sleepless again in the city

I couldn’t sleep well again. Spent a long while turning and tossing, frustrated by the noises from above and around. Why are people revving engines at 11pm in the night?

Actually I’d fallen asleep for a bit to be woken by these right before midnight, which caused the broken sleep and thereafter I just couldn’t get back into proper slumber anymore. Finally at 4.30, I decided to just wake up and quit trying to go back to sleep.

Sunday was actually a pretty good day I had, with the morning starting with a yoga class after I spent the earlier part of the morning mopping the floor.

Attended service and then had a nice catch-up session with a friend over coffee, cake and lunch, a tad too much perhaps that today… well the story of my life reads again how the obsession with controlling the number on the weighing scale took over and I’ve failed on the control bit. Really, it’s the thing that’s taken control over me and over the last few days the number has sort of risen to a level that I’ve not seen in a while. Yes I am upset but compared to before when I’d be reduced to a sobbing mess and lamenting and blaming God for putting me through this, I think I got to the stage where I’ve become so tired and jaded. Maybe I’ve finally become resigned that I’ll just never be able to control it whichever way I want it to go without seriously limiting and restricting my life to one that is devoid of the joy of allowing oneself to indulge and enjoy gastronomical treats.

When I talk about such stuff to other people, I do it with this sense of self centred-ness that I know speaks of a lot of insensitivity for how others may feel when I wax lyrical on being unable to accept that I’ve gained a kilogram over a day. Maybe it’s something others struggle with too but me imposing my complains on them is probably not such a kind and nice thing to do.

The business district on the weekend is always a picture of tranquility and peace, entirely different from what it is on weekdays.

Yummy pre-yoga snack on Sunday.

The broken sleep is evident in the slight bloodshot appearance in my dull eyes, which funnily, a friend I met for lunch last week mentioned I still have that big smile and sparkle in my eyes. Really? I thought that the inside of me has died several times over, and my senses are dull with zero interests remaining in me, not shopping, not travelling, not anything. Maybe only food? Or that is another touchy area for me because of the tight grasp of control I am trying to exert over it but unfortunately with how all things go, the harder you try to control something, the less able you are able to do so and in fact, it turns its head on you and controls you instead.

Post-yoga. Expensive yogurt pot.

That big meal and I demolished the slice of cheesecake almost by myself, with the generous avocado toast, and half the pot of hummus. I wonder where my huge appetite comes from and that explains why today I am paying the price.

sometimes I think…

About how perhaps I’m thankful that many years ago I decided to call it quits on my first and only relationship after spending more than, was it 3 or 4 years, together?

We started out well, as with most couples, going through that amorous phase where we seemed more than friends but yet nobody wanted to make a first move to officiate the relationship.

It took long enough, maybe almost a year, before on one fateful night that was no doubt aided by copious amounts of alcohol, that the confession came and presto we became known as girlfriend and boyfriend.

But as time went by, friction grew and I guess maybe our lives changed and what we wanted or not became clearer to both of us, which I think maybe neither of us were willing to compromise on because the young us wanted an uncompromised life?

There are times when I’d think if we hadn’t parted, how would things be like now? Would we have both compromised on some areas that we held steadfast onto then, would I be now a mother to kid(s), or would we have actually still parted ways?

Well these what ifs are interesting to wonder about but we never really know and probably it is better that we don’t.

Actually I don’t know the point of this post. It arose because I was somehow just feeling poignant about life. But actually halfway through I lost my train of thought.

Saturday almost is over. It’s been a fairly good day. I hope for more good days or is it greedy to even harbour such a hope?

it’s a cray cray world

So to speak.

This week felt like it has gone by in a flash and Friday is just a couple of hours away.

Is it good that I’ve been kept fairly occupied at work that this week I hadn’t had much time or mood while in the office to mindlessly scroll through social media? I was online but doing more reading of news articles.

Yet… when the mind is everywhere with only a portion of it being able to focus on the task at hand, I need frequent mental breaks to toggle among tasks which ended up with lower productivity because we all know how multitasking goes. I do need downtime though because I think that bit redundancy is necessary for one to pause and ruminate, or even to give thanks and appreciation. When every moment is spent trying to chase after something or complete something, we get so terribly lost and buried under a load of pressure that time just slips by without us noticing that a few more strands of silver are peeking through the crown of our heads or a few more lines have etched their permanence on our faces.

