with great responsibility, comes great power.

short notice: i am currently applying to numerous universities and this is one of the essays i’ve written so far. this was actually based on a true experience i had last august when i was given the chance to deliver a speech on the Independence Day ceremony at my school. i talked about the topic “freedom’ and intepret it to my personal life as the student body president. enjoy!

In the beginning of 2019, I was given the trust to serve the school and my friends as the Student Body President. Since my first year in high school, I indeed have always been active and joined numerous activities in school. I also happen to attend a Jesuit school which is widely known to have so many extracurricular activities, such as Charity Bazaar, a small music festival, Jamboree, Orientation Day for our juniors, and much more. I was beyond excited to carry this big responsibilities. 

I have always remember the sentence “with great power, comes great responsibility”. This sentence was the value I uphold in the beginning of the term of office. For months, I came home late because I attended numerous meetings, made various decisions, and on top of everything, keeping up with my classes and grades. To me, my ‘new’ responsibilities now are the result of the power or privilege that I earned since now I am the elected Student Body President. I was seen as a leader and therefore I ‘received’ my authority to be the communicator between the students and the schools, and also received the trust to accompany every student activities and represent the school in numerous events.

As expected, the trip was not always running smooth. There were times when I felt tired, felt like I want to give up, mostly because I am a perfectionist and I want everything to happen according to the plan we all have been agreeing on. I often have to face critics because I am  the chairman of almost every event being held in this school by the students. There were times I felt down and when it happened, I channel my feelings in a form of writing as it is my biggest passion.

Last August, I was given the chance to give a speech on the Independence Day ceremony being held at my school. I was thinking of the word “independence”, which usually is equivalent to “freedom”. I was thinking about the “freedom” or privilege I received this past year. By writing it down and reflecting on it, especially by the examen tradition that I was taught in school, I learned that I have to change my mindset instead of feeling pressured by all the responsibilities and job I know have. The sentence was supposed to be “with great responsibility, comes great power.” I was not only being judged as the President when my fellow senators and I first got elected, but what matters the most our work ethics and the outcome of it throughout our tenure. 

Without the endless blessings from Jesus himself, and continuous support from everyone who have voted for me, through critics and suggestions, my title would be meaningless. If the Student Body were not able to earn trust from both the school and the students, there were no use of us being chosen in the first place at all. Me having such privilege and ‘power’ to create and promote changes were not the result of me being chosen as the President, but the other way around, when I can prove and show then how good I can work and handle my responsibilities, that’s when people will start to acknowledge me as a leader.

For almost a year, I went through many humbling experiences with all it’s ups and downs. In the end, to become a leader means to be a servant, to contribute and motivate others for the better, not only for the title. With the value I was taught in my high school, which was a Jesuit school, I learned so much on how to be a competent, compassionate, have a conscience, committed leader and I strive to further develop myself to be women for others, servant for others, and most importantly do it all for the Greater Glory of God, Ad Maiorem Dei Gloriam.

finding and becoming the right partner

I admit I don’t write my experience being The Student Body President as often as I wished the first time I was officially elected, but for the past 6 months I can tell you that I have learn so much things and get the chance to grow into a better person, each day.

One of the biggest thing I learn, 2 years being in Gonzaga and joining a lot of the committees are the importance of finding and becoming the right working partner. I learned it in every committees I joined, from Gonz League (treasurer with Rachel) to SFF (working with Andra in schedule), to Gonzfest 2018 (partnering with Stella as secretary), Jambore (mentoring Franklin with Jason), and MIG 2018 (becoming pendamping divisi with Cebe and Andre). Through and with them, I faces every obstacles and challenges and I can guarantee you, the partner you have really determine the way you grow as a person, or in my case, in Gonzaga.

From each and every one of them, I am glad that they all remind as my close and good friends, and we did amazing on our job. There were inevitable fights and difference in opinions, obviously, but in the end I really wouldn’t trade them for anybody else. My kids won’t be as cool and as amazing as Franklin in Jambore if my pasmen wasn’t Jason, and I won’t be able to understand people’s emotion and be more discipline if it wasn’t because of Stella and her amazing work ethics.

The biggest point or realization that actually hits about choosing the right partner came when I have to choose my Vice President. It was my first time actually getting the chance to choose whoever I want (as long as they joined the leadership camp which was part of the selection process, and preferably either Angger or Damar), to be my working partner for the next ONE YEAR.

It was not a short amount of time, and being part of the Senate is not an easy job either, but in that very moment I immediately chose Damar. We were never close before, as we lived far away from each other, learned different subjects and took different major, and don’t have the same circle of friends. But from what I heard, I know that Damar is someone who is diligent, friendly, and can be the polar opposite of my wittiness and agility who could anchor me from time to time. He doesn’t easily get angry or emotional and is seen as all in all a more serious person. In other aspects, he was also one of the Senator last year.  He, in a way, complete me in ways I lack as a leader.

It has been seven months in, and so far, there hasn’t been any moment where I question Damar, or where I question myself for choosing him. Yes, we did have our own fair share of arguments and different ways of approaching things, but in the end, he really is the ideal partner I can ever ask for.

Knowing that we came from a very different social circle, I decided to make being close to him one of my priorities. I told him almost everything about my personal life, the personality I lack, and what I want Senate to be. Based on my experience being part of numerous committees, I knew how the help of Senator have helped me. I told him what I wished Senate will be when it comes to helping the committees choosen organize each events.

Gladly, he was in one page with me when it comes to being better Senator and becoming more organized internally as an organization. I dedicate almost all my time taking care of Senate, doing interviews after interviews, and organizing smaller events. Whenever things get hard or challenging, I know that I can go back to him and just spill my thoughts out.

