It’s odd. Over the last week or so, I’ve been feeling homesick again, similar to how I was at the beginning of my time here in Indonesia. Or dare I say, possibly worse? It’s different, I’ll grant that.
It could be because I’m not feeling too great and being unwell abroad always evokes a longing for my home where people can pity me. Even though my family tease me mercilessly, calling me a baby and saying ‘aw, are you sick, diddums?’ whilst patronisingly stroking my hair, they still bring me tea or medicine or apples. Thankfully I don’t get sick often, but when I do, holy shit do I want to be taken care of. Yes, my Indonesian housemates and friends can take care of me and have offered to do so now, but it’s not the same, purely because I can’t expect them to spend hours watching clips of Hasan Minhaj or Dr Phil on YouTube whilst I curl against them and whine about how ‘I’m sick’ every ten minutes. That treatment is specifically for my parents, my partner and my besties. Ha! Even now, I’m here Whatsapping my mate, who has her own legitimate shit going on, to tell her I’ve got a headache.
But I do believe it’s more than my physical malaise right now contributing to my homesickness, especially as these feelings coincided with the realisation that I’ll actually be flying back to London in four months time.
I mean, wtf. I just got here!
It’s a strange feeling. My time in Indonesia is going by so quickly yet so slowly. It kinda just crept up on me, you know? I remember, when I first arrived, cornering my then housemate to ask her how she was feeling because she only had four months left when I stepped off the plane to begin my 12.
‘Are you excited to be going home? But sad to be leaving Jakarta?’
She was nonplussed about it.
‘Dunno,’ she responded, lighting a cigarette. ‘It’s too early to have those feelings. Maybe in a couple of months I will.’
And now I’m the girl who only has four months left, and unlike my housemate, I’ve got all the feelings.
I’ve got happy feelings, feelings such as seeing my family and friends, visiting my favourite restaurants and cafés, having easy access to vegan cake, etc.
But I’ve also got ambiguous, worrying feelings, feelings such as careers, living arrangements, am I travelling or am I settling, etc.
So it’s a mish-mash of emotions right now. At the beginning, all of my feelings were centred on being away from home and how to cope with that, and then I had a few glorious months in-between where I felt in my stride and mentally 100%, knowing that I was still far away from flying back to England so I wouldn’t have to think beyond the here and the now… but now, for the last four months, it seems like my focus will be centred both on Jakarta and London, and if it’s anything like how it’s been over the past week, it’s pulling my head in different directions.
I’m both happy and sad, but that’s for another post.
At the moment, because home is so close, I’m missing it even more. I know that because I’m cooking dishes my Mum made for me when I was younger, and dishes my love likes and which I want to perfect for him. I’m also listening to music I grew up with and reading books of the motherland voraciously. This truly feels like being an expat, because I’ve never been so consistent with my heritage and the practising of my cultures for such an extended time because I’ve been without them.
And on that note, I’m now going to reheat a curry and some roti I made earlier (because apparently I can make roti now? No lie, I was totally happy that it came out semi-decent!) whilst I call England to complain to them about my sore throat.