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Play well; leg godt

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Play well, my favourite dog form in the whole wide world (and some say the universe or even the galaxy)!

This is the most recent photo I have of you, which is obviously not recent at all since it was sent to me months ago. Maybe you have become chubbier than usual, but your ridiculously well-defined handsome features are still handsome?

You’re approximately three years old now—an adult in human years and still so naughty (or cowardly), I’d bet your mummy would say. But again, it’s just my assumption, because I’ve absolutely no idea if you are keeping well, if your skin has healed, if you’re still sensitive to strangers, if you still hate everyone else but your family and human form *chios*, if you’re still afraid of thunder and loud noises, if you still refuses to go out beyond your house’s corridor…

Well, I miss you so so so so much, my handsome dog form. Seeing your smiley happy face makes my eyes tear for some reason. Sometimes I wonder if you would still recall my face and reminisce what an awesome human form I was. Remember how we were so alike in so many ways that it was incredibly unbelievable? I used to tell your mummy I get how you feel and think, because I am you. Haha.

I wish I was there at your birthday party which is probably filled with lots of presents and treats for you. Haha. I wish you had met Milo (your mummy’s dog form) more often, instead of having Didi the weird sheepdog crash our gathering. I wish I had given you the longest, tightest bear hug ever the last time we met if I had known I would never see you again.

But most of all, my dear Lego Alejandro Lee, I wish for you to be happy and healthy always. *squishes your tiny happy face passionately*

det bedste er ikke for godt

The best is never too good for you, my beloved dog form. XOXO

P/S: I did a search for you on my blog and guess what? Here are a few posts that I’ve specially wrote for or mentioned you in: Little Lego, Sputnik Dog, Saving The Best, Lego Turns One, Choco Baby. Enjoy.

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Today is your day

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It’s been slightly over two months after my birthday and I still feel rather chirpy about it. I feel young and old at the same time, but overall I feel as though a huge burden has lifted from my shoulders. And in its place, there’s a renewed sense of optimism that the whole world is my ‘oyster’ and it’s just waiting for me to go out there and fork it for dinner.

February has been an enlightening month for me, as I took time out to re-evaluate the choices and decisions I made over the past few years about my career and the people in my life. I think I understand my motivations and needs a bit better, which is the grown-up way of saying I’ve matured! Bravo!

Maybe I am (or have already started) distancing myself from those outdated bad habits and relationships that were holding me back from the good stuff. Obviously, I experienced some emotional turmoil because of that, but I dare say the feeling of relief is greater and much more welcome. I am now definitely better at compartmentalising my emotions, at determining the reasons behind why I might feel a certain way and making sure I have mastery over my behaviour. Maybe the spring cleaning I did before the Lunar New Year really helped declutter my mind!

According to my tarot card reading, ‘it is a time of reassessment of your values and priorities and the influence of this month will be felt for a long time to come… the inner changes that take place represent a much larger step forward than you will probably realise at this time.’

I highly recommend everyone to try decluttering the things they no longer use and free their living space (and mind) for greater things to come… and start living life the way you want or do the things you want to achieve… Because…

‘Today is your day! Your mountain is waiting. So get on your way.’ — Dr. Seuss

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Love actually

The beginning of two great days

I first wrote this post shortly after we came back and I updated subsequently several times on 2 and 17 January, 21 February, 4 April, 24 and 31 Dec last year as well as a few times this year. But finally on the fourth anniversary of starting this blog, I thought publishing this post would be rather apt. So here goes.

This pic was taken moments before the ferry set off to our next destination and 15 Dec 2010 was the beginning of two fucking great days.

I couldn’t sleep the night before excited and fearful of what was to come because the past few days had been a torment in more than one way. But really, we didn’t have to worry so much. Things picked up where we left off.

It started with home-made heart shaped pasta for breakfast. We were sitting there waiting for the ferry when she whipped out a tupperware box and said: “Breakfast!”

