This mini video of Draw My Life Map (URL:http://youtu.be/C5dUrELzzeI) is inspired by an exercise for a course of storytelling by Novoed.
I used mouse (using digitized pen will be better) to draw in SpeedyPainter (speedypainter.altervista.org), which is freely available. For editing, I used Movie Maker.
I am going to share with you my little life map.
Sit back and relax.
I spent my early months of life in a little farm in Sumatera, Indonesia – a beautiful emerald of equator. Before I turned 1 year old, Daddy and Mommy moved to Jakarta for a better life.The capital was entirely different from the rural area of Sumatera where we came from.
At age three, I had a lovely baby brother.
His short stay with us reminds me forever on the precious yet vulnerable life.
I dearly miss him!
Several years later, I had a sister and another much younger brother, whom I love very much!
My childhood was simple and happy, with schools, friends, books and TVs.
I enjoyed riding a bicycle, watching MacGyver and SeaQuest episodes on local TV channel, relying heavily on the subtitles. Not many people spoke English in Jakarta at that time.
My favorite books include the translated versions of The Famous Five novels by British author Enid Blyton.
After completing my homework, I eagerly looked forward to join the adventures and picnics of Julian, Dick, Anne, George and her dog Timmy. Timmy would do anything for her, such a great loyalty!
I dreamed that when I was reaching their ages, I would go for such adventures with my dear friends like The Famous Five did.
Many years later, a part of the dream was realized in my young adulthood, when I occasionally helped my housemate to walk his playful golden retriever that loves to chase tennis balls, ducks and ducklings, swimming at the River Cam.
Back to my childhood.
A riot happened in Jakarta. That event severely affected many people.
They lost everything, including their loved ones.
The event also changed the course of my simple and peaceful life with my family.
Daddy and Mommy were determined to work harder so that they could afford to send me to a safer place.
It was the first time I applied for a passport and flied with a single-way ticket to a neighboring country: Malaysia.
At the beginning, living far far away from Daddy, Mommy, my sister and brother, I often felt sad and worried about my family.
It was tough, r-e-a-l-l-y tough!
Fortunately in Malaysia, I was blessed with kind friends and encouraging teachers. Thanks to them, I looked forward going to school, to learn, to chat everyday. I am forever grateful to them. For the first time of my life, I learned Chinese Mandarin at school. I found the Chinese letters beautiful, every stroke can carry feelings, emotions and aspirations.
Somehow, some of these beautiful letters and words transpire over five-thousand-years of wisdom.
I fell in love with many idioms and quotes, especially those related to happiness, nature and people.
Let me share one of my favorite:
笑口常开 / Xiao4Kou3Chang2Kai1.
It means “Smile & Laugh Often”.
I wish you, my dear friends, 笑口常开!
During our high school days, we wanted so much to go to a university, so that we could train in our chosen disciplines, pursue our dream careers, earn a decent living to take care of our ageing parents and future children.
My friends and I worked hard in our study.
Learning by heart is rewarding, generous people have allowed me to come to Singapore with a scholarship for my undergraduate study. It means a lot for me.
Thank you from my deepest heart.
So I come to Singapore – the Little Red Dot of Southeast Asia.
On Yunnan Campus, I made many friends, learned from my professors and peers, further developed deeper passions for life and learning, worked part-time, volunteered in several activities, including a mentorship program organized by the Welfare Service Club. We also performed song signings for Christmas!
Since then, my passions have brought me to many places worldwide, learning from and sharing with people who have become dear friends.
Places shape people, and people shape places too.
Fast forward to now, I am very grateful with my life, my experiences (bad and good), and most importantly, the people who have walked with me, have loved me and whom I love.
Although everyday I face new challenges, I choose to see them as opportunities to learn, to be creative, and to grow in our lives.
There are many people whose lives are far from the acceptable and their ideals.
What can we do for them?
How is about choosing to be happy and grateful?
Being grateful creates simple happiness.
When we are happy, our minds relax and we can conceive meaningful ideas and solutions.
When we are happy, we can spread our joy.
“Happiness is contagious”.
I tell myself to make at least three people smile everyday.
It’s not that difficult, I am sure you can do much better than me.
Being alive is a miracle.
Being happy is a choice.