Moving to a new country is always hard, I think the one thing that makes it the hardest is the lack of community. Without a community and companionship you are reduced to nights alone and no support system. My biggest struggle in college was this.
Without my strong support system in Singapore with my family and Eagles, college life was surprisingly difficult. It wasn’t that I wasn’t having fun or having the time of my life but it was the little things that made me miss home. I remembered once I planned this theatre meeting and I really really wanted my friends to come and support me but they just simply wasn’t interested. It wasn’t their fault but I remember being slightly down because there was no one to support me. But sometimes I feel that others won’t go or do something for you if it doesn’t benefit them? Maybe that’s being slightly judgmental but when I try to get my friends to come to events, I have to appeal to their interests (which is natural and very common but contrasting to my community back home). And I don’t know why but I feel like I constantly have to look/ask for feedback or compliments. The next day, my friend Bevin, who is very close to my family, had an art show on her birthday to raise funds for the Philippines relief aid. And she had my whole family there and all our mutual friends supporting her. After my experience the day before, I really started thinking about this idea of community.
A community is there for you even if they are supremely bored or don’t know anything about it (my parents watched some weird ass theatre shows that I have put on and bought tickets to concerts to people they have never even heard before). That unconditional support is so important in anyone’s life.
But another thing about a community is that it takes time to grow, it’s not those overnight plants that grow when you add a bit of water to it. It takes time to nurture a caring, responsible and sensitive community. And last night, at this inaugural event, Amethyst, for my school, I felt some sort of community spirit (Gotong Royong haha). And I feel it growing and developing. I’m glad that I’m here to be an active agent in shaping that community. I want it to be the best it can be. I miss my family and community back home but I think building this community is important.