A Quote I Try to Live by: Verily, with Every Difficulty, There is Relief

It’s only day-3 and I already messed up this challenge by not writing in the past 6 days. I tried to write when I was on my way back to home from work but always failed, either because I fell asleep along the way on Trans Jogja, or because the situation didn’t make it possible for me to write. And when I reached home, I always got sidetracked doing other things like cooking, gossiping with my dad, or complaining about how my neighbor changed his hotspot username and password so I can’t use it for free anymore. But now that I don’t have to go to work, I have enough time to catch up. Well, it’s not really catching up if I only write one post per day –if I could do that, though.

Well now let’s get cracking with this job.

Have you ever experienced a time when everything doesn’t seem to go your way? When you go through one bad thing after another, and everything seems to go wrong no matter what you do to fix them? Well you’re not alone, then. Bad things happen to everyone. For me and my dad, that time was last month. It was a pretty tough month for both of us, where our patience and sincerity were being tested. While my dad remained calm and patient, I was the one who *sort of* lost control. Instead of being mad at me for cursing a lot, my dad tried to calm me, because he knew how disappointed I was at that time. He just told me not to hate someone that much, and to always remember their kindness and forgive their mistake. He convinced me that we would be okay, we’re gonna find a way out of this difficulty, Allah will help us, and we could get through this together. 

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How my dad deals with every problem always reminds me of one verse in Quran “verily, with every difficulty, there is relief”. It is the 5th verse from Surah Al-Inshirah. One of the most beautiful verses in the Quran and maybe one of the most widely shared verse on the Internet. It gives a message of hope and encouragement, and makes me more positive and not easily discouraged whenever I’m facing a problem. It’s like a reminder for me that there is always a solution for any problem that we might face, and compared to Allah’s Mercy all our difficulties and problems are tiny. With that being said, that verse automatically becomes a quote that I try to live by.

You may feel like you’re going through your difficulties all alone, but Allah will always be by your side. Hang in there. The promise of Allah is true. After all, with every difficulty, there is relief.

Things I Like and Dislike About Myself

Hey, I’m back to continue this challenge. I’m going to write down some of the things that I like and dislike about myself. I thought I’d do this challenge to help me appreciate the good things in me, not in an arrogant way but simply in a self respecting way, since it has been something that I’ve been struggling with my whole life. And I’m also going to write some of the things I dislike about myself, in the hope that in the near future I can do something to change that, or perhaps find a way to accept that. Knowing what you like and dislike about yourself is a very important basic key when it comes to improving yourself. Strengthen your strengths and change what needs to be changed. And in order to do that, you have to know what kind of person that you are.

Here are four things that I like about myself:

  1. I’m generally a positive-thinking person, and I always try to see the good in every situation, especially in the most difficult one. It’s never that simple, but it doesn’t have to be all that complicated either. It can be started from trying to be the least judgemental that I can become and keep myself surrounded by people who believe in staying positive.
  2. I forgive; always. I don’t hold on to grudges. I just want to live, learn, and move forward.
  3. I’m a good listener and a good problem solver, at least that’s what my friends told me. Perhaps that’s what makes them come back to me when they’re facing a problem.
  4. I’m quite independent and I can enjoy time by myself. I think I’ve mentioned a couple times about this in my older posts.

And now it’s time to write down what I dislike about myself, but i’ll try to include the positive things in them instead of merely mentioning them.

  1. Sometimes I give up too easily. I don’t always finish the things that I start and it can be a problem. The main reason I said that is because I haven’t finished my law degree. But if I try to look at the bigger picture, there are many things that I finished and achieved, like finishing my animal science degree in 4 years and two months, so it’s not entirely true. Instead of letting it defines who I am, I’d like to call it as a process that I have to go through in order to know who I want to be and what I really love. But however, I still need to be more resposible whenever I choose to start something.
  2. I’m sort of reluctant to ask for help even when I need it. I usually just accept the help when it’s offered. I like to help people but I don’t like to ask for one. Sorry if it doesn’t make sense. But fortunately, I’m SO blessed to have friends who care enough to offer help. Honestly, I don’t know whether it is something that I’m supposed to like or dislike, not sure if it’s shame, selfishness, or stupidity. But since some of my friends complained about it, I think it’s something that needs to be changed.
  3. Sometimes I still unconsciously compare myself with others. I know it’s human nature to always compare yourself and to see that the grass is always greener on the other side, but it doesn’t make it okay to keep doing that. It’s toxic. That’s why I always keep telling myself to focus on improving myself rather than feeling sad due to my bad habit of comparing myself with others.
  4. My commitment issue and how I always tend to push people away when they get too close with me. I’d like to think that it has something to do with my depression. Or maybe I’m such a shit person on the inside.

That’s that. I could write up to five or more things if I wanted to, but those things I wrote above are enough to represent me. 

