Underestimated Predicament - Broken Ankle Pt. 1

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Sooooooo turns out I didn't sprain my ankle. It's funny how at the end of my last post, I mentioned that my pain didn't feel like pain from a sprained ankle but it felt like something else.

This was what it looked like after the earlier bandages were taken off. Bruises on the side of my ankle was a sign of torn ligaments I think?
Turns out my fibula is fractured causing my talus bone in the ankle to dislocate. Also, I had torn ligaments. Listen to what your body is telling you, people! This was more serious than I thought it was.

My underestimated injury required surgery called ORIF (Open Reduction Internal Fixation), where they had to insert a metal plate, which held 6 screws drilled into my bones to straighten the broken fibula plus re-position the talus bone for recovery. The doctor also had to do ankle ligament reconstruction on my ligaments that tore.
Thankfully, the surgery was successful and the spinal injection given was not as painful as I thought it would be (ETA: The spinal injection site is starting to bruise. Hmmmm). I thought it was the kind of pain that would elicit blood curling screams from me, but thank God it wasn't. The post-surgery spinal injection wound was even more annoying to be honest because I had to lie down most of the time and it would always rub against the injection area.

It's also very interesting how everything from my waist down just felt numb. It's even more interesting that you can't feel the surgeon cutting into your leg. So cool. I wanted to see what was going on, but there was a curtain separating me and the operation area which is understandable. But being my curious self, I asked the anesthetist if he could help me take some pictures and he did! I get to see what they did inside my leg, and the X-ray showed how it was fixed with the 6 screws and metal plate. The doctor also had to put my leg in a splint.

Ahhhh wonder what path I would have gone down if I was a doctor/surgeon. Their job is so noble in my opinion, healing the broken and helping people regain certain skills and abilities. Okay, enough why-didn't-I-become-a-doctor talk before I spiral into the vortex of over thinking about my past and future. Cue X-rays!

Before: An X-ray of my broken fibula and displaced talus bone.
After: 1 metal plate and 5 screws later.... one more long screw will be inserted which will connect my fibula and tibia together at the bottom.

Lessons I have learnt so far in this very unneccessary experience:

Lesson 1: Heavy people are more prone to serious injuries due to their weight. Because of my big boned and heavy body, a small fall can cause a big impact. Sigh, the many woes of a heavy person.

Lesson 2: Just go to a western doctor instead of a Chinese traditional doctor to save your time if you think you need to. Wasted 4 days of bed rest with herbs on my leg when all I needed was an X-ray to see what was going on.

Lesson 3: In a zombie run, if you want to follow a crowd, do so with extreme caution. Or you'll end up like me. You might as well get your life tag pulled out then risk spraining your ankle or worst - surgery and months of healing/rehabilitation.

Lesson 4: If you have screws and plates in your body, you are allowed to have a different take of the song Titanium.

Lesson 5: If you plan to do a spinal injection for surgery anesthesia, here's an important tip: go to the toilet and do ALL you need to do before the surgery. Because the anesthesia is going to last 6 hours and you don't get to pee and your bladder refuses to let you pee. I am usually called the girl with the strong bladder from my friends, because I can hold my pee and not pee for a long while (not a good thing to do btw). I made sure not to drink excessive amounts of liquids before and after the surgery so I don't need to: a) use the toilet which is like 200 miles away for me after a LEG surgery; and b) use a bedpan. But for some unexplained reason, my bladder just filled up after the surgery and the pain of not being able to pee because your body isn't letting you, is excruciating. They had to put a catheter (and I'm going to leave it at that), and the relief of letting go of your bladder after that is SO great.

Isaac and Jas dropped by with a Christmas gift and a card!

I don't know if I should be relieved this injury did not happen during my school period, or sad that this is happening during the Christmas/New Year/semester break season. This is making me have to cancel all my plans for my semester break! I was suppose to find a Christmas cookie recipe to make as Christmas gifts! Now, I can't even BUY Christmas gifts. This is going to take forever to heal, and I'm not ready to be grounded for 2-3 months. As much as I love lazing around, I may go stir crazy. Not getting to go out with my friends, eat good food, go for the usual Christmas/New Year festivities... Le sigh. Oh well, looking at the bright side, I get to save quite some money and petrol not going out.

