Wednesday, 27 March 2019

Breathing again

It's almost two years I've been in this new place. So my life is revolving around my works, my study, fitness, eating, friends, books, words, and academic thingy. As I said before, my life is not that great but much much much better than before. I was always whining and grieving about finding new jobs and money. I used to blog here that being jobless is far more painful than being childless. The more I try to swallow the fact, the more I realize I'm a career-minded and being at home being a domestic goddess and fertile lady is not my cup of tea.  I realize it's just me and not necessarily on other people. For example my mother she gave up her career to see me and my siblings growing up and cooking at home and she is like Bree Van de Kamp in Desperate Housewives. She said it is one of the biggest achievement in her life and she is so happy to be at home being a domestic goddess. One of her complain is money because she is financially dependent to my father. However, money is not an issue actually because my father always give money to her and she can spend up to her desire. One of my friend, who is Master holder, she choose to work as part-timer at one of the prestigious university and somehow she able to generate money doing some part time business and marketing. Furthermore, she is well off because her parents are loaded. I'm thinking that if I were her, will I seeking jobs or  will I do things like her? To be in my mom's shoes, I honestly think I can't. Of course my mother asked me why should I LDR with my husband just for work, but I have no answer for that and I just said I'm not like you. I read a blog about a housewife whose husband is wealthy enough to support her and she is childfree too. Although I admire her style and her shopping spree I just can't imagine my life like that. 

So when I came to this new place, I met some colleagues and one of them is around 40-year-old lady. She might have the same interest like me, that she love to go out working. She said she can't imagine life in the home. Even staying at home for confinement leave suffocating her. And she can't imagine her life when the pension age is coming. One of my friend who is a PhD holder has undergone 200 interviews in her life. I asked how can you track down your interview session? She said every interview she is quite mindful for the environment, the people, place, and tiny things so she kept a journal in her computer writing about every interview she went. She also can't simply staying at home so she told me she did some small business as side income to sustain life. Frankly I'm relieved knowing that my sense of self esteem is shared by other women too, because before this I thought I am just haughty or different from other woman. 

The work here is not so stressing because the system is not so rigid but since I also doing my PhD, I clearly juggling because I have to finish the study (hopefully) on time. This is because I cannot bear the cost any longer. I can not apply MyBrain because the terms and conditions stated clearly that my status cannot apply that. I try to find cheaper alternative to make it less costly. For example, submit the article to the free journals, not attending conference - because I read the graduation requirement it stated the conference is not mandatory (but last year I present quite a lot of papers in conference under sponsorship of my company - which make me exhausted). So this year I try to minimize the conference presentation. In addition, my supervisor is very helpful on guiding me- which I don't know if he is like that to other students or because I already have book chapter published. The journals submission is what I'm doing right now because this is the requirement from the university and regardless if you finish your thesis but no publication you cannot simply graduate. When I was doing my Master, the requirement is one journal but for PhD the requirement is two Scopus-indexed journal. On the topic of my study, my SV has recommend me to do easier methodology because clearly I have no funding. So I follow his advice and I found it is fruitful because it apparently getting attention nowadays.

Speaking of funding for PhD, I was promised to get a scholarship but with terms and condition that I do it at certain university, certain supervisor, certain topic-- which I loathe all the suggestions. I against the command and the suggestion and this make 'certain party' dislike me. However, getting into fights with old sport is wasting time so I tried diplomacy to minimize the negative impact. Although some people can no longer see this 'party' face, I still have good relationship with 'the party'. And here I am self-sponsored PhD student and doing it part-time. One day, I was talking to my SV and he suggested I applied for research grant. Apparently at that time, the grant application is due in two days and I was outstationed. I supposed cannot sleep and submit it as soon as possible but I just can't. I slept and the next morning I woke up earlier and submitted the application. I really hope the application is successful and ease my study journey. 

To say that I'm a good and bright student is overstatement. Some people compliments me saying that I'm doing good by publish my book chapter, going to library every weekend, got attention from supervisor (because to get attention  from supervisor is a privilege hehe) and all. The things is I was kinda left behind from my Gantt Chart, still have no solid framework and my whole research design is still not refined. Basically I'm left behind from the schedule and it sometimes scare me off. I cannot simply telling others my juggles and difficulties of doing PhD because it seems so unprofessional to me to grieve about it to colleague. But since people around me doing the same thing, I cannot escape from the discussion and I am very grateful the colleague is very understanding and not make judgment about that, since we are basically on the same boat. 

