Out of My Own Skin

Today, I went out for dinner with my brothers bringing my Tulisan Green Grass Hobo Bag that holds my green Topshop wallet I had since 11th grade; my secondhand Samsung S5 my friend gave me, my mom’s Xiaomi Mi Power Bank; a Fujifilm QCam analog camera; a couple of fine-tipped pens; a USB drive I last used a couple weeks ago to print out my thesis draft; and  a peach nylon pouch that I used as a makeup bag.

The bag contains four things: Etude House Precious Mineral ‘Blooming Fit’ BB Cream that I got since my early college years from my mom, a knock off beauty blender I bought at Foodhall so that I can reach my credit card minimum purchase limit as I was trying to buy two packs of q-tip, Etude House Big Cover Tip Concealer in beige — the first piece of makeup I bought out of free will in Jakarta, and a Wet n Wild lipstick 507C ‘Blushing Ball’ that I got as a present from my friend as she got back from the United States. I used to have so much more, but it got lost along the way as I was too careless in keeping them.

So in the car, as my brothers are joking with one another I decided to put on a makeup. Why not? I used The Body Shop Himalayan Charcoal Face Mask earlier shower today. My skin should’ve been pretty cleared out and although a bit dry, it just feels like a good day to wear makeup as we’re going to a mall in the south of the town for dinner. So I applied my three set makeup with the help of my phone’s front camera. At first, it feels weird, it’s been weeks since I last wore makeup and even I can count the times I wear makeup this year with my two hands. I made sure to thin out my layer of BB cream by wiping the top off a bit with a dry tissue. I also got a reaffirmation from my brother that my makeup wasn’t too thick. Then I proceed with my dinner.

As I got home pretty full and now with a Starbucks venti Caramel Macchiato leftover, I changed my clothes to my usual nightwear: an oversized shirt and shorts that guaranteed have a couple of holes in them. I then walked to the bathroom, find my usual cleanser — Etude House Wonder Pore Freshener (I swear this post is not sponsored by any brand whatsoever, my mom just like to think that I am really accustomed to Etude House product and due to my low interest in beauty stuff I don’t care about it and I’ll just use whatever product my mom bought for me) with Watsons Embossing Cotton Puffs.

First wipe — oh, there’s less makeup residue than what I expected.

Second wipe — of course, there are more residues than one would expect.

Third wipe —  wow there’s still some here and there, is this cleanser even effective?

As I proceed on grabbing my fourth cotton puffs of the night I looked at myself in the mirror. Honestly, I did not look so different from the time I put on my makeup.

Obviously, my lips were not as pink and glossy, my neck became a tone darker, my acnes are now visible, my face got a bit red from all the rubbing.

But really, not a huge difference.

I made sure that I had my makeup completely off by proceeding with the fourth wipe. The same conclusion was made. I continued washing off my face using Mentholatum Acnes Creamy Wash that I have been using for the last month — not knowing who really bought it and for whom, it was just there inside my bathroom. To finish off everything I used Wardah Lightening Face Toner. There, there. So much effort is put to clean up makeup that barely looked there; the ‘natural look’.

And there I found that maybe that amount of makeup is enough for me. That maybe the mascara I bought in Rotterdam was actually unnecessary and whatever brand of eyeliner I used to have on my peach bag is not needed. Maybe every piece of makeup I have is not needed — for I looked the same and I feel the same. But then I realize it’s not actually the makeup result that I really liked; it’s just that the fact that I tried improving myself to be more presentable to the community standard. Yet at other times, I feel empowered.

Or maybe I just like to spend some time painting my own face, realizing some parts of my face that I liked and some I really don’t. That I like putting it when I feel like it and for most of the days being comfortable in my own skin. Even sometimes I put on makeup as a reminder to take care more of my skin — look at how much effort it takes to clean a thin layer of makeup compared to sleeping off the dirt on my face every night since I thought “oh I don’t put any makeup I don’t need to wash my face tonight”. Sometimes, talking about makeup products like talking about that new designer collection that you cannot afford is also fun and the experience of buying one is also exciting.