My house is also a total hazard for whomever who has a broken body part like me. We don't have railings in toilets, the slope to the entrance of the house is uphill, the steps into my house den is high, we have a lot of tall steps on our stairs, the toilet nearest to the living room is far far away. I admit it's not going to be an easy feat to live in my house with a broken leg, therefore I'm predicting that I will have to stay in bed for a loooooong time.

The cousin and fam bought me beautiful blue flowers!
And damn, with my impending lack of exercise due to the immobility of my leg, I'm gonna be fat as hell. I was so pumped up to work out and train for my Nike Run next year! I even bought an app that could help with my training progress. Guess that's delayed and will have to wait till my next semester break. I was also going to learn to cook some dishes e.g. chicken and avocados with balsamic vinegar, spaghetti carbonara and poached salmon. I had so many plans!!!

It's okay it's okay, trying to reassure myself that I have also other hobbies and skills to explore and throw myself into without having to move my legs. For example, I've always wanted to learn French and this is my opportunity. I now also have more time to spend on quiet time with God daily. Hobbies like knitting and quilling came to mind, but I'm not meticulous, hard working and creative enough for that. I'd probably just dump the project after a few days but hey, never say never. Also, I can probably study and get a head start for next semester's subjects, no harm there.

Roasted granola with chocolate chips from Xian Jin. Thanks XJ! So addictive!

This rehabilitation process and trying to regain movement and strength to my leg, is not only a long, physically demanding and taxing phase, it also tests the mind... to not give up and sob over small defeats, but to rise over the challenges faced and stand up strong at the end of the day. I don't know when I got this emotional, but I almost cried when I almost slipped on the wet uphill slope to my house entrance, thinking how I can't do simple things like this and havivng to trouble my already tired family members just to get things done for me.

Pray for me, as I go through this whole new experience that I have not explored. You'll probably be seeing me blog more often because I have left this blog abandoned for far too long! I'd also like to help people in the same situation as me as I wasn't informed enough about how to handle things like this. You kinda gotta learn along the way and see how it goes, like life. More updates on my leg next time!

Life With A Sprained Ankle

Monday, December 15, 2014

(Update: My ankle is not sprained, it's fractured. Not everything in this post is completely irrelevant though. New post about my fractured leg)

Now that I'm in bed rest, I have more time for blogging lol.

I always thought that ankle-spraining was no big deal. I sprained my ankle a few times (very very minor though) and still could continue exercising after.

However, I was not at all prepared for this.

During the Run For Your Life Malaysia, I sprained my ankle. Apparently people took the term 'Run For Your Life' very literally and seriously. 
It was during a zombie wave and there were tons of zombies, eagerly wanting to pull out life tags. I followed a big group. Panic and fear made people stumble and then I tripped over them because I didn't have enough time to dodge or avoid the human heap - thus leading to a sprained ankle.

It almost felt weird because the pain and shock from falling was not as huge as one thing: Seeing my feet twisted 90 degrees to the left. It was like something out of a horror movies or American Horror Story! I was so shocked I didn't feel pain, yet. Of course when you see something like that happening to your leg (or at least for me), it quickly registers in your brain that something is clearly wrong and it must be fixed. So I twisted it back easily, because my joints felt like jelly. I could easily twist my leg back to the left completely if I wanted to, it was terrifying. And then, the pain comes in.

And it hurt. Some organisers and a zombie helped me up and laid me down on a safer place on the side. Promptly after that, another person was put beside me for the same problem: sprained ankle. Her name was Crab and she was such a friendly person! Without her, I would've been very lonely the entire time from the field to the medic tent.

We look happy, but trust me, we are not.

Anyways, I had to do the usual things like bandaging and icing. Elevating the leg even hurt. Everything hurt. But then again my tolerance for pain wasn't very high. So my parents got a wheelchair and a pair of crutches for me to help with going from one place to another (thanks church!).

And with my luck, OF COURSE the Ohhsome Fest and bowling with Wong Fu and David was on that night itself and the next day. The chinese traditional doctor guy told me not to and I needed to rest, but this was a once in a lifetime thing! I was determined to go, so I went.

Reached Avenue K after a long, painful process of getting into the car, and there was no ramp (which I later found out was on the other side of the entrance ugh -.-), and I THINK I twisted my ankle AGAIN. My swollen ankle was in mid-air and with the forward movement of my hop, the unhealed leg somehow slightly twisted again and I felt intense pain. Probably because my joints weren't healed and were still jelly-like. Sigh. We should probably just implement ramps everywhere. The guards didn't even bother to inform us that there was a ramp on the other side!

