Thursday, June 6, 2019


"All I see before me is that final 24 hours in Adelaide. The sadness swam in their eyes and their hearts shattered into pieces."

The moment I close my eyes to that particular song, all I see in my mind is that vision dancing in my mind. The vision where they forced themselves to hold back their tears for the fear of flooding the tears with the sticky solution. Come to think of it, it may be a subconscious cry for me to slow down and smell the roses, so to speak. It may also be an indication that I’m using the alternate universe or a happier past to cope with all the earthly stressors.

The document that did a 180 on me arrived on my doorstep faster than I expected. Any form of elation was replaced with a wave of anger in my bloodstream. Anger that I played my cards in the wrong fashion, which backfired in my face and landed me with irreversible changes. Anger that everything in my plans derailed like a train driver who has lost control. My circle of friends will never have an understanding of how I’m feeling unless I speak of it - and you may ask why I’d rather torture myself emotionally than to let them know.

I’ve said it from time to time: it’s my battle to fight and I’ll deal with it alone. Yes, you’ll definitely remind me that what I’m suppressing and what I’m projecting to those around me will crash into each other and make a clear path murky. And yes, it’s exhausting down to the bones to feign that everything is okay when it is not, but it is what it is.

I found myself reliving a flashback of me travelling with the Carries, Papa Carrie’s business acquaintance, and the guy’s family to a resort interstate. While I don’t remember the exact details of that trip, we were there at night. I wore the pair of Japanese flip-flops as the adults gathered at the cafe near the swimming pool. The children - two boys of differing ages - and I were close by, doing our own thing. Maybe the large age gap created an element of awkwardness between us - or I’m distant whenever I’m introduced to someone new. I need time to warm up to the person. I’m not shy; just … cautious, for lack of a better word.

Could this be a sign that I’m living in the reminiscence of the ancient days? For all I know, I’ve descended to a stage where I could care less about the wonderful Pandora’s box of the future. All of the unexplainable pain and aches that left me for such a long time have returned to harass me on a frequent basis. The recent one came when I returned to my cubicle after completing a task. As the pain knocked on my ribcage, I had to hold it while I hid behind the table to let the pain go away on its own. Maybe what I read is true after all: pains and aches will manifest weirdly out of stress and anxiety. Don’t let the looks fool you; I’m in a world of stress and anxiety as its toppings.

Sunday, May 12, 2019


If I’m zoning out, that’s a sign that I’m introverting and plotting the resolution of personal matters in my brain. What’s worse is if it occurs at the workplace and in the presence of colleagues. I don’t want to be mistaken as someone distant, but I don’t want to be pushed to the edge where the annoyance will glimmer in my eyes as a warning. All I need at that time is some moments to myself to process the information overload. If I don’t do that, my brain will be weighed down like an anchor with unnecessary matters . . . and it’ll be splashed on my face. No wonder the Carries have zoomed in on the fact that one has to be adaptable and flexible. Things are fishy when I’m boiling like a radiator in a room that has a comfortable temperature, which meant that my mood is about to slide off. I slipped out for lunch alone at a nearby eatery without my colleagues knowing because I needed the time out to clear my brain and calm myself.

Yet they are cool enough to understand that I’m not as fluent as them in the common language spoken at the workplace. Even though I grew up in a multicultural and multilingual society and have been exposed to at least 4 languages, it doesn’t necessarily mean that I’m fluent in all of it. My brain still doesn’t work fast enough to swim between languages, trust me.

But what I’ve recently observed is that I’m more selfish when it comes to weekends and holidays. I’d rather stay at home and recharge the introvert battery than to head outdoors in the midst of a crowded place. Hang on, I know what you’d say about this. Beggars can’t be choosers; working folks only have the weekends to run their errands and complete their shopping. If my battery isn’t fully recharged over the weekend, I’ve a tendency of working with a charcoal face. That’s why things are much better if and when I’m fully rested and ready to attack the working week head-on. Don’t blame me; I would love to be on my own for the remaining 25% as I don’t thrive in a crowded area. I thrive better in solitude. Throw me in a room with all of my work and the expected timeframe for completion and leave me alone until I poke my head out for assistance. Oh, and copious amount of coffee would be lovely as it’d keep me awake until I crash after hours. It’s a weird habit I have since before college.

