It’s been over a year since I’ve properly updated about my life in this space and I’m sure we all can agree that all the reviews and ofc the Christmas selfie aren’t rly good indications of how I’ve changed throughout this time.
So much has happened since then. I’m reaching my one-year mark at my first full-time job in about a month, I’ve learnt a lot, been exposed to a world that I never thought I’d be part of, grown (rounder) a bit, made new friends, lost some friends probably, and probably changed a lot. I’m not sure if it’s all good changes and it’s something that worried me initially. Like would I become a different person after working here? I think to some extent change is inevitable but as long as who I am at the core is the same? I was concerned that I’d become a person with a mean heart and harsh exterior. But with my friends and family to centre me, I doubt I would. Harsh exterior maybe though since I need to survive in this difficult ~adult~ world.
I’ll do a proper update soon. Feeling rly fortunate this week because it was my birthday week and I always suddenly get this overwhelming sense of sentimentality because as usual, I was spoilt by my friends and family hehe.
…The number of friends we have or the amount of time we spend out of our home doesn’t define who we are. I think you’re one of the sweetest person I’ve ever known who has such a contagious laughter, someone who naturally brings a lot of joy to others, and it’s these things that make you special and make you who you are k?:)
For days when I lousy about myself. Tq my dear dear friend ❤
So this happened when I was in Rotterdam. I remember I was out having fun in London and when I came back to Xinyi’s place where I was staying, she opened the door and announced that Mr Lee Kuan Yew passed away (More accurately she said something like “He’s dead”. Yknw how we Singaporeans are.)
I remember I reacted with surprise and just went “Oh. Okay.” Partly because I guess on some level we all were expecting the announcement of his passing anytime. But for it to be said so baldly and so suddenly after a fun first day out in London… I couldn’t really process it. But it’s been a few days now and while my life here in Rotterdam has been going on as usual, it seems far from life as per normal back in Singapore. All the tributes, all the information on social media, all the reminders about what he has done for Singapore. It feels so surreal to be honest – to be an overseas Singaporean at a time like this. From my vantage point, it really looks as though Singaporeans are really all coming together at a time like this. And I love it. Being overseas for the past two months have made me realise how much I love being in Singapore, how proud I am of being Singaporean. And with his passing and the outpouring of affection and gratitude that Singapore has been showing through various online links I have back home… it makes me feel even more sentimental.
I think as humans, we tend to forget. I’ve always been taught to 饮水思源 – that I shouldn’t forget my roots. But it’s human to forget. To live in such comfort that we forget the struggle that our ancestors went through to allow us to live in such comfort. There are so many stories about Mr Lee on the net now – about his enduring spirit, about how he constructed Singapore as we know it, about him and his wife. He is an amazing man. The foresight he had, the mental strength, the determination and the responsibility he must have felt. How can any ordinary man endure all that? To know that the livelihood of thousands and that the future of an entire nation rested on you. That nobody expected you to succeed as a nation. At times like this I really am so proud to be from Singapore. To say that yes, my ancestors beat the odds and gave me the home that I love so much now.
I remember scrolling through my Facebook newsfeed and someone shared a conversation she overheard while she was in the queue to pay respects to Mr Lee. It went something like:
Never mind. We won’t be doing this again.
It’s a slightly shocking statement. But true I think. Who else would be worthy of all this media attention, all the tears, all the love from Singaporeans? Some people might not like what he did, but we cannot deny that if it weren’t for the decisions that he made, we wouldn’t even be around to voice our dissent. He is the one who gave us all the opportunities that we now have, that we now sometimes take for granted.
This is Singapore.We check online for the estimated queue time. We whatsapp our friends and update our Facebook status…
I love that above Facebook post. I feel like it encompasses everything I love about Singapore. We might complain and whine and be annoyed, but at the end of everything, we will come together and we will mourn the passing of the man who built Singapore for us.
We had ballet at 9am today instead of our usual because people wouldn’t be able to make it for class at night. I was unfortunately slightly late because I overslept and was huffing and puffing even before class started becos I was rushing.
A little explanation about the way the Grade 8 exam works:
Everyone has their own group of 3-4 dancers. And we each have to perform four solos – one compulsory and the other three chosen by ourselves.
Solos are rly rly quite frightening things – especially if you’re an unprepared dancers. There’s no crowd to melt into and it’ll rly only be you, the examiner and the pianist in the studio. Talk about nerve-wracking.
I haven’t actually had the chance to try dancing alone before, partly because of luck. So imagine my surprise when my ballet teacher suddenly said she wanted me to try dancing Valse Printemps solo. I was rly taken aback because I wasn’t expecting it and… okay better the Valse than the free movement one which I am rly rly unsure of.
