136 – End of classes, piece of happiness

I think I have a tendency to write more when I’m sleep deprived. So here I am again after only getting 3 hours of sleep last night.

Today was the last day of classes so thank goodness for that. Had to do two papers (3500 words and 2000 words respectively) for today…hence the semi-allnighter.

Had a 60s presentation for the psych class as well. No big deal. Though her marking style really has me cringing and frustrated. She’s a great prof but very, very specific to what she wants to hear.

Got my first midterm on Saturday so I’ll be meeting up with Alina tomorrow to study some chemistry. I feel a bit more productive with someone else in the room provided they’re not the ones being the distraction.

Been playing way too much league for my own good. But that’s usually what happens around exam time – after all, I got to diamond a year and a half ago during finals…what physics exam, right?

The instructor/TA I emailed the 3500 word assignment to replied back saying he had received it…and also extended an invitation to do summer research in the lab that he’s in (he probably sent it to other students too, but it was special to me nonetheless) .  We had a conversation last week about how I thought research wasn’t for me and how I’d much rather go into industry/med school. He told be he disagreed and thought that I was actually quite good (the course he’s teaching is a lab/research-based course). It made me feel really happy. Because the course had been frustrating – especially for the other members of my group. To be perfectly honest though, I liked it…though I wouldn’t say that to the face of my frustrated team.

In any case, it just made me smile really hard (and blush) that he referred back to that conversation and made the effort to reply considering the number of 3000+ word assignments he now has to grade…

I definitely have one of those “really love this prof but would not approach” crushes on him. Totally platonic though. Don’t need more grad student drama after that infuriating elevator guy. Nope.

Besides, I have a boyfriend.  So double nope.

But damn, he has me considering trying research again. :/

134 – out of focus.

I feel stuck.

Trapped in a box as the whole world around me continues to rush by.

It’s scary.

As if my body is not my own and as if someone else has taken over my mind. What I want and need to do isn’t being done. Every time I try to focus, there’s this annoying throb in my head that leaves me feeling awful and sick.
Not exactly a migraine. But nothing good either.

My life just feels a little out of focus.

Somehow I’ve got to find a way out of this box.

133 – hope is on the horizon

Just gonna jot a few thoughts down before I have to head to school.

Didn’t get much sleep last night – 2 hours ish. Was busy doing my three assignments – 2 chem lab reports, one chem synthesis assignment, and one bio reading assignment for tonight’s lab. Going to be a loonnnggg day. Prob not gonna do well on the chem assignments. But I give up. My crappy laptop couldn’t handle the size of the damn excel files (literally took an hour just trying to format graphs since it would freeze for a whole minute every time I changed something). Not sure if the stereochemistry in my assignment is right. I should also rewrite it in pen. But meh. If I have time.

Really could’ve used my long Thanksgiving weekend better. Didn’t really use it at all. Spent it working, hanging out with friends, and doing the things I always do when I don’t really want to study. Sigh. Procrastination habits die hard.

Sometimes I think I’m just too overwhelmed from everything to do work. Too many hours of class, too many hours of extra stuff (work, volunteer, ultimate, CSU stuff, Brain Day stuff). I think I’m already mentally exhausted. It’s barely been a month.

I know I can do better.

But darn is it hard to keep my life in balance.

Still haven’t picked up my new phone.

Really, really want to.

But no. freaking. time.

On the bright side, I haven’t felt depressed in a while.

Though I’m not sure tired is any better of a feeling.

Not even sure if I’m stressed anymore. Everything feels numbed down.

But there are always brighter days ahead. I can feel it.

Always hanging on to the hope of the upcoming horizon.

The thought drives me forward.

And maybe this time, something will be different.

Maybe I’ll be able to change.

I know it’s highly unlikely, but it doesn’t hurt to say it.

Doesn’t hurt to try.

129 – feeling close to breaking down

Trying my best to hold onto the good moments, but it’s getting harder and harder to feel okay. 

My experiments have been put on hold until the technicians come by to check on the machine and the LC valve is repaired. Found out that the dansylation was somehow decreasing the detection of the hormones – AD in particular. Sigh.

Getting worried that this project won’t be completed in time. Then I’ll have nothing to show for the summer or for the poster presentation I have to do. Considering taking a new project.  But I don’t know what I’m capable of.

I’m behind on my MCAT studying.  No surprise there.  But I know I can pull through if there wasn’t so much else on my mind. Need to get through Bio this weekend. Should be stuff I already know.

My period’s here. Late again (was also last month). And my abdomen is bloated everytime prior (which makes me freak out about the fact that I’m getting fat). It may be an ovarian cyst (but not necessarily, since google diagnoses are not very accurate). Which means I should get it checked out. *Reminder to make an appointment for next week.* Wonder if it’s stress induced.
This city is poison.

