Are You Happy?

He ever said so long she (me) is happy… But, are you? I wanted to ask.

Never had I thought I could be someone source of happiness. Came home a week to spend time with family. Mom said I am one blessed girl, having so many people to love me. My dad remembers everything I said. He grants my wishes regardless big or small. Knowing my homecoming, le mom changed bedsheet and curtains, decorated my room with flowers and sprayed scents air freshener. My brother fetches me whenever I want.

Uncles know I love herbal soup, seafood and Hakka delicacies, so I had a table full of Hakka cuisine, crab feast and big bowl of soup all by myself. Aunts cooked me food, and I never starved. Grandma still fills my bowl with loads of vegetables. Grandpa asked me to come home often. I am the eldest at home, I often take charge and make decisions. However among elder cousins, I am still one little girl. Little cousins are now all grown up, they drive me around and take care of me.

Having to live overseas almost a decade, home is where family is. I really treasure the moment being together. My love language is indeed quality time. Spending 9 days with them feel like a dream. Time sure files, I am leaving for work soon. When was the last time you see your parents? Have they have more wrinkles? Do they walk slower now? Their simplest joy is when they see smile on our faces.

These days, I got to teach them new things, introduced cocktails, explored good food places etc. Despite turning 28 this year, they still nag me for being forgetful, they still cook me dishes upon request, they still drive me around (cause I rarely drive) etc. Really glad that I am very close to my family, especially parents. Once, my friend asked: who are you closer to, mom or dad? Both, I said!

I literally told my mom everything, even though we are many miles apart. She never missed any events happened in my life, and she remembers better than I do. I am my dad’s favorite, he claimed. He only listened to me when my mom can’t even. Guess I just know how to push the right button aye? It applies the same to my little brother. Hehe. πŸ™‚

Often we thought we are alone, especially living overseas. We never wanted to worry our families, but I always remind myself I have loving family to back me up whenever I need. My dad was saying he is very happy to see us well now, but his heart aches whenever he sees us spending money on them (buy things, eat-out etc.). It is unnecessary, he said.

I reassured, saying that you (and mom) are my motivation to work hard. When we were young, you worked hard to feed us, give us the best education. I want to do the same. I work hard so that I am able to provide you better, bring you to experience, to explore. He then relieved. Though money is not everything, but it indeed provides us more options.

It’s okay to feel helpless, it’s okay to cry (we are all humans), more importantly, you should know that there is always someone love you more than you ever know. Don’t need to feel guilty or sorry, do it now before you know. Call whoever you miss, tell them how you feel. Often we are afraid how another party will react, but that’s your assumption. Communicate, not just talk.

Hope you are happy in whatever you do. Feeling a little emo right now *packing my luggage but I am looking forward to come home in July again hehe. Ciao~

The 5-Minute Journal #5

I am grateful for:

  • Finding out my stye early. I am on medical leave today
  • My colleagues checking in if I am doing okay
  • Able to visit temple for prayers after so many months
  • Spending time for studies, I have been havoc and meeting plenty of people recently
  • Having my favorite ramen craving fixed

Today’s affirmation:

  • Illness can be a blessing in disguise
  • Health always comes first
  • I have grown so much wow! I was clearing Google docs and came across my EQ report taken few years back. Glad that I have improved

Amazing things happened today:

  • Le cousins in UK are coming back in July, can’t wait to see them!
  • Avatar 2 is coming out on my birthday eve hehe
  • Packing for my homecoming trip shortly
  • Looking forward for le food trips coming week

Good Friday Indeed

It’s a long weekend these weekends. Hence, my parents decided to come down for visit. It has been more than 2 years since they came down to Singapore. It was pretty spontaneous. Earlier, I was just casually asking my dad if they planned to visit us since border has been uplifted. And he reverted: yes we will be coming down next week!

He booked accommodation, submitted his pass for approval etc. Fast forward to Thursday, I went out for drinks. Revealed some not-so-secret secrets from my brother. I was not surprised, prolly due to society nowadays, it’s kinda common I guess. I am glad that I am a half glass full person. Somehow I overcome things easier than my friends, and even so, I am able to shower positive energy to the people whom I care.