Also, why do people make the doors of the toilets for people with physical difficulties the kind where there's a weight that closes the door? How are people gonna push the door open when both our hands are trying to push ourselves forward into the toilet?? Well thank God for kind people who offered to open the door for me though.

At the same time, my mouth felt drier than usual the whole time I wasn't even sure why. Which meant I had to drink more water. Which also meant then the frequency of my toilet going increases. With my leg, it was SO troublesome, painful and inconvenient to just push myself up the wheelchair or whichever surface I was on to place my derrière on the toilet bowl. Thank God they provided toilets for people with physical difficulty with railings that I could hold on to for leverage. From then on, I realised I would have to torture myself to go to the toilet.

Rolling around the mall in a wheelchair, I felt as if some people were looking at me, trying to figure out what poor tragedy I stumbled upon. How did I know? Because I knew I would've done the same.

The pain is horrible though. Even when my leg was at rest, there was still that throbbing pain that threatened to become an even more intense pain if I moved my leg just a little bit. Every single second - it hurt. When I move from a certain location to another and had to lift my leg, it hurt so bad. It's as if my swollen ankle had a weight tied on it all the time. Even gravity makes it hurt. 

And once you stay at a place, you kinda stay there forever (unless you're ready for more pain from moving to another location). If you don't have someone to help you take stuff, then man good luck. I am lucky because I have my relatives and family who help me once in a while :) It's difficult to go the toilet, difficult to get in and out of the car, difficult to just MOVE your leg from one orientation to another... the inconvenience of it all... I have experimented with 5 different leg positions, because my leg gets painful after awhile on each position so I always switch it up.

Over here, we have the prop your leg over another to elevate your foot. Note: It hurts when you lift it up so high. At least to me cause it feels like my foot is gonna twist any time. And your leg gets tired.

This one is the most normal leg position. But it doesn't elevate your leg, and the heel gets a little painful after awhile because of the swelling on the bottom.

This one is for when all the other leg positions get tiring and painful, and you want to just not touch the heel for awhile, so you prop your foot's base on the flat surface. Also gets tired because you're kinda resting your whole leg on it so that's painful too.

This one helps to elevate your foot. But hell, this one gets uncomfortable and painful after awhile because of the weight it puts on the heel, and my heel hurts.

I think this one is the most recommended leg position. I can stay in this position the longest, and it's the most comfortable one among the rest. It's the same as the previous one, but with a bolster underneath my hamstrings area to support the weight.

I wish I had one of those tall loops where you can put your leg in the hole and helps elevate it without touching any part of your foot. Sigh.

Also thank God for Sarah! She was my lifesaver and pushed me everywhere I needed to go and took care of me during, before and after the Ohhsome Fest. Her parents helped me get to the front entrance of the mall and waited with me till my dad came. Everything was made easier cause of them. A THOUSAND THANK YOUS!

One thing I did appreciate also, was strangers helping me by holding the doors open for me, asked me if I needed help with pushing my wheelchair, and moving chairs away to make way for my wheelchair. There is hope for humanity! And thank you to the security guards and organizers who helped carry me up steps because well I couldn't roll myself up steps. I know I'm heavy. Also strangers giving you their awesome spot at the very front in an event because you're too low to see anything. Thank you kind strangers!

Also hopping around and lifting your left leg in the air to avoid from being hit by all kinds of things also builds leg muscles. Not joking, it's super tiring. And pushing yourself forward? Total arm exercise. I've been doing so much hopping, it makes me so tired. Also since you can't use your leg as leverage to get up, you have to kinda do a partial sit up and then push yourself up. My core honestly hurts right now. I feel like I'm exercising lol.

And being able to park at the parking for disabled people near the entrance to the mall! No more looking for parkings lol.

2-3 days in, and I don't think the swelling is going down nor is the pain subsiding. Is that bad? Am I suppose to get it x-rayed or checked out by a western doctor. Idk. We'll find out soon because I'm going to the chinese traditional doctor tomorrow to change the bandage and see how my ankle's doing. Hopefully it's getting better because Christmas is coming! Not only that, I've made plans with friends for this week and next, and it's so sad to have to postpone them or cancel them. And I also have friends leaving the country very soon, and if I don't get to hang out with them at least once before they leave because of this injury, I will be devastated and sorely disappointed.

