Friday, August 14, 2020

My Life Matters

I am the oldest of four children. I used to have conflict with my mother who I considered fierce and authoritarian. I even said that she looked like a monster.  I received many religious doctrines, which were like spiritual abuse, from my father.  Parenting patterns often govern and affect the way their children grow up and this made me a submissive person and very dependent on others.  I did not have my own will and always went along with people.  I was filled with hatred and anger towards my parents, especially my mother.
One day I felt stuck with bad habits, addicted to cigarettes, drinking alcohol, drugs, marijuana, changing boyfriends, hanging out every night and no longer thinking of myself.  I felt lost.  I didn’t want to live; I didn’t want to die either.
I feel blessed to encounter IofC through a friend of mine, Umam invited me to join the annual Youth Camp held by IofC Indonesia in 2011. My intention was only to have fun and make friends.  After a few years, I lost contact with my IofC friends and didn’t get involved with IofC activities. In 2014 I started to reconnect with IofC friends until now.
Again, I got into trouble. In 2015 I was given a chance to be the chairperson of the annual Youth Camp held in Malang. I was not responsible with my words and actions. At that time I was still very chaotic and could not get along with my friends. I was not sure what I should do and could not keep my commitment. I felt so grateful that the core team of IofC Indonesia kept welcoming me warmly and embraced me and helped me organize the camp.
The camp in Malang became my life's turning point.  Since then I have learnt to deal with my unfinished business and I have decided to leave my dark sides behind, becoming my new self. My old friends still try to influenced me to come back to my bad habits but I always feel blessed that my IofC friends are always there for me.
I keep learning to be a better person by joining the School of Reconciliation, one of the IofC Indonesia programs. Joining the programs help me to grow and to build a better relationship with my husband, kids, family, and people around me. After getting married, I moved from Jakarta but it doesn’t change my connections with IofC friends even though we stay apart from each other. I am grateful for my life’s journey with IofC.

Dessy Jamilee