Things I Have Lost

The ability to come up with better blog titles is definitely one of them, as you can see.

It’s taken me longer than the average person, but after slightly more than 3 years, I’m done with being a house officer.

In the past three years, I feel like I’ve pretty much lost everything that makes me who I am, but there are a few things I’ve lost that make me go, ” why did I have to go and like medicine so much?”

Here’s the few:

1.Proper sleep

Since I began working, I can count the number of times I’ve slept without dreaming about work, or without waking up in the middle of the night, thinking that I’ve forgotten to do something at work or that I’m late for work.

The only times I have proper (i.e. dreamless) sleep is when I’m exhausted or have recruited the assistance of alcohol or Tramadol.

2. The ability to wear high heels

I love shoes, because no matter how many tubs of ice cream I gobble up or slices of pizza I inhale, feet don’t get fat. And legs look pretty damn nice in heels.

Along comes housemanship, where your tasks include being every single staff member of the ward and my 3 inch yellow espadrille heels with the cute bow on top will NOT cut it as sensible footwear. As a result, most of my days are spent in flats or even worse, black Bata school shoes. This bad habit of wearing shitty looking shoes has encroached into my life and now I’m never fully dressed. Fuck you, Sia, the smile doesn’t help when you’re wearing a gorgeous floral dress and brown flats.

3. A sense of style

It starts with shoes. Then it moves up. I start my morning by thinking about all the work that I potentially have to do in a day. That by itself usually eliminates skirts (no one wants to commence CPR in a skirt, trust me.) So, trousers it is. Everything else doesn’t matter because we have our white coats on anyway. By the end of my final rotation, my wardrobe consisted of stretchable trousers (no need to iron) and anything that fit.

I’m not saying that I used to be some super stylish chick who was at the helm of the fashion train, but at least I didn’t feel embarrassed about my clothes when taking pictures. These days, I look so bad that friends choose not to tag me in pictures out of the kindness of their hearts.

4. Hair

So. Much. Hair. Gone.

I’m sorry. This one’s too painful to talk about.

5. Life outside work.

My phone is flooded with pictures of x-rays, wounds and patient details. All my conversations are about cases, jobs to carry out and the like. My messages to my mum only consist of, “I reached work already” and ” leaving work now.”

The occasional invitations to go out just to chill and relax are met with, “Nah la, it’s ok. I work double shift tomorrow.” or ” No, I don’t have a full off day this weekend.”

 

I don’t expect these things to all return to me once I start life as a medical officer, but I hope whatever force that’s keeping them away from me allows visits.

 

Boys and Eyes

This blog is moving so slowly, snails want to give it a ride. I’ve been wanting to post stuff for a while, but nothing good has come to mind. Until now, when I’m on sick leave and probably experiencing mild intoxication.

For reasons unknown, I’ve been ogling guys like a lusty wench (far more socially acceptable than a crazy wench.) Most of my lusting takes place sat in front of my laptop, which makes me kinda loser-ish but whatever. My latest loin-crush is thanks to @nosweetnothings on Twitter, who mentioned a player from the French rugby team during the Rugby World Cup finals. Curious to see her specimen of choice, I Googled the team and came across a very lovely calendar called Dieux du Stade (Gods of the Stadium) instead. This is where I found him:

He is Thomas Combezou, the something for Montpellier Hérault Rugby Club. Okay, okay I’m not that shallow. He plays centre. From my “research” I’ve gathered that his job is mainly to tackle anyone who has the ball. What else could I come up with after seeing practically every photo of him playing with his face in somebody’s ribs?

Me lusting over him and making it known to the whole world even before blogging about it has resulted in two things: bacterial conjunctivitis and the catty side in guys. Well, the latter has always been there, but Combezou is the one that helped me get some clarity on the matter.

First, let’s talk about the conjunctivitis. I didn’t want to admit it at first, but I think prolonged staring at hot/cute guys results in me getting some sort of grotesque eye issue. You may think I’m being silly, but when it has happened three times, people stop laughing.

1. In November 2007, I discovered the awesomeness that is Gerard Butler in the movie “300.” He was big, ripped, in minimal clothing and killing other men violently. My knees were liquid. I also had a subconjunctival hemorrhage that took 2 weeks to get better.

