Midlife Crisis – is this half of the years that I have in this life?

I had a moment of enlightenment a few months ago. And I took action on it. I decided to study part time. I made some enquiries to friends who are already on that path and those who have completed their studies. Some were encouraging, some tried to talk me out of it.

This could be a mid life crisis. Gosh, maybe. I am after all only 37 years old this year. If this is halfway through my lifeline – my impending death would be at 74? Hanya Allah Yang Maha Mengetahui.

I am taking a huge leap of faith here to juggle the many things on my plate right now. I will be missing more sleep hours and personal time. I am convincing myself that this is called Sacrifice. Most of my hours studying is online via modules and pre-recorded lectures on top of completing assignments with grueling deadlines.

There are a few certain things for now;

  • I have no intention to become a specialist in any field of medicine. Anesthesia will always be my first love. I tried to put in similar determination and passion into primary care just as I did into emergency medicine but after 2 years, I just feel that it is not working out for me. I do not enjoy the nature of primary care. As a responsible medical practitioner, I will of course still develop my knowledge and upgrade my skills to ensure I become a safe doctor but the drive to do so is not because I want to be a specialist. Its more of that I can be a safe doctor to serve my patients needs.
  • I have my husbands support. Knowing that he is OK with me doing this would mean him being able to support me and my schedule accordingly.
  • Accepting that the world is my oyster and that I am free to roam in it as however I wish and who ever I want to become.

I am pursuing a Bachelors Degree in Psychology with Honours. I am aware that having this scroll will not make me a psychiatrist. I am keeping my options open for other career options that this field may offer if I chose to upgrade on it stage by stage. I do not have to be a doctor forever you know. What if I want to work in a company as an organizational therapist. Or sit in my own office providing counselling or psychotherapy services as a private, registered practitioner. Perhaps delve into a popular or contemporary form of psychology. Or be the best ever social worker with a medical degree, an invaluable aide to Syed Azmi’s cause. I dunno.

I am envisioning a world where people need more help with their mental health from all walks of life. We are seeing a rise in people who could not manage their emotions and channel them appropriately to the extent of harming themselves and others. I also people who have a very distorted perception of how to treat another human being and their surroundings. I see communities falling apart as they place more value as an individual than coming together as one. We see more and more empty vessels making loud noises flooding social media, which is a huge influence in our lives nowadays – dishing out nonsensical advice to those who actually needs guidance. The world has gotten bitter and sick. Maybe I have a role here somewhere.

I will be blogging about my journey as a mature student in NotaMinci and a separate IG account, HOBOMINCI. I had wanted to document there my path towards becoming an anesthetist. However, survival of the fittest showed me that I am just not fit enough for that road. I failed to get into the programme twice and at the same time my social and biological clock is ticking. So I need a diversion. A form of affirmation to myself that I am meant to blossom but maybe not within the perimeter of an operating theatre or the ICU. Maybe it is best I blossom in the wild outside medicine where I don’t have to tiptoe and watch my back. Instead be loose and free like the dandelion in the wind. Only to sprout again in other terrains and bring happiness to humanity.

Filtering Instagram

For the past few months – I have been decluttering my Instagram Following list. I have less than 500 genuine followers but I myself am following more than 1000 other accounts. I had thought to myself do I need to follow all of these accounts? Park Seo Joon has over 4 million followers and yet he only follows 79 people. Like, whoa. That was mind blowing.

I started by unfollowing accounts that has been inactive for more than 6 months, fake profiles and selected sellers account. The trend back then was if someone follows you, you are (made to feel) obliged to follow back. When in fact, there could be sinister reasons as to why they would want to follow you. For instance, they are selling on Instagram and they see you as a potential buyer, so they’d leave a like on your photo, give a random comment and click Follow. When you follow them back, you realize that they intend to flood your feed by advertising the things they sell.

So, I unfollowed those accounts that sells tudung I would not wear, dresses that I won’t fit into or way above my budget, accounts that sell seasonal viral food like asam or fish skin or those with stores which are not located in Melaka or KL. Like why would I follow a shop based in Terengganu and does not do postal services.

Then I unfollowed celebrity profiles which I feel would not add value to my life or whose lifestyle are not one compatible to mine. I still keep ctdk and chef wan for instance alongside IU (korean singer). But I did remove personalities like David Beckham etc.. coz they just seem so far away. I think I followed Beckham because of Harper initially. I could always read up on her via Google or some sort of tabloid site.

Which comes to the next accounts on the list. The tabloid accounts. I feel I don’t need to follow all the ohbulan, lobakmerah, yada yada cause they highlight almost the same things. Plus, I am seeing a lot of them already on Facebook as my friends love to share the links on the news feed.

I also filter the influencers. I slashed ambiguous product sellers, profiles that make tutorials I have no use for at the moment

These itself got me down to a few hundred already and I was already at about 700ish at the time. Next was a bit difficult as I go through my planner and stationary related list. Some had gone inactive, said goodbye to a few sellers and made a mental note to follow the good ones on my other IG account called Hobominci. That is specific to it.