And of course to make matters worse, there are bed bugs in my room.  Woke up yesterday morning to a whole line of bite marks on my arm. They don’t hurt or itch,  but they’re very noticeable.
So that means I have to spend this weekend cleaning (on top of considering an exterminator). And it’ll probably take me longer than the average person as I am deathly and irrationally terrified of bugs to the point that i just freeze in fear for a good five minutes when I see them scurrying around (literally the way I handed the ant situation last summer back home…in addition to freaking out and calling my mom home from work). It goes without saying that this alone is enough to drive me into a weeping mess. But I’m trying not to let it consume me. Will be sleeping over at my boyfriend’s until it’s safe.

Got a birthday party to attend tomorrow (drinking probably implied).  That plus the cleaning plus my 10hrs of work means my weekend is fairly obliterated.  How I will find the time to study is beyond me. An all-nighter seems inevitable.

Lastly, feeling incredibly homesick.
I don’t think any number of years living here will make me call Toronto home.
So I wish for the strength I need to get me home.

It feels like there are a million things weighing on my mind. It’s crushing. Making it hard to hold on to brighter things (food, friends, love, and gaming).
Which is such a shame. Since I’ve been focusing so hard on happiness and been feeling so lighthearted. So much that I haven’t paid much notice to my depression.
But sometimes all it takes is a trigger to bring it all crashing.
Just one little thing. Or in this case, a million.

109 – Classes, Stress, & the U of T TA Strike

Doodling in class 'cause sometimes it gets too slow.

Doodling in class ’cause sometimes it gets too slow.

I don’t think I’m going to make my goal of 10 posts for this month. It’s not that I’ve been too busy to blog, but more that I haven’t made the time to sit down and really digest my thoughts. Now that I’ve gotten my final midterm out of the way, I think it’s time for me to kind of reflect on what’s been going on in my life during the past 2 weeks.

I’ve been watching a considerable amount of House, MD. About to finish the second season. I’m not sure what I’ll do when I approach the 8th (and last) season. It’s extremely addicting and satisfying to watch. Very, very good stress reliever

Went to the Innis Athletic Banquet last Thursday. Kimmy convinced me that it was a good idea to go for free food. It was. Food was amazing and so were the cocktails. I had four drinks and despite everyone else thinking I was drunk, I felt sober as hell. This genetic condition sucks. Wish I could actually get drunk (stupid missing enzymes). It was definitely interesting listening to my teammates outside of the playing field though. Heard some really interesting stories.

The U of T TA strike has been looming over the university for the past three weeks. Went to a student walkout last Wednesday (I didn’t actually walk out of class since I had already finished my lab by that time, but hey, I contributed to the mob of people walking out of class). People (both undergrads and grads) gave speeches and talked about why the strike and fair wages for TAs mattered to them. It was heartwarming. The “Hype Squad” came by and sang a few union songs with the crowd. Their rendition of “Solidarity Forever” brought back memories of when Mr. Martin sung it to our Middle Years class in ninth grade. I miss those times. The thirty of us in that program made some really sweet memories.

Back to the strike. Three weeks. Two tentative agreements (both rejected). And no resolution in sight. The university has called for an arbitration mediator to settle it. There is uncertainty if this will help resolve.

Tutorials disrupted, labs and classes cancelled. Clearly, this strike cannot go on. Luckily for me, the damage has been minimal.

In order to appease undergraduate students, the dean of the Faculty of Arts and Science informed us that we are allowed to drop or CR/NCR courses after we receive our final grade and that we can CR/NCR even if the course is required for our program. That means I can basically CR/NCR any course I don’t get an A in and manipulate my GPA to a 4.0. Tempting. Not sure if I will be doing any of that though.

I hope the TA strike ends soon.

My ROP assignments have been stressing me out. I feel like my supervisor expects too much out of us, especially considering we are just undergraduate students (and second years no less). Sigh. Term ends next week…Just get it done.

Doing another Brain Day presentation tomorrow. Got work after and then the CSU social. Gonna be a busy day. :s

I feel like I had more things I wanted to write about, but can’t remember them anymore. Will blog again if and when I do. 🙂

105 – I think I’m depressed (again?).

It’s like I’ve lost all motivation for school. I have a midterm tomorrow that I just can’t seem to study for.

I sleep too much (15 hours yesterday and 12 hours the day before).

I can’t focus. I forget what I’m about to do every few seconds.

I still have a slight cough and lately have been breaking out in hives from the cold (-20 degree weather is not treating me well, sigh). I haven’t had hives since an allergic reaction to eggs when I was like 8 years old. Like seriously? I feel like I’ve been sick forever.

I just want to feel well.