Idk if I'm being a wimp, but this sprained ankle thing is really painful and troublesome. It doesn't look like a big deal to other people, but man to me it's really something else. Now, I'm trying to figure out how I'm going to get downstairs and into the car tomorrow with the least amount of pain and stress put on my foot.... hmm.

Only human

Thursday, November 20, 2014

I feel soooo bad. I screwed up badly at work with one customer and I think she pretty much hates my guts.

Man I hope I never have to do anything with her again :/

So she asked for an iPad, and she was indecisive on whether to get the iPad Air or iPad Mini 2. She asked me if there was available stock and I checked and said yes! Thing is, I don't remember if she ever did ask me which storage space she wanted. But I would have asked her anyway to make sure and I somehow remember her asking for the 16GB, and I checked and there was stock. She decides to come back later. Let's call her E.

Fast forward an hour later, tons of customers were swarming around us trying to get their hands on their new Apple devices. It was like all of a sudden everyone wanted to get something AT THE SAME TIME and we only had 2 people around to help them.

So of course with my luck, previously mentioned lady E came back to get her iPad with heavy bags after shopping at the supermarket. I was already ambushed by 3 boisterous loud customers from China desperately asking me about the iPhone 6 because they wanted to get it. E then asked me for the iPad Mini 2 she asked for earlier. I was too busy to even talk to her right then. And I was struggling with communicating with the customers from China and I was the only Chinese there and they could only speak Chinese! I really honestly thought she was the mother of another customer who was there buying the same dang thing so I left her alone because well her so called 'daughter' was already getting it. So after the customer left, she was still there. The next thing I did was my fault, and I'm not denying it: I forgot about her and didn't notice her there. When I finally finished attending to the rest of the customers, she came to me and asked me if I was gonna serve her and if her iPad was available and walked away pissed. I called her back, told her of course and I'm going to attend to her right now.

Took out a 16GB Silver one. Got her details and card. Swiped her card. She asked me if that really is the one she asked for (thank God she asked that though). Well, turns out she wanted 32GB. Fine. Went to the cupboard to get a new one. BUT OF COURSE, THERE IS NO MORE 32GB. OF COURSE MY LIFE SUCKS. At this point, I was just thinking FML FML FML. She's already 150% pissed. But anyways, I had to break it to her. Of course she was freaking angry. She didn't chew my head off in front of everyone (thank God), but her facial expression told me enough :/ Refunded her money, and she just walked away.  I MISLED HER... I'M SORRY LADY. Thank God my supervisor didn't kill me for that. It was either she didn't know what was going on, or she was really nice lol.

So I feel extremely guilty because:
1. She hates me.
2. Who knows who she'll tell this unfortunate story to and how vastly it'll spread and WHO WILL WANT TO GET THEIR STUFF HERE ANYMORE. Learned in ITC class, that a dissatisfied customer can affect 7 other potential customers. Lovely.
3. She was carrying what looked like the heaviest shopping bags and she waited so long :(
4. She looked like she really gave a lot of thought into  which iPad she wanted to buy and needed it.
5. I wasted her time.
6. I lost a potential customer.

Sigh this hit me hard because it's kinda in my nature to feel and think so deeply about failure and things that don't work out. So I had to vent it out here. But I also do realize that as humans we all make mistakes that are painfully irreversible. The most important thing is that we learn from them. I am a strong believer of experiences - whether bad or good - can teach us a lot of things. And next time, we work harder and try not to do it again (this doesn't apply to me when it comes to exams I never seem to learn to not procrastinate).

I have a 7 year old!

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

That's right guys. I have a 7 year old. One that I have nurtured, given makeovers several times in the past 7 years, and poured out knowledge and wisdom onto. I was a bad mom even, abandoning it for months because I was lazy.

Yup, it's my blog. This blog's very first post was published on September 19th 2007, 7 years ago. It's surreal!

*Cue majestic fireworks and party poppers*

My blog is as old as the first iPod Classic (which is obsolete at the moment because Apple discontinued the line). My blog in the form of a human, would've started her first year of primary school this year.

 My first post ever was an intro of me.

