Christmas has come and gone, so did Boxing Day. How’s the shopping going, guys?

It dawned upon me on Christmas day that what I actually enjoy more than Christmas itself, were the days leading up to it. The anticipation, the excitement, the surprises. That said, I had a wonderful, quiet Christmas with the boyfriend & his family. I helped put up the Christmas tree aaaaaaannnnnnnnndddddddd I also got a bunch of Christmas presents (yayyyyyyy!) – total kid at heart here. My first proper English Christmas & the boyfriend wanted to make sure I enjoyed every single bit of this festive season. And I did, I really did. ♥

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In the short month that I was away (from the blog), there have been a couple of happenings. Things that I won’t be thoroughly detailing out. Let’s just say that as much as I can hardly wait for the new year to begin, I am wary, so so wary, of what will be in the new year. I am uncertain, and so is my future.

“New beginnings are often disguised as painful endings.”

I’d like to believe that. After all, tough times never last, tough people do. Right?

I ran into yet another brick wall and once again I am stumped, almost defeated & kneeled helplessly in front of said brick wall. Despaired as I was, I actually have so many things to be thankful for. I am surrounded by friends & family who love me, applauding me for my successes as of date. They held out their hands and told me it is not the end of the world. Their words of encouragement mean so much to me, what would I have done without them? I admit I was tired, it was a stupid brick wall that shouldn’t have been, but yet there was. In the darkest corner of my heart, I felt the little flame of fight went out. It was scary, I honestly felt like I was already defeated and the worst is simply yet to come.

It was then that I realised that it wasn’t the fear of failure that paralysed me, it was the fear of not being able to stand up again after the fall. That was the fear I felt in the darkest corner of my heart. It was that fear that gripped my whole heart and turned it cold. And still, I have more things to be grateful for. The fact that I am here, with people I love, still able to go on and celebrate Christmas. It really wasn’t the end of the world for me. My friends reminded me: “You have come this far, you mustn’t give up now. You are so, so close. Closer than anyone has ever been.”

And they are right. I am SO CLOSE. Closer than I can ever imagine. I am here, & I am going to complete this journey. I just got to keep trying.

One of my closest friend said to me: “The brick walls are there for a reason. The brick walls are not there to keep us out. The brick walls are there to give us a chance to show how badly we want something. Because the brick walls are there to stop the people who don’t want it badly enough.”

I want it so bad.

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It is painful for me to share that Bobby, the family dog, had left us and went seeking for dog heaven yesterday. We are all shocked & devastated, and I worry for my parents the most. Bobby had been such a joy for them both, they are still in denial. Maybe I am, too. We still can’t accept that he’s gone. I hope my sister is okay too.

Grief. Grief has not hit me this hard in such a long while. But with grief, there is also love.

And life goes on, like it always does. Life always goes on.

May the new year bring new beginnings. One can only hope.

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Happy New Year, everyone.

 

Toodles. ♥

 

Sun sets at 4:00PM.

The temperature here is about 5°-6°C, quite a bit of rain as well (it is England, isn’t it?).

The fire is roaring by the fireplace, radiating much needed warmth & cosyness.

The dog is lounging.

I awake every morning to the boyfriend making me a cup of tea to kick-start the day.

And I am drinking a tad too much tea. Maybe not that much, just a cup every 2 hours?

Life since I arrived hasn’t entirely been idyllic. Okay maybe just a little. There’s the whole settling down, unpacking, and getting used to the ever-changing weather. And getting over jetlag. It really has been a week. 

I thought I was all ready for the cold. I mean, I was one big whiny puss back home when it came to the scorching heat. And then of course I got here and the cold hit me, and I hastily retreat into my jumpers and coats, and I proclaim that I am in dire need of wintery clothings, and the boyfriend agrees. Well, this is home now. 