2. In January 2009, I watched Seungri’s music video for “Strong Baby.” It’s not much, if I want to be honest about it, but something about him and that slight hint of developing rectus abdominis made me like him. Bam! Kerato-conjunctivitis for 3 weeks, followed by another subconjunctival hemorrhage. That was a total of FIVE weeks with a shitty looking eye.

3. November 2011 (are you seeing a pattern here? I am.) I am blessed with the knowledge that a sculpture like Thomas Combezou exists. After just a week of gazing upon his (insert any word that describes Adonis-like perfection) I have bacterial conjunctivitis. My eyes are spewing colonies and their by-products, and I’m praying that it will be gone in a few days.

Now, about boys being catty.

I’ve gone on about how crazy and ridiculous women can be sometimes, but I’ve never really touched on the topic of male behaviour. I have a fairly decent number of guy friends, and they’re all lovely chaps. Some girls even want to date them. *snigger*

These guys are also the ones who call us girls petty and jealous when they point out an attractive woman and we don’t agree with them. This is their classic line:

“you girls can never admit that another girl is beautiful, there’s always some justification. Look at us guys; if another man is handsome, we have no problem admitting it.”

BOLLOCKS.

Guys can only say that another man is attractive when THEY are the ones pointing it out. If us girls point a handsome or physically attractive man out, these are the most likely responses:

“steroids”

“gay”

“small penis”

“what the fuck is wrong with you?!!”

Usually, these words further prove to me that my eye-candy is indeed hot and bonk-worthy. I heard all of the above when I showed my guy friends that picture. Perfect.

Not only that, it shows that men and women aren’t very different when it comes to being envious. Women are capable of looking at other females and thinking that they’re attractive too, just not the ones you fellas point out.

Oh, my snail’s here. I’ll see you around!

He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not

It’s been a while since I had a proper crush. By proper crush, I mean I like the guy but I don’t want to pounce him. I think the last time that happened, I was still wearing a school uniform.

THEN

When I liked a guy in school, I went through a period of self-loathing. I have no idea why, but I was convinced that liking a guy whilst in school was a bad idea. In my head, liking boys meant that I was neglecting my studies and forgetting my priorities. I used to beat myself up a lot about it. I would do my best to try and forget the object of my affections. Stupid, I know. Who was I to go against raging hormones? It didn’t stop me from trying, though.

Most of you may know this, but to those who don’t, I was far from attractive in school. My plan was to get by with my brains and wit. Not my best plan, but that’s another story. Back to not being attractive. Glasses, braces, overweight and some inexplicable belief that I’d never find jeans that could fit me made me hide behind cargo pants, baggy t-shirts and boots. Till today, my cousin will never let me forget that I bought men’s shoes once. To 16-year old me, my (lack of) style made perfect sense. My personality and my taste in music were married. People were supposed to “get” me by knowing what sort of music I listened to. I was into bands like The Smashing Pumpkins, Bush and Garbage. The fact that rock chicks did not dress up like Gavin Rossdale or even Kurt Cobain totally escaped me. Don’t ask me how I didn’t notice that Shirley Manson wore short dresses and looked totally hot while singing “Only Happy When It Rains.” It also didn’t occur to me that the guys I liked were at that age where they might be confused about their sexuality and if they had any sort of attraction to a girl who looked like she could skin a moose in 2 minutes, this could leave some pretty bad scars.

The guy I liked studied at the school my mom worked in. My mom worked in a library and with the sort of curriculum the students had, trips to the library were frequent. Back then, there was no Friendster, Facebook or broadband internet and stalking was done physically. So I’d miss school and follow my mom to work to study in that library. I missed a total of 25 days of school in an academic year, but my grades were fucking awesome. How did that work out? I kept telling myself that if I studied, God would reward me with a glimpse of my crush. Lame, I know. I never said I wasn’t.

NOW

One gorgeous afternoon, while I was berating myself for liking someone, my friend Farina stopped me and said, “Being in love is nice, you idiot. Why can’t you just enjoy the feeling?” I’m pretty sure my answer was, “but but but..” and nothing more, but it got me thinking. Why CAN’T I enjoy it? Liking a person makes me all warm and happy inside, and being happy is good, right? Why was I denying myself happiness? Since then, I stopped getting on my case about liking a guy. Nowadays, I only stop short of throwing glitter at people on the streets and farting rainbows when I like someone.