“You have a caffeined bloodstream.”

My childhood friend would always quip that phrase each time we head off to our favorite coffeehouse to catch up. And I’ve learnt to take it in my stride as it’s true. Still, I can’t complain much. Life in law is more hectic than this and the first one to take a beating is my social life, as I’ve insinuated before.

Come to think of it, this reminds me of a touchy conversation between me and someone. It is a topic that only a handful of my nearest and dearest know. It’s the precursor to who I am today. In the quiet moments to myself, I questioned most of the decisions that I made in the last five years. The anger and sadness rose from nowhere into the air, suffocating me with all of the regrets. Yet the irony is there; the more I should arrange for an appointment with a counsellor/psychiatrist, the more I’m unwilling to do so. It’s rather safer for me to keep everyone at an arm’s distance instead. Although the specific someone desired for me to spill more beans as I’d feel much better after ranting, it’s arduous to do so . . . for personal reasons.

Maybe it’s true; the suppressed issues are deeply entwined with my identity that eliminating it would remove a significant part of me.

Thursday, May 2, 2019


There was a slight reprieve in the form of the Labor Day holiday, in which I was able to catch up with life and to do some shopping for new work clothes. You’d be surprised; the ones that I have in the closet aren’t exactly appropriate for my future permanent position. What made it inconvenient is the fact that I’ve never incorporated those colors into my everyday attire. For those styles, I wear it from time to time, depending on the occasion.

Yet the break wasn’t enough to refill the energy tank. One day’s rest is never enough, believe me. If you thought the life of a university student was tough, having a full-time career is another story in itself. The tank’s depleted to the point where I need a long break, but I’m only saving my annual leave for important matters instead. It didn’t help my situation when my body protested out of stress. The last time I was under the weather with symptoms like this, it was in the midst of my final year. Remnants of it first showed up during work, but the ignorant child in me thought it was related more to overthinking rather than a fever. It wasn’t until 48 hours later that the symptoms showed up at full blast: body chills, a rising temperature, a growing desire to sleep . . . you name it. I’m not surprised, to say the least. While my body tried its hardest to fight off the infection, I ran errands instead of locking myself indoors to rest.

Talk about testing my luck.

Although the fever was drastically reduced after spending a night in perspiration, it wasn’t enough. I returned to work with faint traces of it and even swung by the convenience store to buy paracetamol tablets - something which I’ve never done before. If I’ve attended classes while recovering from a fever before, repeating it for work shouldn’t be a problem. My friends would disagree with me on this, I’m sure. As what I’ve elaborated to a peer before our final exams, I’ll be that employee who will rock up to office even when ill unless I’m bedridden. I’m aware that it’s unhealthy as it’d affect the work-life balance and send me on a downward spiral, but that’s just me.

That brings me to the possibility of emotional exhaustion.

I should’ve realized that the tendency to come down with fever or cold might be a spillover from my intense academic days. But there’s more. I’ll tell you why; I’m now easily annoyed at my inability to concentrate on the tasks at hand. I’m making what my folks would term as silly mistakes. The pre-Adelaide me was never like this: she had the eye to spot mistakes and was more observant. While a reasonable person is able to move on from their errors within minutes, I can spend the entire day reflecting about it and where I could’ve done it right.

Maybe it’s a sign that I’m shrouded in brain fog. Or maybe not. Only time will tell which is which.

Monday, April 22, 2019


A lot has happened over these couple of months. Combined with what I endured since my final year up until now, I’m not surprised I always push myself close to breaking point. A part of me is aware that I’m using work to escape my emotions. A bad choice, yeah, I know. It’s the least I can do without bursting into flames at an unsuspecting and innocent soul. Another part of me has the sneaking suspicion that it’s the result of suppressing my emotions, leading to a personality change.

Those who are close to me (which are far and few between) cringe whenever they see me in this stage. Sure, they’ve encouraged me to come clean with whatever that’s bothering me. Yet there are certain things that’ll forever remain a secret from them. I’m weary of explaining myself to someone who hasn’t lived through the circumstances I was thrown into. I mean, it’s seriously unfair and it’d be a waste of my breath. At least with someone who understands, there’s not much need for words. Just a look in each other’s eyes is enough; the rest speaks for itself.

