Talking about Relationship (This Time It’s My Story)

So, I want to talk about my current relationship but I don’t know where to start. Duh.
Let me try…  My boyfriend and I went to the same primary school, same junior high school, and same senior high school. All those 12 years, we didn’t know each other personally. Well, we knew each other’s face and name and that’s it.
We went to different universities in 2012. Then in 2014 we started chatting online and we always had good conversation. 
As time went by, I thought to myself, “Does he flirt with me?” and yes, he flirted and sometimes he had funny pickup lines that I couldn’t help laughing. He still does that. Damn, I smile while writing this. 
However, I hadn’t been interested in relationship for years so I just talked to him casually as a friend. I responded to his pickup line with another joke that often made him felt like, “Aaaaaarrrrggghh!!!” 
I told Lady Slytherin about this. I said, “Well, I guess I could like him if he can continue it long enough.” She asked, “What if he’s tired and he goes finding someone else?” I said, “That’s okay. I’m not ready for a relationship anyway.”
Recently, I found a blog post that described my feeling about him in the beginning here. That post is about potential love. It says, “Have you ever felt a potential love for someone? Like, you don’t actually love them and you know you don’t, but you know you could. You realise that you could easily fall in love with them….”
Back to my story, we once met for a few minutes to lend him my book. I forget when that happened. Months later, in June 2017, we agreed to meet in a book store because where else should I go for a first date (book lover mode: on)? We met another high school friend in that book store and this friend looked at us suspiciously. We greeted him and he looked like he wanted to ask question but he didn’t ask. He was too shocked, probably.
We went out together five times until finally he asked me to be his girlfriend last November. I had the proclivity to avoiding commitment but I thought again, I always enjoyed my time with him and it didn’t hurt to give this relationship a try. He is willing to communicate his thought and opinion. He also lets me do the same. In other words, we’re good for each other so I said yes. 
We’re finally in a relationship after 3 years. Our friends say that’s a long time. Well, it really takes a long time for me to trust someone. It takes me longer to let myself commit to a relationship so that long time is worth spending.
How do I feel about him? He’s different. Back in the past, when I had a crush or fell in love, I felt a little uncomfortable. I have come a long way in the term of loving myself. In the past, I often thought too hard on how to impress the guy I liked. With my boyfriend now, I feel all right. We have our fight, of course, but we talk through it. This is why I was once confused about how I felt because love used to make me uncomfortable.
Now if you ask me whether I love him, I will say yes, I do love him.

Tips on Saving Money

I’m a bit of an impulsive buyer. However, recently my behaviour is turned down because a) I have come to my sense that I will not really need those things I want to buy, b) I have meager budget.

That leads me to an article “8 Simple Ways to Save Money” by Better Money Habits from Bank of America because I need to save money to support my impulsive shopping, right? (I don’t have the right motivation, sorry). Let’s review the tips.

1. Record your expenses: to be honest, I’m lazy to write expense record. However, as I recall my expenses, I spend so much money for food and makeup. Damn.

2. Make a budget: this sounds difficult but I may try.

3. Plan on saving money: I do plan on it, that’s why I read that article. However, I’m often tempted to use my saved money for something else that wasn’t intended at first.

4. Choose something to save for: I’ve mentioned my problem in point no. 3

5. Decide on your priorities: well… food is important. Okay, I’ll be more careful about spending money on food then.

6. Pick the right tool: I don’t intend to save my money for something big so…

7. Make saving automatic: on a side note, the saved money I talk about in no. 3 is not the money I save in bank. My money in bank is quite untouched since they’re for my need in far future.

8. Watch your savings grow: I’m ready for this.

So yeah, wish me luck on spending and saving my money better.

This Ride is a Wild One

I like the song “Missing You” by All Time Low. It’s about mental health. The lyrics address some issues relating to it.

The first words are, “I heard that you’ve been self-medicating in the quiet of your room, your sweet suburban tomb.” This is the first time I find a song that talks about self medication. Attention everyone, this is important: psychotherapy is not a joke. The medicine for patients with psychiatry condition is not like paracetamol that you can just buy without prescription and you’ll be okay. If you want psychiatric medication, see a psychiatrist.

I like the lines,

“You’ve come this far,

you’re all cleaned up,

you made a mess again,

there’s no more trying,

time to sort yourself out…”

Those lines talk about recovery and relapse. For those who experience this, I believe you can go through this, even when it seems impossible.

I’m also impressed with the line, “Hold on tight, this ride is a wild one.” That line describes the journey with mental health: it’s not always easy, it’s wild, but as always, we can pass it.