Me and my brother fully paid for the trip expenses, something I am very proud of. I have been longing to offer this gesture. I brought them to places with legitimate food and services. My mom was happy to see her son after 2 years. I found my brother becoming more mature, he is more chivalry and patience now. Despite being his older sister, sometimes I feel like I am the younger one.

Visited Flower Dome & Cloud Forest. My mom loves flowers, hence it’s a right choice bringing them for the visit. Not to mention, it was pretty sunny and hot. So, it was wise to stay indoors surrounded by flora and fauna. Brought them for dinner in a German bar. Le brother did all the meat cutting which I am glad. I have no idea how to do it to begin with. We then chilled in the hotel for awhile before parents slept in.

Rebellious got us to sneak out for a late night movie. Fortunately, the nearest cinema theatre was just 3 mins away. Parents knocked us on the door at 8am next day when we were still in our bed. Freshen up ourselves, chatted a while while having breakfast before heading out for temple visit. I am glad that dad made such impulsive decision for driving many hours down to Singapore to see us, so that we are able to spend quality time together.

Parents left Singapore after we had Chinese cuisine for lunch in a mall. My dad even bought me some snacks that I casually mentioned before hehe. Went for facial before meeting up le friends at a well known Indian restaurant near Clarke Quay. Met a pretty cool new friend who works in cybersecurity field. He even introduced us a draft beer place for drinks. Though I don’t really fancy beer, I really had fun.

Pretty sum up my Good Friday which is indeed a good Friday. I must say time really flies with a blink of eye. It’s mid April and soon gonna be May. Lately, I found out I am a very bad texter, or rather I prefer face to face conversation. Sometimes I would just ghost people without my knowing, or I feel some texts don’t need my actions? I guess being someone whose love language is quality time, I just want to spend time with those I care.

My heart is full now.

Homebound’ 22

The day has finally arrived… after 2 years. From booking vaccinated travel lane (VTL) flight, applying leaves, scheduling appointment for PCR test etc., I am finally home! Did I cry for a moment? Let’s not state the obvious. My tears were rolling at the corner of my eye when plane took off.

Have been waiting this moment for the longest time since March 2020. It all started from Alpha, Beta and then Delta, and now Omicron… Multiple country lockdowns, case fluctuations, being anxious etc. . The past 2 years were tough for all of us, regardless physically & mentally. Though it was a short 15-day trip, it was very fruitful.

Got to spend precious moment with my family and friends. Being not able to see my paternal grandma and maternal grandpa for 2 years, they have more wrinkles, they walk slower than how they used to, they now only react to louder voices… I am glad I am still able to catch up what I have missed.

Surprised my grandma when she was watching television the other day, she couldn’t react when I called her, prolly it didn’t strike her mind that I will show up like that in one fine afternoon. She still asked if I am dating, prolly she wants to see me settle down when she is still around. She teased my dad for being old school, for not able to accept interracial relationship. She reassured me, so long I am happy, she is happy.

We also stayed overnight at my uncle’s place, we gathered around to listen how grandpa travelled to China when he was only 3 years old. He shared how lucky we are as third generation, not require to do labor intensive work when we were kids. My cousins are now grown up children who can drive their older sister (me) around exploring city for late supper. We are close as we mostly spent our childhood together.

Got to sing karaoke after 2 years, catch up with le secondary school friends, manage to eat food that I have been longing. Not to mention, my dad’s cooking skill has improved a lot indeed. He is like my genie as he never failed my food quest. So proud of him that he has leveled up during country lockdown. Now he can cook, bake, grill etc.

I am glad after 2 years not able to return home, nothing has changed. πŸ™‚ Oh, I got to drive with my dad sitting beside me. I have not touched steering wheel since late 2019, it has been awhile. I am lucky to have my family and friends to fetch me around whenever I need. Definitely, one of the best days I had in these 2 years. Time to back to work, not to mention, I have 2 exams next month, but I have yet to start reading any materials.

