nothing much

my friend syl asked me. 

“reading and drawing”

“wow yes it’s as anti-social as it sounds”

have been making reading a habit, particularly when i’m commuting. it’s been at least 2 years since my social media notifications have been disabled and now that i’ve started working, i really don’t want to become a social media slave or a working adult drone. really going to make self-improvement and self-awareness a daily occurence in my life. 

2017 feels like it has just begun. excited for this new season of challenges, learning more about myself through these challenges, growing as a strong Christian and always seeking to be a better person!!!!! 

i took 1 normal grab and 2 grab share rides today and they were interesting. i shouldn’t be writing about how i met with 3 very different personalities since that should be a given but it felt quintessentially so. i guess it’s because most people have the tendency to surround themselves with like-minded people or that friends are usually around your age so the thought processes and life experiences are similar.

so today i had the opportunity to meet:

1) an indian who has a masters but found himself out of a job because his contract expired. he was cynical about how the government hasn’t been doing much to help singaporeans and i don’t know if xenophobia would be entirely accurate but the discontentment with “foreigners taking our jobs” was a key argument. he didn’t even want to admit that he was a singaporean because he was ashamed that he had a masters but he was relegated to driving a grab. 

2) a makeup artist. i noticed her makeup box and confirmed her career with her. we ended up talking about makeup for the entire 10 minute ride. she shared with me that her kat von d blue smoky eyeshadow look was because she’s currently on course and learning how to do stage makeup. it was a really pleasant conversation throwing all the names of the makeup brands we liked around in the backseat.

3) ended off my day with a rather pretentious asshole who is a sgx trader with a law degree. i like to think that i have an awkward button switch whereby i don’t feel awkward despite the silence, so i’m not sure if the conversation was actually painful. when i say pretentious asshole it doesn’t mean that i had a very painful conversation or that he was conceited, i guess it was just the general vibe. it started off with how we both got in the car at the same time, the driver said that he would drop me off first at my tutee’s condo and the other passenger commented “oh nice, that’s a nice place, pretty near mine” and i corrected him that i don’t actually stay that and that i was going there for tuition. i mentioned that i actually just finished one tuition so i was on the way to the second and he made a remark that implied that nowadays people are desperate for money. i didn’t like how he made that assumption so i replied “well i don’t take money from my parents so the money has to come from somewhere” and there was a very obvious silence. apart from that i think we actually sustained the conversation with the sharing of our degrees, where he’s working, where i’m going to work etc. in retrospect it really was a boring conversation relative to the second one, the driver must have been glad to be greeted with the silence in the backseat the second i got off the grab. 

not sure why i’m writing. just felt the need to document i guess.

would it be an insult to those who are going through real mental disorders to claim that i think i have been suffering from mild depression? would it be ignorant to throw such a term so loosely around or to even allow yourself to think you are depressed?

so here we have it. it’s been 6 years with this blog. i started this when i was in jc. where my writing was flippant and i would lug my now deceased sony dslr around to take photos. it’s been a long time since then. when i started, it was a lot about studies and my ruminations or idle thoughts on what my purpose in life is / what is my direction. my worries of getting A’s at all in A levels. and then came the struggle to choose a university course when i actually did manage to get into one. and then the struggle with university. and now i’ve graduated. 

and now 6 years on, i am writing as an officially unemployed person. i don’t know how it really makes me feel. the past week i wasn’t my self. i was a culmination of all the doubts and insecurities i had with moving forward. i was a cesspool of negativity and utter hopelessness. i still am a tiny swimming pool of that; i have 9 tabs open of job applications that i should have applied on tuesday but today is saturday. do you ever feel like you are a sim? i feel trapped. that i am destined to live this sim life – having to soon wake up at a certain timing to go to work on time, coming back and sometimes my sim meter indicates that i’m tired / i’m in a need for social interactions / i need to fulfil my hygiene meters. sometimes i read a book, sometimes i go over to a friend’s house. but at the end of the day, i return back to my bed. my eyes shut, i sleep, i wake up and the cycle merely changes a little but it is essentially, a sim life.

i feel hollow. i have been feeling apprhensive and immensely frightened. and unfortunately it feels that this blog has journeyed with me for 6 years but i am vastly still the same person; childlike and uncertain. 

there is no ending to this. it has been a defeating week. and i know this is going to reoccur for the next few months and even years to come.

but i had a tiny light in this darkness just now when i read somebody’s blog post about an embroidery that she has been working on. it felt like a spark of excitement and realization that i still want to do so many things. i want to try embroiding too, i want to finish reading 50 books before the year ends, i want to learn the piano, i want to learn yoga and take up dance lessons. there still are many things to look forward to. i just need to focus on that. perhaps this sim life doesn’t need to be so dreary all the time.

