Thursday, October 9, 2008

1st draft: My dark past

My childhood time was the thing that I cannot erase from my box of mind. The dark memories that hold me until now have given me such deep impacts not only to me but to my family. They even change the way my siblings and I perceive on things. The most affected one of course would be my sister. How did it start? To start, it is all because of skin colour issue that makes us feel like we were alien among our other relatives. For many years each of us, especially I would think that dark-complexion people are ugly compared to the fair-complexion people. My father has dark complexion and my mother is on the contrary. Their marriage was done in a rush I would say. This is because they just got married before they even had the time to get to know each other. Our siblings have different skin complexion. Even my younger brothers do not resemble me at all. All my brothers have fairer skin complexion compared to the sisters including me. At that time we were told that girls were supposed to have fair skin and guys are not related with it. Who imposed such idea? It was my grandmother (my mother’s mother) who discriminated us all the time. At first I did not notice that she had treated us differently but as I grew up older I realize the obvious discrimination that my grandparents have imposed on us.

I remembered back then when I was still a kid I would always be scolded if I touched expensive things. Even my cousins would look disgusted at us when we played with them. When we went back for Raya time, we will not be given a special room to stay. We just put our bags and clothes at one corner of the house. At night, we would sleep at the living room. All the comforts were given the priority to our other relatives. Until now we experience the same thing over and over again. Back then all my aunts and uncles were not married yet so we had strong bond with them. However when I grew up older I realized the different gap that have been created especially when they have married and have their own children. I realized the treatment that my cousins received were totally different compared to the treatment she gave to us when we were still kids. She treated them nicely and would always praised them compared us who always got lots of scolding.

The idea that people with darker complexion are ugly people and fair –complexion people are the most beautiful had made our esteem low. I started to experience this when I was in secondary school. I dared not mixed around with people who have fair complexion except a few whom I considered friendly and can be trusted. I never talked to guys as I felt that I was the most hideous person on earth. Even when I returned for Raya, my little cousins would say that “hitam melegam” (very dark skin complexion like charcoal) to us especially I because I have the darkest skin complexion among all my other siblings. Another impact that it gave to me was I never believed in my own abilities and talent. I never believed that any guy would want to marry me because I was very ugly.

This thing did not only happen to me but to my father as well. My mother revealed to us surprising secret that we have never known until we have grown older. She said that when she was pregnant with the second child which was my sister, she was not only got scolded but also being insulted rapidly from my grandparents and our great grandparents. They did not want any more children as they thought that their grandchildren will turn out to have dark-complexion just like the father. As a result, my mother would keep a secret when she was pregnant. My father was the toughest person of all despite of his skin complexion. Once, when he was lying on the mat, my great grandparent said something hurtful and totally heart-breaking to my mother. Thinking that he was sleeping, she said to my mother with thick Kedah slang, “jangan beranak banyak-banyak. Nanti semua dapat anak hitam macam pungkuq belanga.” (don’t give birth to many children or else they will turn out to have charcoal-colour skin complexion.” He was hurtful at that time and still could not forget what she had said to him. My father was the most hurtful person at that moment. Yet, he was the one who my grandparents relied the most when they had difficult times. Not only that, my mother also told me that our grandmother told us that we were annoying when we cried when we were babies. When we knew about this thing, I have a disrespectful thought of my grandmother. I felt so as when my aunts gave birth to new children, my grandmother will praise them a lot and gave them toys and food compared to us who received nothing only scolding.

Our grandparents were not the only one who has this skin colour issues idea. Our ex-neighbours as well thought the same way. They would be proud of their daughters’ fair skin complexion and will always say that we have dark skin complexion. My mother was really stressful not by only my grandparents but also by them. For these past few years we were haunted by this thought which never dies in our minds. Luckily I registered for this TEYL course, I learned people are different and special. I learned to develop more self-esteem. My sister until now is beauty conscious. She would buy lots of skin whitening product so that she can have fairer skin complexion. She would scold me for not trying to use this product so that I can look fairer. However I just ignored what she said as I have learned that physical appearance is not the most important thing that people should look at but the attitude and personality is the most important thing that should be counted. My sister is still facing the same thing that I have experienced back then when I was in secondary school. I am still helping her to diminish this idea so that she would build her self esteem little by little. As for my grandmother, I could do nothing for her as her mind set has been set up that way right from the start. What ever treatment she gave, I will never be affected again.

10 comments:

babysbreath said...

Wow, this a shocking. It feels lik as if we're in America when they stil practice the skin color difference. For me we have to accept who we are never let anyone come in our way. I'm pretty short and people make fun of my teeth. It's relly upsetting. Til now, i remember it. i still have problems with my self esteem. but i'm glad that you succeeded in increasing yourself esteem and getting friends who don't really mind what skin colour you have. It's what in the inside, nee? You might wanna check on a few grammatical errors.

persona non grata said...

your story was really shocked me. its like some people was practicing apartheid in malaysia. well, i think that u already prove yourself that u are the best among ur other relative. the successful person is a person who always think about the future. but, bear in mind.. how success u are now, ur dark story life is the reason how it happened now. maybe it's the way how ALLAH want to help u to be a good and success person - never discriminate people, be humble, and down to earth. good luck frenz!

onekyh said...