Now I love surprises a lot because it’s rare that I would be surprised since I would have figured it out beforehand or forced the information out of someone. And trust me, I was trying really hard, almost persistent, to get the info out from her the night before so this was a literally real treat.

The pasta had crab meat in slightly spicy tomato sauce and a little hard-boiled egg at the side. It was 8.55am and I can rave on and on about how delicious the pasta was and how I was grinning non-stop but I really hate to brag, Internet, because there is so much more to come.

We got up the ferry and started snapping photos of ourselves in our sunglasses. I tried to look suave and failed. If you ever saw me, you’d know I belong to the goofy genre, or as what she would always say, I have this general sheepish look all the time.

She was portraying a 60s look, although it could be the camera filter I was using that gave her that classic retro look. I thought she looked amazing. Then again, she always does and she knows how beautiful she is to me even if I would only say it silently in my heart.

Sleep was slightly hard to come by as we were distracted by Ice Age 3, playing on the big television screen. I couldn’t tell you much about the movie now, except it had mammoths and an irritating sloth which was trying to raise three T-Rexes. What I remember is it was nice holding hands, enjoying the cozy moments of her lying on my shoulder with my arm wrapped around her as the ferry gently churns its way across the sea.

When we arrived, we were almost immediately chauffeured to BYT where friendly staff, cold towels and a rather disgusting drink that was touted to be full of health benefits awaited us. After checking in, we were ushered to the spa room where we would be pampered, oiled, scrubbed and massaged for the next two hours. It was paradise on earth and if the world had ended then, I would have died the happiest person in the whole universe because I was with her.

We then retreated to our villa, where we chilled, rested, tumbled around, dined and napped in luxury. When we finally woke up, it was close to last order for dinner and we hurriedly got changed and headed down to a restaurant within BYT. The dinner was okay, because nothing could beat what happened back at our villa. We had champagne in a bucket, the jacuzzi turned on, some entertainment show playing on TV and a cheesecake that she made herself and had my initial on it. She also gave me what was probably a whole year’s supply of presents. I was so dumbfounded and touched and delighted that I couldn’t speak. Maybe she really loved me after all, in spite of what had happened in the past, I remember thinking. And I have never loved her more since then. The next few hours of our night were some of the best sleepless fun we ever had, and also censored from public viewing. Haha.

We woke up the next day to a splendid ocean view. In a half-awake stupor, I turned to look at her. And she looked at me and we smiled. I said: “I can wake up to this view every day. I can live like this forever.”

Because baby, you’re amazing just the way you are.

There’s this kind of love that sneaks up on you and softly taps you on your shoulder when you least expect it and hits you really hard. Every moment seems a little crazy and impossible at first — from the person you are with and how they make you feel to the new things you find yourself doing for them. You’re almost freaked out by the depth of love you feel growing within you and there are times you find your breath taken away or reach new levels of frustration. You might shrug your shoulders and say: ‘Maybe this won’t last at all, let’s just enjoy this for now and see where this takes us.’ But then one day, you realise you want this person more than anything else you have ever wanted in your entire life, because what both of you have is more than love. It’s proof that you fit together perfectly and that you are soulmates and how incredible lucky you are to have found each other out of seven billion people in the whole world. So yes, in spite of everything and even though how the passing of time is supposed to dilute our memories and feelings, I love you still.

“So it’s not gonna be easy. It’s going to be really hard; we’re gonna have to work at this everyday, but I want to do that because I want you. I want all of you, forever, everyday. You and me… everyday.” — Nicholas Sparks

Merry Christmas, everyone! 😀

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It’s my 30th birthday

Happy 30th BirthdayBe nice.

Today’s the day I turn 30. And I am a little nonchalant about the 30 years I have taken to get here. It should be an impressive milestone celebrated with the family, close friends and perhaps a life partner, but all I feel is ‘meh’. While in my teens, I’ve always thought I’d die young.You know, because I’d be living the fast and dangerous rebel’s life.

But the minute I hit 25, my perspective changed to ‘I want to live for as long as possible and to do great things in my life’. So far, I have accomplished the ‘live as long as possible’ bit, but sadly I’m still far away from the ‘do great things’ part and was getting depressed over it.

