January 21st, 2018
|08:14 am - Sleep|
I had been having very poor sleep since 2016. I believe it’s related to having tried dating. It sounds hilarious but that I really have been pretty cloistered in this area for a long time.
Last two weeks, I noticed a significant improvement in my sleep quality. I was able to let go and fall into a very deep sleep. Like I used to, dreaming dreams.
And I believe it’s because I don’t have a longing for someone. I don’t sleep thinking of someone and I don’t wake up thinking of the same.
That is what has changed and it has given me a much better emotional freedom. I think this is an area I got to work on if I want to try dating again this year.
Have a diversified life. So diversified that no one man can suddenly enter and make me make it all about him.
January 17th, 2018
|10:34 am - Pain|
It was most painful when I first injure myself with abrasion wounds to walk.
And when I walked during those first two days, especially right after the fall, I noticed I was taking very deep breaths, in and out, and I was not doing it deliberately but it just came instinctively to me as a way to cope with the pain. That deep breathing with pursed lips so that I took a noisy inhale and exhale seemed to physiologically and/or psychologically reduced the pain I was experiencing.
I had wanted to post something on deep breathing because it can come in so handy when you want to re-center yourself and stop yourself from getting carried away in spiraling or unruly thoughts or emotions.
We are not often that conscious of my breath. I started to notice my breath when I first tried scuba diving and because you see the bubbles coming out of my mouth, it's like super obvious that you're breathing. And there is this calming effect to being able to notice your breath.
I remember one time I managed to prevent gastric from deep breathing. As I mentioned before, there was a period in my life in 2015-2016 where I was undergoing a lot of stress and very high strung, and that was when I first experimented with deep breathing. Once, I could see the gastric almost coming, when I was in a group setting and engaging in a conversation topic that made me very uncomfortable, and I immediately applied deep breathing and prevented it.
Our breath is something that we all have access to as a means to reconnect with ourselves and recenter our attention on the present moment. Breathing deeply may or may not make you feel better, but it can help you create space for uncomfortable emotions (rather than tensing up) and give you a few extra moments to recollect yourself before you make a hasty decision (rather than acting on impulse).
January 16th, 2018
|08:43 pm - Prozac|
About two years ago, I tried Prozac. I never really shared about that experience because of the stigma behind having to see a psychiatrist or take medicine. But basically, I am quite the adventurous sort even when it comes to such treatment. I was not incapable of living without tweaking my serotonin levels. But I wanted to try to see whether it would be helpful to me. So when my clinical psychologist suggested it, though I was initially hesitant, I was later on very eager to try. Important note: medication taking must accompany your weekly therapy sessions.
What do I remember from that experience? First, it was difficult to get the dosage right. So I am quite small size, maybe don't need so much, but after testing it out, and then realizing maybe it's not enough, and increasing, and then realizing it's too much. This process took time, months to refine, and the doctor was saying that this is normal. My friend, B, was the one who noticed it was too much. I was becoming very edgy and impulsive. What Prozac did for me was to help me become more spontaneous and easily happy. I usually think a lot before making a decision, I think Prozac short-circuited that process. So yah... you can imagine what happens when I go shopping on a high.
Then, there were also the side-effects. I can't quite remember what side-effects I had... I think extreme lethargy could be one of them. Before I adapted to it, I was first extremely tired and drowsy. But that's normal. I can't quite remember what other side-effects... So these side effects usually come right at the beginning when you first start taking it. Oh YES! I had this ringing in one of my ears when I lied down against it. Gosh. That was irritating and worrying. It stopped when I reduced the dosage.
Also, you need a doctor who is comfortable dispensing it to you. So the ordinary GP may not be able to diagnose you with depression or anxiety. What I got from the NTU doctor was a sedative that worked very badly for me, because it made me so drowsy. I think when I am anxious or depressed, the last thing I want is a reduced capacity to handle whatever I am facing in life. But maybe that's what others need. To just tune down an overactive mind/body.
And why did I stop? I found that Chinese medicine also could treat mental illnesses, so I decided to give it a try and I didn't want to take the two types together. So I just stopped.
One more thing, my health insurance DID NOT cover mental health costs. :| Something for you to check... Probably doesn't cover.
What I can conclude from that experience was that definitely Prozac had the ability to change the way I think and feel, it made me high; but, I would rather highs be generated naturally through the adventure of life itself, and not artificially through drugs. Yes, but yes, there's no shame at all to take it if you need it. Yes, and I recognized whatever I had probably wasn't as serious as what some of you out there are experiencing. So, this is not an irresponsible message to stop your medication.
But one to encourage you to give it a try if you need it, and stop it, when you no longer do. Please do all these carefully in consultation with your therapist!
