Refleksi Diri dari Pertanyaan "Sudah Hamil Belum?" yang Muncul Saat Lebaran

Momen Lebaran lekat dengan kesempatan untuk kembali terkoneksi dengan mereka yang tersayang. Bagi anak muda Indonesia -garis bawah perspektif anak muda, karena saya belum punya pengalaman menjadi orang tua-, momen Lebaran bisa jadi ajang silaturahmi yang ngeri-ngeri sedap. Sebagian besar dari kita pasti pernah merasa kaget, sebal, bahkan jengah dengan rentetan pertanyaan klasik yang sering dilontarkan sanak saudara yang biasanya memang hanya bertemu setahun sekali semacam : "Wah tahun depan lulus SMA ya, mau lanjut kuliah dimana?" "Sudah mau lulus kuliah aja nih bentar lagi, rencananya mau ngelamar kerja kemana?" "Kamu udah sekian tahun kerja, kapan mau ketemu jodohnya kalau sibuk cari uang terus..." "Eh ini ada pengantin baru, kapan mau kasih cucu buat mama papa?"
Seolah semua lulusan SMA harus pasrah dan jadi anak kuliah, padahal siapa tahu mereka mau langsung cari duit sebagai influencer. Seakan semua lulusan universitas harus kerja di gedung ka…

On Perfect Marriage

On January 16th 2020 Masyan and I celebrate the fourth anniversary of our partnership. Yes, I just used the term partnership to try to sound more professional, instead of frankly and hopelessly said "the fourth anniversary of being boyfriend and girlfriend". As a matter of fact, this is our first January 16th where we have been officially married. So yeah, we both come to the point of asking each other, do we celebrate our partnership on November 10th now? Which was our wedding date and not make a big deal about January 16th anymore. Or do we celebrate both? Which gives us one more excuse to go on a fancy date and eat somewhere nice :p
On a more critical note, I would like to take this time to just sit down and write wonderful thing about being married. Due to work related reason, we are still living in two different cities for the time being. So whenever he comes home for the weekend and we get to spend time together, it somehow still feels like a honeymoon. Yes, I do get …

On Growing Apart and Finding Closure

As we grow up, we have come to understand that people grow apart sometimes. As we near the adulthood, we no longer have enough time and energy to keep everyone close to us anymore. Those who used to sit next to us during high school days, lovers we used to see everyday during college, or co-workers who started together but have now moved to different workplaces. These people who used to be part of our routine, are now nothing but happy memories (or painful) and occasional chats of "Let's hang out sometime soon" that never really happens. I, for one, is a true believer of that.
There will come days when out of the blue you think of those people, nights when they randomly show up in your dream. And you can't help but feeling a little miserable for missing them and the good times you had together.
I had a dream about someone who used to be my regular go to person, when I clearly did not think about them before going to bed. I woke up with such mixed feelings. Some of m…

The End of Game of Thrones - Sebuah Renungan Ramadhan

A few hours before the final episode of Game of Thrones airs, I find myself reflecting. Despite fans' mixed feelings about how the final season was written, we have surely witnessed one of the greatest productions in the history of television. That alone makes me grateful. What a time to be alive.
Even though the show constantly promotes things I am normally against (drinking problems, slavery, incest, forced arranged marriages, killing people for power, etc.), I have a tremendous admiration towards the show because it reminds me of the very core of everything : that all thing must come to an end and that nothing is going to stay here forever.
Thrones fandom by now are fully aware of the phrase "Valar Morghulis", which in High Valyrian translates to all men must die. This customary saying is traditionally answered with "Valar Dohaeris" which means all men must serve. Even though this exchange has a more barbaric-violent tone when used in the show, I really dee…

Why I Didn't Dream of Getting Into Stanford

A few weeks ago, we were bombarded with the happy news of Maudy Ayunda getting acceptance letters from Stanford and Harvard. Later on, during an interview with Najwa Shihab we found out that she had dreamed (and of course broken down the dream into concrete steps) of getting into Stanford for awhile. However, knowing that its acceptance rate was pretty damn low, she "humbled" herself by applying into Harvard for a different program, hoping that she would get accepted (in what universe does a person choose Harvard as their back up plan?). As someone who doesn't necessarily have a business background, getting accepted into Stanford MBA program is a major achievement (during the same interview she notes that most of her classmates are investment bankers, CEO of start-ups, and such). I don't personally know Maudy Ayunda, but I too am happy for her!
Perceiving this wonderful news, however, got me reflecting upon myself, my education, and just the general learning environ…

My Favorite Conversationalist

I love conversations.
Not the shallow ones.  The one about the weather or the politicians, the one I have to half-heartedly make during short trips with the taxi drivers.
Doesn't even have to be deep, comprehensive, mind blowing one. Packed with statistics and numbers, facts and figures. Anything impromptu, out of the blue, where minuscule details flourish to remarkable conversations on just about everything. Anything, at all.
Those conversations I have with you. I love them all. The one where we argue when the most effective time to pick our nose is. The one where I pitch my favorite countries on beauty pageants. The one with your delightful music playing in the background, which is another thing I love about you. The one we have while we drive nowhere, just being, drifting, savoring the company of each other.

Wouldn't you want to know? What it would be like to grow old and have nothing left but an endless conversation with me? I would.
I know we'd drive each other mad wi…

On Finding Greater Purpose in Life

"Kamu ingat ngga anak kecil baju putih celana oren? Aku dapat kabar dia meninggal karena demam berdarah. Ini aku mau ngelayat."
Sebaris pesan dari Masyan pagi ini. Anak kecil laki-laki berbaju putih bercelana jingga that he bonded with on New Year's eve has passed away. Anak kecil yang mungkin baru sepuluh tahun usianya. Anak kecil yang mungkin belum sadar betapa kejamnya persaingan di dunia nyata. Anak kecil yang selama hidupnya mungkin memahami bahagia dari berapa banyak uang jajan yang diterimanya dan berapa banyak yang bisa dia simpan untuk membeli barang lain yang lama diidamkan.
Logika saya sempat tidak terima. Bukan karena saya merasa Allah tidak adil. Tapi kemampuan saya yang terbatas, sesaat kesulitan memahami. He was perfectly healthy on New Year's eve, which was less than three months ago. He suffered from dengue fever, not a heart attack or a severe head injury from car accident, which I know a lot of people recover from.  A lot of people, maybe even me, h…