Tuesday, April 01, 2008
It's the character that's the weakest that God gives the most challenges to
Okay, ini pengakuan deh.

I would rarely telling stories about myself. Most of my blog entries are about what I did and what I would experienced or sometime what I was thinking about. There was one blog entry about my little brother and 1 or 2 entries about my family. (For my big brother, I haven't tell anyone about your stories. NOT yet... coming soon...)

Why did I put this word
"It's the character that's the weakest that God gives the most challenges to" ?

as my blog title?

Well, what I want to tell you is that this blog entry is about myself and how I'm grateful of my life.

My life is not about a fairy tales or a dream come true. I'm not a princess. My family is not a rich family. I came to Australia with feeling lost and so sad despite I was trying to cover it by telling my Mom and Dad that I was having fun while try to learn new things to distracted my sad feeling.

I did it to make them feel comfortable and glad knowing that I was able to stand between my own feet even though I was far away from my own family. It was a biggest challenge.

My Mom and Dad were trying hard to protect me since I was a kid because of my hearing loss. They never let me wandering around the street around my house without someone watching over me. They would shouted to me if I was getting to the mid of road, they were afraid if a car or a motorbike would hit me from behind as I can't hear until it come so close.

Strangely, my Dad gave up when I asked him again and again to teach me ride a motorbike. I loved it as I finally feel free whenever I ride my motorbike as I feel that my Dad finally trust me.

My Dad never let me playing around my friends' house after school. My parent would rather keep me busy with private tutors who would come to my home to teach me. Once I remembered how I was sad not being able playing basketball with my friend, Julia, when I was already 17 years old and in a senior high school. This made me became a shy girl and I was not confident to talk to any stranger. It was not like this when I was still normal as I was called 'a talker' as I was always asking people including any stranger about anything and always have conversation for everyone.

My family always had this curfew at 9pm. It's time to go to bed by 9 so that everyone in my family had to be at home before that time. Sometime they would take us out and being home by 10pm, but it were rarely done. The wake-up time? Always around 5am. If I'm not up by 6am, there would be cold water sprinkled over my face, a thing that always surprised me and make me jumped out from the bed.

I was almost getting expelled from SMP (junior high school) when a principal nun told my mom that it's better for me to getting mixed with disabled people to learn to do crafts for living rather than study in the school as I can't hear perfectly what the teachers would say. I didn't have hearing aids that time as I hate those noisy old hearing aids (it was like listening to noisy radio all day). However, My Mom and Dad decided to bet with the principal about my marks without telling me or even pushed me to study hard. Suddenly, I was on rank 17 out of 120+ students in the school. I couldn't remember what happened but when I was graduated, I was on rank 10 out from 120+ students. When I was about to enter the senior high school nearby, the principal nun told my Mom that she would do her best to speak to the principal nun at senior high school of how a great student I was. I was graduated from my senior high school with rank 7 from all total studies and rank 4 for 7 basic studies from my all of the class year. My average mark was 8. My Mom then wanted me to study in pharmacy in Ubaya in which I didn't like as I love Biological Science more than chemistry.

So why did I came here? Indonesia was in a big turmoil and May 1998 tragedy was happening around big cities in Java. My family was saved from getting burned down because of people from nearby kampong were dare to came out and shouted to those old men dressed in uniform to go away. Indonesia do need a lots of people with courage like them to drive out those bad people. I was grateful that my family was okay that time.

My motorbike was stolen and I got a big hit that left my arm got blue when those robbers stole it away. Luckily, a Javanese man with a pick-up car helped me to go to police station and reported it that night. That was the only loss I had.

My family then sent me to my uncle who is living in Sydney to keep me away since the possibility of turmoil in Indonesia may happen again as the political government was unstable.

I felt confused and cold when I arrived here. It was around August. I was told that Sydney just got over 1 week long rain that was not stopping, causing big flood in Wollongong. Little did I knew that time that it was the last long rain in Australia before drought came.

In December 1998, I was thinking about to go home in February, but my Mom wanted me to stay longer for at least 6 months more as Indonesia still unstable that time.
I was sad and cried even more when my English teacher told me that I was brave to came here all by myself.

I was confused to continue my English class as my Mom asked me. I didn't really like English class. My hearing aids couldn't help me with pronunciation as it was mono and couldn't pick up any hisses. I couldn't even heard how it was sound like leaves been blow by wind or even sound of water dripping. It was hard for me to pronounce words if you never heard them precisely how it should be sounded like.

Then came out a big turn out. My education agent told me that he would put me in a university instead English classes. I was packing as in 3 days I have to fly back to Indonesia because of my ticket was intended to fly me back in February 1999. I was praying to God to let me go back, but if He wanted me to stay, then put I asked him me in any university as I was late to apply and I was sure that I would not be accepted. I was also asking Him to promise to me that He would take care of my family if I had to stay in Australia.