Well rumie, do not feel down. We love to be your friends. I also got the same treatment from my grandmother (from my father side). It is not about skin colour, but more towards favouritism. Well, she kind of upset because my father married my mother. She wanted my father to marry someone else. Furthermore, in all of her children she did not like my father. She never ever hold my siblings and I when we were small and got scolded by my uncle for that. Now, Allah the Almighty had shown it all to her that all her favourite children had left her alone and now she said that only my father is whom she could rely on. I believe in good deeds. If you think that you are right and you do something good, Allah will reward you. I was once, could not forgive her of what she ever did to my mother, father and my siblings. However, as time pass by I know that I should not hold any grudge towards her, it is useless. Just take it as a lesson.

You should also check on your grammar especially the tenses between present and past.

blueberry said...

remember ALLAh will give test to those ALLAH love. be patient. i do admit that some people love to discrimininate other especially those who are not good looking. pretty people will always get better treatment.
i want to share with you with my story. ever since my secondary school time, i suffers severe acne problem. i causes frustration making me feeling stress all the time. i tried many ways to over come this problem. but at the same time i try to be strong. there are many friends who support me. but i have to admit there are also people who will treated you badly, saying things that will make you cry all night long..
but, this is the reality. there are good people who alwys appreciate and support us but there are also so many people out there who always make our life miserable.
but try not to kep concentrating on the problem.you have to be grateful that you are healthy.. the skin colour is not the main issue.

think this..if you were born fair, but at the same time you are suffering from bad desease or born hadicapped, wouldn't it be worst..?

so, don't give up. face this world and remember to enjoy your life.

ALEK WEK..she is a successful supermodel even though she is having dark skin completion...don't be so sad k..you deserve to be happy and enjoy this life.

yagami said...

thanx for all the comment, I really appreciated that...you guyz make me wanna cry huhuhuhuhu....

fahmi said...

you bring up very sad topic. that's something unexpected happen in malaysia. for your topic u have to find a little bit fact from phsycology side if u want to help people like your sister to diminish this idea. from fact you can make her thinking based on something well reasearch. to make it more impact you try to show a few prove like dark skin model was succeed in their career.

for using cosmetic to get fair skin is not prohibited. but make sure don't obses to use it, cause chemical compound if over use can damage your skin. this fact i not really sure but you can refer to expert.if your skin colour change to much your skin can exposed to sunlight for too long, it because your skin has become more thinner. skin have function to protect from UV that can cause skin cancer. so you try to check about this if you have time. in the same time you can prove to your sister

nEuRuLe @z@Ni said...

wow..what a secret u have..our society still have this kind of mindset...please don't be too sad.. take this positively...not all dark skin people are ugly. like you,you are sweet and and i like your complexion.some people judge a book by its cover.but no worry dear, as people mindset is changing and evolves,haha..they will look up to you as you have the credits for your intelligence, kindness and noble job as a teacher..
barang yang lepas jangan dikenang-kenang..kenangan tu memang kadang kala menyaitkan..tapi ade hikmah di sebaliknya...itu maybe dugaan untuk ibu hang..oarng tua2 zaman dulu pemikiran diorang lai sikit..alah.biarkan saja...aku kan ada....ramai apa orang berkulit hitam manis kawin nagn mat salleh...huhu..
by the way. i like the style of your writing..you have a good language command in english..

lupikirlah sendiri said...

yup i agree to every opinion up there, be satisfied with what we have my dear,k. life is not abt ur face and ur complexon, its more of heart. ur writing is one of the best, but dont keep telling about ur fate,its irritating, u must know how the people out there strggling for bread and milk. so Allah knows best..

hanmie7227 said...

Honestly, your story is interesting and shocked for me to know it. Speechless is the best word for describing my feeling right now when reading your entry.

Overall, your language is very good. Good elaboration and there are feelings inside it. You successfully delivered the message that you want to reader. Besides, the content is interesting, meaningful and full of emotion in it. Your essay has lot strong points in it.

For your writing, I think that maybe you should organise it properly. Each paragraph is too long. May be you can split it in two. Sometime it does make the reader’s eyes tired reading those words in a long paragraph.

¬(_NaMi_)¬ said...

taste the mother spirit....tastyyyy
1. .... siblings and I 'perceive on' things.

i check mr cambridge.. juz not sure whether we have to use ON after perceive or not. But in the mr cambridge sentence example, there is no on..


2. .... At that time we were told that girls were supposed to have fair skin and 'guys are not related with it.'

not related with what, the fair skin thing rite, i think i understand the meaning but cam not so tasty je this sentence esspecially the last phrase

3. ....It was my grandmother (my mother’s mother)
maybe u can use maternal mother (saje je nak gune bombastic word)... but urs is already gud


4. .... discrimination that my 'grandparents' have imposed on us.

so that means both of them are the evil discriminator,u said before only ur grandma.. mybe u can say ur grandma 'menghasut' ur grandpa, then she will appear eviler :p