Saturday, October 29, 2011

Moving On...

I seem to be moving on in a few aspects of my life and I can't seem to be happier. Our move or not to move dilemma has sorted itself out and by default we are staying put in Brisbane. Although I was looking forward to exploring another city in Australia, I am more than glad it is status quo. God really knows what's best for us.

Staying put also means that I can continue working in the city. I think Ling has done me great service by helping me get this job. I couldn't ask for more favorable working conditions. I work 3 full days a week and commute by bus. Initially having to take the bus caused me some trepidation due to horrible experiences whilst studying in Malaysia. We never knew what time the buses would come or if it came at all. Then there were the overcrowded buses on rainy days when the conductor would pack us in like sardines and it was suffocating because nobody could open the windows. We never realized how hazardous it was then. I could go on with the horror stories. 

Taking the bus in Brisbane is so different. I find it so very pleasant and yet I know people still whinge if the bus is late by 5 minutes! The weather also makes it pleasant to do lots of walking. If it was humid like in Malaysia, I'd be drenched in sweat even before I reach my bus stop! So I can even say I do a little bit of exercise! 

Working also means a bit of time to myself (even it if means work and on the upside, paid work!). I actually enjoy time on the bus because I read a book or listen to music or sermons. I get to dress up and that in itself lifts my spirits up a bit :) Working also means I am less likely to dwell on my aches and pains.   Working part time means great work/life balance. I am really thankful.

David on the other hand has been really and truly wonderful. Now that he's finished his course and is very free, he does a lot of things around the house plus takes care of Micah on the days he's not at childcare and I am at work. As for his work, he's juggling his business in China and exploring something new in Brisbane. He's also trying out his DIY skills. He's renovating our outdoor dining area - we want to create another room for the house by enclosing it. I can't wait for that to be completed. We've had to put off doing a lot of things on the house because of the 'move or not to move dilemma' but as that has been solved, we can move on as well on the refurbishments.

As for my health issues, I have been put on the wait list for surgery which I hope will sort it all out once and for all. 

Things are moving on...

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Time to Travel

I can't believe it's been a year since we've stayed put and been away from Malaysia. This is the longest by far. Even though we haven't lived in Malaysia since 2007, making this the 4th year we've 'moved' away, we were still visiting home very often. 

I am now looking forward to traveling again. 2 weeeks in Kuala Lumpur and 1 week in Hong Kong. We last traveled last year June when we made a trip to London and Geneva. When we got to Brisbane after that, I was pretty happy to stay grounded. A yearly holiday is much better than shuttling around every 2 months.

I was supposed to go to Japan in May. Tickets were all booked but when the tsunami happened, it was a unanimous decision to cancel. The trip was planned with my 2 other friends, Lilian and Carol. We want to head somewhere together to celebrate our 40th. An all girls trip - and I am so excited. This will also be the first time I am leaving Micah for an extended time. 

I look back on the year that has passed and am amazed that I made it through. I have to confess that it has been a tough year. Emotionally, physically and mentally. David was busy with work (and he had to travel leaving me with Micah) and he was studying - the weekly assignments meant all work and no play. Despite his schedule and work load he still managed to take care of Micah and help me around the house. That I have no complains. Unfortunately he wasn't really there for me emotionally. 

Then there was the adjustment to Micah's development. He grew up lots this past year but in doing so we've had to kick start parenting 101 suddenly when before we were merely providers of food, shelter and comfort. I mean before he became his own person, all he needed was to be fed, cleaned and clothed and comforted. He needed very little until the day he turned 2. As he developed mentally, he demanded a lot of our attention. So the first 6 months here with him was so tough. This took a toll on me physically. Having to manage a 13kg toddler is no easy feat with a weak back and shoulders. I could never find time to heal enough for the next round of lifting! Then there were other problems - I find out that I am anaemic. I couldn't figure out why I was suddenly bone tired all the time before the diagnosis. Now with the knowledge and an iron supplement, I at least have that sorted so that I feel more energized.

When my body is weak, I suffer mentally and emotionally. And so it has been a roller coaster ride with me taking David along for the ride up and down with my good and bad days!