I remember the first time I bought a full set of makeup from Martha Tilaar counter in a department store nearest to my house and the cashier thought that I was preparing for a theater performance (it was not, I was actually joining a beauty class, FAILED miserably and realized that I got no potential to become a makeup artist). I remember the time my friend got so surprised to know that I recognize a lip tint palette from a picture of a packaging of an up and coming beauty brand. I also remember getting so confused when a friend asked me to help him to look for a good shade of lipstick for her mom at Tonymoly while I just knew right then that Tonymoly sells makeup and not shoes (LMAO). I also remember when my friend laughed at me for using Wardah as my go-to brand for skincare since she thought it was not ‘sophisticated’ enough. I also remember being so lost during the time my friends are talking about contour sticks and the time I was so proud of buying The Original Beautyblender that I immediately told my friend to “invest in one ASAP!!!”

Sometimes I feel like whenever someone suggested that I have to use makeup was to cover my ugliness, but I have to realize that sometimes people are just curious about my skin, what I would look like if ‘decorated’ with X product, or would I be willing to let people test their makeup skills on me. Of course, it’s different when I have other people put makeup on my face. It sometimes feels uncomfortable, but it is interesting to see how other see the nooks and crannies of my own face and how they either emphasize the good and hide the bad. Like a painter, each hand has a different touch and it is interesting to see yourself as the media but with your unique features and the makeup artist ideas coming into one.

From this, I have to teach myself that makeup does not define a person. “Oh, you like applying makeup? That’s cool. Oh, you don’t usually wear makeup? That’s cool. You look beautiful either with or without.” I also need to improve my makeup skills ’cause although I don’t plan to wear it often I have to at least look on point at the right moment. As for now I don’t think I’ll ever be so invested in makeup nor do I intend to wear makeup more often. I just come to appreciate it more on myself and especially by myself. For I can be beautiful inside my own skin as well as from the outside, and so are you.


A House is Not a Home, But At Least I Want My Own

I’ve always wanted to have my own house. Painted with bright warm colors, big windows, wooden floorings topped with fluffy rugs, and ideally situated somewhere cold — and definitely will have air conditioning system installed. I would have a kitchen with uniformed-colored utensils, complete with an oven. There will be a long dining table nearby the kitchen island.

The color palette will be dominated by monochromatic colors with a little blue and yellow accents in some random spots. I’ll have a separate playroom decorated my favorite paintings and posters, a corner dedicated to my toy collections, a library filled with my collection of books and comics. Scattered around the room will be little souvenirs I got from my travels. I imagine my fridge displaying reminders and letters from loved ones and be full with my favorite food and drinks, and maybe I’ll have a specific counter for snacks.

Maybe not specifically a house. Maybe an apartment, a condo, a mansion, a palace, a gazebo. Maybe one room with my own personal bathroom is enough — even one without bath tubs, I can (compensate to) dream of.

Maybe all I want is to get out of the place I refer to as ‘home’ now.

Maybe all I want is a chance for solitude and get out of my shell at times I want.

Maybe all I want is independence. Since the 1st grade of elementary school. Funny, how one little girl can dream of leaving home that early. Funny, how that is the one dream that has always been constant.

I just don’t want to wake up to be wishing not to ever wake up again.

I just wish I can start my day positive, despite the negative things I have to accept everytime I wake up.

Maybe so that I will be accepted for my personality, not merely habits I have while I am unconscious.

Or maybe that it’s better just to stay asleep.

For I have been called a bastard, a demon-borne, an ungrateful kid — all for turning out to be the unideal homemaker.

And for it had been compensated with “love”, “care”, and money. But all of it no longer seems enough to hold me now.

I want to get out.

I want to have an ideal home. My dream home.

Or should I just turn into a demon?

A Thank You Note

It’s been a week ever since myself and my 17 friends-cum-teammates finalizes our final performance for the Criminal Law in Practice class. After months of practicing our moot, writing up documents, summarizing cases, tons of readings, arguments, one visit to the emergency room, 20 pans of pizza and bottomless coke, we’re finally done. We sum it up with the two-hour session of karaoke, three birthday cakes, and one big pot of sukiyaki for each and every one of us.

And then entered a new month; our group work is done, only the group chat remains. Group pictures and embarrassing photos of the member filled the chat album. From what begun as a group of 9 guys and 9 girls from two different social circles came into one to act out an adaptation of the prosecution of a notable case in Indonesia. I act up as a co-leader to the group and were playing the character of the convict. It first begun as all fun and game, continued with perpetual stress and then ended up with a big sigh of relief and remained a nickname for myself, “Mami”.

A week has passed and I don’t remember clearly the legal theories we had all used, but I remember all the jokes we made — be it funny, corny or borderline offensive. Funny how even now we boasted our group dynamics despite the different personalities in the group. We may all have personal vendettas to one another and as a group, we have common rivalries but all and all it ended up in laughter.

