Sick of Being Sick

I had suffered a long and serious illness for the past month. It did not come as a surprise for I had been warned three months before that. During that period, I had sore throat before I slept but I always woke up feeling normal. It happened for quite a number of time and I guessed that I was saved by taking a tiny bit of manuka honey every night. However, there was also an obvious symptom – my scalp was growing acne and it was irritating.

My body had been “heaty” since young and thus I would fall sick often. I was no fan of food but I most preferred western food, fast food and just any fried food. I had been resisting them throughout my life because they made me fall sick very easily.

However, for this year, I was rather rebellious and did not practise self control. Other than taking fast food numerous times, there was a couple of times I took fried food like char kuey teow as my main course meal. My mum had also bought packet roti prata from the NTUC Fairprice for supper, which tasted quite good after frying them and she replenished it quite a few times. My mum’s porridge for lunch was rather healthy but not her dinner, which usually came with food like nuggets. I was very amazed with myself throughout the months before my body failed me.

As usual, it always started with sore throat, followed by cough and flu. I did not take my temperature but I knew I was having fever occasionally. Phlegm, blocked nose and ears were gifts from them and the worst thing was to bring down my energy. I was pretty slow in my work then.

The terrors did not leave me soon. They stayed faithfully with me for over a month. Doctor told me it was not that my body was weak, but I did not have enough rest. I had to agree.

I was badly disturbed almost every morning by my neighbour’s puppy who barked loudly for a few minutes. It was obvious that I did not sleep early and thus being woke up in the morning was a torture.

Resting during the afternoon was almost impossible with my sticky dog around. I had only two bedrooms and my mum barred Luckie from entering one and my sister-in-law did not like anyone to enter the other bedroom when she and my elder brother were not around. I could not leave Luckie alone in the living room because he would end up crying and barking so loudly that I would end up not able to sleep.

Since I was sharing bedroom with my mum and younger brother and both of them would “die” without switching the air-con on even when the weather was not very bad, I had to bear with it despite I was afraid of the low temperature. Flu was never tolerating.

While I was sick, I still had to continue with my daily administration work. It was not difficult at all but to do the same old time-consuming stuffs for the past few years was really sickening. Those boring work would not make me grow.

One of the most stressful things was to arrange for photoshoot. Things would be better if the parties I had to alias with did not give problems, and eventually, I had actually wasted my time and effort. I was all along very easygoing but some people might be fussier than me. Not everyone was very committed.

I had one of the most challenging tasks on hand, which was to update the website for my “xiao mei”. She had changed her webhost a year ago but did not migrate her files over. Somehow, she was lucky that her old files were still inside the old server and the host did not remove the files. I had to try log into both her new and old webhosts, and of course the latter did not work. In the end, I had to rip the source codes and other files from her own webhost and it included a flash file, which was calling other files. I spent a few days to fix everything for her. It was mind-blowing. In fact, she was not in a rush but I was just too determined and eager to solve her problems.

That week, I had promised to do an interior shoot for my cousin-in-law. During the first day, a Tuesday, he was astonished to see me turn up at the bar. I was wrecked by the full-equipment bags that I had carried all the way to the place when my body was so weak. He checked his phone and realised it was the correct date and time. The problem was that there were many staffs working there to setup the place as they were still in preparation for the opening the week after. Even one of the string of LED light was loosen and hanging around. We agreed to shoot during the next morning but he texted me a couple of hours before the shoot that the bar’s staffs would be there to work and thus we postponed to Friday. I had forced myself to wake up early over nothing. On Friday, I was smart enough to not bring my laptop along, in fact, there was no need to even bring my lighting along to the cramp place. The person holding to the key was not around and I had to wait outside the bar for around half an hour. Then, contractors continued to go in to fix things while the lady staff was cleaning things up. Many items such as fruits were laying around the bar counter and tables. The tables were not even in order. To conclude, it was a disaster for a photographer. I had to move things around by myself and even wiping the surfaces of the tables and it was impossible to even capture the widest shoot using my 24-70mm lens. I had to also wait for the staffs and contractors to move away before I could set the long exposure for my camera. It was one of the most horrible photoshoot I had ever done in my illness and I was not even satisfied with the angles and lighting.