And come the lines with strange power,

Grit your teeth, and pull your hair,

paint the walls black, and scream, ‘Fuck the world,

’cause it’s my life, I’m gonna take it back,’

and never for a second blame yourself.”

I really like the part, “…. it’s my life, I’m gonna take it back,” because damn, it reminds me that no matter the circumstance, I have the power to take my life back and have control over it.

There are still some parts of the lyrics that I haven’t mentioned in this post. Another post, maybe?

I guess someday if I have to explain about mental health, I would also recommend this song because why not, this song is well written and it talks about important issue.

Figurative Ship and Some Language Lesson

The prompt today is sail and considering that I don’t have proper knowledge about ship and sailing, I will just write about figurative ship: household.

In Indonesian language there is term “bahtera rumah tangga”. Bahtera means ship, rumah tangga means household. If you understand Indonesian language, you can read this article about the etymology of the phrase.

Usually people use the word “kapal” in Indonesian to talk about the watercraft. The word “bahtera” is rarely used in everyday conversation when you talk about water transportation. So why do we use the word “bahtera” when it comes to figurative ship called household?

The word “kapal” is derived from Tamil word “kappal”. The word “bahtera” is derived from the word “bahitra” in old Javanese, which is a loanword from from Sanskirt word “vahitra”. According to the article I link above, the word “bahtera” is used when talking about figurative ship because Sankirt is used as ritual language so it has more spiritual feeling.

So it is said that being a family and creating household is like being in the same ship. You have to work together so the ship can sail safely. I can’t explain further about it because, like a fan whose ship isn’t canon, my ship hasn’t sailed yet.

Maybe I should enjoy the harbour while getting my ship ready. Then we’ll sail (though I don’t know yet whom this “we” refer to).

“The Most Asian” Novel: My Experience with the Kite Runner

Few weeks ago, I read the Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini and it was amazing.

I will not spoil much but I will tell about my experience reading it. First, reading this novel in public place was a mistake. I brought the novel during my night’s watch duty in hospital and I had to hold back my tears many times. So I was happy when I could finally read it at home because I could cry ugly tears as I wanted.

Second, this novel is probably “the most Asian” novel I’ve ever read. The “Asian things” come in many forms: Asian pride, parent-and-child relationship, our attitude toward people of different ethnicity or religion, the gender biased norm, marriage, the taboo stuff, etc. Then I realise something: regardless of ethnicity, location, and religion, Asians are Asians. Some proud creatures we are. Well, maybe not all Asians but I live in another part of Asia and I can relate and understand those things.

This is one of my favourite quotes in the book which is also one of “the most Asian” quotes, “Because history isn’t easy to overcome. Neither is religion. In the end, I was a Pashtun and he was a Hazara, I was Sunni and he was Shi’a, and nothing was going to change that. Nothing. But we were kids who had learned to crawl together, and no history, ethnicity, society, or religion was going to change that either.”

I guess those “Asian things”, aside from the story line, are what make me love this novel so much. Because I could relate to it. Because it makes me cry and say, “Yes, right.”

Ugly Moment in Hospital: Death

I like fiction and fanfiction. I have a thing for fiction that takes place in hospital. I don’t know why. Perhaps because I’m a medical student so I like hospital setting. However, it changed recently. I’m a co-assistant and I’ve just spent 3 weeks in department of pulmonology. Those 3 weeks changed my perspective about hospital.

In fiction, there is this moment when a character dies and because this is fiction, we read some beautiful description that messes our emotion. In reality, death is … death, and it’s not beautiful. There is no narrator saying words describing the situation. It’s an ugly process which, in department of pulmonology, starts with worsened shortness of breath. Then the breathing stops, the heartbeat stops. Dead.

Another thing: last word. Often in fiction, the character says a word or two before death. I have never seen that. The person is too busy to try to breath. No last word before death.

No attractive face, either, I tell you. In fiction, you can imagine your favourite character as you want but many real people look miserable when they’re dying. 

So here is some “moral of the story” that I can give (which usually I don’t): while you’re still alive, attractive and breathing easily, speak. Do not wait until the last moment of your life to say things you’re supposed to say. However, also remember, choose your word carefully. Ah, it’s difficult, isn’t it? On one side, we don’t want to regret that we don’t say the thing, on the other side we will regret if we say it the wrong way. Oh wait, that’s a topic for another post.

And here I am, comparing death in fiction and reality while looking for good fanfiction to read before going to bed. Duh.

Lawful Wife and Mistress: Talking about Medical Study

Recently, I just found out that Anton Chekhov, the Russian author, was also a doctor. One of his famous quote regarding this was, “Medicine is my lawful wife, literature my mistress: when I get tired of one, I spend the night with the other.”