I have always believed that my spirit as a leader will always resonate to the others. If I am optimistic and cheerful, it will effect my peers to feel the same power. On the other hand, If they see me getting down or pessimistic, it will also make my peers feel similar. But I also knew that as a human being, there is no possible way for us to always be positive the whole year. 

I think, as much as we need to be strong and positive, there will also be a time when we need someone we can show our true emotions at the moment, and being able to open ourselves. As much as I called myself a positive person and I can be cheerful 24/7, I also realized that I need someone I can rely on to when I wasn’t my best. When it comes to Senate and all the dramas, let me tell you, Damar really is my go-to person. As my partner, he is the one who usually get the same information that I got, which neither of us can tell anyone (yet), and we are both the ones who need to face it together. 

Not only that, nowadays it seems like we are connected to the same way of thinking almost all the time, which made working with him a thousand times better. We have the same or at least similar thoughts almost on every topic and it made it way easier to execute every ideas being produced.

Whenever I am sick (like me right now lmao), I know that I don’t need to worry because Damar will do a great job covering up everything that needs to be done on that day. I know that I can trust him well. This just sounds so emotional but let me tell you there were alot of times I can’t help but feel grateful about his existence as my partner. There were moments where I said it right to his face how lucky I am.

Currently we are dealing with the upcoming big event in our school, and organizing it has been one hell of a ride. All I can say is, it really hits me each time how important it is for us to have the right partner and being the right one. I recently just told someone how important it is to find the right partner, someone who you can talk anything about, someone you can share your deepest fears, because I know working can be exhausting sometimes and there is no way we can always keep up with everything that happened. My friend was talking to me that he was feeling down because he thought he didn’t have someone to be open to. I told him that it was not healthy mentally for him. I told him that he need some sort of safe space. 

Not only that, we also need to focus on becoming the right partner for whoever in life we are going to work together with. It is very important to be someone who others can trust, others can be open to. This is the biggest lesson I probably have learned studying in Gonzaga the past 2 years. To be a good listener and to find someone who can listen.

Everytime people said or talked to me about how good I worked, all I can say is, I won’t be who I am if it’s not because these amazing 11 other people I’ve met, and especially having Damar as my vice-president. I mean, I know I can deal with the obstacles I have been given, and I have successfully managed it all, I know for sure it won’t be the same without having Damar. He might not be the best to some people. I’ve heard not-too-good comments about him, and how some people thought he wasn’t the best I could ask for, but for me, he is still the right one, at the end of the day.

My prayer today is for everyone to experience finding, and one day, becoming, not the best, but the right partner for the other person we will encounter in life. 


Shine the light on whatever’s worst

I have not write anything in such a long time, and I know it doesn’t feel right coming back being sad and writing something so personal, because I want my content to be filled with happier moments and topics but I guess, because I know this is my place to talk about every thought I have in mind, I decided to also share everything, every lessons I learned.

Yesterday, I lost my dear friends. The school had had their final meeting regarding the end of our school term and made their final decision on who’s staying and will go to 12th grade or who will have to stay in 11th grade or transfer to another school.

I was beyond devastated to hear that at least 17 students, some of them are one of my closest circle, would not be joining all of us for the next school term. Their final score didn’t pass the grade, especially on the most important subjects like physics and math.

I heard the news when I just finished the leadership camp I joined to prepare me and my friends for the next school event we are having mid July. I was anticipating to hear people being called by their teachers to give them the ultimatum of not being able to stay in Gonzaga anymore, but accepting the fact that I will not be able to graduate with them next year hurt so much.

One of them are my dearest friend, Maxi. We are super close to each other and I would tell him a lot of stories about my life, what I was feeling and what I want to be when I grew up. He also told me a lot stories about his family, his crush for this one cute girl, and his thoughts.

He wasn’t the smartest student, I knew that. Throughout the whole semester, he had been struggling to keep up with exams and paperworks, but he pushed through. I know that there are a lot of other things he was facing in his life, none of which I could blame him for happening.

He also joined the leadership camp, among with 57 other people, and we had so much fun doing all the games, completing the challenges, and in general having fun and learned more about the core values of our school.

Until around 4 pm, we started getting news about two of our friends who failed the grade and would have to stay in 11th grade. None of them were my close friends, but then I started to get quiet because I am sad. Even though we are not close, everyone in this school feel like a family of mine, and to not be able to be by their side and have them on the next school semester, even just the thought of it, fucking hurts.

Then I get the information that it was Maxi. I immediately cried, and I tried to find him in the crowd. We were still on the last closing session of the camp, so I was holding the urge to literally ran to Maxi and hug him.

One of the teacher saw me cried, and came to me to tell me not to come to him right away, and let him have his time with his mother on the phone call first. He need some time to be alone to accept the reality, she said. So I was sitting there, impatiently, not even listening to what the person in the front was talking anymore.

Five minutes later, Arthur came, crying. He just heard the news that his closest friend, who was one of my friends too, also failed the grade. We hugged each other tightly, knowing that we can’t let the others know how sad we were because we were supposed to lead this event until it was done.

As soon as the event finished, I immediately ran to Maxi and hugged him and cried, but at that time he was already calm and in the state of accepting the information. He was smiling, and he said that he won’t go anywhere far from all of us. He assured us that everything is okay, and he is figuring out some other things but there is nothing to worry about.

But then, the calling session from teachers to parents keep on happening until late at night, and even this early morning. I was sad the whole trip home, I can’t believe that there would be so many people failing the grades and not being able to move to 12th grade.

