What 2022 Has Taught Me

Hello, my dusty old blog. I almost forgot about you… but I didn’t! Posting my life on Instagram has been so practical, but I hope I can go back to writing on this blog again in 2023. I will start a day earlier then! I posted this reflection on Instagram as a year-end note. I might as well copy it here before starting fresh again in the new year. Only a few minutes before new year Jakarta time now…

2022 is the year that I truly know that it doesn’t matter how close or estranged you are with your parent, no matter how smooth or complicated your relationship is, when they’re gone from this world it’s a whole ‘nother level of pain. I don’t think this pain will ever go away, but I know now that I am capable of living side by side with it and still function as a human being.

In 2022 I also learn that life can flip within seconds. Your life can be all too well one day, and be utterly miserable the next day. Then again now I know I can live side by side with stability and uncertainty.

I took these photos in mid December 2021. Even though my dad’s chemo showed significant progress, at the time I wasn’t sure if I’d still be able to see him around anymore in 2022, so I dragged him out from his room to see the sunset at a nearby beach in Kupang.

My premonition came true. He passed away on Aug 9, 2022. He couldn’t materialize his plan to reunite with my mom in Jakarta after 13 years of separation, who is now living with dementia & Parkinson (another kind of pain I’d probably write for another day). I had to break the news to my mom that he passed away. That moment alone will need me to do hundred days of therapy. Having to grieve the loss of a parent while watching your other parent’s health deteriorating in front of your eyes and yet still have to function, because life doesn’t wait for you to be well, is also another kind of pain I still can’t articulate verbally. So, I’m writing this instead.

Also, in 2022 I truly learned that our able-body is a blessing, don’t take it for granted. My dad was so fit until 71. He never really got sick. But the cancer and the diabetes flipped everything. He couldn’t walk anymore, he couldn’t hold things firmly let alone type messages again, every simple thing was taken away from him, and that’s why I understand now why people with terminal illness are sometimes so difficult to deal with, because we can never understand their pain, physically and moreover mentally.

Anyway, all I’m saying is, let’s try our best to live our lives with no regrets. We can’t turn back the time and tomorrow is never promised. Happy new year, folks.


  1. Thank you for writing this and thank you for the last point you’ve made.

    This writing got me in tears. I think it was very courageous and brave of you to hang on there and to share all of these after all you have been through.

    Hope 2023 will bring you a lot of good and great thing. Selamat tahun baru, mbak :)).

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