A Whole New World

By addinaf - 4:56:00 PM

I've been listening to A Whole New World these days. Any versions of it and I keep it on replay. I love both Zayn-Zhavia version and Mena-Naomi version, and not to forget the legendary original version Brad Kane-Lea Salonga.

Here is the thing, I might not the biggest Aladdin or Disney Princess fans. But, the hype of the Aladdin is just growing on me. I feel like the 'A Whole New World' song is related to what I've experienced lately with him.

I'm not a princess, obviously, and I've decided almost everything in my life even before my marriage, I decided my own major, my own education, I traveled a lot, and I did a lot of solo travel too! I moved here and there, I did this and that. I can stand on my own feet. I am my own woman. In this case, I am not comparable to Jasmine (I'm not saying that Jasmine is not her own woman, but, anyway, you get what I meant, because she is a princess).

In the song, Aladdin says that he can show Jasmine a whole new world, because in the movie (the original version) Jasmine never goes anywhere, never decides anything, so basically, Jasmine is the epitome of patriarchy somehow, or we can also compare the case with a strict culture of Moslem women in Arab or middle east in general.

'.. No one to tell us no, or where to go, or say we're only dreaming..'

I grew up in a conservative family, not too strict, but my parents still have some particular conservative 'rules' for their daughters. For example, I never able to go out in the night by myself, or I must go back home after 9 or 10pm, I should dress politely, I should get married soon (?) so that my parents can feel relieved or something like that, and so on, which I understand the reasons completely, and I know that they did that for my own good. However, in some last months (approximately two months before my Master Degree graduation, and two months before my D-day (of marriage)), I felt so stress for all the pressure that I got. Some of them somehow make almost no sense.

What's your plan after graduation? Why do you want to work abroad? How about him? Are you guys decided to get married soon? Why don't you get married immediately after so you can live together abroad? A woman who will get married soon doesn't go to the concert alone! Don't go out too often! Don't wear those clothes, it's not appropriate! And so on, and so on.

Maybe it's hard to believe, but for me and him, marriage is one big step to feel the freedom itself. It's weird because some people thought that marriage equals to 'losing your freedom', but we were the opposite. So, we did it immediately to make the 'closure', and here we are now.

Me and him
It's strange that people always said to me that I can't do this and that because I'm a married woman, but not for him, I still can do this and that or he even offered his help for me. I understand completely that I might be one of the lucky women who have a husband with an 'equal' mindset, and let me decide what I want to do, what to wear, support my work and my passion, and appreciate me to the fullest. I know that not every woman can get this privileged, no?

The thing is, why do we (women) have to get married, or in a sense, have to become someone's 'belonging' in order to get the freedom? Isn't that strange?

That's why I feel like the song is somehow related to me and him in general. I got the feeling that Jasmine felt, to get the freedom. In my case, I can decide what kind of work I want to do, I can live together with him, do whatever we want, go wherever, as long as we both agreed on that. I know that this 'freedom' is not a 'complete freedom', because, you know, ((Asian parents)). We still have some other pressure and 'what to do' in order to fulfill or to follow the culture etc, we can not avoid that.

On the other hand, that doesn't mean he 'saved' me like what Aladdin did to Jasmine, he isn't perfect either. I'm pretty sure that we saved each other, we open each other's eyes, we helped each other to get to 'this place'. And I'm still the same person, I'm still a woman of my own, but I should be grateful that I have the privileged to decide, to speak up, and to live my own.

Long story short, here we are now, me and him, living a whole new world in a new city, despite the fact that we've been in this country for almost 3 years, but, still, this city is something new for us. We traveled a lot in these last 5 months (and (I believe) in the future as well), a lot of opportunities for us, new works, new friends, a new point of view, a new language (for me), new goals, and so on.

shining, shimmering, splendid

A whole new world, a dazzling place I never knew. A whole new world with new horizons to pursue, and now (I wish) no one to tell us no or where to go or what to do and so on.

Because the best people in life are free, no?

Addina Faizati
Spring in Brescia

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