I cried before I went to sleep, praying so hard to God that everyone can sleep peacefully today, that they can find the best solution to what they are facing right now. I prayed and wished so hard that their parents would understand and that this event, no matter how hard it is to face, will be their turning point as a person. To be better.

Half of me was mad, I was so sick of losing people, let alone people I already considered as my own family. I was angry at them for not trying hard enough, for fighting too late for their own grades, for not listening to me everytime I told them to study. I was angry at myself for not being the one to tell them hard enough to do better, to be better, for not being with them when they are sad, for letting them down and not pushed him harder, for being too late.

I was pissed off and I didn’t know where to blame it on, or who. I can’t blame it to the school or the teachers. It must be hard for them too to let dozens of their students down. It must be hard already to have the courage to call the parents and to tell them right on their face that their kids failed. That their kids didn’t make it.

Every school have their own standard and regulations, and I know for a fact it is something we all should accept and respect as student. But this one time, I just wished they would have given him one last chance. One.

But then again, there are no ways of turning back what has happened right now. There are no ways but to go forward and to support everyone who can’t be with us anymore the following school term.

I woke up feeling super tired today, but I pledged to myself that I want this to be the last time of me seeing people leave. In grade 12, I want to be able, and have time, to help as much people as I can, helping them to be more conscious of their grades, of their own life. I want these people who are now sad and angry and confused to find their callings in life again.

I want my friends to be able to accept everything that had happened and to be able to see the positive light on it. I want them to use this as motivation and not the other way around. I want them to have better vision of what they want to be and what their next move is going to be,

But most importantly, I want all these people to know that they are loved. That we all love them and we are all sad to not have them by our side. That we cared and we want them to change for the better. We want them to know that we will not stop supporting and help them when they need it.

As one of my friend tweeted 2 hours ago, shine the light on whatever’s worst.

I wished, in a more positive light, that what happened these past days can be a jump start for a better change. I wish for everyone to finally have the time to see and find solution to the problem which may or may not be the roots and factors why they didn’t make it this time. I wish you guys find home.

Because you all deserve it.

I’ll see all of you on top, very soon!


perspektif pemilih pemula; pesta demokrasi dan puisi sang nabi

Halo. Sudah lama rasanya gak menulis, karena kesibukan di sekolah yang semakin banyak, dan tuntutan tugas-tugas yang semakin tinggi. Beberapa bulan belakangan, kondisi politik dan media sosial yang carut-marut juga membuat banyak topik yang menurut gue cukup menarik untuk dibahas, berpotensi untuk bikin perpecahan dan pertengkaran di dunia onlen. Anyway, lagi pengen ngetik dalam Bahasa Indonesia, ehehehe.

17 April 2019, untuk pertama kalinya, gue menunaikan salah satu hak dan kewajiban sebagai warga negara Indonesia dengan menyumbangkan suara dalam pemilihan presiden dan legislatif. Salah satu dari pemilu paling rumit di dunia, katanya. Banyak sekali wartawan mancanegara yang ikut meliput dan merilis artikel tentang proses persiapan h minus sekian, sampai peristiwa hebat ini. Bahkan, Google menjadikan ikon Google Doodle mereka bertema Indonesia’s election, khusus untuk mengenang peristiwa sejarah ini.

Sebagai pemilih pemula, ada beberapa hal yang mau gue ceritakan berhubungan dengan pengalaman pertama ini. Bukan, ini bukan tentang kampret dan cebong. Ini tentang pendidikan politik kepada anak-anak remaja, tentang betapa besar kekuatan anak muda Indonesia dalam membentuk masa depan bangsa. Dalam hal ini, tulisan kali ini mungkin lebih ditujukan kepada para orang tua.

Sejak kecil, gue tumbuh di keluarga yang cenderung terbuka dalam membahas masalah politik. Sejak kecil, kalo dari cerita mami, gue suka berteriak “moncong putih!”, slogan logo banteng PDIP. Padahal waktu itu belum tau apa-apa, asal ngebacot ajalah pokoknya.

Kemudian, ketika SD gue mulai menunjukkan ketertarikan pada sejarah dan membaca. Di sinilah, gue mulai membaca tentang teori-teori tragedi 1998 (and everything leading up to the event), dan menyadari ada ketidakcocokkan data, antara apa yang gue baca di buku, dan apa yang gue pelajari di sekolah.

Dari sini, kedua orang tua gue mulai menceritakan pengalaman pribadi mereka dan teman atau kerabat terdekat tentang kejadian sebenarnya. Sempet kaget sih, tapi sejak saat itu, gue jadi belajar dan tergerak untuk lebih peka dan mau tau tentang hal-hal seputar politik dan sejarah. Berusaha untuk mengikuti setiap perkembangan yang ada, banyak membaca berita, dan gak gampang percaya sama yang ada di buku sekolah.

Mengetahui bahwa tahun ini gue akan berpartisipasi dalam pesta demokrasi besar, gue ga mau menyia-nyiakan kesempatan. I did my research on PSI, sebuah partai baru yang mengusung semangat milenial, banyak mendengarkan opini orang tentang mereka, dan selalu update dengan perkembangan mereka di sosial media. Nama-nama seperti Tsamara Amany, Dara Nasution, Kokok Dirgantoro, Rian Ernest senantiasa memenuhi timeline Twitter. Gue mencari tahu, kelebihan dan kekurangan mereka. Apa yang membuat mereka pantas untuk dipilih.

