Some people experience it early during their high school years, a few later in their lives but to most they just do not really think about it, they wake up, go to work, eat, go to bed and move on with their lives, to get married, have a family and settle down. All of which are not wrong but there are people who need that feeling they can grasp onto, to make sure they are doing something important with their lives. To feel good about themselves.
I often look at others and envy how easily people can go about their lives while I am still thinking about what I should do next, even though to my friends, I have done enough but they do not know what I am actually going through do they? That feeling of restlessness about whether or not I have done enough for the environment.
But thankfully, there was not any particular moment or any particular thing that was mentioned that made me realise the reason why I am still doing this is because, I have been given something in life. That is the feeling. I do not really think the experiences during my time at Chagar Hutang are something that can be described with a situation or a description of an activity but it is more inclined towards what I actually felt. I keep on going because I remember what it feels like to do good for the people or things around me.
The Epitome of Feeling Absolute
It was absolute. That moment you are feeling whole, knowing you have done something right. I remember when the sunlight kissed our skin in the morning and how the soft sand brushed against my feet in the evening when we had completed our activities in the afternoon. To be part of something great, in making sure that the turtles would survive, the information would be transferred from one person to the other, has made me miss every moment of it.
To top it all off, the volunteers had no access to the outside world by any means, no internet, no reception, it was exactly like one of those movies where people residing in rural areas had to learn how to live without having to rush to do anything and just embrace every second with each other, the nature and themselves.
This part of self-discovery had made me love myself even more for doing this kind of activity. It is different because it was for one whole week and all of us really took the time to share our thoughts on things without relying on other platforms. It was genuine. Plus, we noticed what each other would do and paid attention to what each other would have to say. We had so many good moments. And that is why I said some people only have this during their high school years where mobile phones were not an option back then.
So, to me, it was not just about nest checks or laughing at Syam gagging at the awful rotten eggs’ smell or how all of us would laugh at Alin’s random jokes, it was about everything. The feeling I had that made this experience so different from my other volunteering stories. If someone asks me if I have a specific experience that I would like to share, I know it would be the moment that I prayed to Allah so much, so that I could go for Project Penyu when the poster on Facebook popped up on my newsfeed.
And what came after is the epitome of feeling absolute at Chagar Hutang, Pulau Redang with my fellow volunteers through Charisma Movement.