Don’t Coddle a Baby When They Fall Down

You know how you’re not supposed to coddle a baby when they fall down because the gasps and “awwww” are generally what cause them to cry? I have done ethnographic research on this phenomenon watching small Indonesian children crashing to the ground in the presence of their parents who seemingly could not care less. Evidently, the babies don’t care either. Anyway, this is relevant because you should not do this to a 22 year old either. I have done field studies on the latter.

Remember that time I cut my head while I was in Spain? No? Okay, well I did because I cannot stand on my own two feet. I handled the situation pretty well and even taxied my way to the hospital at 4 in the morning just to be sure I was not concussed. My parents were worried, but when I talked to them on the phone I kept my cool. I was 20.

Most things have remained the same over the years. I still cannot stand on my own two feet, or arms for that matter. I can stay 56% calm in less than ideal situations. I worry my parents. However, now I am 22.

You have probably guessed by now that there is a reason I’m writing this nonsense. If you haven’t, than it’s likely because you didn’t take the time to read the aforementioned nonsense (no offense taken, I’ve never been one at recounting stories). So, here in Indonesia I have a lot of free time. A lot. I also have not had functioning internet at my school in four weeks (remember: I live at my school). Public transportation ends at 4pm, I am still contemplating my “need” for a motor bike, and who wants to take taxis everywhere? This means I have to entertain myself in creative ways. I read, a lot. I bought a ukulele. I make art. I submerge myself in my bed thinking about how I can lay in any direction and none of my limbs will hang off. I workout. I do yoga. They all seem pretty harmless, right? I’ll give you 5 seconds to guess where this is leading, and the cause of last Thursday’s pain (re: I cannot stand on my own two arms).






Yoga. Easy guess, I know. Yoga is the most danger-inflicting activity from my list above. If you’re me. Which you’re not. So for you, yoga is probably harmless and peaceful and grounding. Again, if you’re me, you will likely injure yourself in some unforeseen way practicing yoga. Turn likely into definitely and there you have the events of last Thursday at approximately 8pm. Where I do yoga is a narrow space located between my bed and the TV/refrigerator/water dispenser and the sturdy iron plant thing that holds it up. I enjoy headstands and such, so I figured why not try a forearm stand. I decided to be safe and do it in front of my stubborn balcony door so that if I overshot it, I wouldn’t break my back or arms. Mom and dad would be so proud of my cautious proceedings. Little did I realize that you could also tip sideways while projecting yourself into a forearm stand. You didn’t either? Well, you can, and it’s the opposite of fun! So, down I went in the direction of the sturdy iron plant thing that holds my water dispenser. I yelled a few profanities and stood up slouched over with my hands on my knees (like people do after they finish a race or something). I knew that I couldn’t have survived that fall without any wounds, so I sat on my yoga mat and flipped over my right foot. For the sake of my boyfriend staying conscious, I will not describe what I saw, but it was deep and red and my pinky toe looked as if I attempted (unsuccessfully) to sever it off. I suddenly got dizzy, but the same kind of dizzy I feel when I get blood taken, so I knew how to handle that feeling. I laid back on my mat and did some deep breathing to calm myself down. Remember I am my own doctor here according to the health lady from my orientation in Bandung, so Dr. Savannah decided it was best to FaceTime Mom and Dad. The second I saw their faces, my calm, cool, collected, and independent persona instantly disappeared. I broke down. And this is where my story comes full circle. Don’t coddle a baby when they fall down. Also, don’t coddle a 22 year old when they’re a dumbass.

Yeah, I’m fine. Tomorrow I’m going to get an x-ray to confirm that.

In other news, the past few weeks have been challenging. I’m not looking to sugarcoat my experience for anyone. Honestly, for the first time in my life I truly felt homesick. That is not to say I haven’t had any positive moments, because I certainly have. However, due to the fact that not only is this a transitional period for me, but also my school, it’s hard to get much accomplished. My headmaster is new as of this past summer, and all the previous headmaster told her was that he applied to have an ETA and that she should continue with the process because it will look good for the school. As a result, no one really knows what the hell my deal is here. Add this to the current physical state of my school (it’s undergoing serious renovations), and I’m a little lost. This doesn’t make me feel all that great, but I am trying my best to remain patient and optimistic. In my effort to do so, here are ten things I am happy about:

  1. I am learning to make batik. I will not divulge how talented (or not) I am.
  2. I have explored Jogja (Yogyakarta), finally! And I made some excellent, cheap purchases in the process.
  3. I invested in a blender.
  4. I invested in a ukulele. Pretty sure it’s a children’s toy, but it works.
  5. I saw the new James Bond movie.
  6. I am becoming immune to the worms in my bathroom.
  7. I found non-instant rolled oats and granola and herbal tea at an international supermarket in Semarang.
  8. I discovered Tongseng Jamur, my favorite Indonesian dish. It has curry. Find picture below.
  9. I saw all of the ETAs in Central Java at one time.
  10. In just over a month I will be in Thailand!
Learning batik
Learning batik design
Halloween celebrations
Halloween celebrations
Traditional market finds
Traditional market finds
The result of my first experience cooking an Indonesian dish, a variation of Lotek.
The result of my first experience cooking an Indonesian dish, a variation of Lotek.
I ate "pizza" in Jogja and was very happy
I ate “pizza” in Jogja and was very happy.


This made me smile a lot
This made me smile a lot.
Tongseng Jamur


2 thoughts on “Don’t Coddle a Baby When They Fall Down

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s