This month is my birth month and I normally take this time to reflect upon my life, and also the people who have been influential in my life. Though foremost I take this time to appreciate the persons who have brought me to life – my parents! Without them, I won’t be even here typing this blog. So please allow me to write about them on my first blog. Also I think it’s a good way of starting this blog, so you know my root and hopefully get more insight of who I am.
I am born in a small town, in an island called Nias, Indonesia. I lived in that beautiful town for about nine years before moving to a much bigger city for my education. Both my parents are also born in small towns. Dad is born in Nias, where mum is born in an outskirt of Medan (Lubuk Pakam).
I am very proud of my dad. He didn’t finish his primary school, but he is a smart man despite his lack of formal education. He understands the politics and economy and he runs a successful business. In fact, he became an entrepreneur when he was just a teenager. From limited stories told by my dad, I learnt that he borrowed money from the bank when he started his business. He was doing very well that he could pay off his debt in a few years. My dad has wonderful work ethics, he put a lot hard work and efforts into his business. Personally, I don’t think dad had an “easy” life. He lost his mum (my grandma) at a young age – probably he was a (late) teen. A few years after that my granddad also left the world. My grandparents have 4 sons and 2 daughters.They grew up in a low-to-middle class family, with little wealth. So I guess, dad had to be independent at a young age.
Dad doesn’t talk much, but there is one saying that he said sticks to my mind until today and have changed my outlook in life ever since. I was about 7 years old (Year 1) at that time. When I was young, I was very eager to learn; I had thirst for knowledge. So in classes I paid attention to what the teachers taught, hence I learnt pretty quickly. Without much effort, to my delight, I ranked the first in the first term (we had 3 terms in a year). Thinking that I could easily get to the top without studying much, I decided not to study during the second term. So when I was handed the report that I got down to number two, I was so disappointed and went home crying. I went upstairs and crying on the couch, my dad was typing next to me. He turned to me and wondered why I cried… and I told him that I came down to second in the class. Then he gave me my first life lesson, that has literally changed my outlook in life. He then said “Well, you didn’t study during the term, so it’s understandable you went down the rank. However, this is only the second term, you still have another term to go this year. So why don’t you study harder next time and do better?”.
This is my first lesson on failure or setbacks. Since then I began to see failure or setback as a springboard for better success. Failure wasn’t the end of the world, in fact, it can be a beginning of a journey. So thank you dad for that wonderful lesson. You may not know or remember this, but it’s very significant to me.
My mum, on the other hand, is a kind, beautiful and wise woman. She didn’t have the luxury to be able to go to school, she had to work and help my grandma looking after her siblings. They have big family and financially my grandparents couldn’t afford the school fees; only the youngest son managed to study and got a university degree. So mum isn’t academically smart, but boy, she is street smart.I personally think our family business won’t grow as much as it is now without her. She knows how to see opportunity and takes advantage of it. I’ve learnt so much wisdom from mum, and I am always grateful for her lessons. Without her wise guidance, I think I would have been a spoiled girl with bad attitudes.
One lesson I appreciate much from mum is her teaching me how to judge people wisely. She taught me the danger of gossipers, and because of her I don’t have the habit to gossip. She once told me that people who talk bad about others behind their back will also talk bad about you behind your back. I don’t tend to take things at face value, but somehow my mum’s remark made me think and observe my surroundings. And of course mum was right! I witnessed it myself how twisted the tongues of gossipers! Since then I don’t take people’s stories as truth. And also it helped me see that people have different perceptions, their stories are true to them, but may not to others.
There are so many other things that I have learnt from mum, but I don’t want to bore you to death. So for now, I leave it as is. I hope you’ll keep on reading my future musings and hopefully you’ll learn something from them…
Thank you for reading and visiting my page.