What about the future?

I sincerely don't know. 

I and my husband is LDR for almost two years, apart by 700 kilometers. I used to tell here what is good and what is bad in this LDR. If people asked me, "don't you miss your husband?". I replied with pretentious sheepish laugh because I don't really mindful about my feeling. I miss him, I miss his presence and all but I really love the loneliness. 

Have you ever heard a quote that "Don't be so used of loneliness because once you comfortable with it, the presence of others is hard for you" (more or less like this I can't remember). Honestly, the quote is very very very true. I am very grateful to have my own office, my own room (I rent a room here - expensive but small but love the amenities in the condo) , my own car, my own books, my own mind basically so I found it very very very calming and relaxing. I never said that my husband is annoying or I'm constrained by his presence but sitting alone in the house for a time (when I was not working before) has consumed my soul that it become part of me majorly. Loneliness has become my solitude. 

When talking about the future, I have things in my mind but the failed in execution. The things I do now is my career development and I am quite excellent in it. I received a lot of compliments, praises, recognition, sponsors, etc and heck I even gave a talk internationally for an intellectual discourse. I wanted to find other place to be near with my husband but the industry of academia nowadays is no longer like 10 years ago when I was graduated and I was on top of the world. It is challenging. The perks and benefits are things I have to consider when changing the place, plus without PhD, my movement is somehow limited. So my husband recommend me to finish my PhD first and after that we will start execute plans. I don't know if I want to follow my husband suggestion or I should take my own destiny, maybe I was just emotionally touched because the friends that I attached when I was coming here the first day -- all are moving forward for career development and betterment. And here I left alone, tssk. 

I used to tell my father about my plan to change workplace since I thought my portfolio is quite strong even though I still doing my PhD. My father never against my plan but ask me to think carefully about my future and don't repeat the same mistake he said . :-) . I understand what he mean because all my grieves before, because I made mistake of not carefully plan my future and career development. Since God give me second chance, so I will make sure to set my foot in reality and no longer depends on others or making decision purely driven by emotion. He asked me, "Are you happy there?" And I straightaway reply "Of course I am happy. All people can see it obviously from my face". "As long as you are happy I am happy too"..Ermmm this sounds like a movie scene but I swear this conversation happened in last two weeks at the kampung wedding ceremony where we annoyed by the untalented kugiran. 

It just me and my books and movies - both are the things I love and I always write about it in this blog. 

There are a lot of  things happened in between like
  • My father got sick
  • My youngest brother got married
  • Officially, I'm the only one in my husband family who are childless. His siblings are 7. 
  • I and my brother (got married 4 years ago) still childless
  • My spiritual journey - (I have this thing twice but will talk about it later)
  • This morning, my car got second major scratch because I was careless and I hit the pillar at parking lot
  • I finally hit the gym. 
  • Joining zumba almost a year and I am very very happy with the serotonin and dopamine released (betul ke this is right chemical released if we exercise and happy?)
  • I fail in healthy eating because the food price here is so damn expensive so I opt for calorie-infused food (how to kurus and beautiful like Keira Knightley liddat?)
  • Husband got promoted

I actually trying to archive the negative posts in this blog but have no time to do so. When I read it back it sounds so foolish and stupid because basically I give no information other than rant rant rant. I used to intend to shut down the blog but I love this blog since it goes through what I've been feeling around my life for past years. So instead of shutting it down, I change the 'voice', in line with my age and maturity. I still waiting for right time to spring cleaning the blog. 

I also noticed that some bloggers write a "drop-by" entry to the blog. We have Twitter and Insta and FB but we still miss the blog. We love the vibes of typing the words based on our opinion and arguments, emotion, the subject we love, the things we wanna share and so on. Twitter and Insta is too content oriented, IMHO.

I think I write a lot today so see you at next post (wah macam betul je nak kembali berblogging padahal kerja banyak)

Next time I wanna write about "Is infertility is an expiation of sin: My personal thoughts"

See you later!

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