Trapped in a room with people you don't know. Yes, their names, their age, the color of their eyes and hands and hair-
But thoughts? Dreams? Fears? Something that goes deeper than the skin.
Find out what runs in their veins. What fuels their feet to keep moving forward, onward
Skip lightly on those cheekbones and skim what lips have touched there
Crawl through the recesses of these ribs and pry them apart to peer ever so discreetly into a beating heart
Yes, and take what is inside to make it yours.
But that is not what happens when you're a prisoner in a stifled room.
You do not tumble into bodies not meant to know you
Wrapped in their decadence and careless laughter
So instead you shrink. And with it the 4 walls enclose further
Until you are but a whisper in that room full of roaring bodies.
If you've been anywhere near my Instagram this week you'd know that life has been a lot of up and down. The painful moments, like Friday night, are sharp, hurting both physically and mentally. But thankfully they are also short. After a much needed 10 hour sleep the bad thoughts had washed away. And life was all good again.
I've mostly been disappointed about school. First things first, it's all my tests, which have been going on a downward spiral veritably right after terms, like a taunting laughter that tells me not to be complacent and rest on my laurels. I did good for 2 subjects, getting 100th percentile for ELL which was honestly shocking- and probably only because Mr Tham marks me leniently- and 93rd percentile for lit. The other subjects were okay since they were above average and the only horrible grade was Chem. That was awful, I got a U, and about 10th percentile to boot. But I was willing to conveniently overlook that in the light of my other scores, and felt quite satisfied.
Well, school kicked me in the face after that, because I stopped working so hard for the CA's so most of my recent tests have been pretty terrible. It's upsetting, but a smart wake up call, as I realize this is a habit of mine.
Not sure if it's a product of just being the recipient of good marks, but it's suddenly a lot more stressful. In Sec 3 EOYs I remember topping lit, english, and SS/half history, and was on such a high throughout the whole holiday but simultaneously super afraid that I'd lose the positions to somebody else. If I recall correctly I only held on to it by the tips of my fingers. It's easier to slip back than it is to maintain excellence. That's why they say it's harder to be 1st place than 2nd straining for 1st.
In the same vein I've been treating dance with the same half-hearted drive. It's just the sort of attitude that makes Zaki scream at us and Ms Wee actually cry for a technique class, which brought an onslaught of miserable thoughts about my whole person, my shitty character, and how I never pursue perfection- it's always about compromise, making up for things that I should have done but didn't.
You see that in the way I wake up at 3am to work by not being able to stay up in the first place. It looks like I'm being diligent, but it's not. That's compromise. I'm just coping with my initial inability.
It's also evident in how I listen to dance music and revise counts during school hours because I didn't have enough time at home due to poor time management. That's compromise. It's a flaw.
However, it's also a human tendency to focus only on what's so very wrong. I am still a generally happy person- school's pretty bloody fun when it wants to be; like being just as good at foosball as the guys, when gym boy says hi to me in the void deck, and giggling incessantly during Chem with Maryann because we have heaps of weird inside jokes together.
Also, 'my heart is filled with thankfulness to Him who bore my pain'. I may be flawed and blemished with countless sins, and flesh fail with regularity: but through it all it is well, because God is always up there, ever present, giving me the strength to carry on.
This year's National Day was a little stranger than the last, but a special one that's got a permanent place in my heart somewhere.
One of the most obvious differences was AC's way of celebrating the nation's birthday, with lots of fanfare and pomp. Suffice to say I didn't like it a whole lot. It will do, for me, but amidst the red and white balloons and standing up on chairs I felt that something was missing. Next year I will definitely request for them to play Heartbeat, which is a requisite for a good National Day celebration in my opinion, and also my favorite ND song of all time, in case you hadn't realized.
They got this Minister guy to come and give a speech, and that was supremely boring, evidenced by the fact that I fell asleep on Shannon's shoulder for the entire duration of it and didn't even know if it was over when I woke up. In short, AC STEP UP YOUR GAME! Make me actually stay awake if you force us to come to school on an eve of a public holiday!!
After that, I headed out for lunch and a study session with a boy- gym boy- so that's quite a significant change too. But this was a nice one. I liked it.
For National Day itself I had some cool plans up my sleeve, namely another Bux study sesh with Maryann and out to watch the parade fireworks in real life.
Saw the most adorable doggo outside Starbucks, named Bagel!! *heart eyes*
We arrived at around 5pm at the Marina Bay Promontory. I thought it'd be a huge lawn so we could settle down somewhere for a picnic of sorts, but we saw this long stretch of riverside pavement that looked like it could have smashing views, and had prime spots to boot. So after a brief deliberation Maryann whipped out her MG picnic mat and we tuckered down for the long wait till the light shows would come out.
And how right we were. We got treated to a gorgeous sunset at dusk midway through talking, and since we're both huge sky people we basically freaked out and took a thousand pics. Throughout the night there was also intermittent firework displays leading up to the grand finale at the end. We also got a great view of the drone show, which was something I'd never seen before in my life, super COOL.
Like I wrote in my diary, company is arguably one of the most important considerations for an adventure like this. Which makes me glad that I went with Maryann, who might possibly be reading this right now (hi bitch), and who's been a real gem in MD5, one of those few people you meet and click with instantly and you know you'll cling onto her for the rest of your life. That's not the case most JC friendships, or even friendships in general.
And so even without giving it much deep thought, I know what I felt, and that is: after all these years, no matter what my dad says, Singapore is still my home.
I have a passport that says I'm Australian. My body is made up with genes equal parts from Hong Kong and Malaysia. I've lived in Japan and America, remembering only bits of both. But I grew up in Singapore, born and bred on this land, and maybe this is a fact my soul knows, because listening to Heartbeat or Home watching the Singaporean skyline light up with brilliant fireworks- that's something I'll always love down to the bone.
Imagine this times one thousand, with masses of young teens sashaying everywhere decked out in saris, baju kurungs, all a manner of kebayas, and not to forget cheongsams.
And of course, you get the boy squad strolling into assembly amid thunderous applause, dressed to the nines in Arabic thoub and checkered picnic mat headscarves.
L / 18 / SG / ACJC
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If you get everything you want the minute you want it, what's the point of living?
last updated: 5 september