My friends and I laughed at that because never have we ever found medicine-related quote like that before. Now is the thing: every medical student that I have been close to has this kind of “mistress”, this thing that we spend our time with when we’re tired of our “lawful wife” in the form of medical study. One friend’s “mistress” is drawing, another one’s is cosplay, someone else has literature as mistress.

However, there is a problem when you’re constantly tired of your “lawful wife”. That’s what happens to me. Medical study is often demanding so I spend a lot of time with my “mistress(es)”: literature, fandom, and other things.

I think it’s time for me to remind myself that no matter how excited I get when I see my “mistress(es)”, it is my “lawful wife” that I made my vow to spend my life with.

On Sarah Urie and Kindness

In one of my recent posts, I talked about kindness as one of Hufflepuff’s trait. 

I’m a Hufflepuff but I never consider myself a kind or nice person. Some experiences make me think to myself, “Maybe some people don’t deserve my kindness.” So, I confess, I may act nice but I often have “unkind” thought of what I could do when someone do or say unkind things to me. 

One day, I found Sarah Urie’s instagram account. At first I felt something strange. I didn’t know. She did nothing wrong but I felt strange. Later I knew it was because of her bio. Her bio is changed now but when I first saw her instagram, it said, “🐝 kind” Can you view the bee emoji from computer? 

What’s wrong with that bio? Let me tell you, I spent times trying to conceal myself and selecting few people who deserve my kindness then this woman named Sarah said, “Be(e) kind” to my face (well, I face my cell phone so technically she said in to my face online). What?! Who does she think she is, telling people to be kind? She just doesn’t understand the “bitter consequence” of being kind. Maybe she doesn’t understand. Or maybe she understand that some people are horrible but she thinks it’s still important to be kind anyway.

So I think I need to thank Sarah Urie for giving me perspective that it’s all right to be kind. Also, I thank her for giving me idea to write some blog posts (seriously, this is important).

On Hufflepuff and Justice

In my previous post, I talked about how people often forgot about Hufflepuff’s justice. People tend to think that Hufflepuff is a house of sweet innocent dumb people. Sorry, that “dumb” part is rude. 

We Hufflepuffs are kind, loyal, and hardworking. However, we are also just. Now I confess that even I forget that “just” part sometimes. 

Hufflepuffs value justice. This is why many Puffs helped fight Death Eaters during the Battle of Hogwarts. They couldn’t stand the injustice that would have happened if Death Eaters had ruled the wizarding world.

However, why don’t we, even the Hufflepuffs themselves, talk more about this “badass” trait? I’m not sure why but I remember something said by Miwako Sato from Detective Conan series, “But kid, remember one thing. The word ‘justice’ isn’t a word you can involve in any occasion. It’s something we must hold secretly in our hearts.”

Justice is not something to boast about.

On Hufflepuff and Kindness

In Harry Potter books we know that Hufflepuff values kindness, loyalty, hardwork, and justice. Sounds too nice, huh? I mean, compare those traits to Slytherin’s ambition, Ravenclaw’s intelligence, or Gryffindor’s courage.

I’m a Hufflepuff and believe me, I once thought, “What ‘badass’ quality does my house have?” The answer to that question is, “Maybe none.” If you insist, I can say that Hufflepuff’s justice is badass but people often forget this one trait when they talk about Hufflepuff.

When talking about Hufflepuff, we often talk about kindness, loyalty, and hardwork. The harsh truth is some people view kindness as weakness. I need to learn more neuropsychiatry to find out why. Perhaps because kindness is associated with a child’s innocence. That possible reason is, in my opinion, what makes Hufflepuff precious. This house understands that Hogwarts teaches children.

I found this tumblr post a while ago and I shivered with a little pride. It said, “Children. They were teaching children. Rowena, Godric, Salazar; they tended to forget that. …. ‘I will take them all,’ she said. …. ‘I will teach them how to be the backbone, the heart of this world. I will teach them how to stand steadfast, when all hope is lost.’ …. No, she knew theirs would not be an easy path, or a glorious one. They would have no songs. No great tales in books. No laurels. No consolation, no thanks. But they would be the reason why, when darkness finally came, all of them in all their different colours would stand shoulder to shoulder and draw their wands as brothers in arms. ….” I also recommend you to read the tag, seriously. Some of the tags say #and this my friend is why no one is quite sure what a hufflepuff really is #the answer is: everyone.

And that, my friends, is why I like being in Hufflepuff, being a Hufflepuff.