The month that was July 2014

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First things first — where in the world did July go? I don’t think I did all that much but it still felt really busy! I only had one weekend away in the mountains and didn’t really do much hiking this month thanks to being busy with work, being sick and well, life.

So anyway, time to look back at the month that was July. At the start of the month I decided to do my very own ‘dry July’ where I planned to not have any added or refined sugars. And you know what? I succeeded. 31 days of no added or refined sugar! And I feel all the better for it. There were two birthdays and about 4 or 5 cakes at work this month but I didn’t cave one bit. I am so proud of myself. Now the plan is to continue having only very limited sugar {read: desserts!} and keep off the refined sugars as much as I can for my own health.

July saw me back at uni and even though I initially thought of doing it full time, I decided just a couple of days before uni started to go part-time. And after the first week of uni, I’m so glad I made that decision. Two classes and it’s already a lot of work. Because it’s a writing course, there is a lot of reading and well, writing! We workshop writing pieces in one of my courses every week. You read that right — every week! In the other one, there is one time we workshop our own piece. And for both courses, we have to hand in one essay each and a short story each. So yay for writing! I’m enjoying it so far though. Even though there are times I feel like a bit of an idiot because I may have not read some of the ‘bigger’ books, if you know what I mean.

Apart from uni, July has been busy on the blog. I had the giveaway which ended yesterday and I will announce the winners over the weekend. This month, thanks to some prompts and some thoughts in my head, I shared my biggest fear and coincidentally, the end of the relationship with The Ex back in 2012. Yes, it was one I stayed in far longer than I should have.

On the flatmate front, my lovely flatmate Z left last weekend. I have another one moving in this weekend and it made me reflect on funny ads I’ve seen or slightly crazy flatmates I’ve had! Finally, I also had the chance to read a beautiful book this month that continues to stay with me. I realise I have been slack in replying to comments but I promise you I do read them all. I will endeavour to reply to them sooner.

How was July for you?

Did you know there are only 5 more months to the end of the year? 

Until next time,

Cheers!!!


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Should I stay or should I go

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Back in 2011, I faced this very question: should I stay or should I go? Should I call it quits on this relationship?

I had been with R for 18 months after we had another go at the relationship after a 12 month break. Things felt different the second time around. We talked about our earlier mistakes and how to prevent it from occurring this time around. It was all good in theory. And worked quite well while we saw each other only on weekends. 6 months after living together, things started to get difficult.

Now, I know relationships aren’t meant to be easy. But I doubt they were meant to be that difficult! For starters, we weren’t intimate anymore. No cuddles, rare hand-holding moments, even rarer kisses. Then there were the disagreements. It felt like if one of us had an opinion, the other just had to disagree. I wondered if this was just us testing one another to see who would break first and call it quits. Around December 2011, I began to seriously contemplate whether I should stay in the relationship. It was after yet another fight due to not getting any kind of sympathy after having a day of allergies and being told something along the lines of “don’t pass on your germs”. I went to bed in tears with Pebbles curled at my feet.

There were other things bothering me as well. Like how unsupportive he had been when a manager back then thought I was management material. When I excitedly shared the news with him, he thought it was a bad thing. Because apparently, only a certain kind of person wants a management role. {Let’s not even get into the fact that I was just excited that someone thought I was capable and hadn’t contemplated management ever!} Or how when I’d talk about a hard day at work with a difficult client, he’d try and one-up me with his difficult client {Note to self: never date another psychologist!}.

But a certain fear kept me in the relationship. Even though I think deep down I knew it was dead.

Few days into 2012, he brought up “we need to talk”. “Here we go,” I thought and mentally prepared myself. I let him have the first go. Turned out, breaking up was far from his mind! He was noticing the lack of closeness and wanted to work on that and decided that we should do something special rather than just go through the motions. Damn. So much for preparing myself for a break-up. When it came to my turn, I couldn’t do it. Not after what was said.