Day 1: Five Ways to Win My Heart

A few days ago I stumbled upon a blog post about 30-day writing challenge. I’ve seen this challenge multiple times before but I had to google it up again to see the full list of topic that should be written. I found some versions of this challenge, but overall they’re similar and essentially the same. I don’t know who started this but, man, 30 topics are way too much for this lazy ass to handle. I gotta cut down some topics and make it into one-third of the actual amount of it. Hello, this lazy ass right here is trying her best to participate. But to be honest though, it is a quite interesting challenge to join because besides practicing my writing skill, it also helps me to get to know myself more deeply. So, without further ado, let’s get started.

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My heart is such a dark, spooky, and dangerous place that nobody should ever get closer, let alone winning it. And I don’t think there’s a certain way to win my heart. I’m actually easily amazed by something new and different, but it doesn’t count as winning because most of the times the amazement disappeared as quickly as it came. I believe that when it comes to winning my heart, it should be able to keep me amazed for a long time and most importantly makes me feel comfortable. So what I’m going to write down bellow is more like five ways to make me feel comfortable (and probably win my heart, eventually).

Leave me alone, give me the space that I need. If you’re a true believer of the quote “sometimes I push you away because I need you to pull me closer” please back off. Just because those girls before me used this trick doesn’t mean such quotes apply to every girl, especially to me. If I push you away, do not, I repeat, DO NOT, pull me closer. If I push you away it’s either I want to be alone or I can’t deal with your annoying ass anymore. Just give me the space that I need. I love the company of other people, don’t get me wrong, but I take a lot of time to recover from being around people as well. Someone who can respect my “me time” and understand how much I love solitude is definitely going to win my heart.

Be patient with my texting habit. I can be someone who sends text you frequently, reply to a text in a blink of the eye, and bombard you with tons of heart emojis, but it only happens for a few weeks until I finally feel tired of it. Maybe I just get bored easily. Or maybe I’m not the type to text someone all day everyday, no matter how much I like you or who you are to me. Go ask my boyfriend how often we text each other in a day. I just want someone who can pull off texting everyday and not texting at all in a day.

Be open-minded. It’s always nice to be around open-minded people, you know, those who are willing to listen, observe, understand, and try to see everything from different point of view. The ones who don’t easily judge and point at people, saying that their opinion is right or wrong. But it doesn’t mean that they always accept everything, though. They still have their own standard but chose not to impose anyone to live up to it. Even though we’re in a relationship and we believe that we’re soulmates, we’re still a different human beings with different way of thinking, and disagreements are inevitable and might happen. This is when your open-mindedness is pretty much needed.

Impress me with your knowledge. Looks fade; knowledge is forever. I’m attracted to people who knows a lot of things. It doesn’t always have to be about law, politic, physics or how this galaxy were formed, even though it’d be better if you could explain about that as well. It’s nice to talk to people who always have an answer to every weird and unimportant question I ask, or at least willing to think of the answer to my question instead of just saying “idk” “why did you even ask me that”.

Love french fries dipped in ice cream as much as I do. Well, this is the last one. It might sound weird for some people but believe me, many people out there have tried this since years ago. The combination of something sweet and something salty makes it taste SO good, please consider trying this or at least add it into your -100 things to do before you die- list. If you ask me out and take me to McDonald’s and you order this heaven-sent food there’s a huge chance I’m gonna say yes when you want to take me to McDonald’s again. Which means, a bigger chance to win my heart.

I think I left out a few things that probably were far more important but that’s all what I came up with for now.

My Daily Makeup Routine

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I don’t know how others perceive me, whether as someone who doesn’t care about her look or as someone who does, but in reality I actually love putting on makeup. It’s like a nice little ritual to start off my activity. And by makeup, it doesn’t always mean having a perfect face contouring, a perfect winged liner, a fleek eyebrows, or a blinding highlighter. Sometimes it’s just putting on a small amount of BB cream, a face powder, a nude lipstick and then call it a day. But even though I love putting on makeup, I don’t always wear it everyday. There are days where I don’t mind to go out with zero makeup on, despite the fact that I might look like a walking zombie and scare the little kid. So my daily makeups are basically what I wear when I want to look more presentable and feel more human.

My daily makeup routine basically takes me about ten minutes (or can be up to 30 minutes if I do it while singing the entire song from one album). This little routine is missing certain parts that are probably important for some people, but I’m way too stingy and lazy to incorporate all the products to achieve a flawless looking face. Hey, it’s just for daily look, not a party. 12-hour full coverage foundation? No thanks, I’m not gonna wear my makeup that long. Every day we’re introduced to new products, formulas, trends, and colors, but what I should pay attention more is on how good it is on my skin and how affordable it is because I’m gonna wear it quite often. If you’re expecting to see any high-end brand then you’re clearly looking in the wrong post and you’re very welcome to stop reading by now. So, this is my daily makeup routine along with the products that I use on a daily basis for a natural look.