That said though, I really appreciated the chance to try it out alone because at least now I have the feel of the space a solo dancer has to make use of, and it kinda boosted my confidence in an odd way. Super nervous and the greatest compliment was ‘Good effort’ rather than ‘good’ but it’s okay. Gna practise harder and work on the things she points out to me. One day (hopefully sooner rather than later), it’s gna be ‘good’.
Oh yes and I’ve ‘good line’ ^^ Rly have to take the rare compliments and hug them to myself and reassure myself that I’m not that lousy. Go go go PS G8 is not that insurmountable.
“Of course I’ll hurt you. Of course you’ll hurt me. Of course we will hurt each other. But this is the very condition of existence. To become spring, means accepting the risk of winter. To become presence, means accepting the risk of absence.”
– The Little Prince
Saw this quote on Tumblr and I found it really poignant. The give and take in a relationship and how in order to achieve something, there is always something at risk. Does this mean that to feel happiness, we accept the risk of sadness?
To feel love, we accept the risk of heartbreak?
I remember reading The Little Prince when I was younger, but I think I’ll be able to better appreciate it now.
I have been WAITING FOR THIS DAY FOR SO LONG REALLY. Since after the first week of work I think. Even started a countdown sigh it was so demoralising looking at it when it was SO FAR AWAY BUT FINALLY THE NUMBER GOT SMALLER. And TADAAHHHH MY LAST DAY WAS FINALLY HERE 😀 😀 😀
Spent my last day of work doing Powerpoint slides again haha I wonder who’s the one doing them now. I had lunch w Sherlyn at Soup Spoon who took a half day ): We were considering walking to Cedele but I think we were a bit lazy haha. Soup Spoon was not bad too. Finished our lunch q early I think so we walked around a bit before she left. Just as she left, raroro APPEARED FROM NOWHERE. Hahaha okay not nowhere. But I was definitely surprised. And happy to see her!! 😀 So we chatted for awhile before I remembered that my lunchtime sorta ended already and I had to hurry back.
Since quite a number of my last days of __(insert event)___ (last day of exams for example!) have been spent w raroro, we decided to spend our last day of work together as well 🙂 We initially wanted to go to 313 Somerset for Umi Sushi. But I had a STROKE OF BRILLIANCE and we went to Clarke Quay instead haha omg cool or WHAT. Clarke Quay on a FRIDAY NIGHT eh omg so happening teeheehee. Walked to Raffles Place to drop off her timesheet and then we walked to Clarke Quay (Y) Saving on transport yay! But we got slightly lost getting to Clarke Quay. Luckily my mum picked up her phone before we got even more lost and pointed us to the right direction.
Walked to Central! NOT A GOOD PLACE TO GO IF YOU’RE LOOKING FOR ANY PARTICULAR SHOP OMG IT’S LIKE A MAZE URGH. We kept walking round and round in circles really really really got lost there. Not a good place to go if you’re really hungry either. We initially wanted to go to a Japanese restaurant but when we FINALLY located it, there was a queue to go in omg NO we were SO HUNGRY by then. Checked out several other places but they were either too expensive or too crowded ): Ended up settling for a random place on the basement floor haha. Was not bad also I guess. We shared a pizza and umm chicken chop I think? Eating w raroro can be rather frustrating if you’re in the mood to pig out.
BUT THEN THE HEAVENS SMILED ON ME BECAUSE AFTER MY INTENSE BADGERING SHE AGREED TO INDULGE IN ICE CREAM WITH ME!!!!!!
We both bought Green Tea w Red Bean ice cream omg SOOOO HAPPY. Idk if I was happier about eating the ice cream or the fact that raroro was eating ice cream w me :D:D:D
Sigh we have so few pictures together ): ):
Walked around enjoying our ice cream anddd then we sat by the river because it seemed like a cool thing to do. OKAY LA I’M THE SUAKU ONEEEE T.T She’s done all that before sigh pie why I so suakuuuuu boohoo. I think raroro was enjoying it! She seemed q calm and relaxed HAHA. While I was feeling a bit restless idk why. Ommm must find inner peace.
After awhile it was time to go home because people like me have curfews to adhere to. Managed to catch 166 so we could rest on the bus ride back to Thomson and then HOMEEEE 😀 Was a good way to end the work stint. Thankies raroro and Sherlyn for making my last day of work a happy one 🙂 Will reflect on my working experience in another post maybe umm awhile later becos lazy.