So what did I do? I Googled about ‘turning 30’. And my best friend did not let me down. In 0.43 seconds, it showed me 234,000,000 results on why turning 30 may not be that bad after all.

Julie Tilsner, who wrote about the subject in her book 29 and Counting, said:

‘Thirty is nothing to be afraid of. You’ve got a whole new decade to work with, and this time you’re prepared! You’re educated, you have years in the workplace, you finally know what your hair will and won’t do. You can still dance on tables, but you have some life experience. Turning 30 is actually a really awesome thing.’

All sounds very positive. So there’s absolutely nothing to feel gloomy or to freak out about.

30 Is Different for Everyone

When I was younger, I’d dream about being an astronaut, or a pilot (much like Tom Cruise from Top Gun. Still a brilliant film and a handsome guy, no matter what anyone says!) or Indiana Jones. Whether I become a lawyer or a doctor, I’d be cool, charismatic and carefree like the heroes I aspire to be.

Then I hit the teenage years and things started going downhill from there. I got mixed up in the wrong crowds, I played truant from school, I ran away from home, I gave up a promising sports career in the national team and I dropped out of school. All before I turned 16. In short, I got distracted from obtaining a good education that would supposedly set me on my path to greatness.

Two years later, I woke up metaphorically from my ‘going-nowhere-in-life’ slumber. I also had my first major heartbreak from a relationship I thought would last forever. I nearly killed myself because of one person, until my mum came home just in time to stop me. How silly, right? I felt stuck working in a restaurant. There is nothing with earning a decent living as a service staff, but it just didn’t feel like I was in the right job, doing the right thing I like. That got me thinking about my life, my future and myself.

I picked up the pieces, bit by bit. I changed to a permanent part-time job at a pub and I signed up for part-time classes to get the necessary certifications to get to the art school I wanted. I even went back to my former secondary school to seek help from my art teacher to improve my portfolio. That was how determined I was.

At age 20, I finally got into the art school I was aiming for. I was taking my car and motorbike licences. I had a relatively cushy part-time job. I met someone new to get over the heartbreak I had been nursing for the past two years. I was popular in school, just like in secondary school. So I was still cool, charismatic and carefree. I was delighted with life.

In the year that I was due to turn 21, I met someone who would prove to be a great love of my life. We spent all our waking hours together and we were inseparable and everyone was envious of us and what we had. There were rough moments. I had the nastiest temper and I was immature. And yet we were together for the next five years, most of which were good and we stuck together through the ups and all obstacles that objected to our relationship. We had a fiery relationship and sparks flew all the time. But it was tough to keep the spark between us alive, and ultimately, it was to burn out like a flame. I had to let go.

In my 25th year on earth, I found a job I enjoyed and something I can proudly proclaim to be relatively good at and skills that have enabled me to earn a decent living. I was a journalist. I’ve always wanted to write for a living and I did. I also met someone I thought I could fall in love with and start afresh in my love life. Well, it started afresh alright, but it wasn’t meant to last because I was still in love with the great love of my life. I couldn’t let go and it took a toll on me. I had volatile mood swings and my behaviour was dodgy. I would have dumped my sorry ass too, now that I am looking back. We spent close to a year together, but the relationship ended and gave me the second major heartbreak of my relatively young life. It took me a year to get over it and dust the debris away. One of the reasons I created this blog was to write about the pain I had inside me. I was broken for a long time, but while learning to deal with the pain, I learned many things about myself and I made some new lasting friendships that helped me through the turmoil I was in.

Soon the year I was turning 28 arrived. And I met someone whom I wanted to give my whole life to make her happy all the time. More than half of the posts published (and set as private) on this blog have been dedicated to her. I have never filled up so much virtual space about someone before. I have no idea if I would ever do (or feel) the same for anyone else again.

