A new single by Indonesian singer Tulus, Hati-Hati di Jalan, has been breaking the local airwaves as of late and, as always, his songs hold the power to bring me (and countless others) to certain memories and relive times past.
Take care, he croons. I thought we would be together, clueless on what the universe intended for us. Time heals, they say, so may this longing subside. Take care on your journey, I will continue on mine.*
The one question he asks, though, is – will there ever be anyone quite like you?
To this question, every fibre of my being feels like screaming, “Yes, yes there will! And someone much better, more suitable for you too!” Not in the cynical, no-one-is-irreplaceable kind of way, but in the “God-has-a-more-beautiful-plan for you” one.
Ironically I know full well that if I had told my younger self this, a mere 7-8 years ago, I probably would have believed none of it. Drowning in the first all-consuming heartbreak of my life, I stubbornly wondered whether I would ever love the way I did, whether I would ever be loved the way I was, before it all fell apart.
This despair heightened with the failure of every single encounter that followed. By the time I met my now-husband after a short-lived relationship with a perfectly decent man that had ticked all the boxes on my meaningless checklist, I had resigned to a quiet acceptance. Maybe I would never meet someone else. Maybe I would never love again. Not quite like that, at least.
I couldn’t have been so wrong.
The man I came to love, and marry, turned out to be everything I wished for — and more. This man, who seemed to come out of nowhere, fills and enriches my life in ways I had never imagined. He loves me just the way I want to be loved, his support inspires me to be a better person, and while he is not perfect, he is perfect for me.
Seven years ago, I foolishly believed that that was it for me, and that I would never find something, someone, quite like that ever again. Today, and every day that I wake up to this beautiful man beside me, I am filled with gratitude and happiness that he somehow found his way into my life, and I find myself at peace with everything that I had to overcome to get here.
So if you ask me, yes, I do believe that things will get better. That you’ll find someone better. It may not feel like it. It may seem like you’re treading on this path forever. But I say this because I’ve seen it transpire — to those I hurt, to those who hurt me, and most definitively, to myself.
Take care, friends. Hati-hati di jalan, kawan.
[*] My loose translation of several lines from the Indonesian lyrics.