I’ve been having poor quality of sleep in terms of the number of hours I clock each night. The recorded number seemed to have shown a slight improvement though, maybe because I’ve made it a point to try going to bed earlier but days where I wake before the alarm goes off around 5am, are often. Sometimes I get very little deep and rem sleep, some days I get a lot of rem sleep. Either ways I think my bruxism is back.

I deal with neighbours living above me who are extremely inconsiderate I’m so tempted to file police reports but I know it’s not going to help. Every night without fail they’ll cause a ruckus without care that someone lives in the unit below them. I can’t seem to have a single moment of peace at home my sanity is really wearing dangerously thin.

I’m tired. Really. Can anyone help me? I feel like I can’t do this any longer. Life feels infinitely tiresome and I wish it’s something that I have the choice and option to quit from.

A throwback photo from the weekend that does not reflect my state of mind. I wished days could be better with me having a healthier and happier state of mind. Contrary to beliefs of others, it isn’t often a personal choice. Maybe for them it is but I can’t seem to extricate myself from it.

Feeling rejected and hopeless in life, stuck in a job I’m unhappy and frustrated in but unable to get out, stuck in a flat I derive no peace from which I don’t know how to handle, stuck in a cycle of unhelpful, obsessive and irrational fears and thoughts that I can’t unravel my mind from.

Indeed this is a crazy state of being.

life and its neverending plot twists and potholes

I guess that’s why life is considered a journey because in itself the word journey connotes a certain degree of difficulty and struggle, that it’s not going to be a smooth ride through.

It is tiring when life literally keeps delivering lemons though, like wave after wave, something keeps turning up at the doorstep of my life, swinging yet another juggernaut sized challenge my way. Perhaps that’s an exaggerated description but you know how it seems like there’s never a respite. Is that how it is to keep one going and not bored? I’m not bored but fatigued from all these unceasing episodes, or am I just wearing a dark shade of lens in viewing them which instead I should turn my perspective a different direction and try to view it differently? I know that’s perhaps the solution to this but saying it is invariably easier than acting on it especially when in the depths of fighting to stay afloat to even catch that last bit of breath.

The struggles we encounter and hopefully overcome, by ourselves or through the support of others, and definitely by the grace of God, is what makes us grow as a person, developing our character but why do some of us need to go through so much more (relative speak I suppose)? Whether it’s dealing with eliciting the elusive passion or even tiny spark of joy at work while trying to suppress the urge every single day to serve up the two months’ notice, or navigating the curves and treacherous ways of interpersonal relationships with family, friends and colleagues. There are much more for sure, including all these self talk that goes on endlessly in the mind that leaves one with self doubt, self pity or self loathe.

I am a tired soul and many days I crave to be called back to be with the lord. But I know it’s not time, if not I won’t be here anymore. What is it that I have to do?

Some have harshly called me out on the incessant whining and griping, which often leads to nothing except further digging a deeper hole for myself to sink into but this is the main point of articulating these thoughts in he hope that if I were to put them out in tangible form I could maybe at some point or in the midst of it reflect a little or come upon some revelation of sorts?

I just got to know about an acquaintance’s mum who was involved in an unfortunate accident that has now left the poor lady struggling in a coma. Such unpredictable turns of life, the kind of curveballs nobody wants to get. I just pray for her complete and speedy recovery and that she’ll awake soon and get well.

Life is short. It is unpredictable. Yet many of us, like me especially, don’t treasure it enough to live it vicariously and fully. It’s tough to do it on a daily basis though, we can’t ever have sufficient energy and drive to do so and keep up indefinitely, or at least until such time we go to meet Him.

In the meantime, let’s just continue to plod.

And eat all the peanut butter that I want.

Hazy days return

Another sleepless morning. Awake at 3.30 and I can’t get back to sleep. Maybe I need to stick with just the morning coffee and avoid the extra cuppa in the afternoon which I’ve been indulging on the last few days.

It’s another year of hazy conditions that are more serious than usual. I’ve recollections of a few of those years when it was exceptionally bad. The first was probably one of the first times we have experienced it, where I recalled the haze was so bad that there were periods it enveloped the surroundings so much we had severely reduced visibility even in the immediate vicinity. That was in 1997?

Then once I read about its bad effects in a year when I was overseas and the recorded psi reading then went above 300. I was thankful it cleared up significantly upon my touchdown in Singapore. That was 2013?

