Thursday, 31 July 2008

A matter of clarification

I didn't mean to cucuk anybody who called me by my muet band or label anyone as un-real friends in the previous post.

I was blogging what I felt two weeks ago, and a little of what I felt before I took my dinner, and quite a lot of what I have been feeling for the past few years. The emo-ness was just like every start of a transition, I guess.

I guess.

I'm actually hungry again now. (must be cuz i went to pang sai just now) But not emo anymore.

So I apologize if anyone was provoked by what I wrote, especially the peeps on this island with me.

I'm gonna scavenge for food now.

I think I need to stop pang sai-ing.

Take Me As I Am

I was so invisible I could walk through people.

It felt like that anyway.

The only people who knew me were my two roomies.

Even so, I messed up a few times with them, and got dejected not a few times.

It's always a tough transition - from a somebody to a nobody. I've had a few of those - from MGS 2 to MGSS, from a glorified banana-fied world to Seng Cheong Chinese Night Class, a "successful career" in MGSS to a completely passive life in MHS, from an ounce of reputation in MHS to none at all in UM & finally, from MGC to PJGH (where I'm sure I'll be greeted with "are you new here?" when I go again this Sunday).

During Faculty Orientation week, I discovered that the 2nd year seniors were on an assignment to grab a buddy for their buddy line*. I shall grudgingly admit that I was quite depressed when both roomies got their buddies early in the week, and I was still buddy-less on Thursday. It would have been a wonderful consolation to think that most of the seniors had already gotten their buddies, or they were still looking and didn't see me etc etc. BUT I went through a few occasions where the senior asked the freshies standing with me whether they had buddies, and then either pick one of them if they said yes, or ignored me if they said no. That happened a few times. I made it a point not to count, but I knew it outnumbered at least 3 fingers. Enough to make me wish I had my blue toilet bowl to sit on and brood.

I didn't have my blue toilet bowl, and roomies were too stressed out with orientation to give me the empathy that I greatly needed, so I would lie down on my bed under the guise of sleeping like a pig (good thing that reputation was already quite established) and tell myself I didn't need a buddy.

It's not about the notes the buddy could give me or the free makan or security or whatever. It was about spending 4 days watching and listening to people tell each other who their buddies are, and waiting for my own buddy somewhere out there to want me.

I wondered what was wrong.

Is there something wrong with me? Is it my attitude? Am I too much of a plain Jane? Jumping jellybeans - am I really invisible? Shall I rent a piano and start playing in the middle of the foyer? Shall I flaunt my MUET result slip? Shall I announce my STPM results? Shall I?

I was so tempted. So tempted to the point of being desperate.

It always happened that way.

The question, "Am I not enough?" was always defeated by the resounding NO that followed.

I told myself time and again that it wasn't true. But those thoughts were confirmed once again, after a paper with our MUET results was passed around the class one day. Suddenly people looked me in the eye and smiled. No, people still didn't know my name. Because that didn't matter. They called me by the grade that was printed on my MUET result slip. Literally.

I'm not saying that they're hypocrites or anything. I appreciate their appreciation of that little slip of paper, but... why does it take a little number beside the word "band" to make someone more worthy to be better known?

People know my name now. I won't be a jerk and say it's because of what I did in Form 6. It's because it's the fourth week we're together. But I can't help thinking of the unspoken prefix that lingers with my name. People call me Tse Hwei, but is that what they mean? Or do they mean, the Tse Hwei?

There are some who have the habit of not looking at the papers they sign, and so there are some who don't know what I have done or what I can do. I count that as a blessing. Because I can safely infer that when I see them smile at me, it's because they're smiling at Tse Hwei.

Readers who've made it this far would say that all this is gibberish. Perhaps some would even say I'm on the verge of boasting (or perhaps already have).

I am not.

Or at least not trying to.