Sebagai partai yang bisa dibilang ‘baru’ muncul di liga super besar, mereka memang hadir dengan segudang ide segar dan semangat yang siap membuat orang-orang yang lama nyaman makan uang rakyat cukup ketar-ketir. Setiap kadernya, terutama di DPR RI, adalah orang-orang yang sangat vokal dalam membuat pernyataan dan pidato. Berulang kali, gue kagum dengan Grace Natalie. Sebagai triple minority (perempuan, dari agam minoritas, dari suku/ras minoritas) sama seperti saya, dan seorang figur pemimpin parpol itu gak gampang. Hanya segelintir orang yang berani berpidato sekeras beliau. To be able to speak the unpleasant truth, bahkan tentang partai lama dalam koalisi yang sama. Kader-kader PSI diseleksi ketat, berisi orang-orang yang tidak hanya sekedar mengejar karir politik, tapi orang-orang pintar yang rela melepas jabatan dan pekerjaan mereka demi sebuah harapan; wakil rakyat yang bersih, suara rakyat yang di dengar. Mereka kampanye tanpa serangan fajar, memberikan edukasi politik, membalas setiap tudingan dan hoax yang dilempar.

Namun, selama mereka berkampanye, masih ada juga kekurangannya. PSI yang membawa semangat milenial, menurut gue cenderung tidak sejalan jika kemudian mereka memberikan award untuk tokoh-tokoh politik bodong. Kesannya kok, kayak sekedar nyinyir aja ya. Selain itu, semangat mereka yang seperti anak muda ini, belum bisa merangkul suara-suara pemilih lama, terutama yang di pelosok. Bandingkan dengan Perindo, sesama partai kecil, namun secara aktif bagi-bagi bahan pokok murah dan masuk ke desa-desa. Akar mereka di desa belum kuat. Hasilnya? sampai saat ini, persentase Perindo masih sedikit di atas PSI.

Gue pribadi sedih karena PSI tidak lolos parliamentary threshold 4% untuk masuk ke DPR RI. Mereka bukan kalah karena bercandaan jayus apa jadinya es-dan-gula-digabung, tapi karena sebagian besar pemilih (terutama pemilih lama), masih skeptis bahwa ‘si kecil’ ini akan mampu membawa perubahan di parlemen. Karena sebagian besar masih memilih bertahan dan nyaman dengan anggota DPR yang hobinya hanya nyinyir. Belum rela posisi mereka digeser dengan anak-anak muda yang siap kerja kerja kerja. Tapi, they made it to DPRD! Gapapa, baby steps. Kita kawal dulu kerja bapak gubernur DKI kita, ya!

Begitu pula untuk urusan calon presiden. Baik Pak Jokowi maupun Prabowo, keduanya bukan manusia sempurna tanpa cacat. Ada kelebihan dan kekurangan masing-masing. Bukan cuma sekedar visi misi dan track record mereka, tapi juga bagaimana mereka bersikap dan berkampanye di depan media. Siapa saja orang-orang yang mendukung di belakangnya. Itu juga tidak bisa luput dari perhatian.

Gue pribadi memilih Jokowi. Sebenarnya, visi dan misi kedua paslon baik. Bahkan ada ide paslon 02 yang gue suka (tentang peng-efektivitas-an penggunaan KTP supaya gak perlu terlalu banyak kartu, salah satunya). Pak Jokowi juga bukannya tidak punya kekurangan. 4,5 tahun menjabat ini, beliau belum menyentuh kasus-kasus HAM yang dulu pernah dijanjikan akan diusut tuntas. Namun, dari aspek-aspek yang lain, yang paling mengganggu adalah, gue gak suka dengan orang-orang di belakang 02. Latar belakang mereka gak jelas, tujuan mereka gak mengarah ke tujuan yang baik.

Jokowi, bagi gue, dari banyak kekurangannya pula, dikelilingi oleh orang-orang yang positif. Manusia-manusia hebat yang membawa Indonesia menorehkan berbagai prestasi (ingat sebutan ‘Srikandi Indonesia’? Mereka di belakang beliau). Selain itu, ada faktor-faktor lain seperti pembawaan diri dan gaya bicara, keadaan dan stabilitas psikologi keduanya.

Memang sih, gue sempet lupa membaca latar belakang calon-calon DPRD dan DPD di dapil gue. Bahkan baru tahu nama-nama daerah pilih sekitar dua-tiga hari sebelum pencoblosan. Namun, orang tua gue secara terbuka memberikan pilihan-pilihan nama-nama orang baik yang patut dipilih (bagi mereka), menjelaskan sedikit latar belakang mereka itu siapa, dan memastikan gue bukan hanya sekedar tahu nama saja. Setelahnya, gue berhak memilih sendiri diantara nama-nama tersebut.

Apalagi sekarang, memeriksa latar belakang caleg bisa dengan mudah dilakukan di berbagai website. Bahkan ada fiturnya tersendiri di aplikasi chatting LINE, yang diharapkan mempermudah pemilih pemula dalam menentukan pilihannya.

Hari-H pencoblosan, gue masuk ke bilik suara dengan mantap mengetahui, mau memilih siapa. Tidak lupa memeriksa surat suara dan mengecek tanda tangan KPPS. Uh, rasanya gimanaa gitu, di dalem kotak putih itu. Excited, lega, senang. I voted!

Setelah pencoblosan dan sempat mendengar cerita-cerita teman, gue sadar satu hal. Tidak semua teman gue mendapatkan edukasi dan kesadaran politik yang sama besarnya. Sebagian besar dari mereka hanya memilih plek, ngikutin yang dipilih oleh orang tuanya. Beberapa bahkan hanya asal mencoblos nama-nama di DPD sangking banyaknya daftar calon.