Getting started with revision (what a drag how exciting!) and being fully aware of the looming exam date have possibly contributed to my excessive tea drinking to calm the nerves (& shivering muscles). Of course I am also assimilating to the English culture, been away for far too long & the danger of me forgetting my profound love for tea is evident. Especially since coffee took over quite a bit of my life.

Exploring the little town that I currently am in is quite an adventure. There is a tea shop I have yet to discover, and a bookshop that I have already raided. There is a teddy bear shop I was dragged away from, only because I would attempt to give each and every bear in that shop a home. A fancy wine & cheese place that looks oh-so-inviting each time I walk past it. The houses are lovely, and the autumn leaves even more so.

Equipped with a lovely kitchen, it is once again a joy to be back on my cookery projects. Not to mention cooking for two (or more) people now makes meals a lot easier to plan.

This cold. I can’t help but sometimes miss the breezy beach sunset days. Maybe I’ll write about Bali & Penang next to warm up the upcoming winter days.

 

Excuse me while I go get myself another cup of tea.

 

 

Toodles. ♥

It has been 2 months since I left my job.

A job I had both loved & despised, a job that took up almost all of my life, a job that brought me both pains & joys.

It was so hard for me to say goodbye. To my colleagues who became my closest friends at work, to my mentors who have inspired me to pursue my dreams, to my patients I have been taking care of right up until the day I left.

It was such a process. The goodbyes slowly crept up on me, but almost like in denial I brushed them all off saying I still have some time left with them. Until the day arrived and it finally hit me – it’s over. I spent the rest of the evening post shift properly saying goodbye for the last time in my uniform to all my doctors, nurses, allied healthcare members. Some I know I will most probably never see again.

It is a strange feeling – that realisation that you will not see some people ever again, or at least for a very long time. Especially if these are the people you spent almost all your waking hours with working around the clock in tears, sweat, and blood.

My closest friends at work found ways to keep me around even after I left, as did I. I found myself going back to the ward once too many times than I would like to admit, just so I can see them again.

The whole farewell thing lasted a while. And deep down, I know in my heart that this too shall pass. My friends cannot keep missing me, and I have to learn to let go. They will move on with their lives, and so must I.

 

When I thought the hardest of it all was over, I was hit with the tedious process of moving out of the flat, out of the country. Unearthing one old relic after another in my possession, I had to make big girl’s decision whether or not to keep them or throw them. I’m glad to have you know that I managed to throw out some, gave away some. For a hoarder like me, it was an achievement. Somehow I successfully moved out & moved back to KL. From there, it just got harder.

On the outside, my dad seemed like he has accepted the fact that I am moving countries once again, in search of new adventures. But he sure as hell isn’t kidding me, I know he isn’t coping well with this move. Out of the blue, he will say things like “you’re starting your new life soon, how many more years will it be ‘til we see you again?” Things like this set me off oh-so-easily (yes, I am a big crybaby) and it sure isn’t making this any easier for me. He decided that he won’t be following us to the airport to see us off because he will get too sad and that breaks me. Then again, every little thing breaks me these days. I’m useless, ugh.

Maybe he’ll change his mind, who knows. (He did, in the end. I still cried like a baby at the airport, as expected.)

“You gave me wings to fly.

            Now fly, I must.”

I am both terrified and amazed at how far I have come. I have never been this sure of a decision, and I am quite an indecisive person. This is what I want, this is what I have dreamt of. This is the beginning of an end that I have patiently (and painfully) worked towards for two long years.

In this war, the stakes are high. I won some, I lost some.

I may have just about won my way to the next battle, but at the same time I lost so, so much. I lost friends, I lost money, and most times, I lost heart.

I may have just about won the path to my new life, but I believe I may have also lost huge chunks of my past.

 

And that is the price I have to pay.

 

But moving on with the rest of your life, starts with goodbye.

So, hello England. It has been a week.

 

 

Toodles. ♥

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Last half hour of 2015.