The thing that had worsen my illness was the NUS TevaSUN beach volleyball competition on that Saturday. Each team consisted of five players, including one substitute. Tony, Gin, Bernard and his girlfriend signed up for it but Bernard had confinement at Palau Tekong and thus I was roped in. As the substitute who had to cover for Bernard, I had to be present so that our team would not be disqualified. I finished my TCM medicine (that was prescribed to me right before my illness turned for the worst) and I did not have time to get new medicine due to my interior shoot. Eventually, I took panadol and flu tablets to fight the virus. On the actual day of the competition, I was still very sick. Every time I tried to use my strength, I coughed badly. My head was heavy and I could not concentrate. I disgraced myself in front of all the girls. Right after showering, as I tried to blow to clear my nose, the mucus came out with blood. I knew it was not due to bruises inside my nose because I did not blow my nose hard. The situation was so bad that after I got home and tried to clear my nose again, the mucus dripped continuously for more than five seconds and it was bloody on my basin. I went to see the TCM doctor again and was lectured by her for not resting. For a week, the blood was a loyal companion. My illness took even longer to go away.

I was naive at times but at least I kept my words to everyone. I did my best but my best was far from even the level that I could accept for myself.

Spread the Love – May 2014

May 2014 was filled with loves from many people.

Kexin and I met up for a photoshoot. She was trying to help me with a jogging theme that I wanted to do since a year ago, however, she forgot to bring a top that we had discussed. She was also tired after her school and thus we decided to do a better one during her holidays. I felt I had made a few mistakes while the sunset was not as good as I had seen the past few times at Labrador Park. I was very touched by her objective, which was to help me.

My health was bad for the entire month and almost fell sick many times. There was once when I was a little down, I posted a status in my Facebook before going for my beach volleyball game. Christine called me immediately to ask me to visit the doctor. She had also messaged me a few times through Whatsapp to help me with my photography. I felt very blessed to have an ex colleague who was so concern about me.

During my dinner with my beach volleyball gang, which Shuwen happened to join us, she helped me to log into her Facebook account on my phone and helped me to invite her friends to LIKE my Facebook photography page. It was very nice of her to have helped me. Not everyone was comfortable to log into their accounts on other people’s phone.

My sister-in-law found a new job finally. She took the initiative to treat my family to a dinner at a new restaurant at Chinatown Point owned by chef Daniel. She needed not go to the expense but it was very sweet of her.

I initially had a sexy theme photoshoot with a model and thus I asked Shujuan to accompany me to become my “bodyguard”. However, the model postponed the shoot. Eventually, Shujuan met up with me on the actual day for a photoshoot at IKEA Alexandra, which I wanted to do since long ago. She was very creative and natural, and thus managed to help me get many nice photos despite the bad lighting since I could not set up my equipments without getting permission. She was also a very intelligent and good listener who managed to hold good conversations with me, making it a fantastic day for me.

Weitat organised two gatherings, helping me to meet-up with Mingfa and our favourite uncle and auntie, and also with our ex colleagues. Without him, it was difficult for me to get to see the wonderful people because I was too lazy and busy to organise any meet-up. For the first dinner, he had probably forked out quite a sum of money as well just to give the elderly a treat.

Tony initially formed a team with Gin, Bernard and Poh Hian to take part in the NUS beach volleyball competition. However, Bernard could not make it since he was in BMT and it happened to be his confinement week. Therefore, Tony roped me in. Unfortunately, I felt very sick. Tony went to buy mineral water for us before we went into Sentosa. It started pouring at the end of our game and he went to collect the goodie bags with Gin, asking Poh Hian and I to go to the shower rooms immediately to avoid the rain. Anyway, I played like shit during the game and disgraced myself in front of many girls.

Fell Sick for a Month

Not many people would believe that I have a rather weak body. Taking too much “heaty” food would take me down, other than being very upset. I usually feel thirsty even though my water bottle is always near me.

I was down with sore throat, cough, flu, diarrhea, and probably some fever almost a month ago. I went to the TCM before all the pests arrived and the four days of good behaviour did not save me. Then, I had to force myself to visit the polyclinic because I was told that green phlegm meant that it was a virus infection. Green poo threatened me more.

