06/08/2013

A Trip Down Memory Lane

I had a blog post planned for today, but I happened to fired up my old iPhone 4 so I can use it as my second phone to call home (Malaysia) using an IDD call card. My fiddly fingers started going through all my old messages and photos, which brought back lots of memories and flooded me with rather emotional thoughts. So, please bear with me while I get these thoughts off my chest...

Going through my old messages felt like going through my old diaries. It felt very surreal reading what I said two years ago. There are many people whom I texted back then who were mere acquaintances or professional contacts. Many were just passer-bys in my life whom I had since ceased contact with. So, reading back my texts with them felt especially...weird, in a way.

My trip down the digital memory lane went from being amused to feeling heavy-hearted, as I came across the text messages between myself and a friend from university. Ron was a jovial and laid-back fellow who was one of my first friends in university. We happened to choose the most boring tedious major about Australian politics, which all read like Greek to us because we grew up in Malaysia! So, we compared notes and I helped proofread his assignments and kept each other motivated throughout the boring lectures, discussions, projects, etc. It was good to have a friend around.

Ron and I were not close, but he was a nice enough classmate. On our graduation day, he thanked me for all the help he has received throughout the years. Sadly, that was the last time I spoke to him. Shortly after our graduation, he passed away suddenly. Every now and then, as I go through my old photos, it saddens me that Ron is no longer around. Reading through the text messages made me relived the memories and it grieved me that I cannot tell him: "Hey Ron! Guess what I found on my phone! Remember that time..."

As a passive-aggressive person, so to say, I did not attend Ron's funeral, nor have I contributed to his obituary. As mean as the next sentence will make me sound like, I grieved quietly and quickly, and chose to live my life. This is my reflex and reaction to face a loss. Yet, time does not erase the sadness I feel as I see this photo.

RIP Ron. 

As I walked past my memory of Ron, I remember an unpleasant time in my life. However, I realised how delusional I was. Or rather, what an amateur I was, in terms of managing work relationships. I had a terrible work experience about year ago in direct-selling (I was working in the HQ) and my relationship with my colleagues was strenuous from the beginning. I could not understand why and until now, I put the blame on them being unfriendly and excluded me from the get-go. 

Tonight, my text messages laid the brutal truth in front of me: I was the problem. I did not integrate. I isolated myself from the get-go. As I read back my communication with my ex-colleagues, I thought I was a bitch. No wonder they hated me! I barely replied to my text and when I did, it was mostly "Sorry I missed your call." or one word texts, or declining their offer for coffee/ drinks/ food. Towards the end of my employment there, they barely spoke to me or replied to my text when I tried to be friendly. It was rather clear that I was about to be axed, but I was the only one who did not see it. Noob.

While that was hard to swallow, I must say it wasn't all heavy. I reminisced the good old days on the summer when I only worked for four hours a day and remembering the joy of leaving the office to feel the warm/ sizzling summer air on my skin. It was the smell of freedom! My tone and choice of words was light, my opinions were innocent, carefree, sometimes childish, but fearless, with the whole world under my feet.

I admit to feeling a little forlorn at my youth slipping away and I'm saddened by the people who have moved on (or I've moved on from), but we cannot stop nor turn back time. I'm grateful that the couple of years have made me wiser and less trusting. I'm glad that my work experience have taught me to be more observant and reserved. At the same time, I'm also remembering that while I'm carrying on with life, it is time to call home and tell my parents that I love and care for them.


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