Lin commented in one of the posts that I accept my weaknesses and am happy with who I am. It's not because I delight in my weaknesses. I try everyday to be a better and improved me. But those weaknesses help me hold on to friendships, because people accept me and my baggage of weaknesses.

I know you, you're the one who's always spilling soup.
Yohhh, you so blur la.
I saw you fall off the stage. *laughter*
Har? You dunno wan ar? Aiyoh! How old d!

Those kind of words actually make me happy. I used to get all sensitive and upset when people said those things. But over time, I began to embrace them. Yes, they're the cacat side of me, but at least those are part of my personality. That's who I am.

Yes, Tse Hwei spills soup whenever she drinks it (that's why she avoids soup a lot).

Yes, Tse Hwei is almost always blur (that's why she makes a big deal out of her uber scary Tort tutorial and then has to call up her roomie on the way to tutorial asking her what room she's supposed to be in anyway).

Yes, Tse Hwei falls off stages all the time (that's why she didn't like going on stage to play the piano for the choir).

Yes, Tse Hwei is almost always clueless, especially about roads and things to do with time and dates (that's why she's the only one who can tell tourists how to use the signboards in Melaka).

But that is who Tse Hwei really is. The only documents that should define who Tse Hwei is are her birth certificate, IC and driving license.

Tse Hwei shouldn't need any other documents or qualifications to qualify as Tse Hwei.

That is why there should only be one Tse Hwei, and nobody needs to say she is a Tse Hwei.

There is no need to be the Tse Hwei, because everyone has a different birth certificate, IC, and driving license that makes them unique. So no one should be exalted above the other.

Tse Hwei tries to keep quiet most of the time. When Tse Hwei is quiet, it means she's trying to stop herself from succumbing to the temptation of being the Tse Hwei. When Tse Hwei hides, it means she's trying to stop herself from being a qualified Tse Hwei.

Tse Hwei mostly just wants to be Tse Hwei.

At the same time, she hopes that Tse Hwei is enough for everyone.

If being the Tse Hwei is so unavoidable, let me be the Tse Hwei who can't make good conversations, is too quiet in group discussions, sometimes doesn't do what she's supposed to do, is sometimes too emo, sometimes too cold, mostly unsensible, but still the Tse Hwei who keeps her friends' secrets, puts her friends and family's pictures online without their permission, and who can't turn away a hurting friend.

Take me as I am.

Remember the things I have accomplished and the things I can still accomplish.

But also remember who I am.

I am Tse Hwei.

I can come no other way.

Take me as I am.

one of the times i remember my emo-ness.
savour it.

*Buddy system: Each year, a 2nd-year law student picks a freshie to be his/her buddy. Hence, the freshie will have a 2nd-year, 3rd-year, and final-year buddy. All 1st-year notes in the family line will be handed down to the freshie and the tradition continues for who knows how long.


~author's note: when i say it's one of the time i remember my emo-ness, it means i don't feel that emo now. but the fact that i remember it means part of it lingers within me still. if i really didn't mind, i won't have to keep telling myself i don't mind. i'm ok now. except for the few moments of low self-esteem that occasionally occur. thanks for the concern. you know who you are. =)

What is man that You are mindful of him,
And the son of man that You visit him?

Psalm 8:4

In the Lord's eyes, my documents are nothing.
In the Lord's eyes, I have no qualifications.
In the Lord's eyes, I am no more worthy than the next person.
In light of what I've recently come to emo about...
That's not really a bad thing, is it?

Open my eyes, that I may see
Wondrous things from Your law.

Psalm 119:18

And Elisha prayed, and said, “LORD, I pray, open his eyes that he may see.”
Then the LORD opened the
eyes of the young man, and he saw.
And behold, the mountain
was full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.

2 Kings 6:17

Tuesday, 29 July 2008

In the midst of jelingan para senior in the law fac library...

The things I go through to update my beloved blog fans. Tsk tsk tsk.

No la.