I just really want to go home. I hate this city and how it’s been destroying my immune system.

I feel like I have Seasonal Affective Disorder. But I know I don’t. This winter has really, really sucked for me, but I have felt depressed even when it’s not winter. And I never suffered from these awful physical symptoms back home. These awful physical symptoms that spiral and break my mentality.

I don’t have time to see a doctor/therapist this week, but I will find time soon, especially if my physical symptoms persist.

I can’t survive like this.

At this rate, I fear I won’t even be able to make it home. My grades are suffering too much. I think my Med School dreams are more or less dashed, so I’m thinking of doing a year of Grad School then applying again. At this rate though, no UBC grad school would accept me. Sigh.

My. body. needs. to. adapt.

A lot of international students that I’ve talked to tell me that they love Toronto. Why can’t I see what they see?

I don’t belong here. I think if anything, I’d rather live somewhere too warm than somewhere too cold.

I’ll keep trying to find my motivation, to find a little bit of brightness in my life to hold onto. I know I can do this. I just lack the willpower. But I’ll find it.

I’ll find it.

Because the alternative is too scary to think of.

104 – Happy CNY [Super Blog]

This is going to be a long one. In order to kind of organize it a bit, I’m going to putting tl;dr’s in bold BEFORE each topic. If you hate reading, just the bolded sentences will give you a good idea of what’s been happening in my life.

I’m also going to start putting real names, when applicable, into my blogs. I want to be able to look back years from now and remember the people who helped me out at this point in life. So only good things about good people. Bad people or people I dislike will continue to remain anonymous. It’s to signify a realization that other people are important in my life – my life doesn’t only revolve and consist of solely myself.

This blog is a little Throwback Thursday to my ninth grade, when I used to do super blogs for my Applied Skills class on this blog. Was reading it again a few days ago. The way I blogged drastically changed in tenth grade (when I started this WordPress). I wasn’t innocent back then. Never have been. But I sure as hell acted it. Annoyingly so. But I was trying in my own way to be happy with all those happy faces. I was trying in my own way by being so awfully vague and bored with life. So I’ll never wish I was different person then. Without the girl in that blog, I would not be who I am today and although I am not completely satisfied with who I am now, I’m happy with who I am.

Flashback aside, let’s start on a good note.

First and foremost, have a Happy Chinese/Lunar New Year my WordPress friends.

I think it’s about time I put in another doodle. As a continuation of my previous lunar new year doodle, have another one.

Untitled-1

Yes, yes, I know what you’re thinking: “Where did your years of art lessons go?” But nothing beats a good doodle. They make me happy. I doodle on my arms and notebooks to keep myself awake in class. They’ll always be a part of me. They give me courage when I’m feeling anxious. They make me smile when I’m feeling down. And hopefully, they’ll carry me through this awful semester of university.

I’m a little sad and lonely that I’m not at home celebrating New Years with my family and friends. Red envelopes. Good food. Lion dances and festivals. I miss the celebratory atmosphere. By the time I’m out of this city and back home, I might be too old to enjoy the holiday the same way. What a sad thought. But it’ll be okay. I’m sure I can find new ways to bring the same joy back.

The weather has been awful here, but Buta’s been helping with that.

Buta is my new pig-shaped humidifier. I got it from the One’s at Pacific Mall (a place that feels like an indoor night market). He’s my alarm clock’s best friend. And my hair’s too. It got really dry, windy, and cold this February. We had wind chills of -40 degrees Celsius. Not fun. And it makes my hair all staticky, dry, and annoying. Buta helps with that.

2015-02-19 15.04.19

Look how cute Buta is. Oink oink. ❤

Brings me back to the whole idea of Chinese New Year and the zodiac also. I was born in the Year of the Pig. Perhaps that was why I was naturally drawn to choosing the pig over the various other animal-shaped humidifiers (which were a bunny, panda, and goat).  I can relate to pigs. They’re lazy, stubborn, but they’re also intelligent and fast learners. They can be super friendly and independent at the same time. I think I have what it takes to be a good pig. Some of my friends that are the same age as me really fit the description as well. I wonder if the zodiac and being born in a certain year really does have an influence on your character. Probably not. If anything, it’d be the self-fulfilling prophecy (yay social psych!). Having knowledge that you’re like something can make a person act in a way to fulfill that. So for people influenced by the culture of Chinese New Year, may be more likely to have characteristics of the animal they were born in. Same thing happens with horoscopes. It’s a cool thought though. Just because I believed in it and have celebrated it, it’s influenced me (even if it’s just minuscule compared to all the other environmental factors). The mind works in mysterious ways…that are sometimes not that mysterious.

I learned how true failure feels like.