Now That I Am Finally 30
Now that I am turning 30, the past no longer seems like a chink on my armour. I get that I may not be as talented, as popular, as good-looking, as famous, as wealthy as other people my age, but it’s okay. I am still special in my own way; I am a little unique snowflake that will just be doing adult-like things in my own time. I may not be a best-selling author or a successful CEO yet, but I am still a success in my own way.

Should I have spent my teens studying hard and get Bs so I could have gotten into a good college? Should I have not spent all my hours on going to dance clubs and drink myself silly? On hindsight, maybe I should have. Should I have done better in art school instead of watching TV and playing Warcraft with my friends and indulging in Football Manager on most of my days? Maybe. But I didn’t, because I have not touched Warcraft or Football Manager since 2005 and I do not regret getting the most joy out of those games, even though I know I was wasting my time.

Yes, there are people who have made millions before they are 25, earn $10,000 a month by 27 or be famous and successful entrepreneurs before turning 30. Maybe I am an exception. Maybe I am on a different timeline from the rest and there is no happiness to be gained if I keep comparing myself with others. Life is not a race. Life is what you make of it and how happy and satisfied you deem yourself to be, not to spend your hours being envious of others.

Our whole idea about life before or after 30 should not be defined by the progress we are supposed to make or terms dictated by society. It doesn’t mean if we don’t realise our potential by 30, we are never going to succeed; there may be pieces of us that take years to gel and make us the successful person we will become.

According to Heidi Grant Halvorson, author of Succeed: How We Can Reach Our Goals, we should live our whole life as if we’re in our twenties. ‘It’s that keep-inching-forward mentality that will allow you to be happy with your choices.’

Yes, I admit I am a little sad at the things I have not accomplished or the stuff I thought I would have achieved by now like being an extremely successful high-flyer, having my own apartment, being with the love of my life and travelling around the world. Maybe I am too old to be an astronaut now. Maybe this is the wrong era to be Indiana Jones. Maybe there were many decisions I could have made to get to a different place from where I am now.

But, have I failed at life? I went from a school dropout to studying part-time for a business degree now (very much like Larry Crowne but without the hot lecturer. Nice movie anyway. Go watch it!). I went from a junior service staff to having a relatively okay-paying mid-level media job I enjoy. I have my health (until the results confirm otherwise) and my parents who love me more than I can ever imagine. I am much more confident now and wiser than in my 20s. I am also more than okay to spend time alone and to enjoy my own companionship. I also value myself more. I imagine life can only go up from here.

I am not sure if I will like the idea of turning 30 at all, but now that I am already here, I might as well enjoy it while it last. After all, there’s still the looming 31 to dread over.

So, I will enjoy the year ahead with as much vigour as a unique little snowflake should, because I am 30 and to hell with the rest of you, I’m gonna celebrate by pampering myself the whole of today.

Because today is my day, and no one can be Me-er than Me. 🙂

And stay tuned for the 30 life lessons I’ve learned from my 30 years.

[Image via Sommecards]

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Holding on

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Szzzzzeeeeeeee… Szzzzzeeeeeee… What’s that sound, you ask? It’s the sound of excruciating agony from hitting the top of my head against the fridge with a really loud impact. I’m sucking air in from the resulting pain now. I can feel a bump forming (or would there actually be a concave wound?!) and the pain is still throbbing. Could I actually vomit, or worse, concuss from the intense pain? I do feel groggy now..

But back to my main point… I suppose the image above kinda hints at what I am thinking of.

No one will ever love you the way I did and I may never love again the way I did. But I am happy and I have chosen to let my regrets go. After all, most people go through life without ever feeling the way we did about each other.

You were one of the best things that ever came into my life and I’d like to think that I was the best thing that happened to you and your life.

You once told me that you became a happier person because of me and I like that, because unknown to you, all I ever wanted was to make you happy. And seeing you smile always made my day. *chios* 🙂

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My 30th birthday is approaching

Hi there! I created this blog post on 16 October and did a draft, but didn’t feel like it was good enough to be published. So I thought I’d give myself one more month to let my thoughts incubate a bit more before I let you read my inner, deepest, darkest, funniest thoughts. Heh.

