We can get through all of this.
When nobody understood you, you would put yourself, your thoughts and emotions in those boxes. People called you out for being square, but you remained still. You said that it wasn’t dark or lonely inside, but the most colourful place you’ve ever been; a feed of comfort, joy and freedom that you said you’ll remember forever. In that twist of fate, when you’re gone and no longer present, I’ll form with my fingers the boxes that contained you, which made you feel whole just like how your words had given me a window of hope and made me feel happy. Thank you for sticking with me.
I’ll keep your heart in a box. Rest easy now.
I awaken to the sound of birds chirping,
As a brand new day hastens.
The sun rises with uncertainty looming
In the clouds, telling me to wake up
And I ask myself each day,
Am I living happily?
When I watched Mariah’s and Lauryn Hill’s MTV unplugged, I realised how much more distinct and clear their words became when everything else was stripped back. That’s when I heard their true voices and fell in love ever since. I used to try and fuse many things in my writing but it just became chaotic and a bit ‘much’. So I’ve learned to isolate my own thoughts and feelings amidst the ‘noise’ and let my heart sing.
The 18 year old guy who sat at the window seat next to me, helped me take this photo during the flight back to Singapore. We talked throughout the entire 6 hour journey; He told me about his anxiety and uncertainty about his future, as he awaits national service and university education. By the end of our conversation and as the plane prepared to make its landing, he tells me, “ahh then I guess I’ll be alright”.
Just this morning, my mum told me, “Sometimes to console ourselves, we need to tell ourselves that God knows best”. Indeed, not all our plans take flight but I believe that He will lead us to wherever we are supposed to be.
Looking back now and thinking how I almost passed up on this opportunity, makes me feel slightly foolish. But i’m glad that I finally mustered enough courage to go for this exchange programme. As a result, my love for Korea has grown beyond KPop, KDramas, KFashion and the food. I’m grateful to have experienced the life and seasons here, while making friends from all over the world. I’ve realised that it is easier to embrace a foreign culture if you acknowledge and accept its differences before making comparisons. Also, one important thing I’ve learnt thus far, is to make memories in a way that makes the unfamiliar familiar to you. Truly an experience I will never forget.
한국 안녕 Annyeong Korea. How lucky can I be to have met you, a blessing I will always look back on fondly.
Seoul night, a night across the river; Even if you’re far away, I am happy. It’s okay if we don’t see each other often because you’re still in my heart even when we’re apart. Wondering about you every other night, wherever you are, I’ll be happy. You’ve been more than a dream come true.
One last time, good night Hanguk 🇰🇷