It’s no secret to a lot of you that I’m planning to stay in Australia after I’ve graduated. Though, for some people there has always been a few questions surrounding my decision to do so. In this case, maybe it’s time to answer them.
By the time I graduate, I will have a degree in Applied Medical Biotechnology and in Medical Science Pathology. It’s true that I took the medical science as a backup just in case I can’t find a job in Australia and that I could work in Malaysia, where as having a degree in Medical Biotechnology has no solid future back home. Then again, research opportunities are greater in Australia, especially towards what I’ve been aiming all this while – Cancer. I like what I’ve learnt so far and I would hate to see it go to waste because some things don’t have the resources to push forward.
I have the contacts here. I like working with people who are competent and speak to you in plain English. I like the seriousness of work and the casual goofiness that comes right after. I like that crazy ideas, though scrutinized to detail are not immediately dismiss and that for everyone else, they have to work hard, just as you have to, to get where they want to be. Not some corrupt hierarchy which puts bloodlines and personal connections above an honest days job.
And it is unfortunate that in Malaysia, my bloodline being a Malay takes precedence over matters of relationship no matter how much I may oppose it. In Malaysia, because being a Malay means you’re a Muslim and anyone who marries you has to convert into Islam with all the fine print attached to it. My relationships in the past are often marred by this unfortunate twist of fate for no matter how well I put on a sheep’s clothing, I’m still a wolf – at least back there.
But I am happy with what I have now. I’m happy with my relationship now and I would be damned if I didn’t do everything my power to to make sure my family, if I ever have one of my own, escapes that scrutiny that forces people to go through things against their will. I’ve suffered through that indignity enough as a child and I wish it not on anyone else in my life.
I like it here in Australia. Sure I do miss the food back home and no matter how much I try to recreate it, you can’t beat home grown food. Yet I’ve always felt that I didn’t belong in Malaysia, or at least throughout my life and what happened, I didn’t feel welcomed. Not for my ideas, not for my sense of belief (or disbelief), not for my actions and least of all, not for my bloodline. Here in Australia, I can start anew because I’m just another Asian fellow. I’m another Asian fellow that people think lived in the States. Not bad for someone who’s only been out of his country for the past 3 years and all of it happened to be in Australia.
Here at least, whatever life I had back home, whatever memories, good and especially the bad, doesn’t matter. Here, I can start with a clean slate and I have done so. Here, I can be the part of me that I always tried to hide back home because it wasn’t “Malaysian” enough. Here I can make friends and I have. Here I can talk to anyone without being thought a loony. Here I feel comfortable. Here I feel like I’ve returned home.
I think that’s more than enough reason to want to stay.