By: Natalina (Sogang University)
Everybody has a story to tell. This is part of my story and it has made me who I am. December 2008 was my very first time to celebrate my birthday without my family. That time, I woke up, grabbed my phone on my desk next to my bed. I turned the phone on and saw the calendar fixed on the phone screen. December 2nd was the date that calendar showed. I looked at my window and obviously could still see the blue sky. The sun rays streamed in through the glass window. I got up, and opened the window, and the winds came in blew me away. It was one of the prettiest mornings I have ever experienced. I felt cold but fresh in that morning while throwing my gaze outwards there.
I looked at my calendar again. I still didn't believe my eyes about what I saw on the phone screen, so I turned back to ask my roommate who was ready to go out. I wrote down this question “Today 02-12?” on a white blank paper and showed to her because I couldn't speak either English or Korean at that time. Yes, I knew one thing that I knew nothing. I understood what they said in English, but it was hard for me to speak out. The only words I could speak out were: hi, yes, no, thank you, and sorry. I felt like a mute person who could only used body languages for communicating with others. When she saw my written message, she then supported my eyes that what they saw was right.
South Korea, it isn't like in my hometown. The people here are well know by tradition as being busy and quick-moving. Every morning, whenever I went down to cafeteria of the dormitory where I used to live, which is located on the basement, I found it hard for me to see a smiling face. Likewise, at that time, people who I met there in the basement looked tired, busy and hurry, even though it was Saturday. I don’t like that, it seemed like they were facing a very big problem in their lives. I wanted to see people smile or I wanted to show them my smile, not to those people who I met there, because I would be look at as weird or creepy if I smiled to people who I don’t know. However, I really wanted to do it, at least only that day, which was my birthday, or it might be OK if I did to the chef who cooked for us. As I said, I wanted to see people smile, but no one did. I wish I was at home with my family, where I could find it really easy see smiling faces in the morning. After breakfast, it was not only the Korean people looked busy. I noticed the elevator was busy as well. So, I went back to my room by taking the stairs. I went through the 162 steps, where I counted it every time I stepped on, until I got to the 8th floor, where my room was. That was the most exercise I have done in the morning, not to mention on my birthday.
I took a look at my window again. The sun was getting right at its peak. I did not know how long it would be dominating on the sky up there. I sat near the window, turned my laptop on and tried to relax myself. I started to breathe deeply while imagining what I should do. When my laptop was ready to be used, I typed out yahoo.com on the Internet Explorer web browser's address bar. I was expecting that someone would send me a birthday message, but I got nothing in my email inboxes, so I decided to watch a movie--a funny movie. Not bad though I think, watching movie and laughing by myself. After around 2 hours, the sun was slowly fading as cloud blocked it. And the sky became overcast. Immediately, cumulonimbus cloud covered the sun’s residence.
It also invited the rain to drop a pitter patter at first, and then followed by the second pitter patter, third, and so on. Rain!!! It was so soothing, but I stood up and closed my window. I stayed still, stood in front of my window, and stared at every raindrop that felt down heavily that made the ground wet and muddy.
I went back to where my laptop was, eating a Choco pie while watching Just for Laughs program on YouTube. And again I checked my email. Finally, I got a message, but did’t know who the sender was. I clicked it out and began to read. After I reached at the end of the message, I found out who the sender was.
The message was from my little sister. She used her new email account to write me a birthday message. I had no idea why she did that. By the way, I read the message over and over again, and my tears began to fall, a bit by bit, down to my chicks. I did’t know whether the tears symbolized my happiness or sadness. They fell more and more, without me noticing, and they fell down continuously as the rain fell heavily outside there. Now, if I rethink that moment again, I still don’t understand why I felt that way. Because I could’t hold the feeling, plus the kindly weather, sleep started to attack me slowly. So, I lay down on my bed and pulled the blanket over my head and then fell asleep.
After a couple of hours of sleeping, I then woke up, and looked myself in the mirror. Well, what Demi Lovato, an American actor and singer, said "The mirror can lie. It doesn't show what inside", is true. The mirror told me that I was OK, but I still felt lonely. The feeling didn't disappear with my dream. I saw straight ahead to the window again, the rain had subsided perfectly. However, I still felt the remainder of the rain. It was moist. It was cold. Only one less thing: the rainbow. I waited to see the rainbow and hoped it could appear to help me coloring my day with its color. However, it was winter; there was no rainbow. Because I was afraid if my roommate came and found me crying, I so washed my face.
Outside there, twilight moved increasingly dominating the perfect sepia afternoon. It also covered the sky slowly and became dark, and the darkness became more concentrated. I was silent and staring at the glass of my window which became foggy because of the rain and the cold weather, which reflected the lights colors outside the black background at night. I rubbed a finger into the frosted glass window, and drew several curves that I never knew the meaning of. Suddenly my phone alerted me. I got a message from my roommate. I texted her back, and told her to get us a medium size cheese pizza for dinner.
I spent my Saturday night watching TV with my roommate. We ate pizza while watching TV in living room. We both didn't talk to each other. I then went back to my room after eating, and slept. I believed that sleep is nice thing that I should do because I could forget about everything for a while.
Since that, I tried to accept my birthday as a normal day. I tried, and tried to forget the meaning of my birthday that was saving on my dictionary, that there should be a cake with the candles, and a birthday present. I deleted them. It gave me the lesson that every day is a birthday. When I open my eyes in the morning means that I was born again, and I should thank God for given me one more chance to breathe. This is what my mom has taught me. There are lots of people who don’t even know when their birthday is, so appreciated and be thankful that you do.
I am eternally grateful when it rains. Thank the rain for giving me an opportunity to daydream, specially the rain in that time, because it has changed me. I don’t know what others like doing in their spare time when it rains. For me, daydreaming is the whole things I always do in rainy day. It makes me rethink about the good and bad memories that have been preserved on my life pages.