I’ve Never Been Invited to Their Party

Side A

Dear friends, have you ever felt like you were on a car trip that you never want to end? Not because of a bad destination, nor you don’t have one but because after this car trip you knew that you’ll never be the same again.

You feel you’re not fully prepared, but time is ticking and you enjoy the moment immediately. Because it’s temporary, you become fully aware every second has meaning.

Then, surprises come through questions. You have anticipated, but you haven’t realized until the time comes. And questions, like tests, are not made to be fun. This question wasn’t available with multiple choice answers.

As they say, why go back to the old job, to the old routine, to the same road? Are there no other choices? If I were you, I would probably choose to live outside this country longer.

Are you sure you will be much more stable? This is a madness year. Many people even want to go. But have you saved enough? What do you want to do with your savings?  maybe invest in stocks, buy land, gold, or even a house.

Plan to use savings to more traveling? But at our age, it’s no longer time to play around. Are you sure you want to return to work like you used to? Start all over again, get to know again, adapt again.

What were you talking about? Where did the story go? 

Hey, there is a job vacancy in this company, try it, just try it first.

By the way, where were your old friends? like to hangout? Have an exciting story?

But you know what happened for the past two years? Just so you know, I hate these people, they are superficial, they can’t work anyway. But this matter is nothing to my family’s affairs. But don’t tell anyone, because it’s about ….

Besides, do you miss your freedom? where was the story?

Hey, do you want to go to this place? Let’s make a plan. No, not this year. Next year? See, it always about traveling.

But hey, better the savings for the other things, have you ever considered going to school again? I’m hungry now, where’s my chicken?




Side B

I’m okay

Drink first, cheers.

You know during January-February-March, my mind kept wandering around and I try to find a way to stay on track. It feels like when I wake up in the morning, what I wish was another different city atmosphere. There’s some time at night that makes me awake because suddenly I think of questions that I haven’t answered completely.

I’m not thinking of the answer very often, but instead end up scrolling through Instagram. And when I see people IG stories:  there are parties, there are celebrations.

“Wow, they’re wearing cute outfits according to the theme, #MyGirls #Myboys #Healthyfriendship. This is look fun. Why am I not invited to their party? But who exactly are these people, do I know them personally? why they keep talking like performance everyone’s watching?”

Damn, why do I even feel low.


Blam! Pow! Crack! Snap!

Dreams are over. Reality must be faced now. Work again, writing. Busy days are rolling again. It’s noisy with endless information.

Another new story. New friends. Old friends with new stories. Old stories with new friends. Old friends with old stories plus new perspectives. Some new friends who haven’t told stories, and some old friends who have lost their stories.

New secrets appear afterward. Parts of the puzzle are missing, or deliberately eliminated. New theory. New question. Geez, why does the question arise again?

Slow down. I can’t, because the next thing is July, half a year has passed. Lots of noise to be solved. How could I not have planned anything, or was too lazy to plan something, so it would be better to wait for August to arrive, anyway.


And when August arrives, the atmosphere might become more interesting. Many people cussed at each other. Voice divided. Jakarta has never been so hot. Until September, bang bang bang! people took the streets. Okay is it the right time to run? where to run? Look, this is the most interesting month of the year. There were students killed, there were journalists who were harassed, the protests and tear gas explode

October, Indonesia’s Joko Widodo sworn in for the second term as president and the dry season has not yet ended. There was a forest fire, while I sat in the corner of the coffee shop. Do you remember at the beginning of this year I joked, “I want things to be the same as when I left”

Those are the most ridiculous and most honest words that came out of my mouth in 2019. November finally confirmed everything that I thought was familiar and I knew, in reality, it was not like that. You know like an old sweater that you think is still comfortable and suitable for you to wear, but the reality isn’t. There are only ideas about the old self. Sheer romanticism.

Sometimes my current self thinks how my old self has been able to get through everything in the last two years. Do I miss my old self?

Then December accompanied by the late rainy season. I don’t cry, I don’t cheer. I’m not sad or overwhelmed. But for sure I am relieved because there’s no Disney film ending and definitely wasn’t Guillermo Del Toro’s film ending.

I’m happy because I don’t have to answer people’s questions thoroughly. It’s not that I don’t care anymore about people’s feelings, but I don’t prioritize their feelings over mine. This was the year of being unapologetically me.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *