Fateful days – the sequel

Do you remember this post? Bandi and I received a sad news on the first day of new year. Bandi was diagnosed positive on Hepatitis C.

Looking for a good and reputable hospital to do a pre-marital check up, a friend recommended Eka Hospital. We paid a pretty fat cheque for our full check up, just to make sure we are not only a match made in heaven by the Universe, but also a match made in laboratory.

I did my blood test first, followed by Bandi a couple of days later. We were waiting to meet the obgyn when Bandi received a phone call, “Sir, can you please come back to the lab to give another blood sample?”

Bandi asked, “Why?”

“The result for HCV is reactive. Let’s do another test to confirm.”

“What is HCV?”

“It’s Hepatitis C.”

The result from obgyn then didn’t really matter to me anymore because my only goal in life is to live with Bandi til we’re 100 years old. The news obviously troubled my mind.

We then went to meet the GP to discuss about the lab result. The GP wasn’t very informative. “How could someone be infected by Hep C?” I asked the doctor.

“It’s transmitted by blood and sex.”

Bandi was too confused to talk so I kept challenging the doctor, “well, my hubby never had blood transfusion, doesn’t have tattoo and the only sexual partner is me. If he’s having it, I will be having whatever he’s having.”

The doctor implicitly said that when results like these happen, the marriage tends to be shaken. (WTF, she actually thought Bandi was what-fucking girls around?)

I knew it by heart it’s bullshit. Nobody in this world tells me shits like this. I know Bandi and that is final. Nobody knows Bandi like I do.

We have shared everything, you name it, even chewing gum. There’s no way we’re not sharing this virus either.

The doctor told us to wait for the second test. Maybe it was a mistake on the first test. We agreed on that.

Bandi and I flew back to Singapore the next day. We received an email from the doctor, a scanned document of Bandi’s lab result. It was still positive, it wasn’t borderline, it was way off positive, like seriously positive. The doctor advised Bandi not to share nail clipper, shaving razor, or anything personal with me.

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Bandi took it to the next level. He didn’t let me drink from the same cup with him, eat from the same spoon, we even stopped making out for a while. Don’t even mention about sex. As much as I wanted to be selfish and demand everything to be back to normal,  it couldn’t. I knew he went through so much, he was sad. All I did was hugging him all the time, telling him that we’re gonna kick this shit ass no matter what. His only concern was to pass it to our future baby. I told him not to think about it yet, the only priority is to make sure he’s okay.

During this time, we did a lot of google research and was comforted with the fact that Hepatitis C can be cured. It’s not the end of the world. But we decided to scrape off our Aussie plan and focus on eliminating this virus. I just want to live with Bandi, til 100 years old. I want to travel the world with him, and we will do anything to make sure it’s happening.

Bandi made appointment to see the top hepatologist in Singapore General Hospital (SGH), and only got an appointment 10 weeks later on 8th March.

In 2 months, Bandi went through the phase of sadness, anger, denial and acceptance.

I was in Jakarta for work when he went to his first doctor’s visit. I really wish I could be there with him. Bandi told me to wait til I came back to Singapore which was a day later, to discuss the detail. Doctor referred him to do another blood test, the very detailed one especially to understand how serious the HCV was doing in his body and how much time he had until the virus starting to affect his liver. This costed a whopping $790. (++)

I finally got to see him the next night. He picked me up in Changi Airport and we talked in the uber. He told me that he’s gonna apply for Singapore Citizen. I was shocked, “why?”

“The cost for curing Hepatitis C is 80,000 Singapore Dollars, but government subsidies it to be 12,000 for citizen. We cannot afford $80,000.”

My jaw dropped. Yes, and I cannot afford to lose you either.

I was puzzled. How on earth are we going to find $80,000?

“How much time do we need? When do you need to start the medication?”

“The result will come on 22 March, and I’ll meet the doctor again to understand about the medication plan. But don’t worry, we don’t need to do it ASAP.”

I was sad, and pissed off. Why is this happening to us? Bandi is the kindest, the sweetest, the most thoughtful human being I know. He doesn’t deserve this, he doesn’t deserve anything that can hurt him or make him sad. He only deserves happiness. Universe can hurt me instead. I’ll take bullet for him. I’m bulletproof anyway.

I went for another work trip to Jakarta, again on the same day when we had appointment with his doctor in SGH so he went alone again. I told him to let me know as soon as he had updates. So on Thursday morning, when I was eating breakfast in the hotel, I saw a missed call from Bandi. I called him back rightaway.

“May…”

“Yes?”

“I got nothing.”

“WHAT?”

“Doctor said the result from Singapore Lab says I’m clean.”

“WHAT THE FUCK?!”

“Yeah.”

“There goes 5 years of my life!!!”

“I know, but I’m so relieved.”

“I’m so gonna fucking sue Eka Hospital’s ass.”

“I don’t care. All I care is I’m healthy, and I’m gonna keep living my life with you. That’s the only thing I want.”

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We continued the conversation with hundred of OMG I’m so relieved  and I love you. I felt like I got even closer to Bandi. I know, I really think it’s impossible to be even closer to Bandi, but I felt like I was given a second chance.

I don’t know if any one of you can relate this. There are two ways of seeing it.

One, Eka Hospital ruined 3 months of our life, not to mention our sex life. I swear I gained wrinkles during this past 3 months. Our life was perfect before the incident and Eka Hospital ruined it for 3 months by giving us false alarm.

Two, We are the lucky ones. To be able to go through such whirlwind rollercoaster, and yet holding hands steady and strong, ready to kick ass. We felt like resetting the playstation button when our game starting to be sucky. We were given second chance.

In the end, of course we’re not suing. What is it for? Money? How much money can bring back the 3 months of our life?  How much money can erase the tearful night that Bandi was having? We can’t get our 3 months back. The craziest, most worried 3 months in our life.

We’re so lucky we can ask for second (if not third) opinion in Singapore. But what if this happens to someone else who doesn’t have the fortune to do it (it costed $1,000 altogether from end to end) or even the stupid lab result could ruin their marriage?

How could Eka Hospital screwed up Bandi’s blood test TWICE, I don’t know, only god knows. But what we know, for sure is…

We’re always blessed, we’re always protected. We never doubt that. It’s us, Universe’s favourite people.

As long as we’re positive (no pun intended), and we’re together, nothing can hurt us. And even though it hurts,  so what? it’s not about avoiding the pain, it’s about surviving it.

I still can’t believe such drama happened in our life. We didn’t tell anyone until today. But I’ve decided to share this story because:

  1. We’re warning you to choose hospital wisely. You wouldn’t want to experience their over-priced incompetence.
  2. If there is any doctor reading this, maybe there’s a scientific explanation behind the two different test results. I don’t speak medicine, so maybe incorrect process or method that caused this confusion? If so, what should the doctor do when facing this kind of situation? Obviously not passive-aggressively inducing ideas about dishonesty.

For now, I’m just happy and content with the fact that I can continue my plan, to live with Bandi til we’re 100 years old. :)

And don’t forget to say I love you to your loved ones. Why? Because why not? Life is short.

Cheers,

May (and Bandi), the lucky ones.

Personal: We’re gonna keep going.

I wanna travel for the rest of my life. I hope this is not a phase. I hope this is not “travel as much as you want before you have kids because once you do, then it’s over” kind of thing. Bandi shares the same vision with me and I know that’s what’s important.

Family means no harm, we know that. We fully understand that as Asian kids, we have to take our family as consideration in our decision, no matter how liberal our thinkings are. Trust me, we could’ve just gone, resign from our jobs, withdraw our investment and just go. But we don’t do that, do we? we balance our love to travel with being good asian kids. Working, have stable income, sending money home and make our parents proud. That’s the only way to make Asian parents proud. Oh and yeah, to have baby, which is a little overdue now.

I was not that kid of person, I do care about my mom, but I used to not care about what she thinks of me, but Bandi has thought me that you can have strong character and still make other people happy, that I should not be extremely stubborn, that idealism can be flexible.

Bandi made me a better person, I’m still selfish, I’m just less selfish. And together, we are good. I feel it. With him, I feel good. I feel that we can actually go around the world, with our own timeline, with our own ways.

And we never think to actually stop having income and travel around the world like hippies, because everyone has different way to travel. We’re just taking our time, one city at a time. We still want to travel comfortably, but still on budget though. We don’t spend much money on other things, really. I don’t have any other hobbies that cost a lot of money. I borrow books from library, I stop buying them, and I write. Bandi plays football with his friends, which doesn’t cost anything, really. So, how come we have so much money for traveling? Because we don’t spend money for other stuffs.

I wanna travel for the rest of my life. There are so many things in this world I wanna see, there are so many places in this world I wanna visit. I don’t wanna stop now, I don’t wanna stop when we have kids, I don’t wanna stop when we get old. I don’t wanna stop ever. I wanna keep living life like this. This is not a phase, this is not a “hobby before kids”, this is our life. When we stop travel, we stop living.

And when we have kids, we will still travel. How? I don’t know, we’ll figure it out. There were so many things happened in my life which I didn’t know how to handle, but I figured it out. Now with Bandi, I’m sure we can do it. We have figured out so many odd things. We survived freaking long distance relationship, so I guess we could always try, as long as we’re together.

Nothing is being on hold because we still want to travel. we are not “still want to travel”, we are traveling for life, not still, not then. We’re gonna keep going, because we love it.

Malang, East Java, Indonesia, 31 January 2017.

May.

Personal update and about aspiring in youtube.

Hiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii!

hiiiii

It seems like forever since I updated personal matter in this blog. My life has been a whirlwind of roller-coaster this year and I did not really have time to sit down and reflect and actually write what I’m thinking. Even now I wanted to open my laptop and blogged about my personal update, I hesitated. I just feel like the older I get, the less trust I have with the world. I didn’t feel like pouring out my life to the internet anymore, like I used to when I was young, when blogging was carefree. As you grow older you expect yourself to be in certain standard. To be wise, to act decent, to just be a successful human being according to your own definition.

But I guess, I’m nowhere near that, and I don’t want to restrict myself from being a kid I’ve always been. I always have a young heart, wild and free. I know that for sure for a very very VERY long time.

So here I am… in the intersection of thirty something life.

2016 is crazy, crazy beautiful and crazy sad. I worked hard, I actually gave a damn about my career, which was very weird for me because I never see myself working in the office forever. This happened because I have a great team, great colleagues and I believe in the company I work for, Schneider Electric which is doing something good for the earth, renewable energy, hear hear! So I actually care about my work and my career.

I played hard too, wasted in some party, went out with friends and had really good times with my friends. I traveled to places I’ve never been before, I freaking climbed mount Fuji.

And I learned hard too. I lost my brother and my father. And it broke my heart in pieces in the way I could never imagined before. It was then I truly learned what being strong mean. I always thought I was strong… hell no, I was still learning to be strong. It’s not about not to cry, it’s about not to break. You can cry, you can brief, you can be angry with the world, but you can’t break.

I realized life is so short. How well will I spend mine?

You have no idea how long I’ve struggled about what I want to do with my life. Funny the way I said it like I know now what I want to do. I have a plan even though it’s still quite blurry now.

You guys know I love to take photos and videos and I love to travel and these things are great combination, right? I’ve been making videos about my travel and I even started vlogging when I was in Norway. I just felt that it was very brave to throw yourself out there so people can see you, watch you and comment about you. I know it sounds stupid, but it’s true. Putting youtube videos for public consumption is brave, and did I mention fun? Sometimes when I’m in the train I would just daydream about things I would love to shoot. Like sunrise, snow, animals running in the wild. I hope you can understand what I mean… I started to accept myself for what I actually like and enjoy doing even though it’s seems obscure now. I like the whole process, shooting, editing, publishing.

So two weeks ago I invited my friends to create video which does not have any relation with travel at all. I wanted to know if I only enjoy shooting scenery or I enjoy shooting in general. It was a two and a half hour shoot and the editing part was super long! It took me 16 hours to edit! And guess what, I had fun! And I wanted more. And I have sooooooooo many ideas in my head about what I want to do next.

Of course I will not leave my first love which is blogging, oh I love writing! But I will concentrate more on making videos because I want to learn more about shooting and editing. Of course I still need to learn to write too because hey, we’re learning everyday in our life. :)

Please search “Bay Travels” in youtube. That’s my youtube channel, subscribe if you like it! I have some great plan about it and I want you all to be part of it! Please leave a comment if you guys want me to shoot you and give me some ideas about videos, we can work together! :)

Here’s the video that I was talking about, 16 hours of editing. What a fun project. :)

And I finally finished my Okinawa Vlog, I cannot emphasize anymore how much I love Okinawa!

I’m going to Changi Aiport in 1 hour to travel! I will be back in new year and will be crazy busy until April because of work. I hope I still can squeeze some time to blog and vlog and keep the ideas rolling.

Thanks for reading this til the end, it’s been almost 10 years of online blogging with wordpress and I will never stop blogging! High five all of the bloggers out there!

And of course, wish you a wonderful Christmas and New Year!

Cheers,

May, excited.

After he’s gone

*) Disclaimer: This is very personal, please be considerate before posting comments.

I’ve stared the screen for a while, thinking how honest I would write, and wondering if truth is really what I need now… maybe I should sugar-coat to make me feel better, or if that is actually what I’m feeling for real?

1 year from now, 5 years from now or 20 years from now, when I re-read this post, what I will want to know then? What will I want to remember?

I don’t wanna be bitter. That’s for sure.

I like my life, I got to be the cheerful optimist sanguine who goes wherever she wants to.

I don’t plan to change it.

But…

Of course things changed after the tragedy.

Sometimes I woke up in the morning to a weird feeling, like……. some part of my heart died. A small bite in the flesh, sharp pain for a second. That second when I remembered my brother has died, I could literally hear the sound of my heart cracked.

Nothing could ever prepare me for that. Nothing.

Nothing.

Sometimes a scene flashed in my mind, when he hit me or when I slapped his face and it hurt me even more now because it turns out I don’t have any more time with him, no more chance for redemption. And what a painful thing it is for not having a chance.

Our goodbye was never said.

But of course not everything is dark and blue when I think of him, lately I’ve remembered all the fun things we used to do, long long way before our innocences were taken away from us. When it was just us and toys and imaginations. We used to share imaginations, about having our own version of Kentucky Fried Chicken, our version of Dragon Balls, about playing in the clouds, about creating castles. He was my very first best friend…

… Until drugs have taken him away from me.

And I didn’t save him. I chose to runaway, I saved myself only.

Sometimes I wonder if I could’ve saved him… but I’m sane enough to know I should not feel guilty of anything that is beyond my control. I should not be resentful, should not be bitter and angry with the world being unfair. I may be very far from making peace with my past, but I’m on my way there.

Trust me, reading this, you’ll think it’s that simple. It’s not. I’ve gone through any kind of emotions, what-if-moments, resentment, denials, anger, disappointments and even some suicidal thoughts, but then I’ll remember that it’s all temporary. All the pain are temporary. Nothing is permanent in this life.

Whenever I passed by the alley where I talked to him for the last time, I let the feeling sink in. Maybe if I let it in, it will hurt less. I remember every word he said to me.

And he said… he wanted to come to see me.

He never did. But sometimes I feel he watched over me. I just knew when he was watching over me.

When I went back to Jakarta to check up on my mom, She was devastated and broken hearted in so unimaginable way. I came to Jakarta on a mission, to make her happy. The moment I met her, I knew it was an impossible thing to do. And I will never make her happy. Only she could lift herself up again and be happy, and I will wait. I can only wait.

Nobody can tell her to move on. She’s entitled to her feelings and she can mourn and she’s allowed to willow as long as she wants to. I will just be there.

I want to remember and not to feel hurt. I’m wondering if it’s too much to ask. But Universe always gives me what I need. And I believe this time, I will be able to remember and not to feel hurt anymore.

After he’s gone, that’s a new timeline in my life. There was a time in my life where he was still in the picture, alive; and there is a time now when he’s not in anymore. My life is now divided into 2 time, when he was still there and after he’s gone.

My brother is the only family that reads my blog. He would comment on our personal Facebook chat about what he felt after he read my blog, all of them were happy thoughts. He once said he was happy to know that I’m happy. Some time, he would post it on his Facebook wall, a post about our president, Jokowi and a post about my dream-came-true trip to Parma. So I know he will read this post too. :)

Our relationship doesn’t end just because he’s dead. We’re tied with blood and love, it’s unbreakable. He has a kind soul and his soul will live on for eternity.

That’s all that matters.

Nothing matters in this life but kindness you’ve done and joy that you’ve brought to someone’s life.

I choose to love my brother, no matter what.

And after he’s gone… I will still continue to love. Life is too short to hate, to resent, to be bitter and angry. Our heart will never be full by loving too much or too hard, our heart will expand with no limits, it can’t never be full and rejecting the love it gives and receives.

Love will heal regrets.

May. <3