Top Nav Breadcrumb

Soundtrack of a DP student: The poems and lyrics I rediscovered after five years

Thea Kurniawan shares her third story for our series featuring graduate voices from the IB diploma. 

By Theadosia Kurniawan

Back at high school, I wrote an unfinished piece called “The Soundtrack of a DP Student”. I kept it hidden away because it is rather personal. After rummaging through old files, I found it and finished it. Five years later, it is now time to share it.

To my fellow DP-ers, I hope you can find my lyrics relatable to an extent and that it may inspire you to keep moving forward, working hard and striving for greater heights.

*unlocks phone*

*opens music player app*

*selects “My Recently Played”*

*scrolls through songs*

When I started the DP in August 2011 there was a lot ahead of me. I felt prepared, yet not ready at the same time. I did not know what to expect. It was a big decision and put butterflies in my stomach.

1 August 2011

*Play Butterflies*

Take a deep breath, close my eyes

Steady that heart, oh how time flies

This is it

The time has come

Two years then, nothing but blue skies

 

Bright-eyed and curious

With a dash of fear

I may be small but I’m not alone

‘Cuz I got hope alive and it’s staying here

This adrenaline buzzing

Pumping through my veins

Will I fall or will I fly?

Take the leap and break the chains

Step on new terrain

Onwards to the unknown

But I’ve got this, I’ll work hard for this

Determined to the bone

Butterflies inside me

Can’t control my shakes

No I won’t back out, I’ll stand proud

I’ve got what it takes

 

Take a deep breath, close my eyes

Steady that heart, oh how time flies

This is it

The time has come

Two years then, nothing but blue skies

Everything went smoothly for the first year, until Year 11 exams came. I went through a major low point in the middle of it all, it left me full of uncertainty and insecurity.

14 May 2012

*Play Light Out*

What is going on?

Why am I here?

I see someone screaming

But I can’t hear a thing.

 

She’s trying to reach out

Finding someone to help

But there’s no one there

Just emptiness.

 

It’s dark, it’s cold, it’s lonely

Where did she go?

 

She falls

 

I want to help her

Somehow I can feel her pain

I can feel the burden

Her struggle

Makes me want to cry

 

But there’s no one there

Just emptiness

 

What is going on?

Why am I here?

I see someone screaming

But I can’t hear a thing.

 

An empty hallway

An empty classroom

I see her, I reach out

 

 I realise

 

It’s me

My light is almost out

 

When things got tough, I looked to my friends and family. My gratitude for their support mid-way through DP, a difficult time in adolescence, continues to this day. When I was at my weakest and worst, they were always there for me. This song is dedicated to them.

7 September 2012

*Play The Most Important Thing*

I was at the lowest of lows

My world falling down, down, down

I was angry, ashamed, frightened, frayed

And yet you were there

 

My visions were once smooth sailing

But then the storm came rushing in

And I couldn’t handle it

I couldn’t bear, to get back up again

 

Started with high expectations

But got low results

I said to myself once

Shake it off, pick yourself back up

But the flow of the lows

Boy, they kept seeping in

Deeper I go down the void

I was lost, my mind within

 

I was at the lowest of lows

My world falling down, down, down

I was angry, ashamed, frightened, frayed

And yet you were there

 

You were there, still beside me

Ready to hold me, to comfort me

To say it’s alright, we need to fall before we fly

(You were all there)

Every step of the way

(You were all there)

Kept the darkness at bay

(You were all there)

I was selfish, cranky, moody, just plain crazy

And yet, you always stayed.

 

You’ve taught me an important lesson

The most important thing

The power of love

Can overcome that darkness within.

 

Now I’ve got the faith

The most important thing

I’ll keep fighting on

No time for darkness within

 

I’ve made it this far, I’ll push through

Give it the best that I have

The light is so near.

More smiles and less tears.

 

I’ll finish it strong

I won’t follow the crowd

I owe it to you, my life-savers

I just wanna say:

I’ll do you and me proud

After a much-needed break, I came back to school fresh-faced and ready to conquer what was ahead: the final year of DP. This was the moment we’ve all been waiting for, the climax. I still had some of those butterflies, but I’ve been down before and I got back up.  I was ready to finish strong.

7 March 2013

*Play Do It Again*

Slow and steady

You’ve done this before

You’ve won the fight

There’s just one more

 

Tossed and turned

Anxiety once reigned

But you’ve fought it once

You can do it again

You can make it through

Just believe

Strong will, strong mind

You’ll go far and achieve

 

Slow and steady

You’ve done this before

You’ve won the fight

There’s just one more

Roll your sleeves up

Got work to do

But you’ve got a new energy

To see this through

No more fears

No doubts, no tears

It’s just you and your courage

To the finish

 

Even though, you’re on your own

Never be afraid, to reach out

For help is here

Through family and peers

Oh, you can do this

 

Slow and steady

You’ve done this before

You’ve won the fight

There’s just one more

 

Just like that, two years flew by and we were attending our Graduation! All the internal assessments (IA), theory of knowledge (TOK) essays, creativity, activity, service (CAS) hours and exams were now complete. Even our extended essay was done and dusted! As we all stood, shoulder to shoulder, singing our national anthem on stage and decorated with our gowns and caps, it was truly a surreal feeling. Seconds before we all tossed our caps in the air, our principal finished his closing address with one word: shine.

31 May 2013

*Play Shine*

Here we are

This is it

The time we’ve been waiting for

We’ve given it our all

Now the moment’s come

It’s all we want and more

 

We’ve taken the risk

And kept an open mind

Balanced our time

Cared for each other in kind

 

Now let’s celebrate!

Two years have gone by

So many memories

Let our wings fly

It’s time to go up and out

Into the world with a shout

Oh yeah, we shine.

 

We made our queries

Communicated our thoughts

We shared our knowledge

Strong principles it’s all brought

 

When we look back

And reflect on this journey

This adventure, with up and downs aplenty

We’ll always know

That with a storm comes a rainbow.

 

Now let’s celebrate!

Two years have gone by

So many memories

Let our wings fly

It’s time to go up and out

Into the world with a shout

Oh yeah, we shine.

Thea Kurniawan graduated from Binus International School Simprug, Jakarta with the IB diploma in 2013. Since completing her BSc in Engineering from the University of Western Australia in 2017, she now works in the Project Management division of Ernst & Young. In her spare time, Thea enjoys volunteering with youth organisations and being an advocate for girls in STEM.