Things were okay for about a week. But I think I knew I had to go. I just had to find the right time. January was my birthday and February was his. So I figured the timing wasn’t right. And then I adopted Buttons. Because yes, bringing another cat really strengthens the relationship. Not. If anything, it made me realise just how critical and unsupportive he could be if we were to ever have kids. And after a week of no sleep and stress, I decided. Screw good timing. This had to end.

He was shocked when I ended it and it surprised me that he thought things were going well.

It was still sad when he left and I worried about how I’d cope. But two years on, it has been the best decision of my life. The Ex was stifling me and I became who he wanted me to be.

I have grown so much in the past two years that it’s incredible. I am still single but content with my life.

Personally, I think when you start to question if you should stay or go, you already know the answer.

What do you reckon?

photo credit: Zylenia via photopin cc

***Linking with Yeah Write for their Weekly Writing Challenge***

Until next time,

Cheers!!!


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My biggest fear

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Yesterday I noticed that Raychael from Ms Mystery Case was hosting the ‘I must confess’ linky and getting everyone to confess their biggest fears. It’s a funny coincidence because I had been toying with the idea of blogging about my biggest fear this past week. It is a fear that is hard to talk about and is something I have only voiced out loud to one person — my therapist. And it was during our second session. It has been a fear that has probably been at the back of my mind all the time but it can come to the fore in times when I am incredibly vulnerable.

It is not a fear I have mentioned to anyone else. Not my closest friends. Not my family. No one. And yet, here I am about to talk about it openly to the whole world. Go figure.

I fear that I am going to be alone for the rest of my life. 

Now, I know I have been single since 2012, but even when I was in a relationship with The Ex, I had this fear. I felt alone in that relationship. Just a worse kind of alone-ness. Because you are with someone and yet, alone. I think though in a weird way, the fear of being completely alone made me stay in that dead end relationship a lot longer than I should have and I’m glad I eventually had the courage to end it. But it doesn’t make this fear go away. The thing is, it’s not just about being single. I have a few single older colleagues at work but I notice one big thing that is different between them and me — they have family here. I don’t.

I am well and truly by myself. My sister is in Canada. My parents in India.

I do have great friends here in Australia who I call my family but at the end of the day, I know that they have their responsibilities, their lives and well, their families. Sure, none of them has kids yet but you can bet things will change even more once they do. I don’t intend on having children of my own. {Let’s blame my job for that…} And it makes me wonder whether that decision will create a bigger gap. Because after all, you see mothers befriending mothers through their kids.

While I do have this fear, I am still not willing to settle for just anyone nor have an arranged marriage nor stay in a dead relationship {like I know some people do}. Because I’ve been there. And in the end, it’s worse for my mental health. I think though it’s because of this fear I keep myself so busy. Because if I wasn’t busy, I’d be home. Alone. With two cats. While I am comfortable in my own company and can do things on my own, it’s still a pretty sad thing if that were to happen every night!

I watch people sometimes when I go for a walk by myself. I notice the couples, the families, the sisters, the siblings. And the fear looms it ugly head. I don’t have that. Not the partner. Not the sister. Not the parents. {I still wouldn’t move back to India!!!}. Not the kids. I go through moments of wondering what is wrong with me. Why is it that I am alone. Why for some reason after 3 or 4 dates, guys seem to have second thoughts.

I remember telling my therapist I felt guilty for having this fear. Because I chose to move away from  family to a different country for better opportunities. And I am grateful for my opportunities and for so much in my life. She was the one who told me I can be grateful and I can be scared and sad. It’s okay to feel it all.

It feels weird having rambled on about this fear. But this is a space where I am honest and open. No matter how imperfect I am or my life is.

What is your biggest fear?

Do share!!

***Linking with Raychael for I Must Confess and Jess for IBOT***

P.S. Have you entered the Imperfect Giveaway yet? It ends on the 31st of July!

photo credit: VinothChandar via photopin cc

Until next time,

Cheers!!!