I knew I could have recovered much earlier like usual but it was a different scenario this time. Within the first few days when the symptoms arrived, I was deeply upset over certain news that I had lost my determination to resist anything. It made me feel stuffy on my chest and I knew my conditions would be worsened.

It took me a few weeks to pull myself together after trying to accept reality. I was, however, very loaded with work that I could not have sufficient rest. Keeping myself occupied with work was quite a good way to numb myself anyway. Nevertheless, being in a bad shape had slowed down my work by a lot.

The dry cough after the phlegm was gone kept me companied throughout for at least a week more. I still went to the toilet twice or more times daily as a new routine, and there would be bad tummy-ache at least once.

It was until Thursday night, I felt healthy and managed to have a good volleyball game, followed by supper at McDonald’s with my elder brother and mum.

Battling against illness depends a lot on the mind and I know I should try to avoid recalling depressing stuffs.

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Home Alone Day Two

[Friday, 24 December, 2010]

Eileen messaged me in MSN to solve her Microsoft Word issue and thus I did not go to bed early as planned. My giddiness worsened and I went to bed at 3.30am eventually.

Mike woke me up a few times with his SMSes and I finally got up after 1pm. It was low productive day for me at home in my illness. I spent the most efficient time on photo editing. I heated up the “tang yuan” from the fridge as my late lunch.

I started working in the late afternoon and rewarded myself with a meal from Burger King near 8pm. A few minutes after I started eating, Lucky had finished his dinner and emptied his waste in the kitchen for me to clear.

After the movie on channel 5, Transporter 3, ended, I brought Lucky down for a walk before I started blogging.

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Flu again after Swim

[Tuesday, 28 September, 2010]

I began the day engrossed in my Chinese show, which I caught at Tudou. I went to sleep at 6am with Lucky. He shared my mattress for the first time. I woke up eventually after 2pm.

My younger brother gave a last minute notice for a swim and luckily my stomach was in a better condition that despite having my meal a couple of hours before the swim, I did not feel as bad as in the past. After the swim, flu caught me again.

My brothers and I went down to walk the dog again. We spent most of the time at storey two, right opposite my mum’s workplace, where my younger brother played with his waveboard. I was busy sneezing.

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Recovering from the Sickness

[Thursday, 2 September, 2010]

I began the day blogging and even though I was still sick, I struggled with SmokeForWhat till 7am in my giddiness and headache.

My elder brother woke me up at around 2pm just to look at some pictures.

I spent the day on SmokeForWhat with distractions. Occasionally I still got some headaches.

My mobile phone was going to die on me soon.

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I Fell Sick with a Bad Flu

[Tuesday, 31 August, 2010]

I tried to sleep as early as before 5am and I woke up before 9am. I did not go back to sleep for I remembered my younger brother told me that he could go for a swim before his school. My mum bought breakfast for us from the coffee shop at the second level on its last day of business.

I went to the toilet twice before setting off. The noodle seemed to be a curse. Then, we took bus 145 to Mount Faber Safra and the ticket selling machine failed on us again. I hesitated for a while before visiting the toilet again. I joined my brother in the swim soon but my left shoulder caused me enough pain to slow down but I eventually got used to it. After taking down ten laps using my zip-zap swimming style to avoid the crowd, I stopped for my stomach to digest properly for a while before my chest was choked. It certainly described how bad the problem with my stomach had become. Anyway, I swam another ten laps before the problem relapsed and that summed up my day.

We went up to the second storey to look around after taking our bath, into the E-Mart and then bowling alley. Then, my brother set off to school while I went home alone with my wet nose. I regretted badly not bringing along tissue paper.

The running nose worsened soon and I started sneezing as well. I tried to rest but could not doze off. I posted question in Facebook to discuss about how to solve the problem to smoking in public housing and a smoker posted an idiotic comment to piss me off.

I planned to set off early to for photography before meeting up my ex-colleagues but my weak body refused me. In the end, the bus 75 played trick on me and the bad traffic jam worsened the situation. I alighted a bus-stop earlier and finally reached Rail Mall half an hour late. My gang, consisting of Hirman, Christine, Joei and Eunice had finished their dinner and left a potato for me. I was surprisingly bloated after taking it. Since I was sick, they ordered a bowl of pumpkin soup for me. It was never a boring outing with Hirman around.