Banyak diantara teman-teman gue yang belum ngeh dengan berita-berita politik yang berkeliaran di media, dan seberapa pentingnya kita, sebagai pemilih pemula, untuk bisa menjadi generasi yang melek politik. After all, kita sendiri yang akan menentukan masa depan bangsa, termasuk siapa saja pemimpinnya, dan siapa wakil kita di parlemen. Kebanyakan masih sekedar main sosial media, untuk eksis saja. Bukan untuk memperkaya diri, belajar sejarah, menambah pengetahuan.

Belum lagi, dengan anak-anak yang dipaksa memilih paslon tertentu yang bertentangan dengan keinginan anaknya. I am guessing, seberapa banyak anak berbohong ke orang tuanya demi memilih pemimpin yang ia sendiri inginkan, bukan yang orang tuanya paksakan. Jadi inget puisinya Khalil Gibran yang berjudul Sang Nabi;

Anak mu bukan anakmu. Mereka adalah putra dan putri kehidupan yang mendambakan dirinya sendiri. Mereka datang lewat dirimu namun bukan dari dirimu, Dan meskipun mereka bersamamu  namun mereka bukan milikmu. Kau bisa saja memberi mereka cinta namun bukan pikiranmu, Karena meraka  punya pikiran sendiri. Kau mungkin saja menjadi tempat bermukim tubuh mereka namun bukan jiwa mereka, Karena jiwa mereka berdiam dalam rumah masa depan, yang takkan bisa kau kunjungi, bahkan dalam mimpi – mimpi mu. Kau mungkin ingin seperti mereka , namun jangan buat mereka seperti dirimu. Kehidupan tak berjalan mundur maupun terhenti di hari kemarin. Kau adalah busur yang mengirim anak – anak mu sebagai panah yang melesat ke depan. Sang pemanah melihat sasaran di atas jalan setapak keabadian, dan Dia menundukkanmu dengan kuasa-Nya sehingga panah-Nya dapat melaju mulus dan jauh. Biarkan dirimu tunduk dalam tangan sang pemanah dengan rasa syukur; karena walau Dia mencintai sang panah yang melejit, Dia pun mencintai busur yang kuat

Meningkatnya ketertarikan anak muda terhadap politik harus diimbangi dengan edukasi politik yang objektif, terbuka, dan mudah dimengerti. Di satu titik, anak-anak kalian akan punya hak dan kewajiban menentukan masa depan mereka sendiri. Salah satunya adalah dengan mengetahui kebenaran di masa lalu, agar mereka tahu apa yang seharusnya tidak bisa terulang kembali di masa depan.

Oke, mari kita bahas hal baik. Tahun ini, 5 juta pemilih pemula di Indonesia menggunakan hak suara mereka. Tingkat partisipasi dalam pemilu kali ini juga menyentuh angka 80%! Terharu melihat banyak kakak-kakak kelas yang studi di luar negri pada ngantre di depan kedutaan masing-masing, dan melihat banyak yang pulang kampung demi nyoblos. Banyak juga beredar foto dan artikel tentang perjuangan begitu banyak personil polisi, TNI, dan warga sipil demi membawa kotak-kotak suara mencapai titik-titik TPS yang tersebar di berbagai pelosok daerah.

Harapan saya, tingkat partisipasi politik ini bukan hanya tinggi di awal. Selama pemimpin terpilih dan seluruh jajarannya bekerja nanti, harus terus dikawal dan dikritisi. Ini tugas kita, pemilih pemula, untuk vokal terhadap kerja pemerintah, dan tugas para pemilih lama, untuk mendidik yang baru, supaya euforia politik ini gak hanya manis di awal.

Pasca-pemilu, jangan kembali apatis. Jangan menggampangkan yang ‘kecil’ lagi. Yang kecil-kecil ini, yang suatu hari akan membuat perubahan besar dalam negri. Jadi, jangan hanya diberikan hak suaranya, tapi ditanamkan kesadaran betapa besar kekuatan dalam suara tersebut, jika mereka benar-benar peduli. That’s the only people power I want to see in this country. Oh ya, sama pengen liat lebih banyak pilpres-related memes. Soalnya lucu ngakak enak jadi hiburan selalu bikin nangis sampe sakit perut.


He gives, He takes

I am a firm believer that whatever I receive is never mine, and at some point in life, it will be taken away from me. Because in life, a lot of things are just happening to be on the same road, but it doesn’t mean that we are going to the same end-goal.

The people I am close to right now might be strangers to me many years to come, and I might be close instead to another totally new group of friends. I mean, meeting new people and going through the process of gaining new friends and getting to know about them is something that can be totally exhausting, but I believe that it is part of being human.

I personally get very attached to the people I talk to frequently, I immediately become open to the people who are nice and loving, and by the time it’s time for them to go and be apart from me, it is very hard for me to let them go and say goodbye.

The new role I am trusted to hold this year is something so big that I never thought I can handle ever. I am chosen to be my school’s Student Body President. It was something I never expected before. Getting chosen to be one means sacrificing the time I have with my friends, not being able to meet them as often as I wish I can.

The first few weeks were the toughest. I cried, from time to time, because my day to day plan went from very chill to super busy and hectic. I usually need someone who I can tell my stories about, and not being able to talk to them as often as I used to frustrate me a lot.

I am very used to be able to meet them twice to the third time a week, and now I haven’t got any time to properly talk except when we meet between classes and on lunch breaks when I was not busy doing anything. I talked to them as my way of taking some break from work. I feel like, around these people, I can finally show my real emotions, tell them that I am tired, that I am pissed of, that all I wanted was to talk about anything but school or work-related topics.