Then came out another blow. I was accepted in University of Wollongong the next day. I was very confused that time as I'm not sure about getting back to this foreign country and spend more time in Australia again. My Mom told me to try it for 6 months after I told them during 1 week holiday in Indonesia, I was sent back again to Australia as it was time to start my orientation in the university. It was my biggest challenge that time. Can I survive my university years while I couldn't speak English fluently?

I had to say goodbye to my University in Indonesia, Ubaya, after my Mom called me to write a resign letter for Ubaya. She was intended to let me finished my uni study in Australia. She was also keen to know how I can stay, work here and be Australian permanent resident. That time, there was no way as it was very hard to apply for that kind of visa.

I was graduated one year late than I should be. However, a big turn out again came as new rules on skilled graduation was out in 2002. Before it was very hard to apply for a permanent residency visa. After 2002, as Australia need more skilled graduate and immigrant, immigration lifted those heavy rules and make it easier. It was my biggest challenge again as I didn't know how to live my life alone in Australia and working in here without my family with me.

My Mom then told me story after my graduation that she and my Dad almost get hurt in a car accident in 1999 but was miraculously saved and not even get any cut while the car was in a very bad shape. Even the front window just fallen out without even broken as my Mom got hit on her forehead. That was when I knew that God really take care of my family while I was away.

My ways were smooth back then. Seem it all were designed to make my way staying in Australia easier for me. As I have an uncle in here, I could get more point to enabled me getting passed the threshold point for my visa. I was living with my uncle family only for 2.5 years out of 6 years during my life in Australia that time.

I was hesitated as I was really don't know what kind of job I should have and my Dad was sick of stroke in the same year when I finished my study. I was thinking of going back home and I was praying again to God, telling him that I was about going back as my visa was not out yet in November 2003 and I couldn't get any job even though I already applied in here and there then getting lots of interviews. On 1st of December, I made up a mind that December 2003 as the last month for me to leave Australia for good if there was no news about my visa.

Then I got a phone call from my immigration agent on 18th of December who told me that on 1st of December my visa got approved and it take 18 days for getting through government departments, posting and on to my agent's desk.

I applied for any job again and I got a job in Novotel, but wait. It was not an easy job, in fact it was as a housekeeping who is responsible to clean rooms in the hotel. It was really hard work. By the day I went home, I would be sleeping till morning and then getting up early to get to workplace everyday. In the weekend, sometime I would get rostered on as some seniors didn't like work on weekend because the pay is similar with what you get on weekday.

I didn't mind with the job and think that I would try to get another job as I get more work experience. However, as my family financial problem get worse and my dad being sick for longer time while my Mom got cancer that need an operation and several chemos, I opted to work in the hotel as it was where I could earn steady income compared to McDonald who always giving below average salary. I was going to stand up by myself while helping my little brother supporting his living cost while he is studying.

My dream of being a biological scientist was getting far and further away as I was working and working, then suddenly it is already 4 years. Been 4 years working hard, getting tired and being in pressure while tackling some tasks like changing minibar system and getting into hospitality traineeship classes made me exhausted. I was bored as my supervisor wouldn't let me apply to work in other department in the hotel. He wanted to keep me under his position and he wouldn't let best people out from his department as he think that no one would be helping him.

I tried my best to get my workmates and my supervisor to applied for traineeship as it was offered free and the classes would be in the hotel instead out there. Some of them applied including my supervisor. That why I was upset when my supervisor would not let me step forward or learning new things in other department while I tried my best to put him forward. I feel that I was keep under armpit instead being supported to do better.

By that time, people from other departments already knew me and being supported of me. I became a representative of Occupational Health and Safety from Housekeeping Department as my supervisor always opted not to come to the meeting. I tried my best to voice my concerns and being supportive to the Housekeeping Department though my job always varied by doing minibar and helping my front office manager to make some invoices that time and also working in Conference & Event Department sometime.

By that time, I was not a shy girl anymore. Everyone in Novotel were like my big family. The Maintenance Manager was very happy to chat or helping me out and his staffs were like my extended hands. Every time I found something that was not right, I would reported to them and they were happy to fix it. Even one of the maintenance guy, John, would come straight away whenever I called him. One of his mates would saying that I can just whistle and John, as soon as possible, would come to help me.

My workmate, Sisi from Tonga would helping me if I was busy or called her friends to help me out. No one would ever reject her order as she is a senior and is well respected by the general manager and everyone in the hotel. I can still laugh if I remember how she made people getting hurried try getting everything she asked for.
She called me her daughter and told me that there is no other daughter than her own who will be called daughter again as I'm the only one. She made me feel special.

My general manager was someone special. He always keep his promises and remembered it even thought it was already 1 year ago. It was about training in hospitality. I had no hospitality background and was wanted to learn more otherwise I would get bored. He was also trusting me in everything that I told him about. He is also the one who asked me to come for holiday in Paris. Something that I never dreamed about. I was laughing thinking he was kidding when he asked me if I would like a week holiday in Paris as the hotel just won 5 tickets from a beer sales compared to another hotel group around Australia.