I changed my return flight from VTL to non-VTL to extend my stay, hence I am serving a 7-day stay home quarantine at the moment. I managed to stay longer with family and friends, so I am not complaining at all. Plus, recent cases in Singapore has spiked in double, hence I am happy to stay home, avoiding meet ups and crowds with a legitimate reason for the time being.

Again, I am really thankful for having considerate colleagues, sufficient annual leaves, VTL arrangement, caring landlady, last but not least, my parents for this sweet homebound. Looking forward to meet them again, hopefully soon!

The 5-Minute Journal #3

Today I am grateful for:

  • Getting new work laptop ✨
  • Receiving Christmas gift from Lina ✨ Β 
  • Retrieving my lost spectacles ✨
  • Fixing my I-thought-it-spoilt shoes ✨
  • Having lunch with colleagues at Sanook Kitchen ✨
  • Be punctual at work ✨
  • Getting popular at work HAHA ✨

Today’s affirmation:

  • I am thankful for what I have, for what I receiveΒ πŸ’–
  • Feeling so good to receive good energy. Law of attraction indeed πŸ’–
  • I always do my best, for myself, for others πŸ’–

Here are few amazing things that happened today:

  • As I will be flying overseas soon, my colleague actually prioritized my queue in getting new laptop so that I can fly at peace 😊
  • Gotten a sling bag as Christmas gift, something I have been wanting to buy for my phone 😊
  • Lost my spectacles 2 weeks ago. So lucky that someone actually helped to keep and return me! Not to mention, I just changed them this year! 😊
  • Wore one of my favorite heels to work today. I thought it spoil, but I managed to fix 😊
  • It has been awhile since I had lunch with bunch of colleagues at work. The food was good 😊
  • More and more people knew me at work, not sure why. Maybe I have more authority since I am working in office. But sure, since I love helping people 😊
  • Managed to call for Grab early and reached office on time today, was difficult to call for Grab for the past few weeks 😊

The 5-Minute Journal #2

Today I am grateful for:

  • Having booster shot ✨
  • Waking up at 9am++ after so long ✨
  • Having group call with family ✨
  • Eating Tiramisu (fav cake) in birthday month ✨

Today’s affirmation:

  • I am thankful for what I haveΒ πŸ’–
  • I am feeling better after staycation πŸ’–Β 
  • I will not worry about things beyond my control πŸ’–Β 

Here are few amazing things that happened today:

  • Waking up at 9am++ on a non-working day today. I have been waking up at 5am++ regardless working or not everyday earlier 😊
  • Claim birthday cake- Tiramisu (fav cake) in birthday month before new year 😊
  • Some me time to do self reflect. My mind is clearer now 😊
  • Continue reading a book which I have been longing 😊
  • Was praised for having nice hair while checking out vaccination center 😊
  • Was showed concern if my hometown was hit with flood 😊
  • Grandma + uncle’s family were safe from flood 😊
  • Got to rest like finally, finally! Though no alcohol for the next few days 😊

Last but not least, Merry Christmas everyone! πŸŽ„ An annual festival commemorating birth of Jesus Christ!

Law of Attraction

I don’t deem myself a book smart or very intelligent person. But somehow I am one lucky girl- I always get what I want, of course I work my way up too. I am an optimistic person who worry less though I used to get anxious over unforeseen circumstances that might never happen. It is a total waste of time I would say. No jinx please, still counting my blessings. I believe in law of attraction, especially after reading the book myself.

The law of attraction is a philosophy suggesting that positive thoughts attract positive results into a person’s life whereas negative thoughts attract negative outcomes. It is based on the belief that thoughts are a form of energy and that positive energy attracts success in all areas of life, including health, finances and relationships.

I never doubted myself for not able to achieve what I want. Never. I am not being ignorant. Just saying I am the kind who will focus, work on my goals and never look back. I am very determined to work things out though I might cry when I am stressed out. I never back out. I never told myself that I don’t deserve anything good. I totally deserve it! I would rather work harder than settle for less.