Also, I’m bushed to the point where I can sleep all weekend. It’s a common occurrence that most of my Saturdays are spent on catching up on lost sleep, lol. The beauty is that I’m unsure of its root cause - whether it’s from work, sleep deprivation, a tired soul . . . or a combination of it all.

One thing’s for sure; the sensitive antenna has absorbed all of the emotions around me once again. The good, the bad, and the ugly. All of it. What made it a bit tough was the sour mood that enveloped me as I made my way to the workplace. I wouldn’t say I bailed out on my colleagues, but I declined their invitation to join them for lunch. I needed to be alone for a while to recover from the emotional overload, but ended up spending the lunch hour with another colleague and our takeaways. Trust me, it’s not because I’ve lost my marbles. Even as a university student, I comprehended the unhealthy idea of eating at your cubicle, especially when papers are strewn all over your table and you’re working without a break.

Say what you like, but time slips faster through the cracks of your fingers when you’ve a million things to attend to and concurrently multitask. Succeeding tasks that roll one after another is perfect because it takes the edge off my mind. Being on the go all the time soothes the overthinking mind - yet it drains a large amount of energy from the body.

Thursday, April 11, 2019

A Divergent Path

Questions swirl in the air as I battle between anger and sadness at the deck of cards I have. A part of me feels it’s unfair that I’m in this situation with no light at the end of the tunnel. Yet the new moon brought me on a new adventure in life. I won’t go into the full details of the job scope due to the NDA. The daily routine is somewhat a form of practice, seeing that my intended field has more challenges and stress than I’ll like to admit. All career fields have its own challenges and it’s arduous to describe the level of stress. What I find stressful may be as easy as pie for you. What you find stressful may be something lovely for me instead. It all depends on the individual themselves.

Let’s just say that it’s a different field from what I majored in uni, but believe me on one thing. Educational boundaries are limitless - as long as there is a burning passion to learn about something. I can’t complain much as things seem to be okay right now. That’s something I’m petrified about. No matter how smooth the plans are, there’s always a tad bit of fear that something would go wrong somewhere and somehow.

Jasmine Green Milk Tea

Pork Dried Pan Mee

Speaking of which, I never fail to stumble upon new eateries with my colleagues’ daily recommendations. Lunch with them is sometimes a food exploration for a couple of reasons:

  • With them being around, I have to actually eat. I don't think I had regular lunch as a university student
  • By remembering where the eateries are, I'm able to decide on the spot when I'm in the area or within the vicinity
  • I'm sampling items that I won't purchase in a normal circumstance

That aside, the working week doesn't leave me with much time to pursue my hobbies either. I'm drained of any energy by the time the weekend rolls around. Even my plans for a project are delayed at the same time. But that has no time limit attached to it - yet. To settle it requires advance and tedious planning on my part - or late nights on some days. Is it something that I'm able to do?

Stay tuned to find out more.

Tuesday, March 26, 2019


Although it’s been a couple of months now, I still remember what happened in the depth of those nights. I swallowed the emotions that spread in my heart like wildfire. My insistence of swallowing it resulted in the physical manifestation instead, causing me to suffer from immense back pain. It was at this stage that I promised myself that I’ll never return to this state of mind.

Yet, nothing has changed.

It’s safe to assume that I’ve momentarily lost my marbles as a result of the overthinking and late nights. I’m close to the precipice of emotions where I’m questioning each and every decision of mine . . . but I’d rather struggle with everything on my own. It’s not because speaking of it may amplify my problems, but more along the lines of my desire to avoid it. Truth be told, I’m extremely exhausted - even way more than I’m letting on. Even close friends have no idea what I’m dealing with. Although they’ve encouraged me on multiple occasions not to bottle up my feelings, I’d still throw myself into work to take my mind off it. I don’t want to rant on anyone when all of our shoulders are burdened with our individual responsibilities.