Hello my name is Carmen Chan. I am a Christian. i have a bible? And.. i'm looking for a new bible cover. which suits my personality of course, but they're dang expensive. I'll still find the time to buy it =). I attend Cheras Baptist Church. A church i have attended every Sunday for the past 13 years! And i'm proud of it. Most of the songs in my mp3 are chrsitian songs sang by chris tomlin, david crowder band and many more! 
hmm...i don't like to pick favourites as friendsI am very passionate about Christianity and errr.... technology? Unfortunately, this blog site don't have smileys. With smileys, you increase your reader's entertainment by 20%! well, if i was the reader, the smileys would make me laugh more when i laugh o.O. OKAY. i'll have to do the manual smileys.
i have a pet dog named Miki. Weird name, yes. But, hello. I like Mickey and Nikki so i jumbled it up together and it became...Miki! haha. well, actually i don't really like Mickey but...nevermind that! i don't like to pick favourites and when i'm captain in my group, I let EVERYONE participate. and when i mean everyone in my group, i mean it. but sometimes when i get too involved, i forget about justice in my group. i eventually invited a girl who no one really wanted in my group and not many people like her. and that means you, Yoong. muahahaha. 
I like Hong Kong TVB dramas. well some of it larh. such as Dance of Passion or The Dance of Passion <3. bubu, boo, kenyola and hula). i had my embarassing moments. and i can't really tell them to you. right now, i mean. maybe next time when i post "Most Embarassing Moments". 
There is more i would like to tell you but i'm afraid i'll make you sleep at the end of my post. is this too long? hehe. it should be. and remember, say NO to smiley-blockage. haha. i didn't mean it. and about the imaginary friends, i don't have any.
Omg, what a mess. Well, I'm still a Christian, and I still attend CBC :) I don't think I ever got that bible cover.  I'm no longer obsessed with HK TVB dramas, something else is now ruining my life *cough*Crowen.More on that next time.*cough*. No idea what bubu, boo, kenyola and hula are. Smileys are still of importance to me lol.

The responsibility of running a consistently updated blog is not easy. I often lack inspiration. I wish I could fart out inspiration every week but I can't. As you grow up, you find that you can't really post everything you want in your blog. There are limits, and things you just don't want to share publicly. And there are standards. I cringe looking back at my old posts.

Change is also part of the process. I was naive, a bit too bubbly and just so unaware of what life would throw at me in the future. So optimistic and happy-go-lucky. Ah, good times.

But some things stay the same. I am deeply emotional, more of a curse than a blessing in my opinion. I am still indecisive, something I'm not sure I can ever change even if I wanted to lol. I'm also still a fangirl. Once a fangirl, always a fangirl. Huh 7 years later, I still obsess about things.

What a trip life has been. It's crazy how much can happen and how much you can feel in 7 years. I feel like I've endured enough emotional exhaustion for a lifetime (and there is more to come)! Also, I just reached the big 20. Life has only just begun for me. And here I am, complaining about what I've gone through, when I'm merely scratching the surface. There's more waiting for me out there, CARPE DIEMMMMM.

7 lessons I've learned as I reach my 20s

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Oh crap I'm 20. I've reached my 20s. I feel old already. HELP.

I've had several self-claimed mid-life existential crises before my 20s. More like quarter-life crisis amirite...

I believe that everything we do and face is an experience. If my car breaks down, it's an experience for me and I'll get to learn how to deal with situations like this in the future better. If I lose my purse, that will also be an experience for me, and I will learn from my mistakes. Anyways, these 20 years of living, breathing and surviving have taught me valuable lessons. But I had to learn them the hard way.

This is a bitter post about a fraction of the crap I've gone through and what to expect in the future. I'm only scratching the surface. Yay.

So here's 7 cruel lessons I've learnt for the duration of 20 years that I have lived so far:

1. Don't expect or hope for anything good.

If there's anything these 20 years have taught me, it's not to expect anything great to happen. Because I will only be sorely disappointed. I have been disappointed and let down so many times that I am sick of expecting things to be done the right way (or my way because sometimes I can be a control freak lol). I don't expect anything anymore, or usually I will just expect the worse. I'd rather be pleasantly surprised. Honestly, that's no way to live - living in fear of something horrible happening.