In another year, maybe 2014, it was again a year of heavy smokiness shrouding our skies and invading the vicissitudes of our lungs. My office activated our haze BCP and the boss allowed us to work from home.

The last couple of years had seemed less serious or maybe we had been conditioned to expect hazy days during this period but it shouldn’t be and we need to get to the root cause. Not just blame our neighbours for what we suffer because many there suffer similarly. It’s the cause for the clearing and burning of forestry to produce the things we consume. It’s easier said than done of course and it requires a lot of awareness and self education to find out more about origins of products so that we can vote with our dollars, regardless how small it may seem.

Running on Empty

We often take the weekends to recharge to power ourselves up for the work week ahead. However, the imbalance between the number of working days per week and weekend sort of spells a fate doomed to failure.

Over the last weekend, I partook in the usual activities that I do on weekends. I felt bad about not visiting my folks but physically I was just a little too bummed to make the trip to their place, and the consideration of the homeward trip further dampened any inclination to go. I know that I would enjoy that brief time with them, even if we do not speak much or in-depth. It would just be a few short hours that I spend with mum, and then even lesser with dad and bro, a simple but gratifying home-cooked dinner, but there is a quality that cannot be measured by the duration.

Yoga tires me out, I won’t deny that. For a number of days that I have lost count, I had attended two classes per day, one each in the morning before work and another after work in the evening. On weekends, or public holidays (recent long weekend), I would make myself go for more. Whether I use it as a means of making myself feel better psychologically that I am “burning calories”, however warped and inaccurate that line of thought is, or if I am just abusing the time by filling it up with yoga, it has depleted my energy. I feel the palpable soreness in my body that cries for rest but yet the feeling of attending class seldom ever make me leave with regrets. It almost always feels good after a class, despite that I know I need rest.

So with yoga, with happy food, and also with church service on Sunday where I really dozed off and struggled to stay awake (I don’t know why service has this strong and immense ability to lull me to sleep almost instantly), I think I fuelled up a little. Pastor spoke about the night season, and even in one of the recent devotionals, we are called to not question about why we are in the night season or why it happened to us, but that these night seasons, these struggles and challenges that we are in, would invariably show the grace and provision, favour that God has blessed us with and that no matter what, He would deliver us and bring us to the light. That was the gist of the messages that I gleaned, however in/correct they may be.

The difficulty always lie with being able to let go of self-effort because we don’t know what is self-effort and to what extent am I trying to rely on myself to overcome the adversity and the negative emotions, or how do I let go? Rest does not equate to inactivity, so where does the line stop – at which point does self-effort begin or end?

Oh I forgot about continuing from an earlier part of the post.

After the weekend… with whatever charge I’d infused into myself, it was barely into the second day of the workweek and I already felt like my tank was drying up.

More sleepless nights

Sigh.

There are days when I feel like a piece of driftwood at sea.

A lot has always been told to me, advice that is well-intentioned but which after a while becomes repetitive whether to me or the giver of advice, who then gets tired because to them, not seeing any change in me suggests perhaps that I’m given to my situation and unwilling to heed advice and strive to crawl out of the rut.

It’s a little more than heart wrenching to entertain the thought that I’m not and probably will never be as important as how I’d wished for myself to be, to someone else. Putting it simply, that there just isn’t that closeness and tightness of relationships that I experience, though it does make me self reflect too, if I have not put in more effort on my part. What is lacking in me and what else do I need to do and give? Or is this the reason that God blesses us with different personalities and levels of independence so that perhaps in my case I can learn to rely more on myself and not others? It has however caused me much bitterness and resentment over the years and may also have been a contributing factor to learning this behaviour of not knowing how to rely and turn to Him. Because I just don’t know how.

Increasingly, the passing days have mired me in self doubt, hopelessness and lacking any anticipation of what is to come, resigned to a state of simply existing and not having anything to look forward to.

Maybe it is a mindset change that is needed but it isn’t as easy and simple as the flick of a switch in the brain because it is a complex thing that nobody really understands, not the experts, and not oneself. We can only learn by trial and error, and sometimes these trials and errors although necessary, may prove counterproductive and result in even more problems and issues.

I think someone once told me, “Be happy”. As simple as those two words appear, they are so loaded with meaning and ambiguity at the same time, and instantly brought tears to the brim of my eyes.