Tag Archive: dentistry

screw the title

i’ve been pausing to write for quite some time. and i think just now i realize why.


truthfully, so many times i went home from the clinic i worked for the past 10 months with thoughts and ideas and sentences and when it was the time i sat and opened my laptop…


i was hella lazy to type them.


i made excuses, like, “i’m exhausted“; or “maybe tomorrow“; or “i still need time to gather some more stories“; or the worst of all “what should be the title?”


and tonight. i’m breaking free. i couldn’t care less about the fricking title.


then an epiphany hit me.


not knowing the title, is actually like us living this life.


us here goes to the fresh graduates.

us here goes to the fellow 20s.

us here goes to you who are still figuring out what to do with your life.


the question of the future might come a little late to my class and me. FYI, i went to Dentistry in Universitas Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta, Indonesia. the path i took was all normal. i didn’t accelerate during Junior or High School. so, that made me 18 year-old when i started Dentistry in 2009. the target the faculty gave to us was to graduate in THREE AND HALF years with FOUR years curriculum. i managed to graduate in THREE years  AND TEN months.


when friends in other faculties were already panicking about jobs – or probably even getting married, at that time, my friends and i basically were focusing on the extra TWO years as co-Assistant  in order to acquire the title drg or dokter gigi or dentist.


all in all, it’s nearly SIX YEARS, our lives had been neatly scheduled. when the sixth year was almost over, we just had that panic attack.




well. i know that i had to get a job. the thing was, i had too many questions that Google couldn’t give me answers.


what kind of job?

where can i get the job?

so that means i don’t get to hang out with my friends again?

what if i did wrong?

what if i didn’t get the diagnosis right?

what if i didn’t know what to do with the patient?

what if i didn’t know how to write the meds prescription?

what if i couldn’t make enough money?

what if

what if

what if


those ‘what ifs’ are thoughts when i was thinking about a title of a post. those ‘what ifs’ are the ones that holding me back from writing. those ‘what ifs’ are undoubtedly necessary to be considered, but to make a great leap, we all need small step first.


what i’m saying is:


it’s always good to have big plans, but don’t let it confine you. don’t let it define you; instead, YOU are the one who is the rightful person to define the title.


improvisation and plot twist are two elements we often see in good shows, moreover the live ones. and guess what? our lives are not recorded shows, so naturally, yeah. at some points we are required to improvise; and at some points there will be plot twist(s). we wouldn’t be able to do so if we don’t keep moving on.


it is hella scary, the whole concept of graduating, finding that one perfect job, moving out, and so on. at least, we still have GoogleMaps if we’re lost in our new place. i can’t imagine what would have happened to Neil Armstrong if he wasn’t that brave discovering the Moon then suddenly he got lost…


well, that’s a motivation for all of us. we are not totally lost, LOL.


in short, i’m not trying to look wiser or anything as if i’ve figured out my life, but for my dear fellows, i really think that you shouldn’t waste everything that’s already in front of you. every small thing is something you can use to compose your own definition to life.

if what you’ve already get is the only thing you have, do your best anyway, while also pursuing what you really want. you have to believe that the Universe will align and you will get what you’ve been dreaming.


anyways. i’m in different place now. fingers crossed, i’m aiming for another title in the next TWO and HALF years to continue my passion as a lecturer. i’m currently enrolling the Oral Medicine Specialty in Universitas Airlangga, Surabaya, which has been my lifelong dream. and i live alone in an 11th-floor studio. and i can not wait to explore ALL of the malls in Surabaya.


let’s start the improv 😉




PS. these people are my classmates. small number, but i hope we can support each other together till the end 🙂




few months ago as part of my co-assistant training, we were required to visit a teaching hospital which thankfully only 5 minutes away from my Dentistry campus. we learned the medical record system, forensic dentistry, geriatric/internal medicine and oral surgery. this stage took about only a month, but i have to say that that one month was unforgettable.


after i’ve done my under-grad, i see this pattern on the students in my campus.

1st years are young, weird and completely nerd looking kind of students with a hint of confusion and rule-obey-er.

2nd years realize that they’re no longer high school students. they started to behave as if they’re grown-ups and dare themselves to take more part in campus activities.