Once I have passed that, I went through the recipe/food list. This was easy to do and now I only have a handful of accounts to follow.

Now I am at a stage where I need to choose which friends that I know personally to remain as a follower. So far I have removed myself from accounts that are inactive, hacked or for some reason has become a hardcore sellers account. I am OK with the occasional feed that promotes their business but not every single one of them. I also deleted accounts that are equally active on Facebook because I don’t need to see the same updates on both social media.

Since I still have FOMO – I decided to follow hashtags. It gives me a variety of accounts to stalk and explore. It still feeds my curiosity of the wonderful things that are happening around me. I am proud to say that from the more than 1000 accounts I have followed, now it is down to about 235 accounts. I will declutter from time to time.

In a way I can use my extra time to create more content and focus my time more on other activities such as reading or cleaning the house. Ha ha ha. Gosh, cleaning is like forever. It will never be done.

I gave away books for free the other day and boy, it was a lesson learnt

Whenever I get disheartened of a humane act or good deed I do as part of Tabung Minci or for just being an NGI, I’d scroll through my previous blog posts to gather insight on why I do this in the first place.

Like this post.

I am still learning how to ‘Give Properly’. To give in abundance, in ikhlas, precious and hopefully of need and meaningful to the recipient.

Recently, I decided to do book gifting to my colleagues. It was Xmas season. I mean, who wouldn’t like a book to read right?Surely professionals would love a book. And is willing to try and take on a new genre. Right? Apparently not. I got them wrong. haih.. paiseh.

The books are handpicked from my own shelf. These are books that I love to read, only knowing myself – I wouldn’t read them the second time because of time constraint. I still have a lot on my TBR (to be read) list.

Anyway, all of these books are too shiny, glossy and pricey to be rounded up in a recycling bin. And to do a jumble sale is taking too long to organize. I could actually donate them to a public library but the titles felt so personal ( I honestly don’t know how to explain) that I thought why not share the joy of reading them with my friends.

For each person, I chose a book that I feel would suit their personality and once I gave it to them personally- that was when things got interesting and awkward to a certain extent.

Common questions I got was

  • Why are you giving this?
  • Is this a gift or are you lending it?

Heartwarming response

  • reading the synopsis and willing to try a new genre
  • saying a simple thank you and keeping the book in their personal bag
  • caught already reading the book and loving it so far
  • talking about the book and recommending titles that I may like (bonus)

Heartbreaking response (trying to be chill about it though)

  • without a single flip through the book asking is he/she could sell the book on shopee (I said the book was a gift – it is up to you to do as you please. There was a small thug in my heart as the book was a really good one. If I had known, I would have given it to someone else)
  • without reading the synopsis , kept it in the office drawer. We all know whatever goes inside the drawer, never makes its way out unless it is time for spring cleaning
  • an immediate skeptic response to an unknown form of literature. I have taken into good faith that a thriller could be enjoyed in any language you understand. I failed to understand then, that a non-English thriller may not emit the same excitement of an English thriller

Despite the shortcomings, I felt it was still fulfilling all the same. I am not looking for a book in exchange, or a thanks on Watsapp group (oh god.. please no). It was a small act of sharing joy and giving that’s all. I kept reminding myself that I should give unconditionally. Yes, hiccoughs happen but they are there for a reason. Keep giving. Never stop.

Only in the future, make it Focused, Meaningful & Beneficial.

Sparkle Run Melaka 2020 – a rare weekend activity

The announcement for this event came out very early. At the time I was contemplating on joining or otherwise. There are a few factors that I have to take into consideration whenever I choose to participate in a weekend activity.

  • Kids friendly or otherwise
  • Duration of programme
  • Venue of programme
  • Husbands schedule

If I had to attend a formal course on a weekend – then that is without a doubt, a must go. No question. No need to discuss. But when it comes to something of choice – I need to deliberate.

On Saturdays, my husband works in the clinic for at least half a day. On top of the weekday locum slots he is assigned to. He needs to fulfill his percentage of clinical work since he is most of the time doing a non clinical form of job.

On Sundays, or Saturday sometimes , he has to give community talks, organize gotong royong in a taman affected by dengue fever (which the residents don’t attend anyway) and god knows what other stuff involving handshaking the higher official menteri and such.

In a way, my Me Time or weekend activities need to also consider the above. His timetable. Safe bet is, I plan my stuff and inform him way in advance before he arranges his schedule. With frequent reminders hereafter so he wouldn’t forget through shared digital calendars, physical calendars, watsapp notification and verbal ones via the kids. Ha ha ha.

Sometimes he still forgets. Like my bellydancing session in Bangi. He made me cancel. I said No. He had to rope in his parents to help and we were grumpy towards each other the whole weekend.

Sparkle Run Melaka 2020

This run was announced many months earlier. I was thrilled for I could plan ahead. This is my first run so I am not quite sure what to expect but reading from other peoples experience of other runs – it should be a short run. Indeed it was. We came for the 0830am flag off and noted that those who went for the 0700am flag off has safely received their medal and on their way home.

