Malaysia, to me, is home.
And home, to me, is a lot of things. It’s the place I spent a good chunk of my life at. It’s not necessarily one specific location, but it’s the environment; it’s the people you meet and the memories you create around it. It’s the late nights spent over food and drinks, with mindless talks and ugly laughter. It’s the pounding headache you get after spending the whole day crying over something that may or may not matter ten years later. It’s the loud quarrels and fights over misunderstandings or opposing opinions – some of them resolved, some of them might not be. It’s the notes of the deepest secrets of my heart, never to be revealed to anyone else.
This home has witnessed a lot of my ‘firsts’ – the first day on Earth, the first day of school, the first day of university… And with that is a lot of precious memories and moments I won’t trade for anything else. This is the home that has housed me through the sunny days and rainy months (and even more sunnier days). This is the home that has taught me what it means to live and to love, for myself and others. This is the home that showed me how to create a home for myself and others.
This home, as all homes are, is not perfect. Some days, this home makes me feel angry and frustrated. Of the same things that have happened since generations before me, of the injustice and the absurdity happening. Some days, this home makes me feel strange, on its familiar streets and surroundings.
Some days, I try to be slightly better than the day before, for the sake of this home that I hold very near to my heart. Some days, I try to do things that can benefit me, and the people around me, no matter how small or insignificant it might seem. Just for the sake of trying, for the silver of ‘hope’ that the generations after me do not need to face the same things again.
Most days, it’s hard to even try; most days, I wander aimlessly in this vast space of life, just lucky enough to be wandering on this piece of land I call home.
It’s not perfect; it never was, and I don’t think it ever will be.
Through the years and experiences, I have come to realise that home can be a lot of things. It’s just never meant to be perfect. But what’s important is that I do what small or insignificant things that I can do, to make this ‘home’ feel more like home, for myself and others, through all the good and the less-than-good things.
Home, to me, is a lot of things; and Malaysia is all of them – because Malaysia is my home.
Someday, you and I might need to leave this home, for whatever reason it might be. And I hope that, despite everything, Malaysia can feel like home to you, and for our future generations too – whatever home means to you.