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Funny Flatmate Stories

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As I mentioned yesterday, my flatmate Z moved out. She had told me more than a month ago she would be leaving and well, I’d started looking for new flatmates. I’ve been doing this for a while now. 5 years on the ‘Looking for a flatmate’ and prior to that, ‘Looking for accommodation’. In this time, I’ve come across some funny ads and some weird people. And I’ve lived with some weirdos too. I thought I’d share some of my funny flatmate stories —both ads and experiences — for some laughs:

1. Free accommodation: I remember when I was looking for accommodation back in 2009, I came across an ad that said something along these lines

“Free accommodation available in one-bedroom apartment. Close to beach, public transport and shops. Looking for a female to share with one mature male.”

Umm, free my ass!

2. Crazy religious flatmate: I’ve spoken about my flatmate L previously. She was the one who introduced herself with her religion. Which I have since learnt to take as a major WARNING SIGN! I was naive back then. I have no issues if people want to be religious but there’s a point when you start to wonder if it is a cult more than a religion…

3. Opera singers: My flatmate M was quite all right in many ways but there was one hobby she had — she was an opera singer at a local community group. Which is great for her. But it also meant she had to practise. I had friends over one night for board games and all of a sudden without warning around 8 pm or so, M broke into opera practice in her room startling my friends who didn’t know whether to laugh or not. In M‘s defence, she was a good singer. It was just amusing though!

4. Crazy cat people: Surprisingly, it’s not me. This time around when I was looking, I had one guy contact me saying he loved cats. His profile was pretty much about how much he loved cats. I gave him the benefit of the doubt and had him come to view the place when Z was around. {I made sure she was home!}. He came in, introduced himself and then pretty much launched himself at my cats who come to the door most times. He freaked out poor Pebbles and managed to even get Buttons annoyed. And Buttons usually loves everyone — he rolls over for tradies to scratch his stomach! There were other things about this guy that put me off too and I just didn’t feel comfortable with him. He apparently would be spending a lot of time at home due to studying via correspondence and thought that was a selling point in terms of spending time with the cats. Umm…no, thank you!

 

5. Dating, not house-sharing: Usually when you advertise that you have a place available for sharing, you put up photos of the accommodation — you know, the room, the lounge room and bits and pieces like that. Sometimes, people who are looking for accommodation tend to have their photos up so the person can get an idea I suppose. Anyway, this time around, I contacted a few people and one guy replied back to me asking me for my Facebook or LinkedIn profile and that he would send me his in return. I was a bit suss as to why he wanted it and figured I’d send my LinkedIn thinking he might want to see if I’m a professional {as he was one}. Turns out, if you are not my connection on LinkedIn, you don’t see my photo. He replied back with this:

Sorry to be difficult, could you please send a picture. A bit straight forward of me asking but I don’t want to waste your time viewing the room if we are not of some simalarity. Hope that is not too offensive :)

I lost my shit. I couldn’t tell if he was implying a culture clash or if he thought he was on a dating website. Either way, I figured I wasn’t interested. I replied back saying I wasn’t keen on pursuing this further and that you couldn’t tell if someone is ‘similar’ to you unless and until you meet them!

I have had a lot more weird flatmates. Like the crazy bitch during my final year at uni who threatened to delete my assignment for no reason and who later punched her partner in the face after a fight or the neat freak pilot dude who didn’t like me leaving a coffee cup in the sink in the morning.

Honestly, I could write a book on them!

Have you had any funny or weird house-sharing experiences?

Do share!!

***Linking with Emily and Vanessa for Laugh Linkup and Alicia for Open Slather***

Until next time,

Cheers!!!


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When a flatmate leaves

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Z and Buttons on the couch

My flatmate Z officially moved out today. She’s been living here for more than a year and I realise I haven’t blogged about her much at all unlike previous flatmates. Z has been one of the best flatmates I have ever had. She’s been one of the few since I started flat-sharing at 21, I can call a friend. We talked about everything. We shared almost everything. Right from politics, feminism and psychology to dysfunctional families, sex and guys. Every. Single. Thing. We also went to Birds of Tokyo and Karnivool together and was very supportive of my obsession with Ian Kenny. Oh and did I mention that when she moved in, she was only 21? Yeah, a very mature 21 year old.

