A Little Less Indonesian

This morning while driving, I stopped at a stop sign. (Novel idea, righ

t? ;))

Then I looked Left. Right. Left.

Another novel idea.

And then my heart skipped a beat.

It finally happened.

My Indonesian driving habits and instincts are finally disappearing.

M any, especi

ally those who have experienced driving in Indonesia, understand this to be a good thing. And probably a much safer thing.

I see it as yet another piece of my identity gone.

When I moved back to America, I wanted nothing more than to fit in.

But I also embraced those tiny little things that made me not quite American. My insane love for rice (thankfully, I still have that one), my use of the words aduh and apa, my sometimes-confusion at which side of the car I should go to, how I intentionally tried to not take certain things for granted…like working stoplights and a lack of cockroaches.


I’m not sure who I am anymore.

Everything in me wants to be American with a bit of Indonesian thrown in there. I want to hang on to those things that I believe define me…the girl who lived in Indonesia, the girl who will try just about anything once, the girl who is special because her life has been so crazy.

I’m struggling with those beliefs and the reality of the things I’ve let define me.

My identity is not truly found in any of those.

It is, instead, found in my Father. Or, at least, it should be.

I look back on Indonesia with fondness.

At times I miss it. Other times, I ache for it.

Always, always, I am thankful to be here.

But once in awhile, I wish I was there. To maybe soak up a little more of that Indonesian-ness that is so truly unique…so that I don’t forget it. To be the bule that stands out in a crowd and makes random strangers want to take her picture…and maybe take one for myself so I can remember. And selfishly, to go purse shopping.

(Oh, I did love the purses

there! :))

But I am here and thankful. And when those little things start to go away, I am reminded that no matter what,

I am His.

He sees me not as A

merican or American with a little Indonesian or Indonesian wannabe.

He sees me as His child.

And no matter who I am or who I become, I will always be that.



  1. Hello! I came back this morning to comment on your wordless post and found this little gem had been added.

    Mel, you’re in a real place of growth and stretching. He just won’t let you hang on to all those things you once did! He wants, more than anything else, for you to see your definition come from Him. That way, nothing else can touch it! A little less Indonesion or not. It’s kind of like someone dying. They might be gone from this world, but they’re still with you, still in your heart. Your Indonesion experience will always be a part of you, nothing can ever take that away, even if you become more American and less Indonesian.

    I know you know all that. I just wanted to send a little validation your way.

    Big hugs being sent your way!

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