A different price to pay

A different price to pay

Like most of the students living in Lund, columnist Anindyaningrum Chrisant Rystiasih is living in a student corridor far away from her hometown Jakarta, 10.800 km away to be precise. That is equal to a 15 hour flight away from her parents, the freedom oppressors.

I remember back when I was in high school, I couldn’t wait to move out of the house and live on my own. The thought of having the freedom to do what I want fueled that excitement within me.

Most of us can agree on the perks of living at home. One of the most obvious reasons is that it is cheap, because I don’t have to pay rent. It’s also very convenient, as my mom has to cook anyways, so I don’t have to cook and even don’t have to clean. I get better food, because my mom is a much better cook than me.  I also don’t have to do laundry. Asides from that, there is also an under-valued benefit of face-to-face time with my parents. Even if we only see each other at breakfast and some dinners, these few minutes are the ones I miss the most.

Of course, even if we don’t have to pay for rent or food at home, there is a different price to pay. Family tends to consist of the people who can drive you the most crazy.  It is so easy to get fed up with my parents, and then I remember again why I wanted to live on my own. For example, my mom is very particular about the way I dress, while I don’t really give too much thought on it. She will stop what she is doing to micromanage my outfit until she is thoroughly satisfied. Sometimes to avoid this, I try to outrun her and get out the door before she can make a comment.

So for me, living alone allowed me to skip this less than pleasant outfit ordeal.  On a more serious note, I learned to be responsible for myself. Looking back and seeing how much I have changed and grown feels good. I can manage my own finances juggling between entertainment and necessities. I can party and decide for myself when enough is enough and it’s time to come home. There are a lot of ‘”I can” s when living on your own. It may well be necessary in shaping ourselves to be independent people.

Today, despite my high regards to independent living, I actually miss my parents more. Maybe it is because every time I talk to them on Skype, they seem to be getting older. I know they won’t be around forever, so I want to spend time with them before they are gone. I wouldn’t have been able to get where I am today without their help, and they are still always there to help me whenever they can.

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