One of the members asked me, “Would you like to change something?”. Thinking deep my answer should’ve been a yes, but as of now I only wish that we have a variety of examiner present during our moot. But then again, maybe this is enough. And for it, thank you.

May we continue on this budding friendship of 18.


A Talk on the Aged and Old

I spent a whole Thursday with my friends, some of her cousins and friends of her cousins to a local theme park. The party consists of four 20-year olds, two tweens and four teenagers. We spent the day planning on screaming our lungs out while trying different rides on the park. But there’s a condition: I’m a scaredy cat. The thing is, every single of my friends who are my age are the same.

It’s not only our apprehension to height, speed, swings and twists that held us back, but our fatigue kicked in and even one of my friend uses his ‘rising cholesterol level’ as a reason to back out of rides. Us, the 20-year olds, spent most of our time eating (we ate at three restaurants and bought multiple snacks on the go) as being on the rides are too scary for our mentality and to our physique: the pounding heart, the anxiousness, the headache. While we were complaining and sitting out our rides, the youngsters rode the roller coaster multiple times in a row and asked for more while laughing, maybe at us for being a coward.

It is then when we raise the question, “are we old?” Entering an age number that are now wholly different, we felt the pressure we had never felt before. And what is to blame? Our age. The number. If we were on the edge of being 19, what will be blamed is the condition that “we’re not feeling it” — but aging seems to be a better excuse by the time we entered the big two-o’s, a defining new age.

Both amazement and jealousy went through our mind: how can the youngsters be so energetic? It is ironic as we should’ve been enjoying our times spending a good effort on fun activities with our supposedly youthful energy. Yet the chance to have something to blame on becomes a good excuse. Maybe in reality we’re just too lazy, too unenthusiastic, or annoyed with the child-spirited vibe coming off of a theme park. Or instead our screw got loose and being less daring comes out of the fact that we are more aware of risks and consequences, be it a part of growing up.

This is just a written concern coming from the four of us, which we thought of while enjoying a portion of beef bowl in the conditioned room while the teens and tweens are running around having another try of a tower-drop ride. This is so bothersome, but we had already spent a whole lot energy screaming our lungs out during the time we rode a boat through a doll house.

Is getting old(er) a truly scary thing?

2015: Year in Review

2015 went in a blast. This is my year in review.

  1. January: spent my celebrating the new year at my hotel room in a hotel at Jerusalem while wondering about the political safety between the tension of Palestine and Israel. Was pretty inspired by Jordan and thankful for its weather. Finished my Omra trip and thankful for the opportunity to see the holy places and for getting a good dose of traveling experience.
  2. February: finally going to Yogyakarta for the first time with my parents and my dad’s siblings. Started my fourth semester and at the same time is focusing on my blog: journaldelajournee.blogspot.com and caught up with my high school friends. Legit does not understand anything about the lectures I’ve taken.
  3. March: the least productive month. I cannot recall anything much from this month except for being so frazzled in the midst of bad organizational structure of a particular committee.
  4. April: got hospitalized for appendicitis and had to miss the first mid-term test of the semester and feeling grateful for it. Was involved in an event which I’m not very proud about, but it is a good lesson for saying ‘no’.
  5. May: my brother turned seventeen, which is a big deal. Began taking care of my physical fitness (but not really). Finally catching up for a lot more time with my campus friends.
  6. June: finals coming in and was pretty frantic, was posting the least amount of post within that month. Began the month of Ramadhan, however, was inflicted as I don’t feel very spiritual about it this year. Began taking up new responsibility on an event.
  7. July: learned so much about legal studies with my seniors, and was pretty upset for the fact that I don’t have enough comprehension as my peer on the major I’m pursuing. On another note, finally earned my first commission from blogging. Celebrated one of the (what I felt) the most festive Ied al-Fitr with my family and were very thankful of the long break from school. Regretted not taking an internship, but I know that I was not ready.
  8. August: getting back on the groove of being an MC and is an amazing confidence booster. Getting a lot more serious with my classes as semester 5 began. An awesome month with good food, good company, good spirit. Met a lot of new people and learned so much. Begun sending out postcard as a new hobby.
  9. September: went to my first concert in YEARS and enjoyed my heart out. Finally going out to more event, whether alone or with others and appreciated more Jakarta scenery.
  10. October: had one of the worst birthday ever. The month pass by so slowly and left no good impression. The first published version of this post even forgot to include the month October on the list as it was so unremarkable. This also becomes a reminder that I’m now a grown adult in my 20s, but being older, I weirdly embrace my more child-like interests and became more expressive after an emotional breakdown. My friends said it’s a good thing for the timid me, but I don’t know.
  11. November: Finally got a knack of Go-Jek’s Go-Food as I had so many take outs. Finally feling good about being in a law school. Hosted one of the funnest event. Spent too much money but I got all its worth on books, foods and experiences. Begun writing stories again and felt super inspired.
  12. December: done with fifth semester and were very chill about finals (I don’t know whether it is a good or a bad sign) and pretty busy preparing for a winter program in South Korea due to uncooperative campus administrative system. Pretty excited for the new year which I know I’ll be spending at home because I don’t like staying out late. Ha!