It’s as clear as day that there are undeniable changes in me. Maybe I’m facing with what they call reverse culture shock. Or maybe I’m being torn in two different directions . . . again. Familiar places have become unfamiliar. I’m more irritable than ever. I’ve written about this in the on-campus magazine before and I never expected that I’ll have to deal with this as well. I mean, I had my suspicions when I went east. I just never expected it to be this bad. Throw in other matters that I’m experiencing, it’s no wonder that things have derailed in this manner.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Torn in different directions

What I endured as a youngster has returned to haunt me. I know this for a fact because all of those side effects. It blew out of proportion in my final year when the stress was amplified. My lower spine radiated with such pain that I thought of two possibilities: one was a kidney issue and the other was a bone problem. Neither of which turned out to be true. It was just the physical effects of what I faced. Once I forced myself to take a chill pill and breathe (and boy was it hard!), the pain disappeared the next minute.

"You'll be okay."

There are moments in time when I had to swallow my emotions and say that I’m fine when I want to be left alone with my thoughts. Throw in the fact that I’m still overcoming my past experiences, it’s not easy to be around people at times. Someone once told me before that being alone is a risky game because it may lead to loneliness. If it is for an extended period of time, it’s a downward spiral into the dark abyss - where anything can happen. Even depression. I’d rather keep to myself than to seek help from those closest around me. There’s so much that I had to handle and resolve with no one to air my grievances to; only the salty solution to accompany me to sleep most of the nights. The tears would come at the most unexpected times with a wave of anger suddenly engulfing me instead. It’s either that or I’ll slip into the realm of dark thoughts.

Trust me, if you haven’t lived a day in my shoes or gone through a similar experience, don’t critique or judge my decisions. Since I secretly believe that there’s an element of dislike, I’m only doing what’s best for me and my emotions - even if it means pushing people to an acceptable distance.

There are moments in time when I hope that there’ll be someone who can hear me out and share my burden. Isn’t that everyone’s number 1 wish? To find everlasting happiness with someone they can love and trust with their lives? But I’m a realistic person. It’s not often that you’ll find someone who’ll not use your vulnerabilities against you. Finding that perfect person will be close to impossible, if not harder than expected. This reminds me of a late-night conversation that I had with an acquaintance about love and relationship. While the person only knows what I’ve told him, he comprehended my reluctance about the whole idea of a relationship. Yes, love may be sweeter than sugar and there would be beautiful memories for the lovebirds. On the other end of the spectrum, however, love has the most potential of breaking hearts and causing emotional havoc to the parties instead.

A part of me envisages the importance of having a stable career and settling down with Mr. Right, but I’m sure all of us are aware that only the lucky ones are able to have both. No wonder I’ve heard that marriage is similar to a life sentence.

There are moments in time when I’m seated at the edge of the cliff, pondering on the choices and options that I have. I’m also wondering whether there’s a lesson that needs to be learnt from all this. I keep landing in the same pile of mess; it’s as if the plot is repeated with the same conclusion at the end. But what it symbolizes, I don’t know. All I’m aware is that I feel like I’m torn in two divergent directions right now. Everything that I once believed in is being challenged by what I’m experiencing. What I’ve once regarded as true has turned out to be the opposite. What I’ve avoided all these while, I’m forced to face it dead in the eye now.

"I'll be there for you."

Even as a little girl holding the Chinese lantern and walking around the neighborhood with her friends, I understood that avoiding issues was never a permanent solution. I’ll eventually be weary from all of the running. I can’t be avoiding it forever. While I have presented the best version of myself to everyone, it has bled a lot of energy to maintain that facade.

After what I’ve lived through, seen, and experienced, I’m not who I once was. I can feel the change taking place in my bones. It’s not that difficult to notice; the fury will burn alight in my eyes to mask the brewing sadness. The ghost of my past is a faded memory that I’m clinging onto for dear life. It may mean that the issues I’ve avoided are bubbling to the surface and demanding that I take care of it. Or it may mean nothing.

And that has caused a lot of negative changes in me.

Wednesday, March 13, 2019


I dreamt that we drove along the quiet, dim roads in search for the right building. I’ve no idea what time it was, but there was no parking whatsoever. It was cordoned off and blocked by the residents. We were frightened to illegally park the car and infuriate anyone.

There was a spiral walled staircase that led to an elevator that was guarded by someone. When we told him why we were there, he guided us to the 11th floor, house number 4. At the corner of my eye, I spotted a lady walking in our direction and instead ignored her.

