Thursday, February 24, 2011


 [v. uh-byoozn. uh-byoosShow IPAverb, a·bused, a·bus·ing, noun
–verb (used with object) use wrongly or improperly; misuse: to abuse one'sauthority. treat in a harmful, injurious, or offensive way: to abuse a horse; to abuse one's eyesight. speak insultingly, harshly, and unjustly to or about; revile;malign. commit sexual assault upon.
5.Obsolete to deceive or mislead.
6.wrong or improper use; misuse: the abuse of privileges.
7.harshly or coarsely insulting language: The officer heapedabuse on his men.
8.bad or improper treatment; maltreatment: The child wassubjected to cruel abuse.
9.a corrupt or improper practice or custom: the abuses of atotalitarian regime.
10.rape or sexual assault.

Unprepared. Amazed. Awoken. These were the feelings I felt when I watched the 90 minute performance by “Life Sdn Bhd 6: Abuse” at the Actor’s Studio KL yesterday night. Part of a series for Women:100 {100 hours of performing arts in conjunction with the 100th year celebration of International Women's Day falling on 8 March 2011 read more about this here}, “Life Sdn Bhd 6: Abuse” was definitely more than I bargained for. 

I had initially thought I would get my yearly dose of “culture” {the most culture I am exposed to would normally come from a live culture/probiotic drink meant for my digestive system} at this performance and since I had nothing to do with B on a seemingly boring Wednesday night after work, we both decided to give it a chance.

I sat enthralled, caught up and immersed so deeply with the stories and the emotions that unfolded on stage from several storytellers and survivors. I felt a range of emotions battling in me… they flitted from anger to sadness to pity to guilt to helplessness to hope to thankfulness to awe to amazement. The stories we heard were real stories by real people. 

Brave women and men {and even a dog whose story was narrated by the dog’s owner} told us their stories of emotional and physical abuse. These stories were the kind that we read about in the newspapers and chain emails, stories whose characters we never really see or know personally so that it seemed almost fictional to a certain extent. But there they were, these brave men and women some sitting, some standing, two singing and one dancing sharing their stories and saying “No” to abuse.

When I was younger, before “life” got in the way of things and I was caught up in this rat race to nowhere it seems, I joined a course called ‘Writers for Women’s Rights’ but that passion and fire in me to do something, to make a change died with the grueling task of college and waitressing. I always thought about joining a cause but these thoughts were just that... thoughts. 

Perhaps it is because of my cloistered life that I now have, the security and the little bubble of goodness I live in but I always never took that next step between wanting to do something and actually doing it. “Perhaps it is time to do something,” a voice inside me said but then the grey clouds of worries, excuses and the like swept over me. “You have work. A family to be with. A fiancée to spend time with. A dog to play with. A freelance job. A whole bunch of exciting hobbies. Books to savour. Places to visit. Friends to meet. Poker cards to deal. Movies to enjoy. Kitchen cabinets to choose. Weddings dresses to select…” and on and on and on it went.

I don’t know what I am trying to get at to be honest. All I know is that there is a part of me that was awaken during the performance. There was a spark somewhere in me that reminded me of the starry-eyed girl who wanted to save the world. Who wanted to save herself…I miss her. She was really something.

I know that God works in mysterious ways and perhaps one day soon, when the chaos of “Project Happily Ever After” and “Project Love Nest” has been taken care of shall I finally stand up and shout those words that I long to say beside my fellow sisters and brothers out there. To fight for a cause I believe in. To listen and to share another’s burden. To finally save the world.. or atleast a person’s world.

For those of you who would like to know more about Women:100 click here and for those of you would like to attend this awesome performance, click hereTo those survivors and storytellers, kudos for an amazing and wonderful performance last night. I end this post with a plea for all of us, regardless if you are male or female, to stand up and say “No” to abuse!

Remember: "Hoarding & Collecting is not a crime. It is an art!"

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