On the fashion front, I discovered plus-size clothes that are stylish and feminine. Not only that, I’ve learned that dressing up like I’m part of the Vans Warped Tour ain’t gonna get me any sugar, if you get what I mean. This doesn’t mean I’ve sacrificed any part of my identity by changing the way I dress up. I just know how to look (somewhat) appealing now and on a good day when I think I may see the object of my affection, I even make an effort. You know, with makeup, earrings and high heels.

You’d think that with the avalanche of social networking sites and the awesome Internet speed here in Moscow, I wouldn’t even have to leave my room to check out what been going on with the apple of my eye. Fat chance. I have to like the one guy who only has an account on a Russian site and rarely does anything there. On the bright side, my class attendance has never been this good. I keep going to class with hopes I’ll see him at the bus stop in the morning, or maybe we’ll be in the same hospital. To make things even better, I still maintain the belief that if I study, God will let me catch a glimpse of him, so my work isn’t suffering, either.

Clearly, I’m much better at this crush thing now. :-)

Pudding And Pools

This summer held a lot of promise. While in Moscow, I was told that I would be living in a new place, and not only did this new place have an air-conditioned room for me, it even had a swimming pool. Needless to say, I was really looking forward to coming home.

You see,  my fifth year in med school was nothing less than a bitch in heat that no dog wants to fuck. It was so hectic, I don’t even want to talk about it. You would need to hypnotise me if you wanted to listen to my traumatic experiences. Okay, maybe it wasn’t that bad. It was stressful, which made me eat a lot. When I say, “a lot” what I mean is, “I only stopped short of raiding my guninea pig’s cage for snacks.” Eating a lot made me put on quite a bit of weight. In fact, it’s the weight gain that I find traumatising.

What does my weight have to do with summer, you ask? Everything. A summer in Malaysia usually ends only in one way: with people leaving as proud owners of a second chin. Food is good, cheap and available everywhere. In other words, the chances of the numbers on the scale going down were very, very low.

Now that I live in a condo which has a swimming pool and since I love swimming, you’d think that I’d make full use of the pool and lose all my exam weight. Yeah, sure. Not even my toe has seen the cool, chlorinated water that I had great plans of splashing around in.

Note How I'm Not In The Photo

To make matters worse, I have an uncle who doesn’t snack between meals; one meal just blends in with the next. He doesn’t want to eat alone, so I’m roped in to keep him company. My stomach has forgotten what it feels like to be empty. Poor bastard sure is gonna suffer when I’m back in Moscow.

If you’re wondering whether my uncle is overweight, let me assure you that he is not. He does enough exercise to keep 3 middle-aged women fit. What he fails to understand is that I barely do enough exercise to keep myself fit. In fact, I probably do just enough to not get a heart attack.

This awful combination of minimal exercise and obscene amounts of food has led to the fastest weight gain I have ever experienced in my life, and I am quite the expert when it comes to..ahem..excess baggage. I’ve only been home for 24 days. Shorts that fit me when I arrived can’t go past my bum anymore and the loose T-shirts that I bought last week show off a pretty revolting bulge where my hip bones used to be ( I prodded and poked, I can’t find them anymore.) There’s only so much shrinkage I can blame on my clothes’ dryer.

That said, I sadly admit defeat and accept that getting into a size-10 dress is a bit like riding a pink and turquoise talking unicorn to Narnia.

It’s May. Let The Mistake Making Begin!

Clearly I’m a random sort of person and at the rate I’m going, I may graduate before I write something proper. So here’s some stuff I sifted out of my head.

1. Forensic Medicine classes have begun. My major plan to ace this one is to download and watch as many episodes of CSI my puny little laptop is capable of holding.

2. The Malaysian Students’ Annual Dinner is in two days. The past weekend was spent consuming fajitas, burgers, fried chicken, loads of fries, moist chocolate cake covered in melted white chocolate, and enough barbecued meat to make up a decent sized lamb leg. I might as well just go wearing a saree.

