The Lows are Equally Worth It

Di sepanjang hidup, menulis pernah jadi tulang punggung edukasi, cara mencari nafkah dan cermin untuk berkaca. Setelah melaju terlalu cepat tanpa sempat melihat ke belakang, kini Ia saya jadikan sarana berbenah diri.

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During my college days, I was so used to be vulnerable in my writings. They were mainly blogposts about relationships, music and life but ultimately it was just me trying to understand myself. During that period, I think I was also emotionally constipated in real life while handling issues, so I kinda needed to hose my feelings somewhere else. So people who knew in day-to-day life were usually surprised when they read my unexpectedly intimate and emotional writings. My stuff was romantic and eloquent, but my personality was straight-up asshole. You can fact-check that, haha.

Also during that period, I think I didn’t have a choice except being emotionally numb, so I allocated my sadness, frustration and anger in my writings. The result was quite impressive: I discovered myself. At that time the blogposts felt just like grumbles around journalism, college, drugs but I didn’t realize until today, those things unfolded my own maze. I struggled to accept certain things and fought the world in my own head. Reading my old writings feels like going on an emotional time-machine.

The next thing I realized is I (actually) learn. At the core, the problems I have today are not really different with the ones I had in the past, but with different magnitude, more participant and bigger risk. My encounter with similar problems made me realized that this is a cycle of issues revolving around my personality, my past and my future. Today, as you read this post, you can easily notice that my writings are not that romantic anymore. It’s more direct and elaborative.

There’s a side of me that is afraid of losing the old intimacy of solving my own maze through writings, but I think I am now more aware of my emotional condition therefore more expressive and honest towards myself. Sometimes I wished I can manage my anxiety and frustration so I can write like the old days but deep down I understand that I passed that phase and as an adult.

This journey also helps me to understand emotional constipation among Indonesian people: many of us auto-corrected our emotional wounds with being numb, blocking vulnerability and simply being zombies. While it is easy and simple because it’s practical to do that, accumulation of that could bury your whole consciousness. I have many friends who survived life being that person, but I guess the simple way to put it is this: Life is better when you are emotionally present. It is not always good, sometimes it is terrible, but I guess when you reach the highs, the lows are equally worth it. Be that person. And, if you write, please don’t stop. It gets harder when you’re older and busier, but your writings will pay you back sometimes in the future with things with no currency.

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