Being 20 and being 30

I used to worry a lot about my weight. I exercised myself to exhaustion 14 hours a week on a 900 calorie a day diet.

I lost a lot of hair, energy and my manners in exchange for a bit of weight.

Now I practice eating and exercising in moderation. I picked up karate again two years ago after a 6-year break. I have a lot of my hair, energy and hopefully, my manners back.

I used to always want to get a job. Any job. I was so broke and hungry for experience. Any kind of experience.

I worked as a retail assistant, a tuition teacher, helped out in events and a bunch of random jobs I can’t even remember now. Anything for RM20, 30, 50 a day.

Now I’m pickier with what I spend my time on. I try to do things that bring me further away from the drudgery of work.

I can’t always afford to, but I try.

I used to have a lot of friends. Maybe a thousand of them. Every kind of person with all kind of interests. So I always had something to do with someone. I was hardly home.

I haven’t spoken to most of them in more than eight years. I don’t know how their lives are, and I don’t really mind. I spend more time now doing things with myself than other people. I’m home more these days than I was then.

I was happy. And I’m still happy today.

Just a different kind of happy.

I didn’t speak to my parents much then. I wasn’t home enough and didn’t care enough. All I cared was chasing after things I could list on my resume.

Now I spend a lot of time talking to my parents. More than I’ve ever done in the 29 years before that.

I used to think I’d have everything figured by the time I turned 30.

Now I know I’ll always be learning. Always.

I used to think I my life would be ruined by the mistakes I made.

Now I know I can just forgive myself, do better and move on.

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