Ten Years Later

I hate the thought of having to feel weird about coming home. I have here in my flat a pair of luggage, a box, and a backpack; and it’s strange to see them all ready for my flight in the next ten days. I’m half excited, half anxious because this time, it’s gonna be “for real” and I’m bringing with me ten years of my life back home. It’s not as if I’ve been living in the other hemisphere – not even out of the country – but I’d love to exaggerate things a bit, so I will.

When I left home for university ten years ago, I had a grandiose plan. I brought with me some big dreams. I’d be this, I’d be that. And I dreamed and daydreamed of them at every chance I had. I did imagine gathering flattering titles and then landing on a really nice job in the metropolis, where I’d have to always put on corporate clothes and talk big things with big people. Sooner, I’d be rich. I was ambitious. In fact, very ambitious and it was a good thing, except that life, surprisingly or not, didn’t go as planned.

I thought…I thought…I thought of so many things…of a different kind of life – one that’s different from what’s coming home with me. 

Ten years later, what have I become?

Precisely not how I imagined it. I look at myself in the mirror and I am ordinary and life’s definitely far from grand. No titles garnered, no flattering awards, no overwhelming place that I personally own, no car, no hacker-friendly bank accounts. Oh, and not yet married, got no kids! But I managed to work for a company though small was award-winning, and where I had to look business-y when talking big things with big guys. It somehow made me richer – at least a bit richer than when I was just imagining life after school. That’s basically the story.

When I think of all those years and chances gone, it’s only failure after failure I could see. Errors, I’m made of errors. The beautiful token expected of a ten-year story turned into a rusty trophy made of brittle pieces. Many times I asked myself, “What have I done?”

Then I see my bags and boxes all packed with my story of ten years away from home. “Who have I become?” I smile a pretty one because there are so many things to be truly grateful for. I had my plans but God had a story to tell.

My purpose for leaving home was university but life took me to a maze full of right and wrong turns. I made it a point to be always different but I found joy in sisterhood, friendship, and belongingness. I prayed so hard that life be grand but I bumped into its simplicity and I felt the bliss.

I was wrong to believe that this decade-long adventure was all about beating expectations and chasing dreams. Nobody told me I was to live a story to make me understand who I am, accept what I am not, and be grateful for all that there is.

Thank God. It’s been lovely. Now, fly me home.

Love,
Ayna

 

Ten Years Later

A Promise of A Goodbye

“Maybe because some things have changed.”

Nah, it’s not some things, love. Everything has changed.

You wrote down your promise, now I have to tear it up. Every strip I make of it will bear every bit of hurt that lingered – the hate that wakes me up midday and midnight, the joy that steals me from what’s real now, the stories we’ve made, and the last few questions that will perhaps remain unasked. All of them gone as I kiss your promise goodbye.

Because we are now at the end of our forever. This is where I let all of it go – the dreams we daydreamed together, the so many nights we skipped sleeping, the so many days we chose to rather spend alone than spend with the rest of the world, and all the times rather spent to sweet nothings.

Now, I free our love, let it fly somewhere out a space we will never know of and from where it will never find its way back to us.

Thank you for every bit of everything. It was worth a story after all. But it ends here, now. And I leave here my tiny hopes for us I’ve been holding for a while. And the only thing that I have to offer now is peace, and a wish for you. May you find the love you’ve long been looking for.

Goodbye.
Ayna

A Promise of A Goodbye

The Song of the Last Tear

Stay there, play the guitar

I’ll sit here, listening from afar

Tickle the strings while I fix my wings

Play your music, the curse to our broken rings.

Sit there, play the piano

I’ll hear it and I’ll tell you, “Bravo”

My heart will bleed, blood coming out clear

Look away, I’ll now embrace to death my fear.

But if you see it, please don’t ask

Believe you only see a very sad mask

My pain is not yours anymore

Worry not, I’ll find a cure to what you tore.

Tomorrow, I will wake up and smile

At the love we shared for long but seemed just a while

Tomorrow, I’ll seek answers, please don’t care

Else you’ll see the pain in me, just beware.

And I’m telling you it’s not for you to see

This pain, this nightmare haunting me

So strum the guitar, play the piano

Close your eyes, my dear musico.

Play the music that broke my heart

Close those eyes I used to see as art

Take our memories with you or leave them somewhere

And now, I’ll close my eyes to free this last tear.

The Song of the Last Tear

Out-of-the-Blue…

Out-of-the-Blue Q: If you were an elevator, how would you define or describe life?

After two months of keeping it to myself, I finally asked this question to my office-mates while we were in the elevator. And they said, “You’re tired. Seriously.” Hahaha. Alright, fine, but I’m still wondering…for two months now. More than thrice, I wondered if the elevator ever gets tired (humanizing). What do you think? 🙂

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The Perks of Being a Holiday Worker

May 1.