 2. Don't trust anyone.

Yes, you think of that person in the image you've created in your mind... only to be let down when said person acts in an unwanted way. This also relates to No. 1. I expect that person to do the right thing, but they never do. Promises are always broken and they mean nothing to me anymore. Things change, priorities shift. I always give people the benefit of the doubt and I choose to believe they have good intentions. But yeah this is reality, it doesn't happen the way you want it to.

3. Don't get attached to anyone.

People who come into your life, will leave you whether you like it or not. And you will leave others' lives as well, but they don't seem like they care as much so that doesn't matter. It's a way of life. Ultimately, it's not really your choice whether something or someone leaves you. May be your doing, but not your choice. It's theirs.

4. Don't care too much, or at all if possible.

My downfall in life, is that I care way too much. Even when I am not suppose to, I still do. I care for unneccessary things that aren't even my problems or don't even relate to me, but I can't help but care! What is wrong with me!  It's hard not to care because it's instinctual and habitual. I'd live a happier, easier life if I could turn it off like a switch. And caring too much for other things and people just leads to pain and suffering most of the time. UGH FML.

5. Life is unfair.

I used to be naive (maybe I still am) or maybe just sheltered, and I thought the world could be fair (just-world fallacy), where basically what goes around comes around. I don't see the people who are so rude, insensitive and just plain mean being sorry for what they've done. I'd like for them learn a lesson so they'd stop doing the bad stuff. They just keep doing it again and again, without realizing how much pain and hurt it's causing others.

But, God is watching. Maybe He's trying to teach us a lesson instead. Maybe His plan is greater and I just have to wait and see. It's very hard for me to take faith in something I can't control or is uncertain, I guess I have some control issues that way. I hate things I can't control because I don't know how it's going to work out or behave and I probably won't be emotionally equipped/stable to handle it. I worry all the time about things, and I know I shouldn't worry about things I can't control but it's how I was born, it's part of me.

6. Take opportunities as they arrive.

"We do not get unlimited chances to have the things we want. (...) Nothing is worse than missing an opportunity that could have changed your life." - Addison Montgomery. 

I have had so many opportunities that have passed me by that I regretted not jumping on because of my doubts and worry. A good example would be not applying for the Google Student Ambassador program when I could. I wanted to be a GSA. But I was lazy and afraid of the future. I procrastinated, and in the end the deadline passed me by. I let that opportunity slip from my hands.  There are so many things I should've and could've done, but didn't.

Regret hits me all the time. It's very normal for chronic over-thinkers like me. We visit the past, and wished we could've done more to make it better. I know, people tell us to move on and let go of the past. Well guess what, it's not as easy for me, as it is for you. We all have different coping mechanisms and personalities. I wish I could live in the now than to constantly revisit my past. Part of me doesn't want to because I miss the old days.

7. Things rarely go your way

It's true. Things that you want or plan, never ever go your way. And that's life. If things actually follow the nature of how you planned it out to be, then you're one of the lucky ones. I don't know... but a lot of the things I genuinely need that I ask from God, I never get. They're definitely not out of childish desire or on a whim in my opinion. Maybe it's a "Wait for it", maybe it's a "No". I'll never know. I'm not going to lie, I'm extremely bummed out that it hasn't occurred or will never happen. I'm trying so hard to try to accept what is going on, but I just can't. All I know God has a plan for me. I don't know what that plan is, but it's a hard road and I'm barely surviving.

I miss when I wasn't bogged down with worries and hurt. When I was quirky and happy-go-lucky. When I didn't need to CARE about all these things I don't want to care about. Ugh if this is growing up, I don't want to grow up anymore. Oblivion, death and not living a full life already scares me.

So basically, 20 year old me turned into a 70 year old pessimistic, grumpy person who hates everything. Good to know.

MUN Day 2+3 and... updates?

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Well well well. I promised a post about my 2nd and 3rd day of MUN 2 months ago. If you know me well enough, you wouldn't have expected me to write it soon after I finished that post. But then again, I'm talking to a theoretical and imaginary crowd of readers most of the time because I swear no one is reading my blog. All I post is crap. If I were someone else, I wouldn't read my blog. I guess I'm mainly writing for myself lol.

About my MUN experience, 2nd and 3rd days were less intimidating than the 1st because I got the hang of the protocols and formats. I was definitely experiencing some MUN culture shock, because we all have to speak in 3rd person. It was difficult because.... who speaks in 3rd person in real life lol. I kept saying 'I' or 'you' instead of 'The delegate of Bolivia' etc... it was cool though. I felt very professional, it's not something you get to do outside MUN because people would be looking at you crazy.