It has been over a month since I am elected and officially designated as the Student Body President, and I am getting quite used to the hectic routine, and getting used to skipping meals and losing sleep. I am getting used to smiling all day and have managed my stress better. I now try to find myself me-time whenever possible.

One of the most effective ways was to be quite in class. I used to be this loud person in class who laugh and can’t stop talking ever. But in the past month, I have been very quiet. I dedicated all my class to fully focusing on the topics being taught by the teachers. I sat in the front row, took my notes neatly, and tried to finish every assignment as early as possible. Whenever I am tired and don’t feel like talking to people, I put on my earphones and blast sad songs so I have no chance to over-think about anything. Having my earphones in also means blocking every human interaction possible because people thought I am busy listening to songs and they don’t want to bother me.

I tried to write more to relieve stress, even though I haven’t got much time to write as much as I initially wanted to. I always try to write something or read a book at least once a day, whenever possible. It’s my way of keeping my stress low and to be able to face new problems every day.

As for talking to the people who I love, it was still a challenge. I am just starting to get used to not talking to these people. I managed to talk to them via chats and social media, though. I tried to use as much time as possible to hang out with them after school, but on most days I decided to keep my feelings for myself.

I recently got very close to my partner! He is the vice president, and ever since I got nominated to be the president, I have always known that I would want to have him as my vice president. Why? Personality wise, we complement each other. I was this cheerful, loud, passionate girl. I am always down to new adventured and meeting new people and brainstorming new ideas. I wear my heart on my sleeve and I tried to always be honest in whatever I say, even if it hurts sometimes.

He, on the other hand, was a calm and serene person. When he is faced to a certain problem where taking quick actions is much needed, he handles stress better and calmly. He tends to draw himself back from the problem first, try to find a solution, then came back and silently cleans the mess up. It was a little different from me, who handle the problem with a little bit of tension and stress.

I am a detailed person, but I jump from one topic to another quite fast, because I am trying to cover as many topics as possible. Having him as my vice president means having someone who will follow up each topic and constantly remind me to follow up again so I don’t get caught up and confused with all the matters I have on my hands.

Not having the time to talk to my friends was quickly diminished by having him to talk to every day. I can talk to him and discuss Student Body-related problems, school problems, or even my personal ones. It’s nice to finally have someone I can trust and talk to again. Even though he can’t fully replace my closest friends and there are still some stories I mostly keep to myself. but it was nice to be able to.

One of the Bible verses I held so dearly in my heart is from Ayub 1:21. It goes like this:

And he said: “Naked I came from my mother’s womb, And naked shall I return there. The LORD gave, and the LORD has taken away; Blessed be the name of the LORD.”

This reminds me to always be grateful and to surrender myself and let God do the rest. As humans, it is very normal to feel tired and stressed out and lonely, but I need to always remember that God always listens and He never turns His back away from those who seek for help.

I believe that behind every event happening in life, in which I felt pain and loss, will always be replaced with better, brighter days ahead. I believe that instead of taking my close friends away from my life, He welcomed me to an entirely new, loving family I can call Senat. I am grateful to be able to get the chance to have the chance to serve others around me and to learn to put others first. I learned to be more composed and to rethink and be mindful of everything I am going to say.

The next year will probably be one of the hardest years to go through, but I believe that it’s not my time to give up. Not now, not yet. I believe that whoever and whatever meant to be in my life, will stay, will come back, and finally, will always feel just right.

to celebrate 2018 in 2019;

To end 2018, I learned a lot. I entered the year with a lot of hopes and new things I am planning to try and I am beyond glad I can slowly but surely crosed it of my bucket list. Here are some of the highlights, some of the things I learned about in my 2018 that shaped me and have big impacts on my well being and personality.

Starting 2018, I really want to be a senator.  Along with Arthur and Nane, I joined LKI with hope to be able to be part of the senate member. Turns out, I didn’t make it, while they did. I was sad for some time, because it has been one of my biggest dreams. I was a little bit sad in the beginning of the year, but later on I refueled my self and start to build my next dream; to be as active as possible in my communities through numerous non – academics events that my school held each year.

My first try was attempting to be the Head of Bazar Amal, one of the annual events that my school has, which was creating a charity event where people from the lower economic classes can buy their daily necessities like clothes, medicines, and nine kind of basic needs, with a cheaper price.

I didn’t make it to, because the Head of the event should be an eleventh grade student, but I learned that I have potentials in me and I got the chance to try to speak my ideas out to people, and got important feedbacks from the senators. I, for the first time, proved myself that I actually can do things, if I am brave enough to try.

Not only that, the beginning of the year was pretty rough because I was in a fight with someone quite important to me. This person was someone I have been friends with for a couple of months before 2017 ends, and I was wishing that we can stay that way. Turns out, we got into a weird fight that made us didn’t talk to each other to for almost a whole month.

I was very sad, because all of these happen almost on the same timeline. But then, I braved myself and made my way to confront the person. I asked them what they really feel, and how I can change myself if any of my attitude was wrong.

Being brave and vulnerable was something I can never do in 2017. I was a very prideful person, and admitting my fault, accepting critiques, and trying new things I don’t ever try before was never something I thought I’ll be able to do.

After speaking everything out, we finally reconcile and I got the explanations I have been waiting. This person then became one of my closest friends and they are also the people I am forever grateful to have ever gain this year. I really do wish with all my heart that I can always have them in my life for a long long time.

I also got very involved in almost every event my school held this year. I became the secretary for the annual school mini concert, and I gained a lot f new friends (especially with my seniors, which I also learned a lot from), and I experienced a lot of moments I can never trade with anything.

