Bangkok, Mama, Papa

10 Years: Growing Old with You

The last time I wrote a post related to our anniversary was 4 years ago when we had our 6th one.  I also made a post for the 5th and 4th. (Oh, where was I for these last 4 years? My blog is practically dormant during that period of time. The consequences of being in my status quo, is it? Nevermind. The more important question is, should this dormancy prolonged? I am not sure how to me answer it. I am surely not in my status quo, but, who can tell the future? Let’s see how my blog’s gonna roll after this.)

Oh, anniversary. How is marriage after 10 years?

The first half of my married life was pretty much in Long-Distance-Love mode. Keluarga kocar-kacir. We were stretched between Bangkok, Purwokerto, and Surabaya. The second half of gave us much more time to be together. Almost 70% of our 5 years were spent together under the same roof in Karanggintung. So, yeah, we have experienced two different tastes of married life. While we were at the LDL mode, I fancied the idea of living the family life as it should be, literally together and having each other in hugging distances. You can find how I felt and thought about it in the three links I posted at the beginning of this post. Now, after I had experienced the marriage life I dreamt of before, do I still feel the same that being together is way better than in LDL status for a married couple?

Nope.

It’s valid to say that both have their own minus and plus. Both conditions need hard works to work properly. Both can’t be taken for granted. They bring their own lesson to be learned.

Somehow, if I have a choice, I will go with the later.  Definitely, I do.

In both conditions, communication and compromise are essential. I’ve said it before, love alone is not enough. Marriage grows with responsibility. The longer you are in it, the more responsibility you should take. In the beginning, there was only you and your spouse. As the time flies, there would be children, KPR, growing careers, neighbors, extended families, bla bla bla all you have to deal with. And love alone, my friends, is not enough to overcome the problems related to those.

Yeah, that was 10 years of marriage to me. Sure, I love Pak Suami, and that love has evolved with time. It grows day after day, intertwines with communication and compromises, to build what so-called of our marriage’s backbone.

What about happiness? Am I happy with my marriage? I am. (I don’t know why I suddenly remember my friend’s quote once when I was in my 2nd anniversary. She said that I should not hope too much with married life. She, as long as her marriage, witness that marriage did not necessarily make her happy. She had to shut her dreams down to marry, and after a while in it, she realized that it made her better in many aspects, but it took happiness from her. That’s why she warned me to define progress in my marriage as a better life, and not happiness. Mind you she was in her 20th anniversary now. No, I won’t give you the detail of my dear friend. This post should be about my 10 years of marriage, and not give us fuel to another ghibah.)

But in this point, happiness maybe not the best word to describe the feeling. I don’t know, maybe content is more appropriate. If it so, yes, I am content with my marriage.

The most important thing I realize lately is the importance of not losing our self in marriage. Sure I am Pak Suami’s wife, Soph and Sya’s mom, but I am Tanti in the first place. That’s where I start and will grow from. A happy me for happy children and happy family, that’s the simplest way I put it into a sentence.

Thus, I choose Lucky Man as the soundtrack of my 10th anniversary. Because happiness, more or less, is something in my liberty. And I am a lucky man with fire in my hands.

IMG-20180707-WA0016
ten years and counting, alhamdulillah

 

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Bangkok, Mama

On Jamu, Indonesia Traditional Medicine

I’ve read a fair amount of references on traditional medicines and started to grip some concepts. It’s open my eyes, knowing how little I have understood this subject before, and how much I need to find out more. At the same time, it rose questions haunting me since then:

  1. What is the key concept, the philosophy, of jamu (as balancing doshas, the pitta, kapha, and vata in Thai Traditional Medicine or balancing the five elements in Traditional Chinese Medicine)?
  2. Why aren’t there references discussing it, why aren’t scholars write it? ( I wonder if Jamu – The Ancient Art of Herbal Healing by Susan-Jane Beers is the only modern textbook covering it. It doesn’t discuss the key concept, to start the argument with)

You start to question things as you start to read, they say.

Bangkok, Mama, Papa, Syafiq

A New Chapter: Daycare

We are on our first week of Sya’s daycare journey. The hardest part, I believe. It’s the second experience, indeed. Somehow it doesn’t make this second time any way easier than that of the first one. Let’s simply say that we are on the different circumstances. I mean, this time around and about 8 years ago.

It is worries galore.