I know I don’t update this blog regularly as much as I said I would, but there are just times when I don’t know what to write about or that I know what I want to say but I have difficultly expressing my thoughts eloquently. Irony, I know. So I feel that the wisest thing to do sometimes is not write or talk at all if I have nothing to say or can’t think coherently.

So it’s 16/17 November today (depending on which time zone you’re in). And in around 30 days or so, it’d be my 30th birthday. Which means I’ve revolved around the sun 30 times. Mind-blowing, I know.

It’s also Ludwig van Beethoven’s birthday. He would have been 242 years old. Or may have never been born if his mother had chosen to abort him because she was afraid that he’d be disabled, according to urban myths. Thankfully, she allowed him to live and create some of the best classical compositions I’ve ever listened to.

My favourite compositions are Moonlight Sonata and Fur Elise. Have a listen, if you haven’t already. I remember the emotions that overcame me when I first heard them. It was as though I could feel the pain he went through when he could not be with the girl he had loved dearly and because of the love he felt for her, he wrote and dedicated this sonata for her. Lovely.

AND 16 December was also the day when The Boston Tea Party occurred! Ok, that was not so positive. Moving on…

So apparently if you did a Google search, turning 30 is really a big deal for almost everyone. Seriously, there are about 530,000,000 results online helping you dissect why the number 30 is scary. So you’re not alone. There are millions of people who are freaking out just like what you are doing right now. Not me, I am feeling pretty calm.

But I guess the biggest questions on my mind are: “What have I achieved in the past 30 years? What can I be proud of? What should I do from now? Do I have any regrets? Am I happy? Have I fulfilled my life goals? Am I leading a meaningful life?”

OK, now I get why turning 30 can be depressing.

I had two of the most memorable birthday celebrations when I was 28 and 29 with this girl who I think the world of (nearly half of the blog posts here are written about or for her). I try not to let my mind wonder about how my 30th birthday celebration would be like. It’s better to focus on the present for now. And whatever will be, will be.

But just like the quote above, I hope all the wisdom and inner peace I’ve been seeking my whole life, especially more fervently in the past year, will miraculously appear when I finally hit 30. And stay tuned for my upcoming ’30 for 30′ series of posts in the run-up to my big day. Yay.

[Image via The Creative Paige]

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The third book I wrote for you

Hey, this book is for you. Surprised?

This is the third book I’ve written for you for your birthday for the third year we’ve known each other.

When I told myself I wanted to write books and start a popular series like Harry Potter, I never expect to one day create so many books just for you. The first two books were one of their kind, because no one else has them and they were written specifically for you in mind and meant only for your eyes. The books are a condensed collection of our best and happiest moments together each year. I wonder if you take them out and flip through once in a while.

This third book is the same — filled with memories of this year… Of the things that mean a lot to us…

Remember how you’d sleep over at my place and how you’d tell me you can’t sleep and you want a bedtime story? And how I’d be drowsy and half-asleep, but I would still wake up and tell you a story from my imagination?

I always envision these books would be placed by your bed, so whenever you can’t sleep, they would be your bedtime stories when I’m not sleeping beside you that night. And my dream is that I would give you a book every year as part of our tradition, so that one day you can fill a bookshelf with them.

I never took pictures of the books I made for you, but I’ve always taken immense pride in them, because I spend a lot of effort and time on making them beautiful and tailoring them to a theme for that year. Not sure if you noticed it actually… Well, at least I think they are exquisitely designed, since no one else has ever seen them and you’ve never said they look great! Hahaha!

The books are my way of saying how much I love you and how important you are to me. But it has been difficult passing the third book to you since you’ve always preferred to either reject me or cancel on me at the last minute (even though we had arranged to meet beforehand) or have plans already or be working. I don’t know why. Maybe this book is meant to stay in its bag forever. Maybe it’s ok for you that we haven’t seen each other for almost two months now. Maybe I just care too much.

Goodnight, my love. I hope you’re happy wherever you are.