Saturday, August 25, 2007

The Flaming Cake

I would like to write something on the last couple hours of my 20s. Finally, here is the end of my youth and the dawn of a new era. Maturity, is it?

I am a poet only for a few moments. My tale will be over in a few moments. My laughter lasts only for a few moments. My youth will end in a few moments. I am a poet only for a few moments. Many poets came and went before me. Some left sighing. And some left singing, Their story only lasted a few moments. I too will only live a few moments. Tomorrow I will be taken from you, But for today, I am yours. I am a poet only for a few moments. Tomorrow new tunes will arrive, like freshly bloomed flowers to be plucked. There will be better storytellers than me, and better listeners than you. Tomorrow, someone might remember me... But why should anyone remember me? For my sake, why should this busy world waste its time? I am a poet only for a few moments...

When all the Friends were expecting Rachel's 30th birthday, everybody's trying to remember how they were turning 30 (somehow, Phoebe actually missed her 30th birthday, and she found out about it, a year later on her 31st birthday). Nevertheless, the reaction was all rejection inside each one of them. They contained with the feeling of unsafe, incompetent, immaturity, lack of achievement, the fear about what will happen, and identity crisis. End of the story, they all turned out to be just fine. Otherwise, the status of thirtysomething, has taught them many lesson and opened many doors.

Well, now I am in an indifferent position. The shadow of doubt about what will come next haunts my last couple hours of 20s and resulted in a mild nervous breakdown. Sometimes I hope that my 20s will last forever and I think age is a very high price to pay for maturity. And I admit that I'm not ready. Ooo God, nooooooo.... (I was imagining Joey, when I wrote this line).

Yes, I have lost much, endured much, sacrificed greatly and I cling to the memory of my sacrifices of all the things I have lost or left behind. They drag behind me like chains of my own making. They can have a terrible power over me, the power of grief, and loss, and of regret. Yes, I can let go of the people, places and things, but I have not let go of the pain. I not forgiven myself.

People said that the trick is to keep moving forward, to let go of the fear and the regret that slow us down and keep us from enjoying a journey that will be over too soon. Yes, there will be unexpected bends in the road, shocking surprises we didn't see coming... but that's really the point, don't you think? There's nothing I can do. It is something that I have to face it, whether I like it or not. Maybe, I can make a small notion on what have I gone through.

First, I'd like to tell today's youth that no matter where life takes you, big cities, small towns - I started being twenty at Jatinangor (a small campus city at the southwest of Sumedang) and ended it supposedly at Blitz Megaplex Grand Indonesia, at the very heart of Jakarta -, you'll inevitably come across small minds. People who think that they're better than you are. People who think that material things, or being pretty or popular automatically makes you a worth while human being. I'd like to tell today's youth that none of these things matter unless you have strength of character, integrity, sense of pride, and if you're lucky enough to have any of these things... don't ever sell them. Don't ever sell out. So when you meet a person for the first time, please don't judge them by their station on life, because, who knows, that person just might end up being your best friend.

Secondly, when you're a victim, that's everything. Stick with it out. At least until you solve your first. And after that, if you don't feel like King Kong on cocaine, then you can quit. But if you stay, with my right hand to God, you will never regret it.

Third, good things aren't always what they seem. Too much of anything, even love, is not always a good thing. When you were a kid, it was Christmas candy. You hid it from your parents and you ate it until you got sick. In college, it was the heavy combo of youth, tequila and well, maybe some forbidden ecstasy. You take as much of the good as you can get, because it doesn't come around nearly as often as it should. You will never imagine that it will lead you to something really... really bad.

Earlier this day, my mother called my cell phone. She tried to give me some strength after my sister told her about my mild nervous breakdown. Amazingly, she said,"If you're feeling frightened about what comes next... don't. Embrace the uncertainty. Allow it to lead you places. Be brave as it challenges you to exercise both your heart and your mind as you create your own path towards happiness. Don't waste time with regret. Spin wildly into your next action. Enjoy the present - each moment as it comes - because you'll never get another one quite like it. And if you should ever look up and find yourself lost, simply take a breath and start over. Retrace your steps and go back to the purest place in your heart, where your hope lives. You'll find your way again... You gotta embrace your inner freak. 'Cause the only thing you'll regret is denying who you really are."

Oh my sweet ma. Now, I hope that everything is gonna be just fine...


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