Unfortunately the day was slightly marred w a bit of reflection on my part. Something raroro said that backed up what Sherlyn and Melissa said about how what I say have no climax/ there isn’t a point to what I say. It’s not really that there’s no climax (I think), it’s just that to me, the event was interesting but evidently they didn’t think so. And sometimes I just like to SHARE what’s going on. Idk, maybe it’s just me. I admit it probably gets q annoying to try to follow my train of thoughts and I probably ramble a lot, but it doesn’t happen w all my friends I think. Only the ones I’m probably more comfortable w/ won’t really judge me.
I was slightly worried and unsure about how to act after raroro said that because I have always been vv comfortable talking to her. Now that I know she feels that way, idk, I guess I felt like I had to search my brain to make sure I didn’t say something too stupid or nonsensical or without a point. And it’s a bit tiring tryna censor my words or think up something interesting (enough) for people.
That’s partly why after Melissa and Sherlyn made the comment about how I say things w/o a point, I felt myself talking less w them. Partly for other reasons and partly because I didn’t want to bore them or have them wait for me to finish my (probably) long-winded story and then have them say that oh that’s q lame/no point.
To my dearest dearest raroro and Melissa and Sherlyn, I’m not sure how you’ll react after reading this, but do know that I’m not blaming you! I know it gets annoying to follow my train of thoughts and I guess raroro you’re one of the (un)lucky ones to have to experience my rambling train of thoughts that don’t make sense to you. I’ll try to change! Try being the operative word here haha. But really, I’ll try! 🙂
Now that all three of kids of the Chia family are grown up and busy with school, we hardly spend any time at home. When we do, we’re usually shut off in our own world, doing our own thing, stressed out by our own lives. The one who suffers the most I think, is my grandmother. She comes to my house every morning but then we’re hardly at home. So more often than not, she’s faced with an empty house with only the television (which she doesn’t know how to operate to change its channel) and the maid for company. She eats lunch on her own, watches TV or sleeps because really, what else can she do? Nowadays, there has been more and more days when she spends the entire day alone at my house. I don’t often think about it, but when I do, I feel really really sad and guilty.
And my guilt is increased tenfold and more because on days when I’m home, I’m stuck in front of the computer doing my own stuff. The only time I emerge from my hole is when we have meals together. Even then, I often use my phone while at the dinner table so I’m not really engaging in conversation with her. I realise I really take my grandmother for granted. She does so many things for me, I don’t even realise she’s the one doing it half the time because stuff just happen for me. She packs my room for me, she puts out my pyjamas for me before she goes home, she buys me all the food she thinks I like. But so very, very often I find her annoying and feel frustrated when she talks to me.
Often when she tells me stories, I even listen half-heartedly. I nod at the appropriate pauses, ask leading questions, laugh at some parts and all that. But I’m not really listening. Then when I finish my meal, I occasionally just excuse myself, saying that I need to rush some school work (which is true only about 60% of the time). A lot of times I don’t realise how thoughtless I’m being. How I’m being such a selfish granddaughter, only worrying about my own needs.
Last year during my holidays, I spent some time watching dramas with my grandmother. It was really nice, both of us laughed and bonded over the dramas together. But than school started. I stopped watching the dramas with her but I still played the VCDs for her. Soon it became more like a chore, or even something to occupy her (so that she wouldn’t bother me). When I ran out of VCDs to play for her, I just continued my life as per normal.
I don’t usually think of how my grandmother must feel. She’s not exactly the healthiest person. She tells me of incidents when she fell or suddenly couldn’t move or some medical condition she’s facing at the moment. Then I feel so incredibly grateful for the strangers who help her, who give up their seat for her, who do things that I should be doing as a granddaughter – looking after her.
I love my grandmother so very very much. But all I do is pay lip-service to that. I want to list out all the things she’s done for me, but truthfully, I’d never be able to because I probably don’t even know all the things she has done. It feels like our relationship is a one-way thing yknw. She’s the one who keeps giving and giving and giving but as her grandchildren, all we do is receive and sometimes even push away her efforts. She may show her love for us in ways we don’t like but the fact is, she’s trying to show us she cares in her own way.
It feels like all I can do for her is to try to make her laugh. To be at home more so that at least someone will be around to eat with her, to talk to her and to change the TV channel for her.
So the point of this is that.. I’m going to try my best to treat my grandmother a lot better. And mei I hope you’ll find the time to do so too. To me, one of the most most most important things in the world is my family. I want my grandmother to remember that her grandchildren still love her a whole lot even though we’re busy with our lives now. I love you 婆婆 ♥