As they were calculating the bill of nearly $140, they excluded me for I took very little stuffs and that I was jobless. I felt like taking free lodging. Hirman dropped me at Keppel Road before he sent Joei for her next appointment at East Coast. I felt the urge to get my civilian driving license and car so that I could do friends favours as well.

After reaching home, my younger brother made a cup of tea for me upon knowing that I was having a bad flu.

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Designing Corporate Website

[Saturday, 8 May, 2010]

I continued my work on web design in my cough and backache. I did not sleep early as usual.

It was a very boring Saturday afternoon and everyone seemed to be too busy for me. I wanted to catch a swim but I hated to go to the pool by myself because of the travelling. Gilbert gave me a negative reply on my new design and I decided to get rid of the old concept in order to solve the limitation of revamping. However, I started dozing off in my terrible back pain.

I had a chat with Wanling in MSN and I realised she had graduated. I could have hanged out with her all these while to kill my boredom of mugging in front of the laptop daily. However, she told me she would be flying off to Japan together with her family.

It started raining for a while and the weather was a bit cooler than usual. However, the temperature did not wish to maintain at its best. I made a breakthrough in my web design for the sCreative site but putting the design into webpage was time-consuming and problematic, especially when I had to debug the code for the sake of the Internet Explorer – it was a nuisance for not following the standard HTML format.

My mum was waiting for me to go down for my jog so that she could tag along but to do some walking instead. I was too enthusiastic on the web development that I decided to give it a miss since jogging might instigate a sharp pain in my lower back in my condition.

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Off Day from Work

[Wednesday, 24 March, 2010]

Into the first hour of the day, my chest was still stuffed with disappointment. I felt weak like as though I was falling sick. Therefore, I dropped my boss an email to tell him that I had banged into a ghost and needed to take a day off to recuperate.

My sleeping hour was never as long as intended for somehow my body alarm clock would wake me up before noon no matter how late I slept at. Into the afternoon, I took a few short naps.

The main thing I did for the day was internet marketing, which I tested out a way of not being too dependence on my current list of friends in Facebook.

I was supposed to meet Liyi for dinner but she was held back badly in school and thus, I resumed with my work instead.

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Problematic Facebook and Jogged in Illness

I spent the full day of my Saturday trying to upload the photos taken during the camp into Facebook but as usual, it was problematic. After waiting for very long, it displayed error alert and I had to redo again. I tried uploading smaller numbers of photos at one go but the errors appeared most of the time. One very irritating issue was that some of the photos were uploaded but a few were missing, such that I had to compare to find out the missing ones.

I went for a jog in the evening before completing the work. I took a small muffin and my medicine before leaving my house at around 5.30pm. On the way, I realised the medicine I took was for my flu, cough and sore throat, and not simply for my stomach problem. It was too late and I had to endure running in my blocked nose.

It was not my plan to challenge my limit again for I had heard numerous cases of people collapsing while exercising in their illness. This time, I did it again. Somehow, my timing was more than satisfactory even though I slowed down a lot at the big T-junction separating Marina Barrage and Marina South Pier.

Marina Barrage was crowded on this Saturday evening. The sky was clear even though it was gray before I took off. The gradient colour painted delights in me. The strong wind dried my sweat fast as usual. I found myself a space and lay down immediately to rest, and also, trying hard to prevent liquid dripping out of my nose. The cough hurt my throat a little and I had this feeling that I could not make it back.

There were two groups of people creating loud noises on the field. The first group forfeited a guy by coming over to lie besides me. When I was standing by the side, a cute girl from the second group was forced to come over to greet me but she only waved. I was disturbed by a SMS regarding work that I was most fearful of, but I decided to fully indulge myself in the beautiful and lively place.

I stayed at the Barrage longer than usual. When it was 8.30pm, I decided I should rush home to continue with my work. Half of the crowds were still around and new visitors continued to arrive. I left reluctantly in my semi blocked nose, feeling more feverish than the earlier journey. I was delighted upon reaching my destination at Shenton Way for my timing was much faster than expected in my illness.

Death was nothing.

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