On the 3rd day our group had to present our foolproof resolution about implementing renewable energy solutions. Or so we thought. Turns out it wasn't foolproof. I should've known. We were rushing and we were all inexperienced MUN delegates who knew nothing about what we were doing. So our resolution was rejected because there were too many flaws. Oh well. I guess I had a good time making it with the others though. And I was a beginner, a newbie. This was to be expected.

Anyways, MUN was definitely something out of my comfort zone because I'm always so shy when it comes to talking in front of people or public speaking. But, it was a valuable experience and I appreciated what I got to learn from MUN. The most valuable thing to come out from MUN though, was the people I met. The ECOSOC council was just great. We were peaceful, not exactly looking for conflict unlike the Human Right Council or the Security Council. Well, mainly because we weren't allowed to start a war in our council. And yes, we can actually start wars in MUN! How cool was that. And the people in that council were witty, intelligent and friendly. They're all so sophisticated I wouldn't have known they were 16 year olds. It's so funny because when we have unmoderated caucuses which are basically breaks, everyone is so funny, goofy and joking around. But during the debates, everyone is so mature, worldly and eloquent. Ah, I miss them.

Updates on my life... all I did for the previous holidays was laze around in my natural habitat a.k.a my bed and watched movies/shows like a hobo. It was great. Sure, it wasn't productive at all and I was wasting time but that's me lol. Also went for church camp and that was awesome! Travelled to Sydney again with the bro and mom. Too lazy to recount about our trip but suffice to say, it was a good trip. It was spontaneous but it worked.

What if?

Friday, April 18, 2014

As a worrier, I always ask myself an unneccessary but nagging question, "What if?" What if I did that? What if I didn't do this? And a specific question has been plaguing me ever since I made a decision to study business, "What if I pursued medicine?"

Some of you might know that I originally planned to study medicine. And no, it's not because of Grey's Anatomy as all of you will probably think LOL. It all started at a school concert. There was a dance performance, and someone tripped on microphone wires and fell. He broke his leg and it was a pretty dramatic scene. The red crescent society (PBSM) team went up to help him. I on the other hand, stood helplessly at the side. And I thought in that moment, wow I would really like to be able to help people and save lives. Other than that, I was walking around the school, doing my rounds and duty as a prefect. Someone fell and injured their knee. So I brought her to the office, applied antiseptic and all the stuff you're supposed to do when you injure your knee and I won't go into specifics. I felt very good about it, you know? That I got to help that person feel better physically (and emotionally in a way). Also as an ENFJ (from the Myer-Briggs type indicator), I think I would like the part where you get to communicate and interact with patients.  I would've loved that satisfaction of healing people.

Besides that I also love Biology and the human anatomy. It was fascinating to know what your body is made up of, its defense mechanisms and everything it does to keep you alive. It's mind-blowing really. These were the 2 of the things that made me want to study medicine and become a doctor. Not for the ability and right to say "Trust me, I'm a doctor" ;)

However, the time taken to become one and the corruptness of higher authorities got me thinking twice. If I were to be honest though, the main reason was because I thought I wasn't studious or smart enough to become a doctor. I'm generally lazy and unmotivated. I procrastinate ALL the time. I have the worst memory ever, not to mention, it's very short-termed. How did I expect myself to learn the books stacked upon books of medical terms? It's not traits a medical student would want at all. It would be my downfall if I ever did medicine. I knew myself. I knew that being a doctor takes SO much effort. I personally thought I couldn't do it. I didn't want to fail. There and then, my hopes of becoming a doctor were dashed.

What if I did it though? Would I have survived the academic onslaught of medical school? Would I have failed trying to input all that glorious but outrageous amount of information in my small brain? It bugs me all the time. And I don't think it'll ever stop bugging me until I am genuinely content with this current path I'm taking, which I honestly am not.

In times like these, I really wish I was a time traveller and could travel to the future to see if I did the right thing for myself and my life. And if I didn't, I would change things.

But it's okay. I'll get through this. I'll survive, right?

My first MUN experience

Friday, April 4, 2014

Yup, I joined a Model United Nations conference.

Shy ol' me. I'm pretty proud of myself lol.