P.S. If it was not the drug that helped me... What did? The therapy sessions really helped me a lot... Helped me clarify what I wanted in life and what I could do to help myself. It gave me new ways to see things... This being said, as you know from the blog, I can share openly about my life to almost anyone. But not everyone is like me, so yah, if you want a therapist, need to find someone you can open up to. :)
January 14th, 2018
|03:19 pm - Missing|
I allow you to miss people, to miss things, to miss places, and to miss activities.
I accept that you feel a sense of loss and longing for certain people, things, places, and activities.
Feel it fully, embrace, accept...
It is okay.
And then I realize that I am a person with so much nostalgia.
It has been a difficult weak for me in some ways.
January 13th, 2018
|11:04 pm - Lucky|
Have you ever felt that someone was looking out for you?
I always felt that Someone was looking out for me.
Today, I mysteriously won two stuffed toys at the carnival. Hmmmm... I didn’t want to win them. I was just playing for fun. Maybe they are gifts from God. Maybe He wanted to tell me that He is looking out for me.
I love scary rides at carnivals because they make me feel so alive. All those sensations you feel, weightlessness and all... that you normally don’t feel in ordinary life... you feel them in these short spans of time.
I don’t do drugs or anything. Perhaps this would be the closest to some out of the body experience.
And maybe why I also like freediving so much. Just almost out of the body.
After being not enough for someone for so long, the removal from that situation, led me to feeling more than enough for many of my friends. It mysteriously changed how I now interact with people, a new dynamics has developed that I don't quite understand how and why. I felt suddenly more open to experiences and relationships, even those I would have avoided in the past.
That I do not know, but this I do know for sure for me now that unrequited love is unhealthy for me. I will be wiser in the future. Maybe this is the reason why girls don't often chase guys.
January 12th, 2018
|10:01 am - The trouble with unrequited love|
Unrequited love is bad for you because it may make you unsure of yourself.
We are supposed to be fully who we are and be loved for it. That's the us our friends and family love.
But unrequited love sends an insidious message, one we may not even be aware of, that perhaps I am "not enough", perhaps I need to change...
We may make ourselves smaller, softer, milder; or go the other way, in an effort to elicit at least some response from our love interest. But what we get is an inconsistent reply, further convincing us that we are perhaps not quite enough.
Don't. Stay. In this stage for too long. Please. Confess, find out the truth, and move on.
I think in future if someone likes me, I got to be more proactive and protect the person too, by not prolonging this stage longer than it should.
We all are wonderful people. We have people we love and people who love us. There's no need to get stuck on someone who doesn't love us. Yes, we can love them, but not at the expense of our full personality. We should just be ourselves and free!
And, I will always remember the first time I heard of the word "platonic" when Zachary told me we can be "platonic friends" when I was 14. Yes, today, I appreciate and love this word more than ever. Yes, let's be platonic friends, if we cannot be lovers. It is the most loving alternative.
January 8th, 2018
I realised I really respect myself. I give of myself wholeheartedly and I accept without bargaining my defeat.
I don’t feel ashamed.
|05:27 pm - Trust|
When we were at the motorbike rental, the renter could see my fear and did not trust me to handle the bike. I felt very small. I wasn't sure if I could trust myself either.
And then this Winnie the Pooh quote helped me:
“You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, smarter than you think, and loved more than you know.”
I think especially braver, stronger and smarter.
I am very timid, I think I am very weak, and not smart at all.
But the people who know me think otherwise. Not those who make quick judgments of me, like the Uber driver who works in the pawn business, but those who really know me. They think I am brave, strong and intelligent. :)
Oh, about the Uber driver. I don't speak very confidently, especially to strangers or people I meet the first time. So people who speak English, often think I am Chinese speaking, and people who speak Chinese, often think I'm English speaking. And... people also always think I am a foreigner. Maybe it's partly my dressing, but I believe it's even more how I speak and the confidence I project. So this Uber driver was sussing me out and then when I told him I was doing a PhD, he suddenly showed me a lot of respect.
Does it take a PhD to gain someone's respect?
Thankfully not, but I'm going to use that to my advantage. Get the PhD so I will "look" smart and no need to say anything, people assume I'm smart. xD
Yah, Shuyi, jiayou with the PhD, okay? You can do it. You are smarter than you think, really... You are not only okay with thinking, but really, your real strength is in finding unconventional solutions. You will find your way around any obstacles you face, trust me, okay? :)
I did find my way about the motorbike. I am my bestest and most confident when I am alone. The best teacher I have ever found for myself, is myself. Myself - she's the most gentle, patient, and creative teacher. I borrowed P's bike, went to deserted roads and practiced until I got it. I practice slow, braking, fast, turns... Practice until I felt confident. Then we went to get my bike. :) Thanks P for the adventure!
And this year?
Let it be a year of trust - learning to trust myself more and again. :)
|05:16 pm - This is who I am|
And I am not apologetic about it.