2018 Highlights and Reflections

Screenshot from my Instagram. All photos are mine.

I know it’s been a while since New Year, but I wrote several things for my reflections last year, so I might as well post them here.

Well, I survive. I’m still alive. I can’t say there are a lot of changes, improvement, or achievements, but I guess 2018 is the year I traveled the most. I traveled to 16 countries: Philippines, (with a transit in) Japan, UK, France, Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark, Norway, Germany, Czech Republic, Austria, Hungary, Italy, Switzerland, Spain, and Portugal. Google said I went to 17 countries, I guess they counted US, too. For me, US doesn’t count because that’s where I live now. But I’m glad I did it. I’m not sure when I can such trips again. Truthfully, I’m not sure if I’ll ever be able to do it again. So I’m really grateful that I could do it at least once in my life. But anyway, let’s see about other things.

This is the summary of my 2018 travel sent by Google. I’m one of those people who are actually thankful that Google did this for me.

Insecurity (inferiority n anxiety) level: The same if not increasing..

Happiness: Sought, secured, felt, and treasured as well as indebted.

Socializing skill: Well, it’s always like that. I don’t hate people, I just get anxious quickly around them. So yeah, it can be exhausting and suffocating sometimes. やっぱり I’m more of an introvert after all. (But to tell you the truth, I’m not sure if I don’t really like being with people because I don’t feel comfortable around them or if it’s because I’m afraid that I’ll make them uncomfortable around me. The thought that I make someone uncomfortable is unbearable. Because it feels like rejection, and I don’t deal with it well enough. Though logically and theoretically, it should be okay, right? I mean, if people reject us, we can just go with the ones who accept us, no? But well, the heart wants what it wants, doesn’t it? Often times, we want people who don’t want us to want us, no? Maybe that’s why “falling in love with someone we can’t have” happens. *Eh わるかったね。🙈😅✌)

Alayness: Hmm, I’m not sure if I wrote about this “alay” thing, but long story short, many called me ‘alay’ because too many times I was way exaggeratingly too expressive. But now I don’t think I’m that expressive anymore. I don’t know. Maybe I’m tired. (Btw, if you don’t know what alayness is, it’s basically the state of being “alay”. For some people, alay means negative, i.e. too expressive, exaggerating, dramatizing stuff, etc.)

Cooking skill: The same. I don’t think I can ever claim that I’m good at it. けど、好きでもきらいでもありません。I cook for survival. Good tastes are just coincidental, and maybe it’s just because my tongue is not that good at distinguishing tastes. (Or maybe I’m just scared that someone will like me because he thinks I can cook but then finds out that I’m not good. That way I’ll end up disappointing him, and I don’t want that. That’s why I want people to think that I cannot cook so they don’t have to expect me to cook for them. No expectation=no disappointment, no?)

Health: Thankfully ok. In general I’m a healthy person though I don’t really gain weight. At the beginning till mid 2018, I often got light mouth ulcers, but thankfully not so much at the second half of the year. And in general, I didn’t really get “sick”. I guess the key was keeping my meals in “balance”, you know, like eating various food. But やっぱり, I still prefer Indonesian food. さいこうです❤️

Finance: Great. Thankfully I’m not financially in debt and could survive with what I’ve got. Well, I’ve been taught, since I was a kid, not to spend more than I earn, to buy what I need instead of what I want, though, yeah, every now and then, once in a while, I still spend some money for what I want. Traveling is one example. The more I think about it, I guess I travel more because I want to, not really because I need to (well, except for conference/seminar, because that’s the “demand”). (But sometimes we really need to grant us ourselves some wishes, no?). But, well, yeah, I’ve been a̶ ̶l̶i̶t̶t̶l̶e̶ ̶b̶i̶t̶  stingy.

Love life: Surprisingly, though I don’t really like cheese, I find myself liking cream cheese. Just kidding 😁 Well, I still love Lee Dong Wook. i love Ikuta Toma, too. (Wait, have I written anything about him?) But well, nearing the end of the year, I’m welcoming SakaKen (and few others) into my heart, so, mmm. Haha ごめん、やっぱり, w̶h̶e̶n̶ ̶i̶t̶ ̶c̶o̶m̶e̶s̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶l̶o̶v̶e̶,̶ ̶I̶ ̶s̶i̶m̶p̶l̶y̶ ̶s̶u̶c̶k̶,̶ ̶g̶o̶t̶ ̶n̶o̶ ̶l̶u̶c̶k̶ ̶w̶i̶t̶h̶ ̶t̶h̶a̶t̶. I̶ ̶g̶u̶e̶s̶s̶ ̶I̶’̶v̶e̶ ̶g̶i̶v̶e̶n̶ ̶u̶p̶ ̶n̶ ̶d̶e̶c̶i̶d̶e̶d̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶k̶e̶e̶p̶ ̶f̶a̶n̶t̶a̶s̶i̶z̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶a̶n̶d̶ ̶b̶e̶i̶n̶g̶ ̶h̶a̶p̶p̶y̶ ̶a̶b̶o̶u̶t̶ ̶i̶t̶.̶ うそだ。やっぱり私はあまりやさしくなくてきれいじゃなくておもしろくなくてたのしくないですね🙈 But I’m ok. At least, I hope I don’t hurt anyone that way. I’ll remain hopeful 😊

