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Monday, 24 August 2015

Facing the Trade-offs

18 August, two years ago, was the day I became an aunt as my nephew, Gabriel, was born. On that day, I congratulated Mum for becoming a grandmother. He is her first grandson and I'm sure she's quite happy about it. A few days ago she celebrated her grandson's second birthday by having a feast and invited the other relatives to the house. I Facetimed her and talked to my nephew and wished him a happy birthday.

He's getting so big now and more active. I can't hold his attention for longer than 10 seconds when I Facetime him. He starts talking. And by talking I mean making a sound of "waaawuuuwaaaawuuuwaaaa". But at least he remembers me and can say my name by following after his mother. When I ask him for a kiss, he will lean forward and kiss me by kissing the screen, with a sound of "mwah". One day, when I was talking to Mum, he reached for the phone and hugged it as if he's hugging me. I burst into laughter, feeling touched. 

Following the happy event was the death of my granduncle. It happened yesterday and I found out in the late evening when I called Mum after work. I wasn't surprise to hear the news, considering that my granduncle was old. He died at age 91. In fact, I was quite calm about it. Maybe because I was in a train and didn't want to be so dramatic by bursting into tears. As I got home I was feeling fine by the news and still even managed to do some final-touch on my report and submit it just in time and, for god's sake, I danced with a grin on my face as the similarity result in Turinitin came out and it was only 8 percent. (For the record, it was nearly 3,850 words report and 8 percent of similarity that was mostly from the reference list, it isn't really bad. In case you don't understand what I'm talking about, well, the similarity prevents plagiarism, which is strictly prohibited in academic fields in here - and I'm sure anywhere else in the world.) 

Until tonight, after I Facetimed Mum and saw the dead body of my granduncle and talked to my grandaunt for a few minutes, the mourn starts to seep into me.

I lost the granduncle I've ever had.

Mum came from a big family so I have so many relatives from her side. But there are not so many elders alive. My grandfather died when I was a kid, and Grandma left us a few years ago.It was quite a loss and I still can't get over it. I never will.

I can only imagine how devastated my grandaunt is over this. She lost a daughter 3 or 4 years ago and she still hasn't been able to cope with the loss, and now she lost her husband. I feel so sorry for her, and for my granduncle.  

How funny life can be sometimes, don't you think? One day we celebrate a happy moment and the next the shove comes to push and turns life upside down.

Then it hit me right in the face. I wasn't there to celebrate Gabriel's first and second birthdays. Hell, I wasn't even there the day he was born. I didn't get to share the happy moment with my family, especially with Chris for becoming a daddy. Although I have my disagreements over his decision to get married so young and many more disagreements on the way he leads his life, and his immature thinking is frustrating the hell out of me, but he is still my blood brother. My baby brother. And I still wished I could be there to celebrate the joy because I love him and I love Gabriel as if he's my own.

And now I'm not there to support my family. Yes, I sent my condolences over the phone but god that almost counts to nothing. They say presence is what matters the most. With the mourn combined, I feel really terrible.

These are the kind of things that I'm going to miss for the decision I made. This, I wonder, if it's a trade-off, or rather a sacrifice. In order to gain something, you have to give in other things. Life always says, you can't have both.

I know that I can arguably count on "this is my life" baloney and I've been living with it since the day I made the decision to migrate here. But in my darkest moment, I feel like I'm not so sure about all this thing anymore. Although, I'm not entertained by the idea of going back home. Because as much as I love my family and the town I grew up in, I swear I will never want to live in there again.

These things, and I'm certain of it, will keep coming on me. There will be another missing happy moments, celebrations and devastating news. But I reckon this is the price I have to pay and I'm not sure if it's even worth it when it comes to my family. For one thing, I'm not having a cold feet and am not going back. Yet, I need to find a way to deal with this terrible and depressing feeling.

Until next post.


Anonymous said...

You can rae :)

Rae said...

Thank you, Yona :)