It was a long and tiring process, with a lot of sleepless nights and tears, but Iearned a lot about the structure of the organisations, about the people in it, about what I takes to be able to work efficiently and, learned how to make time and be productive, and most importantly, I learned how nice it is to have moral and emotional support from the people around me. I learned how someone’s presence can mean so much, and how sometimes it was all about the little things.

I also sign myself up to be the Head of Jambore. It was another annual event in my school, and it aims to teach the juniors (the 10 grade students who just entered school) to get to know more about the school core values while getting to know their new friends. I took the interview process very seriously because I really want to get chosen, but sadly I still didn’t. Instead, the school chose someone else I didn’t expected.

I was very sad, I cried the whole night, and I questioned where I did wrong. I was so down to the point I almost didn’t want to try any other positions in the event. For a long time I was a little bit jealous of the person who actually won, and I kind of just lose hope.

But over time, I learned to be grateful. Because I didn’t make it as the Head of Jambore, I got to be a Mentor, got paired with Jason, someone who was very supportive and fun, and I got to have 13 amazing kids, and got to know them very well personally.

From them, I learned how important family is. I learned how important it is to sacrifice things for other people’s happiness, the happiness of sharing and being open and vulnerable, I learned more about people’s personality and how family backgrounds played a lot of role in it. I learned to not repeat the mistakes I have felt from my own Jambore last year, and I learned how important it is to communicate feelings and talk about problems.

I created a very beautiful, loving family, and one of the best experience with them was when they asked to spent time with us the mentors even at the excursions, where most of the other students rather spent their time with their other friends. I even got to know more about my partner, and how important it is to be a solid ‘parents’ in order to have a solid family.

Not only that, this year I got to be a Pendiv! I got the chance to once again, have 18 amazing kids and teach them more about the core values I hold tightly in me since I started highschool. I learned how hard it is to try to change someone, and how big the responsibility is to raise kids in the value we want them to.

One of the best experience I felt was when the school trusted me, and my TWO BESTFRIENDS, to go to Japan and attended an event called ISLF, which stands for Ignatian Students Leadership Forum. I got to met amazing people from other schools in Indonesia, and went to Hadano, Japan, to met even more new friends from a lot of countries in Asia Pacific. We talked a lot about how the problems our countries are facing and what can we do as an Ignatian students to help change or solve it.

I never thought I can be this lucky this year. Despite all the loss I experienced, I gained a lot of new things. God plans never fails, and I can’t thank Him enough for staying and for continuously being there for me through every step and milestone I have in life.

Towards the end of 2018, I got the chance to just have amazing experience and got closer to my classmates, especially the girls. Being busy for a long time made me close with my seniors and the other students from different classes, but it distance me from my own class because I use almost all of my lunch and break time to do something else, be it a meeting, catching up on my school work, or just getting some sleep.

I felt a little bit lonely and anxious at first, but as soon as all of the events done, I was blessed to be able to finally get the chance to get close to them. I got closer to Nara, Icha, Holy, Petrina, and numerous other people I never thought I would get close to before. They are now the people I frequently talk to, share my feelings with, and having fun with. I wouldn’t trade them for the world and I cherish all my time with them this year.

Before the year ended, I experienced something unexpected to. I got nominated to be the Student Body (Senate) President. I was beyond surprised, because I never actually thought about being one. All this time, I have been accepting the fact that I am not a Senator and let go of the thought of it, got blessed with other positions throughout the year, and now all of the sudden I got nomitated.

With this, I have to learn that I can never be in control of my own life, as much as I plan it. I initially planned my 2019 to be chill, focusing myself on applying to universities, and

There are a lot of consequences I have to face, sacrifices to make, and I know it won’t be an easy year. But then again, I never know where the year will take me this time, but I believe that God always has plans for me, and maybe for 2019 He has better things rather the than the ones I want.

I ended 2018 with a heavy feeling, with a not to happy mood, but I am trying to be ready and to be content with where I am know. I will try to be the best in everything that people trust me to be, and I will focus on building myself more.

This year, I want to come out stronger and not letting myself get to the lowest points I was in, last year. I want to focus on growing into a better person, a grateful person, and to always have hope. I want to be less selfish, and to let things happen the way it suppose to happen.

I don’t want to have expectations, but I want to be optimist. I will live by the words “if things are meant to be for you, it will come back. Even if they go, they will come back”. I will not hold things that are not suppose to be with or for me.

One of my favorite song last year was Rumpang by Nadin, it was a song about letting go (melepaskan). Letting go, of people, places, memories are never going to be an easy task, but it’s inevitable. It’s something every human being is condemned to feel in their life, over and over again. One of the lyrics goes;

Banyak yang tak ku ahli, begitu pula menyambutmu pergi.

It translates as “there are a lot of things I am not good at, just like so is welcoming you to go.” This is how I interpret the song. Nadin uses the word welcoming, because when someone leaves, a lot of people see it as something sad because we see it from our perspectives, but when we think about it from their side, we’ll see that when someone go, it means they are moving towards a better place, a better state, a better person. And we should always welcomed this beautiful change.

On the first day of 2019, she released another song called Sorai, which is actually the next part of the first song. It was a song about willingness to let go (merelakan). In this song, she finally talk about the final part of letting someone go, which is the willingness to. The readiness of letting someone go. The lyric goes like this;

Kau dan aku saling membantu, membasuh hati yang pernah pilu.

Mungkin akhirnya tak jadi satu, namun bersorai pernah bertemu.

It means “You and me helped each other, to heal the once hurt hearts. Maybe in the end we don’t be come one, but we celebrate that we’ve met.” I cried the first time I listened to the song. Letting go of someone or certain memories are never going to be easy, but when you finally in the state of being able to celebrate the pain, the parting, the sadness, bersorak-(sorai), that’s the highest level of love.