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I usually start out my morning with my morning skincare routine. I wrote about it here, you can check it out. Before putting on any makeup, I wait the skincare to absorb for about 5 minutes while I do other things like checking instagram, ironing my clothes, or simply thinking about how we’re all gonna die someday. But when I’m lazy I just cleanse my face with this Nivea Micellar Water or Sari Ayu Cleanser and then jump to the last step that is applying sunscreen. However you gotta make sure the canvas is clean enough before you start painting.

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The first step in my daily makeup routine is applying BB cream or foundation. This what I mean when I said that my routine is missing certain important parts. Yup, I don’t use primer. I only wear makeup for 6 hours tops and I don’t mind if it comes off in the middle of the day so for now I don’t need it that much. I usually just go straight to Wardah Everyday BB cream in shade natural or Wardah Everyday Luminous Liquid Foundation in shade light beige. For under 50,000 IDR, these product evens out your skin tone perfectly, but when it comes to covering acne scars, you might still need concealer do to the task. I usually skip concealer as well because acne scars and redness are not my skin problem and I’m not a big fan of highlighting my face with it. To set the BB cream or foundation, I usually wear Marcks Beauty Powder in shade rose. It contains salicylic acid which is great for those who struggle with acne and breakouts. Don’t ask me about how good the oil control is because my skin is hella dry and only produces a small amount of oil on the T-zone area.

And now for the brows. I don’t follow any specific order when it comes to doing my eye brows. Sometimes I do it before applying face powder, sometimes I do it before applying BB cream/foudation. I’ve heard enough of man saying “I hate girls who draw their eyebrows” but that doesn’t stop me from doing my eyebrows. I’m not a fan of full, super thick eyebrows. I usually just use whatever eyebrows pencil that can make my existing brows more prominent while still looking completely natural. As long as it’s not too creamy then I can definitely use it. But for now i’m using Purbasari Daily Series Eyebrow Pencil in black.

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I’m a newbie in this field. I don’t know really know how to contour and I don’t really care to figure it out. I just bought whatever product from whatever brand that I can afford, and I finally chose this Pixy Highlight & Shading. To be honest, the highlighter  is not so flattering, but I still use it to highlight my cheeckbone and brow bone. I highly recommed you to try another brand to achieve that glowing from within kinda look. But don’t worry, the shading is quite good to add more dimension to your face. Well this is the only contouring product I have ever used in my life I can’t say that it’s the best. On the inside of the package there’s an explanation on where to put which shade with direction, just in case contouring confuses you as much as it made me.

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I usually apply blush on after countouring my face and before applying highligther. I wear this Red A Blush On Duo, which also doubles as eyeshadow. I got my hand on this product last year when I did my own makeup for graduation day. I needed a blush on to complete my look so I stole this from my mom (always too broke to purchase a new one). Like the contouring product, I can’t say much about this product other than that it is not too pigmented. I have to swipe and apply a few times to achieve the color intensity that I want. But the plus side is I don’t have to worry about picking up too much product on my brush. At first I didn’t like this orange color because I used to think that blush on was supposed to be pink and other colors are weird. That’s why I bought another blush on –that’s surprisingly VERY, VERY, cheap– that is Viva Fin Touch Blush On, but it turnt out that it’s too way pink, and too pigmented so I end up using it as eyeshadow (I don’t have any eyeshadow brush so I just apply it with my finger) along with the Red A Blush On Duo. But then I realized that I’m more into orange and peach color so yeah the Red A one became my main blush. It already hit pan! (but it’s been more than a year so i’m thinking of repurchasing another one).

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You can never have too much lipstick. You should’ve heard that saying quite often. Now I have more than five lipstick but these four are pretty much what I put inside my makeup pouch. From left to right, it’s Wardah Exclusive Matte Lip Cream in shade saturday night (18), Pixy Lip Cream in shade sweet choco (10), Wardah Matte lipstick in shade velvety brown (14), and Purbasari Lipstick Color Matte in shade topaz (86). Recently I just realize that I’m more into orange-brown and terracota brown rather than mauve pink color. well, many beauty vloggers have raved about these products, the reviews and swatches are all over the internet so you can just google it up.

And that’s a wrap! No mascara, no fake lashes, no eye liner. Most of the products I mentioned above are under 50,000 IDR. Especially, it’s just for daily looks, not a makeup party. I usually add and change a few product when it comes to special occasion. And oh, I’m always excited to know what makeup products that other people wear, so, what’s your daily makeup routine?