Another year coming to a close. I’m starting to get flashbacks of myself around this time of every year, sprawled in some corner typing out the epilogue of my year and end up being overwhelmed with everything.

It happens every single year.

Instead of going out there, partying, & getting drunk in the real world, I snuggle into my spot, accompanied by my favourite mug of steaming hot tea (or coffee), and attempt to summarise my year.

And I get terrible writers’ block.

And I get clouded by all the emotions and events that took place over the entire year.

And I start over.

Only to realise that I am left with a minute to midnight, or completely gone past midnight.

Not always successful, but at least I tried. And this year, I am trying again.

 

Just like every year, I’ve had my fair share of trials and tribulations. This year has indeed been a wild roller coaster ride, & I’m not entirely sure how best to word it. While most friends I know went through their quarter life crises, I was just so busy with life that I basically didn’t have time for a personal crisis. In fact, I found clarity in such uncertainty, it basically opened up my heart, mind & soul to so many possibilities.

Let’s list it:

  • I’ve graduated (beautifully).
  • I fell in love. ♥
  • I’ve gotten myself into a long distance relationship. It’s crazy and I love it.
  • I realised I actually do love my job, I love what I am doing every day, I love my old people. I love being their nurse.
  • I experienced the whole “moving on with the rest of your life starts with goodbye”, again.
  • I have to accept that you can never make other people understand everything you do, neither do you need to justify for it.
  • I may have burnt/scarred some bridges, but only because I know I cannot keep up. I’ve been completely let down by people whom I’ve held so dear, and if I may be completely honest, it has been so absolutely tiring to hold on. What else can I do, but to let go.
  • I made peace with myself – I wrote an entire dissertation on myself, as if I was trying to get to know me all over. It was kinda fun. I don’t think I’ve gotten to the end yet.
  • I allowed myself to cry buckets when I needed to.
  • I pampered myself, love myself loads & never let myself justify the nice things I do for me. Basically bought a lot of nice things for myself.
  • I’ve made big girl’s decisions that I never thought I’d have to make, just yet.
  • I am still queen of procrastination, sadly.
  • I also allowed myself to be a complete antisocial hermit, and spend all the time I needed, to be alone, to bask in the loneliness, to accept that some things you just got to do alone & to learn happiness in that solitude. Before you can brace yourself to face the world again.
  • I have to live with the fact that my LDR is like a constant countdown – always counting down to when we’ll meet; and when we finally do, the back of our minds counting down the days we have left together.
  • I got to travel a fair bit, thanks to the LDR.
  • But I also found home. 🙂
  • I am halfway there, a work in progress to make my dreams come true.

 

A bittersweet, amazing year overall. I have been waiting for this moment to pass for so long, only too excited to rush into 2016. I wouldn’t have made it through without all the wonderful people in my life (near or far) who chose to stay by my side despite my flaws and shortcomings. You know who you are.

& of course, to my amazing best friend & boyfriend half the world away – it is ridiculous because I cannot express just how much joy you have brought into my life, especially even when we are constantly apart. Truly, distance means so little when you mean so much. Here’s to all the adventures we will have together. ♥ I honestly can’t wait.

 

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Happiness comes in the form of a dog.

 

So there you go, 55 minutes past midnight. Never on time.

 

Hello, 2016. I’ve been waiting for ya.

No regrets.

 

Toodles. ♥

I woke up early this morning as usual to Skype the boyfriend – only to be greeted by an exclamation of “This is madness!”. Groggy & half awake, I attempted to process his live updates on the Paris attacks, got onto my news feed, read in horror & felt chills in my bones.

We were there exactly 2 weeks ago. When beauty and love were all I knew.

It is really madness, what with everything that is going on right now. It has turned ugly.

And to think that I was just going to write about how I had an amazing time in Paris, now that I’ve walked through the streets as a different person. I guess this is a completely bad time now.

 

My thoughts and love are with you, Paris.

 

 

Toodles. ♥