The run venue was near to home, so it’s a plus point.

It was stated kids friendly but from the email, it discouraged bringing kids less than 2 years old. So I didn’t bring Ninie. On that day however, I saw other runners bringing their kids in strollers. Dayum.. I could have done the same.

My 5km run with Ee was done in 43minutes. We were pleased with ourselves and will consider joining other runs later. If it fits my weekend activity criteria.

Weddings , grocery shopping for instance are kids friendly activities with a less than 3 hours duration. The difficulty level may differ depending on the variables for the day – husband presence, kids mood or Will to Cooperate, the crowd etc. Even then I still need to plan my grocery trips – is it better to go Family Store where they help you to pack your stuff with less variety or to Tesco with good variety but hands off attitude when it comes to packing customers grocery. In both situation – I bring my own shopping bag. But Family Store was more willing to help.

Anyway, now that I find Fun Run interesting – I will now need to juggle future runs with other cropping weekend agendas – Ee’s skill classes, weddings, birthday parties, courses, visit parents etc etc.. thankful for my faithful HoboMinci.

Pak John Steamboat and BBQ, IOI City Mall

We traveled all the way from Melaka to IOI City Mall Putrajaya last weekend in Starving Mode just to try this outlet since we heard so many positive reviews about it. Especially from the Butterfly Project Malaysia members.

We were not disappointed. 

GE-11, Ground Floor, IOI City Mall,
Lebuh IRC, IOI Resort City,
62502 Putrajaya, Sepang,
Selangor, Malaysia.
Tel: 012-251 8289‬, 03-8957 1128

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The buffet restaurant is located outside the mall on the G FLoor. That would be FYI for those who are not familiar with this mall. Ntah berapa kali belek email, betul ke ni.. betul ke.. terus rasa mcm nak makan kaki baby..

PakJohn is certified HALAL by JAKIM.

It boasts of having over 160 selections of food to choose from. With 6 different soup to cater our preferences. For a buffet, I feel that the price is affordable if you can spare at least over 60 minutes there to just eat. We spent about 90 minutes there. Sebab nak makan semua.

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Mana satu kuah yang tak pedas (not spicy)?

Chicken, prawn and miso..

We opted for chicken soup.

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Rich selection of poultry and seafood. Because I was kind of like on a diet – I ate a lot of protein on that day. Mr Husband had rice and the kids well, I was surprised that Ninie could also enjoy the food. We were so worried that the kids would vomit. The experience of this indoor BBQ gets more delicious as we tried the many sauces and dips from the sauce station.

My best attempt to be a thick skinned blogger and take the video of the sauce station. Cepat sgt sis keliling.  

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That would Ninie, the girl who ate and ate and ate. And can you see that burnt surface of our BBQ tray? Well.. they even replace those things from time to time so that your BBQ will not be hangus despite the many margarine you lather onto your meat. Nice touch, kan?

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There are also rows of vegetables for constipated people those who are into healthy food and needs more vitamins for better bowel movements and skin complexion.

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Mr Husband had 2 helpings of the white rice. There were also fried rice and bihun. And gosh, you should have seen the ramen counter! You just want to sit there for 24 hours and try everything.

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My son Ee went wild over these sticks of fried balls and such. Freshly fried foodbites dipped with the many sauce, is that not foodgasm??!! BUT THAT IS NOT THE END OF IT. Wait till you see what they have as part of their premium selection of which the is already included in the price you paid for. No caj asing2. 

I personally love the Lamb Slices and Smoked Duck. I think its a good idea to have these items ordered over the counter to prevent wastage. I also tried the dim sum which was new to me as I wasn’t very sure on how to eat them. But it ended in my stomach anyway. hehehe..

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For dessert, we had those fluffy waffles (which you also order at the respective counter). The waffles are really that sedap because my husband say so. For someone who thinks everyone else’s cooking is horrible including those viral ones you see circulating over the internet – that waffle compliment is a thumbs up. Hey pakjohn, I want batter recipe.

On top of the waffles, we had multiple cups of ice cream, cendol and cakes.

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And to wash it down, of course, unlimited supply of drinks at the drink station from soda to juice and plain cool water. They even have hot drinks and Mr Husband wrapped it up with a cup of hot MIlo. I of course had my Pepsi. Diet lah sangat.

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Thank you Pak John and The Butterfly Project for the recommendations. We were so full and bloated that we decided to stay the night in Putrajaya. Well we kinda had an idea that we will need an afternoon nap anyways after the great food. Plus, we could visit my sister at Panglima  Garang as well.

So if a good day eating outside A LOT and NEVERENDING for at least 2 hours with the family and friends is your kind of thing eventhough you are on a diet…  Do have Pak John Steamboat and BBQ Buffet in mind. There is always something for everyone.

GE-11, Ground Floor, IOI City Mall,
Lebuh IRC, IOI Resort City,
62502 Putrajaya, Sepang,
Selangor, Malaysia.
Tel: 012-251 8289‬, 03-8957 1128