I am going to miss having her around.

The cats, especially Buttons, are going to miss having her around. She was good with them too. Especially Buttons.

She treated the house like her home. She would clean the place, reorganise things, redecorate. Like it was home. And she said when she came for her final clean up today, it felt like coming home.

Z is not very touchy-feely and would hate if I said this but I’m going to miss her!

The reason she moved out was because she got into university which about an hour or more away from where I live and she also lost her job around the same time she got accepted into uni. It only made sense to look for jobs closer to uni {which she did and got straight away}. And she was looking to move before uni started.

I have known this was coming for over a month.

But it’s still hard. I do feel sad.

I’ve kept myself busy since she moved on Friday by watching DVDs on Friday night, going out on Saturday night and well, I’ve got a glass of wine and DVDs all ready for tonight.

Thanks for being a great flatmate and friend Z! And thank you for being one of the people in my life to make me more open. To the point of sometimes over-sharing! ;)

Hopefully the next flatmate is good for both of us.

Have you had a flatmate you didn’t know but you became good friends with over time?

Do share! 

Until next time,

Cheers!!!


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A lot can happen in 24 hours

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So after blogging yesterday about going back to school, I received a lot of supportive comments on the blog and while in some regards it put my mind at ease, there was still something niggling at the back of my mind. Blame it on being sick and away from work since Wednesday or just flu-brain {if there’s such a thing} but I kept wondering how I was going to cope with 3 nights a week of uni plus exercising 6 mornings, working 5 to 6 days full time, hiking and camping on some weekends, blogging and still finding time to catch up with my friends each week.

I figured I’d go for the first week and see what the assignments were like and if I could cope. But a lot can happen in 24 hours.

Then I went to work this morning and was having a chat with my boss who was startled {like most people} when I told him I was doing the course full-time. He asked me a question which made me think. Really think. He asked why I needed to do a full time load. And you know what? I had no answer to that.

Why did I need to finish this course in a year rather than a year and a half? There was no rush. There was no deadline. It’s not like when I did my psych postgrad as an international student and had no other choice but to do it full time. Now I have options. And I have a job I love.

I am doing the course because of my love for writing and my love to learn and develop. Yes, making a career out of it is there at the back of my mind but it’s not a career that has to start in June 2015! Basically, I want to enjoy the learning and the whole process. I don’t want to just go through week after week doing the bare minimum {like I’ve been guilty of doing through undergrad and some of my psych postgrad}

I thought about all this and much more on the drive back home and realised that even though I’ve taken Monday off work to get my student card and start uni, I could just go in, get the student card, suss out the place and the environment and officially start class on Tuesday {my elective was the Monday class}. Upon getting home, I made my decision. I withdrew from my elective and decided to do a part-time load. I can do this elective next Spring.

For now, I want to enjoy learning.

photo credit: Βethan via photopin cc

Until next time,

Cheers!!!


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Coupons with Zoutons

This is a sponsored post for Zoutons

Who doesn’t love a good bargain? {Don’t lie and tell me you don’t…}

Well, I for one, am a sucker for a deal. I love websites that offer these deals and have subscribed to several of them here in Australia. If I had still been living in India, I probably would be looking for coupons with Zoutons and other such sites. Zoutons is a place where you can get coupons for all your other online shopping needs including Flipkart, Amazon, Jabong, and even eBay. My mum could have definitely done with some Flipkart Coupons to help buy her recent smartphone!

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In addition to finding coupons for specific stores, it is also possible to find coupons based on brands you want to purchase. Makes shopping so much more easy {and dangerous if you are hoping to not spend money at all!}

In a way, it’s a good thing I can’t use the website from Sydney. If so, I know I’d be spending on some of the electronics {always love buying new techy stuff}, clothes {can’t have too many!} and books {but, of course!}

So what deals will you be shopping for? 

Do share!

Until next time,

Cheers!!!


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