So, 3 days before the HELP MUN conference, I felt regret. Why did I even join this?! At that point, I only knew 1% about the country I was delegated to, which was Bolivia. What's worse is I only knew 3% of what MUN was about and what happened during MUNs. Sounds like a bad idea huh.

1 day before the conference, tried to jam into my brain whatever information about Bolivia I could find on the internet because I was too lazy to do it before (typical Carmen to do things at the last minute). Even printed out the whole Wikipedia article about Bolivia in case someone decided to ask me weird questions I don't have the answers to in my brain.

Day 1 of MUN

I was dreading this day. Not mainly because of MUN, it was because of something else, but MUN was the spoiled cherry on top of the messed up cake.

When I reached HELP, the lobby was filled with unknown faces. I studied at HELP yes, but I felt like the stranger among the throng of people who looked like they've made HELP their home (for the next 3 days at least). Felt a little uneasy, because none of the people I know (other than the organizers themselves) participated or is even slightly interested in the idea of joining MUN. Fml.

I always feel awkward when I'm alone in a crowd of peers, and feel the need to make friends. I'm not even an extrovert! The first 2 friends I made were from the matriculation course and IT department in HELP. Other HELP-ers, yay (I was starting to think I was the only one). Collected my tag, which I always thought looked cool and professional when someone wore it. Now, I get to have my own, how exciting.

I also introduced myself and made a few more acquaintances during the opening ceremony. Met quite a number of people until I forgot their names 20 minutes after I met them. Sorry, I blame my short-term memory loss? For their sake and mine, I hope they never read this.

We were then separated to our different venues depending on our councils. Oh no, that means I have to make new NEW friends. Anyways, I was assigned ECOSOC - the Economic and Social Council. I thought since I was taking an economics subject in uni, maybe I could learn a thing or two from here or inject some economic terms here and there to make me sound or look smart. The questions/issues posed were of enhancing narcotic security at borders of certain countries and implementing renewable energy solutions.

It started with roll call, and then... the opening speeches. And in typical Carmen fashion, I didn't know I had to make one and was not informed of this until like an hour before the conference started by one of my new friends. Luckily, I read up on my stance on the issues the night before and that was what I was suppose to talk about. The speeches were suppose to be only a minute or two. I can do this. RIGHT?!

I hoped that they wouldn't call me to make my speech so early because I honestly didn't know what to say. Everything here has protocol and a certain format, and I don't know what I'm suppose to be doing! Of course, my hope was futile. After a few speeches, they called my country out. They weren't even calling countries out in alphabetical order.

The funniest, unlucky, badly-timed and unfortunate thing happened: My laptop which contained what I was going to say, turned off by itself. A little backstory here... my (new) laptop had a battery problem, at least that's what I deduced it to be. My battery at the bottom of my laptop is loose, and if I lift my laptop and place it down, there is a 60% chance the battery will move and my laptop will shut down unintentionally. That 60% chance presented itself during my way up the podium. I put my laptop down on the podium and realized the screen was black. Why do these things always have to happen to me? So, I gave an impromptu speech. Wasn't very smooth because I was trying to come up with stuff to say and let out a lot of 'um's and stutters. Oh well, it could've gone worse like I could have tripped on the way up and fall flat on my face. Small blessings, right?

We were then asked to make resolutions for either of the issues they've given us: narcotic security and renewable energy solutions. My new friend, Jing and I decided to go with narcotic security and joined a group of people who were far more experienced than me in the world of MUN. Okay, so Jing (who is - no surprise - younger than me like how everyone else is) is a sweetheart, but she can be pretty badass and eloquent in debate if she wants to. I've learned that during the course of our 3-day friendship lol. Anyways, the experienced ones took charge immediately, coming up with the resolution's format and firing suggestions. I gave feedback and tried to insinuate myself into the group as much as possible, not wanting to look like the useless one. We were given time to prepare and finish our resolutions at home, so we can present it in the following 2 days.

So that's my first, eventful day of HELP MUN. If anyone were to ask me if they should join MUN, I would straight up tell them: yes! I learned a lot and was exposed to a whole different ball game I wasn't aware of. It made reality outside MUN a little mundane and insignificant. I felt like I was making a difference and changing the world for the better, even if it was just a simulation.

More about Day 2 and 3 soon!

January food porn

Saturday, January 25, 2014

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