We are worried about his meal. He is in a public daycare run by a local. Yes, we had made it clearly understood that Sya is a moslem.  Yes, Sya is not the only moslem toddler there. Yes, the daycare doesn’t serve pork to the kids and serve halal-certified chicken. Somehow this worry is just lingering around.

We are also worried about Sya’s language development. He hasn’t mastered Bahasa Indonesia (he speaks a sentence in two words, communicates well, has a very good vocabulary, somehow he’s just two years old toddler. There’s a so much more he needs to learn), yet he has to communicate in Thai with his sitters. How will he deal with it?

Sya always knows how to make the outsides see he has done good, and only shares his not-so-good-things with his family. His sitters said that his progress is good, less crying day by day, and he sleeps and eats well during his time there. Somehow, we witness how he copes with his sadness and fears each time we bring him there in the morning and pick him up in the noon (Sesedih apa melihat bocah yang sedih dan gelisah selama di gendongan  dalam perjalanan ke TPA, terus sesampainya di sana langsung jadi anak tegar yang tanpa nangis pindah ke pangkuan pengasuhnya dan mengucapkan selamat tinggal sama orang tuanya, coba?).

Oh, why the gene is inherited and expressed in you, Sya?

It’s hard for us, but I know it’s so much harder for him.

Why does a child have to suffer in the name of his parents’ choice?

In the end of the day, I am realized this is not the first time for us. We had survived it before. I know how it is played. I know how it will be rolled. Sya will be fine. He will cope it better than I thought. He is stronger than I expect. Yes, ye will turn out fine. InsyaAllah. Just like his sister years ago. May Allah help Sya through this, as we have done our part in the best efforts we can.

 

 

Mama

#2017bestnine 


Well, well, here is the breakdown:

  • Sya is in 5 pics
  • Soph is in 3 pics
  • I am in 5 pics
  • Pak Suami is in 4 pics
  • There are 3 work-related pics

Somehow, my friend, let me tell you one thing. My life is not that depicted in my Instagram feeds. Not even close. My Instagram is curated, I only post things that I want people see. Just like a house, I only open a window. 

Thank you 2017, and hello 2018. 

Mama, Papa, Sophie, Syafiq

Square One

There’ s a time for anything, i believe. There was time when my world was spinnned around science writing, when Carl Zimmer, Ed Yong, and Atul Gawande occupied my mind (while it wasn’t busy with my primary business, of course). I had so many plans related to this in my mind, somehow none of actions i took then. I am wondering, was i that busy with science writing, or, was i busy imagine it?

After a while i’ve been busy with rumahliliput-hypes only, it finally comes a time when i have a lot of free time to do anything outside that hypes. Those long sleepless nights provided me time to do things useless, of course. Do you know what i do with those times? I stalk. Yes, i stalk in my long sleepless nights. Thank to Instagram (and Twitter, too. Old habit never dies, i guess).

Recently, i found instagram’s account of one i admired for her creativity and struggle to reach her dream. No, i won’t mention her name here.

I catched years since the last time i stalked her in her instagram’s post. She’s just as sweet as she was. She’s just enganged to man with a familiar family name to my ears. And just like that, my stalking journey has officially begun.

I knew that she came from a formal family. Her parents were state officers, and she took a very different path than her parents’. Somehow it’s clear from very beginning that she was raised in a family where education is the first priority. She waited until she was graduated from School of Law before she spreaded her wings, flew away and be who she is known today.

I stalked her family with the help of google. Yes, their formal background would not let his parents possessing instagram account, I guess. Oh, they are retired and her mother run a flower shop.

Sure I was not stop with that. I stalked his fiance, whose big family name. Oh, so he is an aspiring director, a runner, and the our typical of future family man. Lovely.

And so stalked that famous family name. There are television person, actor, restaurateur, philanthropist, and environmentalist there. They love and support each other, i can feel the warmness anytime i look at their pics and read their storiea. They love sports, even the father in his 70s recently participated in a half marathon!

***** **** *** ** *

OK, so, what did you get from this stalking, Tanti?- you may ask.

After did all those stalkings, i realize that family is one’s square one. Yes, FAMILY IS ONE’S SQUARE ONE, i repeat it in capitals. It is the very place where we start, which define our basic color, and eventually where we will come back to, no matter how far we have traveled.

Yes, i know, i am pretty much what my family is. Maybe you see some differences on the surface, but underneath, yep, no need to be discuss further. In my position right now, it doesn’t matter anymore. I accept it, i am good with it.

This rises a question, the essential one. Has i set a family that condusive enough for Sophie and Syafiq to grow to their optimum potency?