Study: Grades are as usual, enough to secure the scholarship a̶n̶d̶ ̶t̶o̶ ̶b̶o̶a̶s̶t̶ ̶i̶f̶ ̶n̶e̶e̶d̶e̶d̶. I went to 2 big conferences, and some minor ones. I felt really great. But if I were to tell you the truth, actually I’ve been struggling with mys̶e̶l̶f̶ study and I feel like I should’ve done better and more. I keep asking myself if I’ve made the right decision with this PhD thing. I keep doubting (and also convincing) myself if I’ll be able to get through this. I keep wondering if it will be okay to quit. Will I be able to take responsibility for it? Etc. Then I remember my scholarship and many people who want it, those I snatched it from, so I hang in there. I might not look like it and some people are surprised when I tell them this, but thank you for believing that I can be (that) strong 🙇🏻‍♀️ 私はがんばります。いつも、ずっと、もっとがんばります🙏

Family: Good. I keep in touch with my family. But there was a time when I was really upset with my sister, but thankfully we made up. Well, I love her, so I can’t stay forever mad. I really hope she can graduate soon. I mean, this situation where she’s not graduating even after almost 7 years study is frustrating not only for her but also for our parents, and I’m stuck in between trying to make them understand each other and still feel loved. It’s not easy.

Friendship: In general it’s ok. People come and go. I might’ve strayed farther from some, I might’ve got closer to some. I’m glad I got to clear things up with some. But on a more serious note, actually, sometimes I have an issue with friendship, probably with myself. I mean, there are times when I break down wondering if I do really have friends. And I learned that people wouldn’t always care for my feelings the way I do for them. I guess I’m truly, unfortunately, oversensitive. And I often want and expect certain people to be there and respond to me but they don’t. And I try my hardest to snap out of it because I believe there are people who would be there for me if only I reach to them in person. It’s my own fault for not reaching out to them. I feel bad. It must be tiring to always be the first one reaching out to me, right? And I feel worse, because if I stress myself thinking I don’t have friends, then it would look like I don’t appreciate the ones who really care about me. Besides, I don’t think I’m a best friend myself. I’m not the type who will chat you and say “hi” every day. I don’t always see my friends’ IG stories and WA statuses either. And I love to believe that I’m not the only one like that. Hence, I can’t make an exception letting it be okay if it’s me but not if it’s others, right? I cannot let myself be selfish like that. But I don’t think I’m a bad friend either. If you need me, you know that you can always reach out to me, and I’ll try to be there. Hence, I’m thankful for everyone who’s always there for me, who responds to my silliness and spoiled acts, who is always concerned whether they’ll make me sad, mad, or happy. I’m truly sorry for all the troubles I’ve caused you 🙏🙇🏻‍♀️

I don’t know what else I should write. Resolutions and wishes in 2019? Well, I’ve stopped making resolutions since long time ago. The last resolution I made was “No Complaining”, and I couldn’t come up with a cooler or better one, so I decided to leave it at that. Besides, I guess I’m not as “ambitious” as I used to be. Responsibilities are burdensome, aren’t they? Technically life has been easier, but I feel like I’ve got more responsibilities and I can’t just do as I please without thinking about them. But anyway, I’m not sure how much time I’ve left in life. So now, instead of thinking too far into the future, I want to treasure the present more and more, well, of course still with the hope that the future will be better. That’s why I have to do my best at the present, no? 🙂 I guess, if I can get through the day feeling accomplished and enough, that’s great, and that’s enough. But, well, this is cliche, but of course I want and hope 2019 to be better. Hopefully there are many better things to happen and many more people become happier. But, actually, to be honest, I just want to feel enough. Enough with what I’ve got. Enough with what I can do. I want to not want more things or people any more.  I want to treasure everything and everyone that I’ve got. I want to stop trying harder to feel “useful” or to convince myself that I’m not that worthless. But of course I know I’m not worthless. It’s just, I hope I can do more and more, and it hurts because I just can’t. I will keep trying my best, though 🙂

So I guess that’s all for the highlights and the reflections for 2018. Thank you for reading; I hope you didn’t waste your time here…

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