Recently, we went Ocean restaurant to celebrate our birthdays. Pretty much an extravagant experience that I prolly won’t be going back again. The overall experience was top notch, for instance their services, food and restaurant ambience. Just saying it is not a norm where I will be going back as a returning customer cause the experience was not cheap. It is meant for an extravagant experience like I said. But, oh wells, once in a lifetime, plus since we are stuck in Singapore during birthdays. Why not?

It was indeed a memorable night. Having jazz music as BGM with fishes swimming in front of my eyes, I never thought I will be experiencing this in my lifetime. Not that I don’t deserve it, but rather I never thought I can make it this far. Living overseas for almost a decade, I guess I am doing good, to be able to afford such experience. Moral of the story: work hard to have more choices, to deserve better life. I guess we need to be practical and realistic at times where money does provide some sort of security and comfort.

Still working hard on my goals. Still sending positive messages to the universe as I believe I will receive the same. I don’t wish everything is smooth in life cause I know that’s not possible. Instead, I pray for the strength to conquer challenges when times are bad. And of course, always reminding myself to be thankful- appreciate for what I receive, for what I have. Feeling abundant!

Are you working on your new year resolutions already? Cause I am!

Unsettled

At times I stay late at work, biting granola bar, thereafter continue drafting my emails…

At times I eat sandwiches as late dinner by the roadside, waiting for taxi to go home…

At times I walk around to buy dinner but all shops have closed, and I am starving…

Totally not ranting how I am being tied down, but rather feeling contented to be able to enjoy what I am doing now even though I give in a lot of time at work. At times where I feel stressful over workload, being tasked to coach and do reporting recently, I am glad I am valued as an asset to the team, to the company. Not to mention, I just joined the team 4 months ago. How time flies.

I have learnt so much, and definitely so much more to learn. I am thankful for having knowledgeable bosses and considerate teammates. They are more experienced than myself, and being very open and always up for discussion whenever I need help. I am tasked to assign, to do reporting and to coach a newcomer. Though at times I still feel I am rather new, not sure if I am ready to handle all these matters, but I will definitely do my best!

Counting down 2 more days to December, and it is the beginning of festive season as well as my birthday month hehe!! I am totally looking forward to all the plans I have with my friends- cycling, Thai food feast, Ocean restaurant experience, staycation, meeting my long lost friend, buffets and gifts!! So excited, and hopefully I never gained a lot of weight by eating too much.

Ps. Sagittarius rocks πŸ™‚

Mon Vaccination Experience

Today marks my day two after jabbing second dose of Pfizer. Not to mention, it is also my second day on medical leave. All I want to say is Thank God I survived. The side-effects turned out so much worse than I expected though my friend did mention about it.

Last Sunday, I was still happily eating my all time favorite- Wanton noodles for dinner while watching Olympics games after vaccination. No side effects at all, very healthy. Prepping myself to sleep thereafter, finally get back to work on coming Monday at home, no longer in quarantine hotel! Wohoo, I thought.

Woke up to muscle ache on my left arm and having chills the next day. I declared MC, so as to get some rest instead of working. Sooner, I started getting fever. I thought it gonna get better after some sleep and drinking much water (that’s what I did during my first dose). I was wrong! It was raining cats and dogs. I started getting high fever and feeling very uncomfortable. Started shivering and felt like my whole body was burning.

Things got worse when my head started aching. I climbed out of my bed for lunch, so that I can have Panadols after that. I definitely made a right choice by ordering a 10-days meal package which will be sent to my house around noon. I remember the days when I was serving quarantine order, not able to cook at home (avoid physical contact), not enough ingredients to survive for 2 weeks (can’t leave home) and expensive food delivery with limited choices.

Back to sleep again after taking medicine. Couldn’t recall how long I have slept- 5 hours? 7 hours? during daytime. Things finally got better after late afternoon, when medicine took effect. I managed to take a shower after a long day, able to walk around and study a bit. Updated mom on my status, told her I have overcome the side-effects, I survived. I really thought I gonna die for goodness sake. Don’t really remember when was the last time I had such high fever.

