The Past

A Matter of Heart


This is the hundredth attempt of me writing this story.

The first one was at the Gatwick Airport lounge as I sat on the leathered-iron chair, waiting with thousand other passengers. I had just gone through a long debacle of two overweight luggages at the check-in counter, where I'd like to tell the chubby-cheek man in uniform, "I'm sorry for trying to fit in all of four years worth of my life into two luggages. And I might've miscalculated the weighing measure. Sorry! Can I just get through? I've got nineteen hours flight ahead of me!"

Second, was at Schiphol International Airport. With two hours to kill, I sat next to the window facing the runways. I remember the scent of airplane engine waste, and the summer sun casted shadow on my brand new notebook, a parting gift from Marta that says Carpe Diem on the cover, written in shiny gold ink.

The following attempts after that were all blur. I only remember it was never longer than two sentences and involved a lot of uncomfortable feelings.

Since I stepped on the plane, I thought I was a time-bomb – I'd explode anytime soon. I imagined floods of tears, uncontrollable rage, emotional waves. But I waited only to find out, it was far bigger, quieter, deadlier than a bomb.

My body began to weaken. There it happened; regular headaches, diarrhoea, and throwing up every two weeks for one consecutive month. I often found myself face down on my pillow, or in a foetus position, holding both of my hands on my tummy, secretly asking for my mother's attention to rub minyak kayu putih on my stormy belly.
"It's psychological, Sayang." She said. "Are you unhappy?" I looked away, could not come up with an answer. So, I stayed silent.

I then remember when I looked at their eyes, when I said I loved it there, it has been difficult moving back in, I could tell to them those were just strings of words. An exaggeration. Nothing more than a statement. But to me, it was real. England had made me feel something that Indonesia couldn't and I wish I could explain how dear it felt, but I couldn't. I wish I could explain why but I couldn't get any farther than one perhaps: because it's my choice. I wasn't born to it. I chose to love that place and I found most of the things in it are larger than life, even when sometimes it doesn't make any sense.

And that what makes saying goodbye to England is beyond heartbreaking.


Nevertheless, it would be unfair to define 2015 only by one goodbye. I have said hello to the other part of continent I never thought in my wildest dream to visit last April, North Africa! To the people I met at youth hostel when I decided to travel on my own up to Liverpool and Cardiff, where I learned how to not feel uncomfortable ordering table for one at Nandos on a rainy Tuesday afternoon in Liverpool One. To a local beauty on the east side of Indonesia with a dear friend, where I learned peace does come from within. And last but not least, I did, too, say hello to the bachelor degree I finally earned after four years of great hard work (and play, of course). And all the tough love the age of twenty three has offered.


But my God, it's 2016!

Look at all of the bright places we have been to! All the emotions we have felt! People we have met! Lesson we have learned! Bands we have seen! Old sweaters we have thrown! Lips we have kissed! Tears we have shed! Well done for getting through another year in one piece with a little bump of emotional damage here and there! That's great! We're here, aren't we! Let's raise our shot glass full with liquor of your choice to get through another set of 365 days!


A piece by : Fiya Muiz