What I wish I would do more in the following year:

  • To watch a lot more movies. I missed out so many blockbusters and local film in 2015.
  • To practice taking more pictures.
  • To write and write more.
  • To take independent classes outside campus.
  • To learn more language.
  • To earn my own money.
  • To gain professional experiences.
  • To edit more films.
  • To study effectively.
  • To be more and more inspired!
  • To be more committed to exercising (and… diet)
  • To have more fun.
  • To stay ever grateful.
  • To nurture my spirituality.

Now I’m pretty excited to welcome 2016! How about you, what is your 2015 in review? :-)

A Dilemma of a Gryffindor

It was a Thursday afternoon, my friends and I were waiting for the class to begin as we were discussing out Pottermore’s Hogwart’s House assignment. My friend who had yet taken the test by the o-glorious Sorting Hat claimed that she’s positive she will be a Hufflepuff. Another one were proudly announcing that she’s a Slytherin. Then the two of them suggest another friend to join Pottermore in order to take the Sorting Hat quiz, assuring her that she’s ‘totally a Ravenclaw’ which my friend were excited about. Before I admit myself being sorted a Gryffindor, my Hufflepuff-per-sé friend said that “Good thing we’re not Gryffindors! They are soo boring!” Being the supposedly brave character that I was destined – or um, sorted into, I tried to neutralize the conversation that everyone is special as they are despite their assortment. In a Divergent-esque argument, I said that you can be ambitious, resourceful, brave and be knowledgeable at the same time to ease the tension in a true Hufflepuff fashion (ha! Ironic). I was ashamed that I cannot bravely pronounce that I am a Gryffindor at the time.

“But still, Gryffindor sucks. They had always been perceived as a hero as if we are nothing.” Now, this looks more like a political analysis by the left wing, but I cannot say that they were wrong. J.K. Rowling, a Hufflepuff, had written the book beautifully but only in the perspective of a Gryffindor. They are valued for whatever charm (not a pun to Professor Flitwick’s Charms class) they have that is carried out their bravery while other characters from other houses seemed one-dimensional. The friendship circle was also seen as if each circle belongs only exclusively to one house while inter-house friendship is overshadowed by the great amount of rivalry between the houses in getting their name recognized for the House Cup.

I’ve only read the Harry Potter series last year, I finished the seven books in a month nearing my mid-term tests. I had always been a fan of the franchise, I watched the fourth to the last movie on the first day of its release in Indonesia – but nowhere as devoted as other Potterheads which I respect and admire. Prior to the official test on Pottermore, I always saw myself as a Ravenclaw due to my nerdiness and strike of elegance. I always saw Gryffindor as the vaguest house on the book; anyone can be brave due to different circumstances and on different times. But qualities like being knowledgeable, loyal and ambitious seemed like an eternal quality that makes the owner stand out. Gryffindor character seemed interchangeable as their bravery seemed to be a temporary struggle. We never see a Ravenclaw struggling to learn, a Slytherin self-doubting, and a Hufflepuff questioning the value of loyalty. But they can all be brave.

As a Gryffindor, I haven’t seen myself and my bravery being my greatest characteristic of power. But everyone can be a hero by their own terms regardless their House background, and sticking to the stereotype can only limit your mind. Maybe this is just a test as old as the Myers-Briggs, or really it is a true test of your potential. But don’t treat Gryffindor any less as we don’t want to be treated more. Or maybe the rest are just jealous of many of us taking the spotlight.

Again, jk.

J.K. Rowling.

(P.S. My Hufflepuff friend taught me that lame pun)