No more muscle ache on my left arm but still having mild fever and discomfort today. My boss asked me to take another day off to rest. I am really thankful for her. As much as how dramatic my days with the new team, she is always there checking on me. To be honest, I feel like I have someone on my back whenever I need, I should definitely work hard when I am back to work tomorrow. Haha! Guess I am good since I can joke eh. πŸ™‚

Finally, I am done with both doses, waiting for 2 more weeks to take effect officially. Can’t wait to go home, looking forward for the day I am able to travel the world again!

I Was Issued Quarantine Order!

You might not know this, but I was issued Quarantine Order (QO) under the Infectious Diseases Act for quarantine for 10 days. It all started on one fine morning, where I woke up to an SMS from Ministry of Health (MOH). I will be contacted with more information including transfer arrangements, it stated.

Just in case, you wonder what is QO:

A QO is a legal order issued to individuals who is, or is suspected to be, a carrier of an infectious disease or a contact of a person confirmed to have an infectious disease. MOH will establish if a QO should be served out in the home, dedicated Government Quarantine Facilities (GQFs) or hospitals, based on an assessment of a person’s contact history, state of health, and the suitability of the home.

I was all good in quarantine hotel with no symptoms at all. Tested negative for both Antigen Rapid Test (ART) & Polymerase Chain Reaction (PCR) tests in the mid of quarantine, however I am still required to complete QO.

Some tips to share:

  • Always on your Bluetooth (token or phone) as my possible exposure was not shown in Trace Together (TT) app- a tracing application used in Singapore. Likely I came in contact with Covid confirmed personnel on public transport as I was nowhere in any clusters too.
  • Always wear your mask. Never remove it unless you are eating or drinking. Shut up when you are on public transport, to avoid exposing yourself to potential carriers.
  • Don’t anyhow touch- in “Singapore slang”. Reduce physical contact whenever possible. You might not know if the person/ item is a potential carrier.
  • Walk away from those who cough or keep sneezing on public transport. Those who are ignorant, might still go out, and it’s us to protect ourselves !!!
  • Stop sharing food with others. My mind was a blank when I was issued QO without knowing any contact history or so. No records were shown in TT but big data kept with MOH which is confidential. Not to mention, I went out with a friend few days ago. But, it is then confirmed I got exposed a day after meeting her.
  • Don’t go out whenever possible. It’s tough with lesser gatherings, outings, but it is vital to stay safe. My parents totally freaked out when I told them about my QO. 😦
  • Reach out MOH proactively if you are the only one (in household) being contacted to serve QO. Rightfully, you should stay away from same household for health concerns. Driver will contact and inform you on the designated quarantine hotel and pick you up thereafter. So, pack your bag beforehand.
  • Download “Homer” from app store to update your temperature and symptoms. It is also used for your location tracing as well as health status. You might be contacted or do expect house visitations if you fail to do so. It’s a breach of act if you leave house while serving QO.
  • Bring a pack of facial masks with you as it is dry and cold in the quarantine hotel room. Always moisturize and hydrate your face, otherwise it will eventually crack and become flaky like mine. It’s darn painful!

I am truly blessed to have considerate boss, team members as well as landlady. They have been checking on my health status and asking if I am well, or need any help… Not to mention, it was my second day with new team when I first started QO. My friend even sent desserts to me. What a lucky girl! πŸ’– Also shout out to the staff where I have been well taken of during my stay. They often reach out to me to check if I need anything, send reminders for food collection and attend to all my queries. πŸ˜€

To be honest, I was quite anxious in the beginning for not knowing any details i.e. contact history, state of health (no tests taken), being traumatized if I might have Covid and spread to others, especially people from the same household. Well, life still goes on right. It’s important not to feel low when we can change nothing. I constantly remind myself how blessed I am to have a roof to stay, food on table and clean water to drink.

It was not a bad experience, but I certainly do not look forward for the experience again. Despite serving quarantine order, I thank God for the well-being for still able to work, catching up with Olympics, read book, study for my paper, write a blog, do some Tabata, attend online French class etc. Yup, I did not put my time into waste.

Nonetheless, take care and stay safe everyone xx. We shall see each other safe and sound someday! Cheers ✨

Ps. Feel free to reach out to me if you are *touch wood* being issued one too. I can share more details based on personal experience. πŸ™‚