It’s Labor Day (a national holiday indeed) and I just came home from WORK! Wiw, awesome. But seriously, I could’ve rejoiced wasting the day to my boring hobbies: reading a novel aloud, soaking my dirty clothes in fresh-smelling bubbles, playing my one and only playlist – yes, the entire album of Pitch Perfect – on my laptop, blog-hopping, checking the fridge if our can of ice cream has multiplied, and of course updating myself with the latest gossips in the whole world through Facebook. But I didn’t! I didn’t because as I’ve just said, I just came home from work.

I didn’t regret though. 🙂

WHY? For three things, at least.

1. No traffic. Travel this morning? That was pretty swift. I actually struggled chasing time because it was already 08:00 and some freakin’ bad air was terribly troubling my tummy; and I wouldn’t go until I got darn relieved of it. So I thought, “Fine, I’ll be late.” I hailed a bus at 8:20 and I knew the remaining 40 minutes couldn’t save me from the “Tardy” remark. Just had to move the hell on. But then again, it’s holiday today and the highway was miraculously not jammed with reckless buses. I had a smooth lift to the office and at 8:42, I was already at my desk. Man, I even got to spare some three minutes to forget to log in. So 8:45 – time in. Lovely.

2.  Canape Galore! Mid-morning, my supervisor asked, “What do you want for snacks? The Boss is asking.” Honestly, I wasn’t really after any particular recipe. I was thinking FREE SNACK! Sweet treat. My supervisor wanted Canape, and I like Canape, so be it. And when The Boss came, it was Canape galore!

3. My Tally Board Just Got Sweeter. We were just about to pack up and leave, and call it a holiday, when my supervisor said, “You have new registrations!” Sounded music, yeah. My counts are climbing and my tally board just got sweeter. Way to go, kiddo!

So what’s there to feel wasted about? Out of working on a holiday, I got me a triple-treat, some precious perks of being a happy holiday worker! 🙂

The Perks of Being a Holiday Worker

Things I Worry About At Twenty-Something

Never would’ve realized these things if I, for once or twice, did not get irritated with myself asking these questions over and over again. 🙂

1. What to wear tomorrow? When I get home from work, I don’t usually spend a while longer in my office clothes slash outfit of the day. Of course, they’re already dirty with soot and sweat. So by the time I change for bed clothes, that’s also the minute I start figuring out what to wear the next day. Slacks? Skirt? Dress? What colors am I going for? Heels? Flats? How about the hair-do? And all that outfit shits. It’s both exciting and frustrating; frustrating when I’ve already gone drowsy and I still haven’t figured it out. Then in the morning, I wake up to panic for not having decided what to wear. So I rush to my outrageous heap of clothes, rummage for a good matching outfit, and that takes me…well…a good deal of time, which in such case is bad. And if I spend a little more time rummaging, I’d arrive in the office at 9:02. Two minutes late! Phew. (Thought: Blame the traffic, not me. HAHAHA!)

2. Have I got enough coins for my bus fare? I should know better now how precious it is to be able to find a seat in the bus on your way to work. Otherwise, you have the right to remain standing all throughout the ride rich in “inertia moments” – those sudden brakes that pull you to that stranger in front and bang your head against his bag; and then push you to another stranger behind and you have to say, “Sorry”. Awful.

For that, I make sure I got my both hands to pin me in place the whole time. So before I leave home, I also make sure I have enough coins to pay my exact fare. Not bills because I don’t have an extra hand to take my change and toss it in my coin purse and dunk it into my bag.

3. What to eat for lunch? What time can I eat lunch? I always wonder what time exactly I can eat my lunch. It’s irritatingly amazing how blood red flags and deadlines can keep you pinned down in your station. Bad thing is that the canteen is way down the ground floor. Then you get to look at the bottom-right corner of your monitor, it’s already 3:00 PM; worse, 4:00 PM. Happy lunch, yeeeaah! 🙂

4. I’m not gonna be late for work, am I? Well, I worry about this everyday, starting when I’m halfway through the travel, or oftentimes when I’m just about to grab my bag and go. As calculated, I have to leave home at 7:45 to 7:50 AM. But because of #1 (What to wear) and this unnecessarily long time in the bath, I often take off at 8:00 to 8:10. It’s not like I’ve wasted thirty minutes but when you know traffic is readily waiting to welcome your day, five minutes is just so damn precious!

5. Where to find a pretty dead twig for my soda bottle vase? An unnecessary worry, fine. But because everytime I open the cupboard I see my empty Sola bottle stripped off of its label, I then start to mentally tour around the neighborhood and scout for a pretty dead twig that looks rustic enough to match our apartment’s intended interior. When I go out to buy food, groceries, whatsoever, I look around for this pretty dead twig but so far always unfortunate.

6. MY LAUNDRYYYY!!! When will I ever run out of dirty clothes??? I don’t need to explain this, right? I don’t usually put off doing my laundry but it’s just awfully unbeatable! Good Lord.

Now, if I think of it, at twenty-something, I still think nonsense…a lot. 🙂

Things I Worry About At Twenty-Something