Turned out he was not kidding. I couldn't stopped smiling for 1 month as he told me not to tell anyone about it as others may be not happy. I though it was the assistant manager who offered me then it turned out the general manager was the one who asked me to come. It was a perfect holiday as I experienced new cultures and travelling even far away from where my family was. That holiday was happened in September 2007. I got to experienced the free France fine dining, walking all days to Eiffel, Notre Dame, trying new food, breathe air in Europe and feel attracted to Paris even though it is smaller and seem dirty everywhere than Australia. I didn't have lots of money as I had to support my little brother's living cost during his study, but God gave me a great holiday that I never dreamed about. I feel like He is paying all of the money that I gave away to my family.

The year 2007 was a bad year as my Dad passed away in April that year and I was so sad. I was thinking of getting back to Indonesia again and again and told my general manager about option to be transferred back to Indonesia to be with my family again. However, it couldn't be done as my friend informed me that salary in Indonesia is very low and I wouldn't be able to save money and helping my little brother if he need money.

I love my former workmates in Novotel very much, but I was bored with my job and I feel that being 4 years is too long already with no step forward. I was impatient. Out of blue, my friend, Zsa2, called me and told me about a new job in her new workplace. I was hesitated as I was afraid of getting into interview again and worried about phone call as I was getting a new hearing aids and have not getting used to new hisses sound that I can hear as I had to train my brain of new voices before I can hear them better. However, I decided to give it a try.

I was praying again to God for new direction, again. I was asking for new place to stay and new job. Can I get both before end of 2007?

Turned out I was the one who interviewing the new manager as every time I asked him, he would told me lots of stories about Mirvac. During one hour interview, I feel like I was the one who interviewed my new manager. I can laugh if I remember how it was going. I couldn't believe when Zsa2 told me that I got accepted even though my conversation over the phone was not successful as I couldn't hear what the manager spoke about. I got a new place that time, so I had to move out, carrying boxes and go to work in 2 different places as I had to get training in new place and finished my old job by December 31st 2007. It were very busiest weeks.

My new job that time? Working in a Central Reservation. It is strange isn't it? It supposed to be for someone who can hear and speak well, but I beat it by working in the Web and Email Reservation Team where I would manage emails and web transactions.

About my new workmates? Now I have more Australian friends who speak perfect English and this push my pronunciation to be better everyday. I speak to them a lot and even my manager gave me lots of new people to be trained in the Web and Email Team. Yes, I'm the first person to be trained and to work in the new Web & Email Reservation and I have handled a lots of problems. I feel like my responsibility is greater than what I had on my previous job.
In my new job, I would love hang out day (day out with workmates every 2-3months) and my new job as I always learn something new while doing different tasks everyday. I'm growing up again and experience more challenges.

So it is finish now? No...not at all as I believe that there are more to challenge my weakest characters to be made stronger and stronger because God wants everyone to be able to stand up and arise. God is like a father figure who is really take care and wants His kids to be able to grow up more and more everyday.

I did go through tears, hard works and sweats. It is never easy to live a life, but I know that I will never be alone with lots of friends, family supports and God himself accompany me. God always accompany you, readers, as well.

It is a long story, but I want to share why we should not cry over or being sad for a long time as it wouldn't get you anywhere. I believe that all of you would be able to stand up from whatever bad experiences or sadness. Just look for God and don't start blaming here and there, just step forward. You will experience new things that worth thousand more than what you feel so important before. Just let go whatever holding you down, look forward to step forward. Rite, Reth? *wink*

I will pray that God will give you something better thousand times. What you need is getting up and being raised again, step forward.

With Love
*dan ngantuk2 karena ngetik kelamaan, koq jadi panjang yak? Alamak, besok masuk pagi2 lage*
posted by Lilia at 8:20 pm | Permalink |


At Wednesday, April 02, 2008 1:38:00 am, Anonymous Anonymous

waduh, jarang2 ke blog elu bisa dapet suguhan kayak gini, sering2 dong Li posting kayak gini, asik benerrrr bacanya :)



At Friday, April 04, 2008 1:55:00 pm, Anonymous Fun

ho oh..setubuh dengan Yenny, jarang banget baca postingan loe yang panjang ini... ikut baca jadi ikut terharu akan perjuangan loe... semangat yak :)


At Thursday, April 17, 2008 7:19:00 am, Blogger Budi D

wow!!!! puanjang temen!!!
well ternyata hidup ente penuh warna yaw...

teruskan perjuangan mu nak... jalan masih panjang, jangan lupa bawa kuas ama cat berwarna untuk melukisi hidup ini...



At Saturday, April 19, 2008 8:02:00 pm, Anonymous nah-nah

You are a great person Lil.
God will always beside You.
We should learn from her spirit and never give up on life.
Always give meaning to our Life.


At Friday, June 27, 2008 12:14:00 pm, Blogger Adrian Christianto

wow ... great post ... very inspiring ...