Monday, January 13, 2020


Wow. Yes. We are officially entering a new decade. A lot of things have happened in the last 10 years in my life but I never realised it is like a lot when I decided to write down the highlights of that year. Also, I was really bad at remembering things, so this is probably a little bit vague. 

I started this blog back in 2013, so it hasn't been 10 years but in this blog alone, a lot of things have changed. The way I write, the way I share my thoughts, the way I create content. I found it so interesting to look back and see how different I was 7 years ago or so. I also can't believe I have been blogging for seven freaking years!! 

My wish is in the next ten years, I want to be happier than I am right now, be in the place where I should be, with a person I deserve, and of course, have created a beautiful, meaningful story that I can share to my children - or maybe on the blog? Who knows! 

I graduated high school and accepted at Padjajaran University with pharmacy as a major. Yes, crazy! I was so happy and proud, literally at the happiest! Since I was a little girl, I always wanted to be a doctor but as I grew up, I realised dreams changed. I still applied to medicine however, I only accepted at private universities which were very expensive especially when you study medicine. Thank God I was accepted at this uni, which is a government university so it is a bit cheaper than the private ones. However, life is not always happening as we planned. By the end of 2010, I was diagnosed with GERD. I was hospitalised 13 times that year. Wow!

My health wasn't getting any better so with a heavy heart, I drew myself back from Padjajaran University and took 3-4 months off uni and focused on my health. By mid-2011, I was accepted at Indonesia University of Education with Indonesian Language and Literature Education as a major. I was still in medication intensively, hospitalised a few more times. I still remember how I literally worked on papers at my hospital bed while endured a lot of pain. Wow. Dedication. 

I was on a new medication for my GERD and it went really great. I no longer in pain, I could eat whatever I want (well not really, but I ate a lot), anytime I want. Everything in my life was actually going really well that time. However, there was one morning that I felt so gross, miserable, and so blue that I couldn't get out of the bed. I lied to my mum, said that I wasn't feeling well so I didn't go to classes that day. There were so many things, so many thoughts, went around on my head and it was so overwhelming. Then a week past and I still felt the same - worse, even. So I went to the hospital, thinking that had to be something wrong with me because the way I felt was not normal. I was never felt like this before. Not even on my worst days. I went through regular check-ups, blood test, and all but the result was everything was normal. I was very healthy physically (for someone who has severe GERD at that time) so my internist referred me to a psychiatrist. I never went to one before, nor that I felt I need to see a shrink, or therapist, or whatever. That's, ladies and gentlemen when the psychiatrist told me that I was depressed and they classified it as severe clinical depression

The doctor reduced the dose of my GERD medication which was a good sign. I was taking medication every single day since I was diagnosed. I swallowed those pills like goddamn lollies. I was also on medication for depression. My anxiety level was so high throughout the year. Plus. I had a bad broke up. Yes, 2013 was not a year for me. On the bright side, I started this blog in July and I have never stopped since. Cheers!

I was offered an internship programme at Bandung Independent School for 5 months as a teacher assistant and this programme opened my mind. I knew I love communicating with people but I never knew I would be so happy to talk to students who learned Indonesian. This is an international school, the students were mostly from overseas. The idea of teaching my own language to those who wanted to learn grew bigger on me. It has changed my perspective. 

By the end of this year, I was 100% off the med for GERD. My doctors said that I no longer on daily medication, only take the med when needed. That was the happiest day of my life. Getting off the med after you've taken them every day for 4 years was probably heaven on earth. 

But I also struggled with my mental health. I had a suicidal thought. I didn't necessarily want to die or kill myself, I just wanted to stop existing.

I was officially a bachelor of education! I was working on my undergraduate thesis while teaching at a high school as a preservice teacher this year. I enjoyed the experience, I actually still friends with my students. I'm also so proud of my thesis. It was probably one of the best things that I've ever done to my life. 

I started to organise the application for master's study overseas. I met with a counsellor, I research about possible universities, I talked to the people from those universities. Also, I was studying IELTS. It was a very overwhelming process but I purely enjoyed it. At that time, I was so proud of myself that I've been through a lot but managed to finish my study on time, earned my bachelor degree, trying to defeat anxiety and depression, and still organising my future.

Earlier the year, I heard back from 6 out of 7 universities that I applied. I was so happy and eager to continue my IELTS class. I had to choose one from six universities that sent me the LoA, it was almost impossible, honestly. After I decided, I worked on the government scholarship programme. However, I did not get the scholarship. Paying the tuition by myself was not an option because it was crazy expensive as an international student. Again, with a heavy heart, I had to turn down the offer. Because I always want to continue my study, I decided to apply to my alma mater again for my master's with Indonesian Language Education as a major. It turned out a great choice because I met so many amazing people in my class. 

I was chosen as a 2018 Victoria Language Assistant. Yes, I had my first real job. I'd say 2017 was a great year for me. At that time, I felt all of the doors opened for me and I was head over heels. I was in a relationship, to say it wasn't very committed one would be such a dipshit. The relationship was led to something bigger, involving our parents and family, and also friends. Heaps were happening and I was, at some point, felt like I had everything in my hand. 

My official year as a language assistant. I was appointed to two government schools based in Melbourne. I have never been to Australia before, so this year was a really big one for me: I worked abroad, I met so many amazing people, friends with them, I lived with a beautiful family, I had the best Australia life I could ever ask for (you can take a peek at my Melbourne category and travel diaries). Basically, I lived my dream. I also struggle with an abusive relationship and had to break up. I was living my best and worst dream at the same time. 

I honestly have no idea how to explain 2018 in words. I met so many amazing people but also lost two important ones. I created a life in Ringwood, Victoria, Australia. I was stepping out of my comfort zone. I challenged myself more than I thought I would be. I was being my best independent, self. But at the same time, I struggled to put myself together because I was dead inside. I went to therapy again (and realised how different it was in Indonesia and Australia), on medication again, and I had suicidal thought again. I wish I told people about this, it was just too hard to talk at that time. I guess I did not want people to see me as a drama queen or anything. I should have at least talk to someone. 

Isn't it crazy how depression works? You are living your dream but also want to stop existing? 

This year was a ride for my mental health. As I came back to Indonesia, I struggle to deal with the trauma and it got worse because I lived in the same city with the abuser. Therapy was no longer help me to cope up with my feelings, so I changed to an individual psychiatrist. It helped a bit, with med and everything, but again, I am the one who can help myself so I didn't stop fighting. I tried everything, the best as I possibly can endure. I'd say, I did try my best and it did get better. I survived and will always am. I was also diagnosed with pericarditis and had two minor heart attack within three months. On the brightest side, I finished my master's degree and officially a master of education with a cum laude honours. 

I'm beyond proud of myself. The last two years were not the easiest ride for me but yet, I still able to survive, still existing, breathing, and present in the moment. This decade has taught me to be stronger and believes in myself more. I can survive everything life throws at me.

How's your decade? 

Love, Vera

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