3. Speaking of barbecued meat, I had such a great time at a barbecue party on Labour Day that I’m still raving about it. I don’t know whether it was the different company, the wonderful food or the fact that every beverage I had between 11a.m. and 9p.m. was alcoholic, but it KICKED ASS.

4.Exams are in a month. Seeing that I did crappily in the one paper everyone said was as easy as Paris Hilton, I’m already worried about this semester’s papers because they’re all hard. Am I doing anything to reduce my worry? Nah, I’ve got a month.

5. My term as a glorified letter writer is coming to an end. I am over the moon about this. My heart is singing and the birds are dancing to the melodies playing in my soul. I’m exaggerating, of course. I barely did enough to warrant such joy. The work I did this past year makes the previous secretary look like a rabid workaholic. Or maybe he just is a rabid workaholic and I’m normal. Either way, I’ll be done and I can go back to my quiet life of ignorance and sloth.

That’s all folks!

We’ve Been Told We’re Worth It

Women are a funny bunch. I should know, I am one.  Many guys I know are usually baffled by how we work, but just ride the wave because it’s easier than trying to figure us out.

I roughly know what the usual stereotypes are about women; we don’t say what we mean, we can have bitchfits at the drop of a hat, we have a pseudo sense of direction etc. What caught my eye recently, however, was a blog post about how women have too much stuff. My first thought was, ‘NOOOOOOOO we don’t.’

After the reading the post, I went to my cupboard and inspected my stuff. It all seemed pretty reasonable, but it DID resemble the picture the writer had posted along with the piece he had written.

Determined to prove that there’s a logical explanation behind every tube, bottle and jar, here I am, explaining why we have the amount that we do. At the very least, why I have what I have and maybe some women will agree with me. Here we go:

Moisturisers

I have one for the day, one for the night, a generic moisturiser for the days I’m too lazy to do the whole toner-hydrating serum-moisturiser regime, body butter, and a “heavy” moisturiser for my elbows and knees.

Why so many, you ask? Contrary to what many guys believe, skin may be just skin, but some areas have thinner skin than others, making it more sensitive. That’s why we have different creams for different body parts. You wouldn’t use a harsh bar of soap for your handsome face, would you? Wait, don’t answer that.

Pre-wash Hair Products

Okay, there are two types of hair oil and a homemade hair mask made of rice and mung beans. Hair oil is a very Indian thing to have, I suppose. While not many Indian girls my age use hair oil, many don’t suffer with a 3-finger wide ‘hair parting’ the way I do, either. I’ve got two different oils because both are good, and two good things should make a better thing, right? The hair mask is another traditional thing. All I know is, my Nanna used to apply it to my hair when I was a kid and I never had any comb-overs.

Foot Care

Bath salts, foot scrubber, pumice and peppermint exfoliating cream.

I’ve seen what happens to feet that don’t get the treatment they deserve. You are either capable of not noticing when you walk out of the house barefoot, or you spend almost 2 hours at a pedicure with the poor woman doing all she can to make your feet appear humanlike while she wonders how she has sinned to deserve a client like you.

I must admit, I have the bath salts only because they smell nice.

Hairbrushes and Combs

Yes, even the woman who has approximately 400 strands of hair thinks that she needs more than one comb. I have two hair brushes with identical properties and a wide-toothed comb. The comb is to detangle the wet hair before blow-drying, one hair brush is to blow dry my hair and the other brush is to style my hair after I dry it because all the static from the previous brush will just fuck up the styling process. See? Not that complicated, right?  *snort*

Miscellaneous Products

This is usually a result of my inability to say, “No.”  Yes, I plan to make that my selling point at clubs, but that’s beside the point.

I have a ‘Bi-phasic Hydrating Serum’ that I have to put on before I apply my moisturiser because apparently, my skin is SO dry that the moisturiser can’t be absorbed by my cells. Magically enough, this miracle serum can bust through my Sahara-like skin and make me look so dewy fresh that you could mistake my face for a blade of grass at dawn.

If you think that’s silly, you should know about my ‘Shaping Facial-Lift Lipo-drain Serum’. The kind aesthetician  at Clarins explained to me that by applying this cream and holding my face is various ways that usually make me look like I’m mourning the loss of a fingernail, I can get rid of the chubby cheeks and double-chin that I’m genetically predisposed with.  You know, the very same cheeks that my UK –Size-8 mother has. In my defence, I really needed to wee and saying ‘yes’ to the lady ensured I didn’t leave a puddle on her recently waxed floor.