It's cuz the electricity supply in college is cut off (candlelight dinner tonight?) and I don't want my hands and feet to sweat anymore than they need to (yes, i have sweaty palms and feet - small voice: and i'm proud of them!) So here I am, looking up cases in e-journals and blogging at the same time. (irrelevant detail: more blogging than looking up cases)

As the days go by without me writing updates about life here in university and orientation weeks (yes, plural), I'm getting more slack about blogging about them. Still keeping the pictures - some taken secretly and stealthily - though, in case I change my mind.

There were some things that made their way into my journal though.

I confess that I didn't feel as homesick as the other MGC-ians did when they first left to this vile place (as a friend calls it). Not because I don't miss home, family 1 and family 2, but because one of family 1 and about 1/3 of family 2 is already here. I mean, it's always been a joke that we can start a new MGC here already. Now it seems like a really tangible suggestion.

College orientation was jia lat until the JKOs (Jawatankuasa Orientasi) came in on the 3rd day and scared the skin off all of us. I was seriously rattled. I was even expecting a nightmare at night. Thankfully, they'd had the sense to come a week before the faculty orientation. So we had about 4 days to prepare ourselves for the worst.

I learned quite a bit during orientation, but I suppose two of the most notable ones would be:
  • Surpressing my emotions - We weren't allowed to smile throughout the orientation, except during the time the seniors had their fun with us during the senior-junior meet. Then they forced us to smile and look happy after throwing heaps of insults at us. During the mock trial, which is a hilarious rendition of a real court proceeding with eccentric witnesses and odd-ball attorneys, we were warned not to smile or laugh no matter what happened. Thought going through my mind throughout the mock trial was: It's not funny. No need to smile. After awhile, my heart was laughing, but not my face. I didn't even have to try to not smile. Fuh. Macam horror movie.
  • Looking people in the eye - I do not like to look at people when I talk. I have an idea why, but I think those who share this trait will know why without my explanation. We had to collect 210 signatures, and I quickly found that the JKOs were more likely to be nicer to me if I looked them in the eye when I recited the *ultra long greeting. And so now I can talk to you without looking away or playing with my hair or whatever. Great achievement, hurrah.

It's such a strange thing.

There were times when I felt horrible, not because I was oppressed by the JKOs, but for certain personal and emotional reasons (public: suppress emotions too much ar?). And it just so happened (for technical reasons; no such thing as just so happened for Christians right) I was doing my Quiet Time on Psalms, and nearing the end of it. Every time I opened my Bible in the morning, there'd be a psalm there to tell me that God is with me through everything, and to hold on to Him.

I hugged my Bible like I hug my Puppy (stuffed).

Oh yeah, I'm now in the process of church-hopping. (Unc D & someone: ...) Frankly, I don't know what I'm looking for. I've been in one single church too long to be able to distinguish between what a church is and what I want in a church. All I know is I've had a sudden inclination to serve in a certain ministry, and that might be a factor in the church I choose to go to.

Pray for me, everyone!

*ultra long greeting = "A very good morning/afternoon/evening to my beloved praiseworthy, most esteemed, adored and highly thought of senior gentleman sir/lady madam. I am your modest freshie, Lim Tse Hwei from Melaka."

Thursday, 24 July 2008

I Wanna Go Home

And I'm coming home to the place where I belong!

(this friday)

Yoh, cheap imitations.

Tuesday, 22 July 2008

Greetings from the Island of Freedom senior Gary calls the Law Fac.

It is indeed an island, because we're almost completely isolated from everyone else (from other facs). People staying outside campus would be completely isolated from everyone else.

As of now, I'm staying in 1st College, meaning I hop to the Law Fac in 3 minutes everyday. Very weird to use the umbrella even on extremely hot days, because that would mean I open the umbrella for a maximum of 3 minutes.

No further updates for now. The keyboard's making a lot of noise as I type. I'll act out orientation when I come back on Friday.

All the best for the J.U.I.C.E event, everyone! (MGC-ians)