That’s what I want to learn in 2019.

Tahun ini, saya mau belajar bersorai untuk setiap bahagia, sedih, pengalaman, dan kehilangan.

Saya mau belajar merelakan.


safe safe space

Second year of high school was a hell lot of fun, if we don’t count the amount of work and assignments we have to do. With the ongoing education system we are dwelling in right now, it is indeed very easy to fall into depressing, stressing situations.

I think, part of being a teenager also includes constantly questioning your selft worth, being very conscious of your body, fully aware of how others see you, and overthinking about everything, even the unnecessary ones.

It’s because around these age we are constantly around our friends rather than with our family and you can feel the social pressure most of the time because everyone is always trying to fit in with the group of people. Everyone wants to feel belonged.

Well, me, too, feel that way, sometimes. There will be days where I will think about how fat or chubby I am compared to other people. Or how attractive a lot of girls are, and how I don’t look like them at all. There were days when I am sad and quiet for no reason, thinking that I have no one to trust. 

There were also times when I just don’t feel like talking, and instead cried my ass out over the simplest thing. You know, the emotional roller coaster.  But the other times, I am still the cheerful and happy girl I was. There are days I just don’t care and have zero fucks to give to anyone.

Days like these are the moments I cherish because it happen less often as I grow up. 

Other than that, I also noticed that a lot of my friends are getting into relationships. Relationship was something I never feel to familiar before, because I barely ever had a real boyfriend. Yes, I do fall A LOT OF TIMES for people, but staying in a long-term, committed one was never a thing.

Relationships, turns out, was not something innocent at all. It involves numerous things like kissing and physical contacts I never though would actually experience until I was married to someone. This make me sounds very nerdy, I know, but that’s shows just how clueless I am with all of this.

The scenes I see in films are actually true, and it also happens to my friends, not just the actors and actresses I saw on the screen. Wow. Moment of pure shock.

I then realized that the reason why I never know about this and was shocked by it was because in Indonesia, sex and every other thing related to it was never a thing we openly talk about. Unlike other countries, a lot of Indonesian kids don’t have any access to the proper sex education they need to know, and they happen to be in a conservative family who still think sex is a taboo topic.

Gladly, my family was quite open with sex talks. Not about everything though, things like masturbation and sexual fantasies, but from time to time they do make me and my siblings know the general things like taking care of our genitals, the basics of consent, about sex and power, etc etc.

Not everyone is as lucky as I am, and I know that. Most teenagers go through this first time experiences (kissing, having sex, masturbation) with no proper information, only based on what their friends are talking about, the internet, or just simply being clueless.

I am starting to worry so much because I know for sure that in these ages, we are very keen on exploring new things, feeling adventurous being able to try and ‘be the first’ between our peers, but we all really do need a proper education for it beforehand to make sure we know when to stop, where is the barrier, and what do we need to know about the consequences. This way, sex and relationships can be somthing safe and happy instead of something secretive and dark.

Recently, I have found a youtuber from Indonesia who post alot of videos talking about sex education, focusing mainly on girls. But some guys did watch her too and learned some from her. She talks about how to masturbate with hygene, what to do before you do sex, what is consent. She basically answers a lot of clueless teenagers’ important questions that they might need.

She talks alot about body positivity and menstruation, about staying out from a toxic relationship. Her name is Sisil, and she even dedicated her Instagram to promote sex education for Indonesian teenagers.

She explained everything explicitly and objectively, and that was what I think we, teenagers need. She remind people to think everything through, to make sure we are always ready before we do anything with our partners.

A lot of people send hate to her, saying that she is trying to promote free sex and sex before marriage and the fact she talked openly about sex education will make teenagers and underaged kids who watched it wants to do the same.

In my opinion, she is trying to give Indonesian people, a safe space, a forum where everybody can find an answer to their questions regarding sex. Questions they might can’t find the answer from anyone, or not comfortable enough to open up. She give people a very objective information and its very important to be educated before doing anything!!

Other than her, I also stumbled upon two accounts on Instagram. One of her is Andrea Gunawan, known as @catwomanizer. 

She is a sexual health acivist and a date coach, and she posted on her Instargram Stories a lot of information about sex. Between her cat pictures and videos, or posts of her amazing hair, she shared too about rape culture and the important of consent!

The other is @inezkristanti. She is a lecturer and a sexuality educator. She also has a collection of highlights of her Instagram Stories talking about more specific things like Foreplay, Infidelity, Masturbation, Hypersexuality, etc.

I am more than happy to see that the awareneess to start educating Indonesian people about sex is something that some people put their time and passion to work in, because I really do thing we deeply need it. Now people get the chance to have a safe space and afe small community where they can get properly educated in a fun and interesting, but still right and authorized information!

Last but not least, I also follow this account I find on Instagram. It is called @perempuantagartegar. It is a nonprofit organization working in promoting a healthy realtionship for girls and women and to be there to help Indonesian women to be more conscious about their body, to be brave enough to speak up, and to be strong enough to leave any bad or toxi relationship they are in.

They try to help by giving free online consulting sessions to any women who need help, anonymously! Women, or men! can talk and tell their stories about their experiences without having to worry about the privacy. They will also get to talk to an anonymous consultant and experts, called Nina (female) and Nino (male) through their website: www.perempuantagartegar.online

I wished my friends and people who might need this inormation can get the access to more accounts and social media similar to this! We need to promote more about the importance of proper sex education in Indonesia!

I am also very open to anyone who wants to share their stories, recommendation, and or experiences in the comments down below! Thankyou ❤