkitkan mereka yang ingin melindungi; yang berniat membekukan reformasi akan berakhir mengobarkan revolusi (yang kemudian memunculkan revelasi: bahwa sejatinya setiap dari jiwa yang ikut andil memang dilahirkan untuk menjadi kekuatan penyeimbang “Yin” dan “Yang”).

Manusia adalah makhluk dengan keinginan (dan rasa ingin tahu) yang tanpa batas; kita sendiri sebagai individu adalah karet-karet gelang yang akan selalu dihadapkan pada pertanyaan-pertanyaan (wonder) dan pertentangan batin. Manusia adalah ciptaan ‘sempurna’ yang diturunkan ke bumi dengan syarat (atau konsekuensi?) sifat tak-pernah-puas: antara tidur yang cukup atau terjaga sampai pagi; menabung atau terus membeli; angkat bicara atau berdiam diri; tinggal atau pergi.

Hidup ini adalah Karet Gelang: di setiap kali gelap menyentuh lantai bumi, di tanah seberang langit sedang terang benderang. Dengan kata lain, pertentangan layaknya diterima sebagai hal yang alami. Pertentangan harus terjadi, karena hidup hanya akan berputar selama manusia masih membuat kontribusi, dan kontribusi adalah stimulan utama untuk terjadinya evolusi (stagnansi = mati).

Teori Karet Gelang meyakini bahwa pertentangan tidak ada kaitannya dengan hasil akhir, karena ‘kemajuan’ adalah konsep abstrak yang tidak relevan dalam dunia kita yang serba non-linear. Tantangan dalam pertentangan bukan dalam memenangkan atau mewujudkan sebuah ide mengenai kesempurnaan (kesesuaian pada satu saja ideal), tetapi pada mengelola konflik dan kapasitas manusia (makhluk yang menampung kemungkinan tak terhingga) untuk hidup dengan menerapkan prinsip ko-eksistensiKarena kita hidup dalam ruang keterbatasan, segala hal yang mendominasi hanya akan mengorupsi. Dominasi berpotensi mendorong ‘koreksi eksesif’ yang hanya akan menggoreskan luka fatal pada riwayat umat manusia (kekerasan, perang, genosida), dan dalam jangka panjang dapat berakibat mengacaukan komposisi (just like Pride Lands after Mufasa passed away). Karena sejarah adalah pemberi warna dasar pada tiap kanvas putih individu; sejarah mempengaruhi manusia dan generasi.

Teori Karet Gelang membantu mengingatkan manusia yang seringkali lupa bahwa bahwa kita bisa tetap bekerjasama, meski berdiri di sisi jalan yang bersemuka. Yang lebih penting, Teori Karet Gelang juga menyoroti fakta bahwa sesungguhnya ancaman terbesar bagi manusia bukanlah konflik atau pertentangan (atau bahkan keserakahan), tetapi ketidakpedulian.

Carelessness. 
Ketika seorang manusia hidup tanpa menggunakan hati. Saat itulah seorang manusia hidup, tetapi sesungguhnya mati.
Most of us live somewhere in the middle.
Semoga kita tidak akan kalah pada distraksi, pada apati. Semoga kita akan selalu ingat untuk peduli. Semoga kita akan selalu jadi pemberani.

12/09/2014

This Is How You Lost Me

Life has never ceases to fascinate me with plot twists. 

Just like any of us, I have plans and expectations I made for myself. Some of my plans worked out good, some of them are even further than impossible to achieve at the moment. Unlike the rest of us, I never treated my expectations as targets. I have been shooting arrows to any directions I like, whenever I got the chance to do it. The grand plan was just simply to do my part in life and be happy. The rest was never fixed, aside of these two slightly abstract objectives; to be a genuinely happy person, and to make my Mom, also all the other people in my life but mostly just my Mom, happy. I have only been moving forward to this point in life with the guidance of my personal compass pointing to those aspirations, and nothing else.

But there are so many ways to make myself happy, like dressing up the way I wanted though some people said I looked like their grandmas or like I came out of a picture taken in the 60s. Be with people I like. Not talking to people I don't like. Watching romantic comedies. Fangirling. Drawing. Thrifting. Eating good food. Currently also learning the art of making good food, but more than anything, what truly makes me happy is when I'm helpful to others.

I remembered I used to prayed to God about it when I was little. I had the greatest fear of living a whole life as a worthless mortal. I was scared I won't be able to do anything good for anyone while I'm alive. I was eight.

But being genuinely happy and at the same time trying to make everyone else happy is a hard deal, it's almost always impossible. I was bullied all through the last three years of elementary school, apparently because I have a hobby of writing good short stories and was my language teacher's favorite. I remembered in the 7th grade there was this classmate who said she hates me "just because" when all I ever did was trying to be friendly. In 8th grade there was this senior who literally threw stuff on me because I was then happily experiencing puppy love with a guy that she happens to like.

In high school I cut my hair the way I always wanted and this guy who's a friend of a friend told me that I looked like a freakin' frog. He's not even in anyway cute himself but I know I can't just ruin other people's day like that.

I'm curious, was my mom the only mother in the world who told her kids not to say anything not nice? She even dissed me when I pointed out people's physical features like, here's an actual conversation between me and my Mom when I was in kindergarten. We were sitting in a bus:
Me: "Mommy, that Lady has funny teeth."
Mom: "Honey, don't say that. Making fun of the creation is like making fun of the Creator Himself."
I have truly never heard my Mom said anything bad about people, not once, unless it's about their bad choices/decisions. That's why when I met someone like that guy in high school I can't help but to wonder what kind of upbringing they had when they were younger.

I am certainly not oblivious to the fact that there are observant people who were disappointed in my pursuit of happiness, or just simply in my mere existence on earth. I realized I might have made choices that their impeccable, innocent judgments do not approve of. I've heard people saying that I can have/do so much better, that I haven't been living up to my full potentials, that I'm a pushover, a hopeless romantic, or just plain dumb.

Some of those I actually agreed. I have actually been doing so well in the business of self-loving and self-hating that y'all don't even need to worry.

And after 22 years, I know it's time to stop. I have to stop trying to earn everyone's seal of approval. Eventually, the only seal of approval I'm gonna need is my own (and my Mom, because I am nothing without her). I can promise that I will spend the rest of my life trying to be the best person I could, but at my own pace, and not too much that I lost the freedom to embrace my flaws.




To anyone who's reading this, I really have nothing else that I can offer you aside from my whole flawed self, my honest thoughts, and my full support for you to be true to who you really are, to define your own "happiness" and actually fulfill it, no matter what anyone else around you are saying.

However, if there are some of you who can't accept this incredibly low standard I set on how I'd like to call a good life, then I guess, this is how you lost me.