3rd years circulate awfully lot in campus. this is the time when they feel like they own campus. 3rd years tend to act arrogant and rather conceited, as if no one knows their campus better than themselves.

and 4th years are bunch of confused students questioning their final assignments aka thesis, and their fear of entering the co-assistant stage. they started to realize that they are nothing in the campus, that there are so much variables affecting their future that they can not predict, let alone control.

the 1st year co-assistants are full of spirit to finish the requirements. with mostly focus on getting it done.

aaand the 2nd year co-assistants are people with blurry and surreal thoughts about how to finish the requirements with draining spirit, and what they’re going to do soon after being vowed as a dentist.


i’m in the last group. which means i have been through all stages hereby i’m allowed to say that…

it’s so easy to feel inferior in this environment.


back to my experience during that one month visit in that teaching hospital.


i was dumbfounded and i did feel dumb the second i entered the oral surgery department. the resident physicians are brilliant, and i think brilliant is not enough to describe their awesomeness. they are that awesome. whenever i talked to them, i felt like we were on different planets where theirs are filled with creatures that’s 100 times more advance than mine.

i felt like “the heck have i studied for the past 4 years? i can’t remember any.” in return to those feelings, it seemed like i ended up studying much more in those 1 month than in my past 4 years. it’s insane.


one day, when i was doing some research in library for my oral surgery report, i met one of the resident, a female one. as i recalled, among those super-awesome residents, she is one of the not-so-awesome ones. however, i greeted her, she greeted back. then we exchanged names, also phone numbers. we talked for some time, quietly, since it’s in library.

she said that she’s trying to finish her study to get the oral surgery specialist title. she asked about my progress. and so on.


aaand just today, i met her when she was heading to the prayer’s room. i called her, thankfully she still remembered me.

i told her that i’ve passed oral surgery exam, and i asked about her study. the answer she gave me was not much changed from back then when i was in the teaching hospital. we didn’t talk too long cause i needed to go, but this thought keeps swirling in my head.


i remember i told her “i don’t know if i can graduate this August.” and she replied with “the point is just finish off your work. if God allows you to graduate this August, God will give way. i think you know better, you seem more pious than me hahaha


well, first of all, i’m nowhere near pious.

second, regardless all i ever babbled, it is okay being a bit behind than my other friends, but i can not help feeling inferior because of this.


and as i said before, it is so easy to feel inferior in my environment.

here in my campus, everything is measured. everything is compared.

are you from wealthy family.

are you from dentists family.

are there any family working as lecturers in campus.

are you good-looking.

are you friendly.

are you popular.

are you smart.

are you skilled.

are you ambitious.

are you graduating soon.



wow. come to this point it seems like a hard life i’m living, furthermore if you are none of the above.


talking about inferiority, it’s about how to overcome it instead of finding something or someone to blame.


first thing first: STOP COMPARING.

compare yourself only to yourself because everyone is special. i know that comparing is inevitable, because ever since we’re little, all people do is compare. we compare our rank in class. we compare whose drawing is better. because we want to prove to someone else that you are better.

now, prove to only yourself that you can be better because you want to. unconsciously, you’ll stop comparing yourself to other people and you can improve yourself.


once the inferiority itself is gone, all that’s left is opportunity to keep growing.


i know all that is just me talk the talk.

i’m going to walk the walk, immediately.





bigger choice

i was going to write 180 degree different topic when suddenly this just popped out of nowhere.


well, not exactly nowhere. i knew exactly where.


i was drafting in my mind about the movies and songs and videos i recently fond about and relating them to my activities. i tried to make a fun post, i rarely make one, right?


so there i was, watching ‘Her’ on cable when suddenly the phone rang. i picked it up, turned out it’s one of my grandpa’s brothers – who is actually my grandpa too – asking whether mom and dad were home, telling that he wanted to pay a quick visit.

i said that they were out to some wedding. but my grandpa decided he would come anyway.


he came with the family about 5 minutes later, they did seem so hurried. they came in, we chatted for a bit, but when i was about to make the teas, they refused. saying they needed to rush because they were heading to their home which is still about 4 hours to go.


this grandpa’s home and where he works as ENT doctor/lecturer is in the same city as where i was born – i’m not referring the city as the city where i came from because i get a lot of bias about where i really came from.


last year at the extended family assembly, he pulled me to a corner and asked me about what i had in mind soon after i graduate from dentistry school. i replied with: i’m not sure. i want to have Oral Medicine (Oral Pathology) specialty degree, though.


then he explained that there was a job available at this university he works in, as lecturer, like i always want to be.


as tempting as it sounded, it’s not really the place i ever thought of. for many reasons.


and tonight, just when they were about to go, this grandpa turned to me.

so? you still want to have that degree?

implicitly saying: the job is still available.




everyone seems to have this certain plan for me.

but me.


i can’t manage a three days long holiday.

i don’t even know what my exact plan for tomorrow.

how am i supposed to be sure what i’m going to do after graduation?


they say, the choice you made when you graduated high school is a big one.

guess what’s bigger?


the choice you made when you graduated university.