I am well aware that guys may have some sort of way to minimize our possessions by 60% (e.g. use more cream on the thicker skin, use less of the same cream on thinner skin or some nonsense like that), but that’s not what we want. If we had any less that what we have now, we’d probably think we’re punishing ourselves. It’s a girl thing.

HAPPY WOMEN’S DAY!

 

My Winter Break (I Kid You Not)

I can’t believe I’m going to type this. This used to be my least favourite topic to write about in primary school, and here I am, posting it on my blog for people (yes, all four of you) to read. The exams must have fucked me harder than I recall.

My two-week winter holidays have finally come to an end. I’m looking forward to classes, mainly because this is what I’ve been up to:

1. Swatting flies. Literally. Thanks to Pedro, my half-blind, fully annoying guinea pig. Apparently the perfectly balanced combination of rodent poo, bedding and hidden stashes of food is excellent for breeding noisy, filthy flies. There are so many of them that I’ve gone slightly nutty. I am convinced that they have favourite spots, strategies to avoid me (sitting anywhere above 160 cm from the floor seems to do the trick) and personalities. I’m pretty sure that any sane person will know that I’m expecting too much from an insect that lives for less than a month.

Pedro in his home a.k.a Diptera Love Shack

Either way, I’ve invested in a decent fly swatter. Whenever I go on my daily “hunt”, it looks like I’ve combined badminton with basketball and pro-wrestling. I add pro-wrestling into the mix because there’s a fair amount of smack talk from me while I’m on my killing spree, ranging from “I’m going to kill you and spit upon your buzzing corpse” to “Hah! Go ahead, fuck around with me. Make my day.”

2. Shopping. This one was quite disappointing, not because there weren’t enough outlets with mad sales, or because there was nothing appealing to me. I just can’t shop. I’ve tried. I’ve gone with friends, I’ve gone alone, I’ve tried going early to avoid crowds, I’ve tried going when I had more time than I could care for. For some inexplicable reason, I cannot walk into every shop in a mall and scrutinise every item on display just for the heck of it. I rarely buy stuff because I want it, and even when I do, I rush into a store, quickly scan the place, buy the thing and scurry out. I’ve been in denial for some time now, but last week, when I was impatiently weaving through people to get out of a mall when I has absolutely NO reason to rush, I knew that it was pointless; I just don’t do shopping.

3. Eating. This wasn’t part of the plan, well at least not my plan. My plan was to spend some quality time walking outside with my pedometer on so that I could finally conquer virtual Tokyo and maybe have a small victory in the Tight Jeans Battle. My friends’ plan was to cook all sorts of lovely, decadent meals that would render us motionless after consumption. The choice between gobbling good food and walking in subzero temperatures was not a hard one to make. Class is on Monday, I’ll be wearing track bottoms.

At this rate, my Gynaecology cycle is beginning to look very inviting.

Baby, It’s Cold Outside..

Here’s a little update:

1. I’ve fallen twice and had a major slip once, all in the span of two weeks. I’m expecting the lower half of my body to be very, very sore. After the icing session over the weekend, I’ve decided to just fall whenever gravity pulls me.

2. Christmas was awesome and tiring. Here’s proof:

This MAY have been after the eggnog

Nothing like 'Christmas in a Cup' to start the day

Us Girls Being Fancy at Lotte Plaza

The Mandatory Party of the Bekker Family

See? FUN.

3. Classes are over, which means exams are around the corner. I have the pleasure of sitting for FOUR papers this winter. Don’t be surprised if you don’t see a post after the 9th of January.

4. November and December have been months of eating, drinking and being merry. In other words, I cannot fit into ANYTHING. Hopefully stress metabolizes all my jolly bits.

5. A new year will show up in a few days. Hopefully it starts with a bang the way this year did. A lot happened, but nothing I feel like mentioning now.

2010 in a (large) nutshell coming soon. Preferably before 2011.

I Am Woman, Hear Me Roar!

Or at the very least, watch me grit my teeth while trying to mask the urge to grunt like a wounded wild boar.