it’s strange how i used to write so often. little moments – often insignificant – would feel significant enough to write about. 

i don’t know why i’m writing but i’d like to make it a habit again. i was talking to ezzy last night about kindles and reading. we discussed about the importance of reading and that we wanted to cultivate the habit if we ever had children. i’m not sure how the conversation started but it certainly made me want to pick up the habit again. i picked it up in september and i think i should make it a habit again to bring a book wherever i go. finally completed sheryl sandberg’s lean in last month and it really piqued my interest into the whole empowering women topic. 

on my way to tuition now and just wanted to thumb type these idle thoughts. back to reading throne of glass. it is mildly embarrassing to be reading the same book as my secondary 4 tutee. also, i really want a kindle.

was thinking of how there’s so much left to learn and improve on. 

i finished reading my fifth book last night and i have been keying in unfamiliar words that i come across in my notes app. i think i got comfortable with the language and i always took it for granted that my english was good but i think it can be even better. it’s about time i expanded my vocabulary. i also got my 15 year old tutee to teach me some bahasa tonight so now i know how to ask her helper to get me some water.

there are so many things i want to do and i feel a little handicapped because the reality is: time is needed to indulge / pursue these things. i’ve had a relatively tough july and august since i started working (was probably still riding off my gung-ho high from conquering feb-june’s back-to-back tuition-f&b-academics and thinking that work-tuition was going to be nothing) and i got rather blind-sided in terms of losing sight of my other intangible goals because most of my time and energy was channelled into being a workaholic and giving tuition after being a workaholic. 

i guess a slight progress would be how i’ve been carrying a book with me and reading it while commuting instead of being another technology enslaved swiping drone on public transport. then again, it could be because my data has been on the verge of exceeding since the first week after it resetted. i think i’m truly starting to grasp the concept of making the best of what little time you have every day. and also, to not let the 9-5 (or 9-730 in my case) system have a limiting effect on personal development despite how challenging it is.  

this is an odd post; my writing is choppy and my thoughts aren’t flowing nearly as well as they do whenever i decide to type out a post. ah well.

i found myself in the most familiar of places; the popular at compass point. it has been over 4 years since i last came here because i entered university three years ago so frequenting sengkang mrt and then the mall became a thing of a distant past. i walked in idly because i wanted to wait a while before i returned home. i didn’t have a purpose to be there and so i naturally gravitated to the books section. then i saw the return of the little prince beside the lang leav collection. i didn’t know her books were close to $30 and i don’t know if the cynist in me is willing to pay for a book that seems a little too deliberitely marketed as the next indie sad lovelorn poem book to read. 

so i found myself reaching for the return of the little prince instead because i remember reading a few pages of the little prince back when i was a kid and i didn’t understand why my mom said “this is a really good book to read, unlike your meg carbot (am i even spelling her name right) book” because i couldnt understand it or i didn’t want to. i found myself reading the whole 150+ pages of it – just standing near the shelves that had the HIGHLIGHTS banner and lost myself in the sea of words. i don’t know how to compare it against the little prince since i consider that i have never read it, but it was quite a blatant life lessons kind of book which was quite entertaining because of how in-your-face it was. but the book also included themes that i resonated with about forgiveness and humility, and these two values (..lessons?) have been at the center of my life for this year. i found myself agreeing and appreciating the book once i moved past the surface flagrance. i was also vaguely aware of many people reaching out for the book and reading snippets while i read the whole thing (and this saving $17 if i had bought it to read at home) and it felt quite like a….. move poster lost in transition moment; where everything is moving, life is in a constant state of moving and unwaiting. but there i was, standing albeit slouching and feeling as if i am at a momentarily pause. 

i thought briefly of how transient this life is. i thought of the families and couples that walked past me and i wondered what conversations were they having or why they even were in the bookstore. this life is so short and it’s so easy to get caught up in the worldliness of your own. it’s so uncommon to even stop to think and wonder how the person on your left and right is feeling. did he/she wake up today with a heavy heart or one that was filled with anticipation? i don’t even know where i got these thoughts but i can correlate it to reading. there’s something about immersing yourself in words that aren’t your own thoughts that make you start to consider the world outside your own.
with that said, i finished reading 4 books in 9 days despite the insane deadline at work today. i borrowed my secondary 3 tutee’s divergent series and felt a little embarrassed to carry it around on public transport as i read while commuting to tuition and back home. i have truly forgotten the joy of reading and i think of all the time i have wasted thumbing through my iphone for the past few years when i could have spent the time reading. but if there’s one thing that i’m sure of is that it is never too late to pick up an old habit up again.