I was also disappointed on a personal level. I had expected to find work pretty easily and was really looking forward to earning some money and getting a bit of me time. That didn't work out so well for many reasons. First was that it just wasn't possible to work full time. We didn't want to send Micah to childcare full time. Part time jobs are also harder to come by. Secondly my qualifications needed to be assessed and that required time. In between waiting for the assessment, David dropped a bomb. Taking into account a lot of factors, it seems that we may have to move to Sydney if he were to get a job in his field or rather, in order for him to progress in his field of study, Sydney seems to have better prospects. With that in mind, I decided to hold back on the assessment because the criteria may be different in New South Wales. That left me in a limbo. I tried applying for jobs in other fields and in administration but there wasn't even a chance at an interview. As it happens - you need connections! 

Finally a chance conversation with a friend resulted in an interview at a legal firm. It was a long process but to cut the story short I am now working once a week. It is somehow appropriate that I remain in the legal line - I am most suited to this environment. I spent 2 days in the office to see how I could fit in before I started work last week and I have to say that I am in my element. It was comforting to know that I didn't forget my stuff and I could work quite efficiently despite trying to grasp the way things are done here in Australia. I still don't know how it will all work out in terms of my career especially if Sydney is happening but for now I am extremely glad to simply, dress up, go to an office from 9-5. David noticed that I was in much better spirits after a day at work.

David's results comes out next week and with it he's applying to some consultancy firms in Sydney. We don't really know what to expect. I guess things will start to fall into place once he gets an offer. For now we  are focused on enjoying our holiday, looking forward to eating our fill of familiar and much missed foods back home and catch up with family. Also a much needed time for myself in Hong Kong.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Worth a Post

I had an argument with David this afternoon. The debate ended abruptly when he dismissed everything and said that he'd prefer to end the discussion. That left me a bit miffed. And that's because I don't go down well without a fight. I had an internal debate right then and wondered whether I should let the anger simmer or have it out by engaging him again. I decided to keep silent, not simmering or anything, and felt the anger dissipate because I was busy trying to cook glutinous rice for dinner. It was good I was distracted.

I thought that, that was the end of the matter but discovered that it wasn't.

Later as we were driving to soccer, I said the word, 'stupid.' Now this is a word Micah has learnt and we are trying hard to dissuade him from saying it. David suddenly accuses me of 'teaching' Micah the word. He says Micah must have learnt it from me as he's noticed that I use that word often!

So here I am wondering if I should have an outburst. Mind you, the earlier debate was somewhat an anti climax so I was game to start a fight. Being an unreasonable female at that moment, I linked everything together and felt I needed to defend myself.

Somehow I managed to keep quiet and practically ignore my man while Micah had his soccer. It wasn't the time and place, anyway.

I fumed a bit here and there. I was less talkative than normal - keeping quiet and just preparing dinner and watching TV.

Then it happened.

My very righteous husband spews out the word, 'stupid' several times in response to some funny news item - and Micah says, "Papa, did you say stupid!"

I rest my case.

Friday, January 14, 2011

A Test

It will be a real test for me personally in the aftermath of the floods. We aren't affected directly and words are beyond me in trying to describe the damage we see in our suburb. As we drove around, we see familiar places covered in mud and our favorite pizza place is still under a feet of water if not more. The golf course has turned into a mud hole and the Jindalee pool is just a pool of dirty brown water. It is amazing how high the water reached at some places.

We are still without power but we saw the Energex people working on the substation nearby.

Micah's childcare was underwater which has now receded - we could see the watermark up close to the roof of the first floor where his room is. We also drove to Rocks Riverside park and it was closed. These are the two places I was going to rely on when David is away next week.

I'll really be a full time Mom after David flies off! The real test begins then :)

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPhone

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Queensland Flood 2011

Our story is trivial compared to those who have suffered loss of lives and home. The unfolding drama of the past 2 days has been splashed across the TV screen the whole day - for those who still have power to watch.

We are safe and dry and although power hasn't been restored, we are definitely not complaining. We commend Premier Bligh, the Queensland Government and all the State Emergency Services people plus the numerous personnel working to give out information including the host of volunteers at all evacuations centers. We've only been able to help a friend who evacuated by keeping their cars for them while they left to stay with their son.

We don't know what will happen in the coming weeks as the water recede and people return to their homes to salvage what they can and to clean up. The city's infrastructure almost came to a standstill and there is a lot of damage and uncertainty. All we can do is to extend a hand where needed and to continue to pray for those directly affected.

Mt Ommaney Drive

Mount Ommaney Shopping Center

Westlake Drive just a few hundred meters from our house

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