(Now would be a good time to warn you that the details of this post are explicit and may cause great discomfort)

Ever since I turned 19, I’ve had an issue with hair. The strands on my head began dropping and the ones on the rest of my body were becoming more obvious. I’m not saying that I’m part lycan or anything extreme like that. In fact, I can safely say that I’m more fortunate than many women.

My problem/insecurities regarding body hair stems from the fact that the females from the maternal side of my family are a head of hair away from being this:

I was left to my own devices when it came to learning about wearing a skirt without making the general population cower in fear, since my mother knew close to nothing about it. Countless hours of research and copies of girly magazines later, I settled on using depilatory creams to solve my issue.

After five years of using the same old method, I decided to try something new. Give the follicles a bit of excitement, you could say. I was against the idea of shaving because I knew myself too well; there would be too many nicks and too little Band-aids in the world to save me from bleeding to death. Laser treatment was a bit much for the bank balance, so that one got tossed out the window as well.

That left me with waxing. I wasn’t really worried about the pain. I just figured it would take too much time to heat up the wax, and there was this paper thingy that is put on the wax-covered limb…all in all, it seemed like too much work.

Either way, I headed for the store that sold girly stuff and parked myself in the hair removal section. As soon as I got there, something caught my eye:

The Lazy Chick's Blessing

The box said everything I needed to see: no heat formula, perfect for first time users…caramel. I have NO idea why the thought of caramel scented wax appealed to me, but it did. Needless to say, I was sold. I skipped along to buy this miracle wax and rushed home to try it.

When I got home, I picked a spot on my body that no one gets a view of (in case of mistakes) and should be able to handle hair being ripped off. Armpits were the clear winner here.

Mistake #1: Putting on the wax BEFORE reading the instructions. Apparently, I was supposed to apply the numbing solution that was provided. While I am an advocate of manual reading, I got excited when I opened the jar. Not only DID it smell like caramel, it looked like this:

Yummy!

Oh well, what’s a little numbing solution? I slapped on the wax and put the so-called muslin strip on the wax. Finally, with manual in hand, I saw that it said there was no need to wait after putting the paper strip. Oh, joys! This is supposed to be fast, too? Excellent. One hand raised in the air, I yanked the bugger off my pits. There was no pain, and..there was no hair on the paper either. I was pretty sure that cold wax or not, this attempt was not successful.

Not about to be defeated by mere wax, I attacked my underarms again by slathering on the wax, plastered the paper and this time, I waited. After a few minutes, I yanked the paper off. I figured that I must have done it right this time around, because the pain was EXCRUCIATING. After I wiped my tears, I inspected my paper. There were about three measly strands of hair and a small patch of blood.

You’d think that something like blood would deter me, but noooooooo. I’m nothing if not stubborn, so I went for attempt #3. Since the waiting thing made a few hairs come off, I concluded that waiting longer, and letting the wax really bond to the hair would be the clincher. So, there I was, arms raised in the air, standing in front of my fan trying to marry off caramel wax with pit hair. I waited ten whole minutes and pulled. There were more tears, hairs and ( what I started to believe was obligatory) blood. Can you say, “epic failure”?

No way is that stuff making its way to my bikini area.

Far and Wide

My womanly post is half done, it’ll get here somehow. Today is another set of nonsense.

  1. Infectious Diseases’ cycle is done. Thank God. What kind of mutated person can speak for 3 hours non-friggin’-stop? There are some neurons that I’ve written eulogies for already.

    A Place Where Even Insanity is Contagious

  2. There’s this Nike pedometer thingy on my new iPod and when it syncs with the Nike+Active thingy, it has this cool point system which correlates to the number of steps I’ve walked. Being an air-headed bimbo, it totally made me want to walk till I got enough points to virtually cross the Brooklyn Bridge. Because something like this may make my jiggly finally go away, Fate decided to let it rain the whole day.

    "New York" Here I Come!

  3. Gynaecology cycle has begun. I observed a few normal vaginal examinations. One word: OUCH! Why are all the instruments so big, metallic and scary looking?!! I’m totally not looking forward to my first gynae appointment, which probably should be soon. Is it too late for a sex change?

    Say, "AAAARRRHHHHHH!!!!!"

Okay, I’m done for today.