The next scene panned to a house with white tiled floor for its porch and white gates. It was a share house with the main tenant. Both of us came to the collective decision to move out due to our respective decisions. Standing in the middle of the living room, the house was vacant and devoid of any decorative pieces. We had instructed the storage company to take all of our items a couple of hours earlier and remained to clean the unit. The main tenant walked out of the door, following her friend who helped to carry her luggage. I stayed on for a little while due to whatever reason I had. I noticed that there were pairs of jeans in different shades of blue placed by the open window of the master bedroom, which left me wondering whether the house came with an odd aura and influenced us to return vacant possession to the owner.

The scene where we drove along the dimly lit road could be an indication that I'm feeling lost. Or maybe the fact that I've not found what I've been searching for. The dimly lit road can also be looked as a dark road. In which case, the online interpretation suggested that 'if a road is dark this man represent confusion, problems, or a lack of understanding as you pursue goals.' I'd say that this is an insight into my current feelings since I'm as confused as ever. There is a bucket's worth of problems that I need to resolve. With no one to air my grievances to, all those emotions have turned inward and caused such havoc that I dislike everyone and everything around me.

Another interpretation is as follows: 'To dream of a paved road represents your path in life being easy or laid out for you. Your sense of direction is clear or catered to. Smooth sailing or nothing getting in your way. Negatively, a paved road may reflect a difficult time of your life that feels like you can’t escape the mundane. It may also reflect a life path that is too easy.’

As for the spiralled wall staircase, there may be two elaborations for this. One stems from me continuously binging on a Taiwanese drama called ‘Fated to Love You’. The other may be best explained by the online interpretation, where ‘if you see stairs at a public area or unknown place, it defines the issues that are related to your behavior and interactions with the outer world.’ Now, I won’t mention much about my behavior on a public sphere, but my social interactions have been affected by what I’m experiencing now.

I don’t know what to make of the scene where I dreamt of 11th floor, house number 4, though.

I'm not sure what a porch would mean, but 'a porch can represent the people who are close to you but not those who are part of your immediate family. Those you keep at a safe distance. Is it time that you let one of these people in? Is there someone whom you want to have a closer relationship with? Or do you need to put someone back in that group, if you have allowed them to get close to you and regretted it?’ If this is my subconscious desire to be closer to someone, I'd prefer to throw my feelings into the sea and turn into a stoic child. It might also hint at a couple of folks whom I know. My personal interpretation would be guarding my innermost feelings in the depths of my heart from the outside world.

As for the empty house, the layout of this property has a familiar aura to it - and it's because I know this house in reality. The online interpretation suggested that the 'porch can be called a positive sign, because in most cases it promises good and new opportunities. However, it may presage negative events; it all depends on other elements of a dream. Dreaming of a porch is a harbinger of a carefree life; this symbol indicates that a dreamer has nothing to worry about.’ Although it may indicative that I've nothing to worry about, I highly doubt that this is accurate.

There has to be something going on with the multiple pairs of jeans being hanged and blowing on its own. I don't own that many pairs in reality although I love denim. Although it is defined online as ‘To dream of seeing denim jeans represents a casual degree of discipline. A comfortable or casual attitude towards goals. Focus, discipline, or willpower that is comfortable not overly concerned. Your ability to persevere without worrying about anything.' I wish this is accurate because I don't feel this way at the current moment. Furthermore, 'Negatively, a pair of jeans may be a sign that you are not serious or focused enough. You are talking a very casually disciplined stance towards a situation. Casually accepting a situation the way it is without believing that being more serious is important to cause any desired changes.' This alternative interpretation makes more sense because I feel like I'm not as focused as I'd like to be in all of my endeavours. My brain has gone off on its own adventure and left me in a zombified mode.

Saturday, March 9, 2019

Pure Bliss

Happiness dance in her eyes,
As she shares a glance with him.
The man of her dreams;
She is twirling with him
With their fingers entwined.

She found her refuge in his arms.
Safety envelops her like a parent’s love.
She found her home in his arms.
Her eyes crinkle up with love,
As she rests her head on his shoulder.

All the fears and worries,
She burns them with the fire of their love.
All the hopes and dreams,
She breathes life into it
As she moves on from her dark past.
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