I know that it wasn’t my best test. I’m abysmally bad at tests under pressure. It wasn’t good, but I couldn’t believe my mark. 15% on a mid-term. It was pretty demoralizing. Makes me doubt my chemistry major. I thought I had understood Inorganic Chem. I clearly wasn’t able to demonstrate any understanding. To be fair, the class average was 37%. But I’m still severely below that average. Ugh. I’m going to have to try harder I guess. You win some, you lose some. In my case, I lose a ton since I was sick for so damn long. I swear this city is toxic towards my health.

2.5 more years. You can do this. Won’t make my Med School dreams. But I’ll keep trying until I do (even if it takes me a few extra years). Don’t. Give. Up.

I’m finally recovering from being sick. I can recover from these awful midterms too, right?

Axe-throwing is really, really fun.

Went axe-throwing with the CSU and it was a real stress-reliever after having heard about my awful midterm mark. It was kind of like archery or darts in which you have to hit a target and try to get the bullseyes,but completely different because axes are so much cooler. It was really difficult to get it to land properly (i.e. not have it bounce off when the handle hit the target instead of the blade), but was really rewarding once you got the hang of it. Such an interesting experience – definitely something I would try again. Then again, I’m really clumsy…so it may not be the best idea to put me with a sharp blade again and again. Meh. Even though I was still sick while doing it, I had a great time. Got to know the other CSU members (especially Tanya and Alex) a little better also. That was super rewarding.

Axe-throwing!

Overnight shifts kind of suck.

I worked my first overnight shift last Friday (at McDonalds). Due to the fact that I was still kind of sick, I slowly lost my voice throughout the long 8 hours (9pm – 5am). It was extremely hard to stop myself from coughing (I still have a slight cough even now), but I tried my best since I didn’t really want to get any customers sick. I have no idea why I accepted that shift, but I like to be accommodating, so I guess that’s why. I had another shift later that day, but I was too sick to really work anymore so I had someone replace me for that. It was Valentine’s Day anyway. I deserved a break.

There were a ton of drunk, rude people that came in between 2-3am. It was a really crazy mob. Makes sense considering there are lot of pubs in the area. Didn’t help that it was Valentine’s Day. Drunk people, sickness, and night shifts really don’t mix. Would not do again.

As for Valentine’ Day itself, I spent the majority of it resting in bed and eating (with the boyfriend, of course). Being sick sucks.

Friendship can be awkward and amazing at the same time.

Went out for AYCE sushi with Mohamed yesterday. He’s honestly been a really good friend to me this year, helping me with my CHM238 (Horrible Inorganic Chem course I’m failing) labs and giving me advice about PSY240 (Abnormal Psych). So it was a nice treat to go out and eat together (away from school). We were supposed to go out with a couple other of my Chemistry classmates/friends, but plans fall through sometimes. Kirsten was too busy with Chinese New Year plans (totally understandable) and Alina was sick with a fever (I really hope I didn’t give that to her, I’d feel terrible if that were the case). The flu seems inescapable as the other friend we asked was also sick.

The place we went to, Spring Sushi, was extremely ambient – it did not feel like the traditional sushi restaurant. It felt like a classy lounge had been changed to a sushi restaurant: the walls were painted with Japanese-esque images, but the rest of the place was classy and the lights were dimmed. The place was wonderful really. We ordered through these iPad-looking things and the service was quick. It was awkward in that the waiter may have thought we were on a date (I already have a boyfriend), offering to take our picture. We accepted the picture, of course. I haven’t taken pictures with anyone in a long while.

The food was really good. I think I shocked Mo with how much I could eat (yay bottomless stomach). That was also awkward. It felt really nice to just talk about things and people and enjoy the lovely view (of this horrible city). I don’t have very many friends here (if at all any). Haven’t really made any close ones yet. It’s really hard. This city is really big. And cold. And lonely. And I’m not particularly a big fan of clubbing events or parties. But it’s okay. I’m doing just fine. I have people that help me out at school. I have people that make me smile at an awful university that threatens to kill my GPA over and over again.

Until the day I find some friends in this heartless city, I have video games.

Bastion is a very well-made and enjoyable game.

Having fallen in love with a trailer of the game a few years back, I finally got around to playing it a few days ago. I was pleasantly surprised. The combat style felt like a mix of Lunia and Rune Factory. Can’t wait to finish it and move onto Transistor (which the trailer has also made me fall in love with).

There’s nothing more satisfying than a good indie game with a solid story, beautiful drawings, and good mechanics. I love being absorbed in a world more mystifying than my own.

bastion_1_0

Then again, I get easily lost in this world as well.

Life is hard.

But it sure is beautiful.

Even the worst moments will pass.

I’m finding my smile again.

Happy Chinese New Year’s, everyone.