On Body Shaming and A Reminder for Myself Not to Constantly Criticize Others

People always have something to say about others, be it about their face, their body, their skin color, the way they dress up, their love life, even to the very personal thing that is their belief. It’s inevitable that at some point you’ll have your own personal judgement about those things too. But does that mean that you should voice yours simply because you have one? Because you think that they need to know what’s on your mind, despite the fact that your opinion –which they never asked for in the first place– might hurt their feelings? No, it does not. Giving an unsolicited opinion can be rude and hurtful sometimes.

With the help of social media, today’s generation doesn’t seem to face difficulty in expressing and delivering their opinion. Twitter now allows you to write up to 280 characters per tweet. You‘re basically only one tweet away to tell those celebs about how pretty they looked before the plastic surgery, or how they look too fat or too skinny now. It is one thing to have an opinion, be it positive or negative, but it is another thing to deliver it in a hateful way without any good intention other than hurting, humiliating, or making fun of the target.

And now that almost all celebs are on Instagram, it became easier for us to leave a comment on their post. To be honest, I find pleasure in reading some funny comments on social media, they’re like the source of my happiness. That’s why sometimes scrolling through the comment section can be more interesting than actually seeing the content posted. But recently, the comment section is misused as an outlet to hate on others, to make fun and body-shame others. Let’s talk a bit about the latter. Body-shaming manifests in many ways and one of them is criticizing another’s appearance, be it in front of them or without their knowledge. Anyone online could experience body shaming, but it’s celebs who have to deal with it the most.

It’s only 9 days into 2018 when I heard that Kendall Jenner got shamed for having acne on her face during the Golden Globes red carpet. Some people were getting pretty judgemental about her acnes and decided to tweet it. Some also questioned for what she was even there at the event. But her fans came to her defense and praised her for showing that everyone, no matter how rich or famous, has experienced acne. Well, what’s so wrong about it? Acne is the most common skin problem. It’s not only people with acne-prone or oily skin who deal with it. No matter what your skin type, your skin condition, we’ll likely to get it at some point in our life. Just because she’s a supermodel and considered to have access to the best skincare in the world doesn’t mean she won’t have it. Nobody is immune to the occasional break out so why make fun of her when you can have it too, or perhaps worse than her?

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Can’t we just appreciate how stunning she was at that event, wearing black Giambattista Valli gown in solidarity with the Time’s Up movement? She was there supporting the movement, along with other celebs too, so what’s the problem? With that being said, it’s just sad that some people on the internet chose to ignore the overall appearance of a woman and most importantly a night’s powerful message that is putting an end to sexism and sexual harassment in Hollywood, and instead chose to criticize unimportant thing that completely has nothing to do with the whole event; that is Kendall Jenner’s acne. And it’s even sadder that it’s mostly done by women to fellow women. It’s like no matter how many women empowerment movement are formed, women still tear each other down over physical appearance.

Body-shaming and other physical related shaming perpetuates the idea that people should be judged mainly for their physical features. And unfortunately, nobody is ever really safe from it. Still from The Kardashian family, Kim Kardashian was body shamed while she was pregnant, even until when she’s no longer pregnant. Haters called her horrible names like fat and even compared her to a killer whale. You should’ve seen the meme all over the internet. Goddamn people it’s pretty humanly to gain weights especially when you’re pregnant.

A long list of awards and accomplishment that you ever received apparently still won’t be enough to save you from critical eyes that constantly keep an eye on every change on your body. Rihanna is one of the world’s busiest people, she’s rich, pretty and hot af, and she still got body-shamed for gaining a few pounds of weight. So what? That extra pounds doesn’t make her less admirable. She’s confident and comfortable with her fluctuating body and that’s what really matters.

Being a part of the British Royal Family won’t be enough to stop people from body-shaming you. People are body-shaming the Duchess of Cambridge by saying that she appears to be too thin to be healthily pregnant. Some even called her anorexic and malnourished. It’s pretty offensive, isn’t it? I’ve never been pregnant before but I know enough to say that carrying a baby inside you is already a struggle on its own. And now that she also suffers from Hyperemesis Gravidarum, your acid remarks is pretty much the last thing she wanna hear. Shaming a pregnant woman (or any woman) for any reason is not cool, and no one should have to put up with it.

The fact that there are conversations about Kendall’s acne or Rihanna’s fluctuating body at all is a reminder of how much emphasis our society still put on women’s appearance as important and valuable, and that people will always find something to be criticized, no matter how normal that thing is. And since I’m a part of the society, I keep reminding myself that we’re more than just pretty faces, and that “nobody’s perfect” doesn’t just apply to us normies but to celebrities too. And most importantly, I keep reminding myself not to constantly criticize others for every little thing they do, for every little change in their body. I won’t be happy to get criticized by people who have no idea what I’ve been through with my body so I might as well try my best not to do it to others. What you put out is what you get back. Would you want someone to do or say something to hurt you? Of course not!