Wow, I can’t believe it’s here. Today marks my 20th year since I first stepped foot at LAX airport. So many years have gone by. So many lessons learned. It sure feels like a milestone. I feel I should write something but I did that in 2020.
According to Fitbit, my stress management score has been around 75 for the past week. Maybe it’s because work is just about the only thing occupying my brain these days. So much to bill, so many accounts to reconcile.
This Monday has been brutal so far. I didn’t want to get up this morning and the moment I did, I wanted to curl back under my comforter. It was so cold and I was so tired. I wanted to turn on the heat but mom was having hot flashes and sweating like crazy. She even had the windows open. It’s 40-some degrees outside, come on!
Is this what it feels like after a 56-hour work week? I’ve been working overtime every week since I started but never have I worked on a Saturday. I think being mentally strained is worse than being physically strained.
And of course, having a mom and family like mine, God forbid I should have one day off. My aunt dragged me out yesterday to have me take her to work and buy two boxes of cup noodles for her on my way home. Of course, when I visit a big box store, there’s no way I would ever make it out with just 2 boxes of cup noodles. I ended up getting some batteries and 2 gigantic (27 gallons) storage containers for my garden stuff.
They looked big at the store and even bigger in the back of my car but when I started putting stuff in them, they were smaller than I thought. I might need one more…or two.
After all of that was done, I was so tired and sleepy even though it was only 2 PM.
That’s what I get for skipping my morning coffee…
I barely dozed off when mom woke me up to help her plant some roses in the front yard. No, it’s the ones I propagated last week. They are these beautiful petite rose bushes from her house – the one she refuses to live in.
I ignored her for the first 15 minutes or so but to be honest, I was so tired I couldn’t even open my eyes without them automatically shutting less than 30 seconds later. She stomped her feet – boom, boom – and shouted, “do you know how much pain I’m in? I only do this for you, you know. If you don’t want to do it, fine, do ask me to do anything else for you again.” She stormed off, muttering angrily beneath her breath.
I should’ve replied, “I didn’t asked you to do this, you know,” but that would dredge that conversation from a few weeks ago which ended with her throwing something across the room, nearly missing my head. I didn’t see what it was because I was outside and out of harm’s way by the time what ever it was landed with a thud.
Today is going to feel so weird. First, I had a meeting at 7 AM, that’s early for anyone. I mean, if it’s still dark outside, then it’s either too early or too late. Unfortunately, the host of the meeting is super busy and that’s the time he has for the meeting.
Mondays are always hard (well, no duh!) especially when one forgets that she set a vibrating alarm on her watch and it goes off right on the dot. This alarm got me jumping out of bed this morning despite being sore all over. It put me in panic mode and I hate it.
Did you know Wi-Fi Extenders don’t speed up or slow down internet? It merely boost the router’s signal so all the nooks and crannies in a house get great wi-fi signal.
Try telling that to my mom.
*rolling eyes and shaking head*
It was a long work day yesterday. I worked for almost 10 hours, encountering problem after problem while my head was still on holiday mode even though I didn’t really experienced any holiday spirit this past week.
The moment my mom found out I’m off the clock, she stomped out of her room and yanked the wi-fi extender out of the wall. I didn’t even hear it. All I heard were stomp, stomp, stomp, a dull thud, and a door slam. Next thing I knew, my wi-fi extender was on the floor.
The night before, like almost every night since I bought the extender, she had complained, “Your damn thing is making the internet slow. I can’t even watch my YouTube videos.” Wah wah wah…
Do you know why I had to get this extender in the first place?
Because the wi-fi signal in my room stinks. The connection is dropping unpredictably during work days – on my laptop, on my phone, even Alexa ignores me as the result of a dropped connection.
Is it possible mom’s taking up my bandwidth. On a typical workday, she’s got 4 devices connected to wi-fi, all streaming videos at the same time. My internet usage app says she spends an average of 15 hours a day streaming YouTube.
It’s crazy, right? Yeah, it’s crazy.
Meanwhile, I’m stuck in my room with my laptop and phone listening to downloaded stuff from Audible, anxiously anticipating the next time my wi-fi connection drops while praying it’s not during a call.
Oh yeah, my internet dropped during a very important call last month. I lost 5 minutes of important conversation trying to get back online. That’s 5 minutes during which I could’ve discussed work stuff that’s been on my mind but instead, by the time I got back online, my boss informed me he’s late for another meeting and gotta go.
And she has the guts to call me selfish. I pay all the bills even though she uses a majority of the utilities. You know what she told me last week, she’s not helping me with the bills (not that she has), she’s putting 65% of her paycheck into retirement. This will probably mean I need to work more overtime hours to give my meager paycheck a boost.
So I have recently started writing on paper again. After such a long time of just typing my thoughts out on a Word document, I was surprised that my hands still knew how to hold a pencil or how to write with one.
It was, as people say, just like riding a bicycle, which is a poor analogy as I don’t know how to ride a bicycle – poor hand-eye coordination, blah blah blah…
Anyway, as I said, I began writing with a pencil (just a good old pencil) and it made me wonder why I ever switched to a mechanical pencil. The simple answer would be pencil sorta became outdated in the mid-90’s (around the time I was in elementary school). I guess all the sharpening and lead breakage got on people’s nerves.
My early experience with a mechanical pencil was a frustrating one – NO ONE told me I was supposed to insert the lead from the side with the eraser, not trying to jam the lead through the tiny opening of the lead-clamp (the small metal piece that was supposed to clamp the lead in place. Let’s just say I broke a lot of lead and ended up with black fingers most of the time.
After I learned (finally) to operate a mechanical pencil, I never went back to the pencil (even though I was strangely gifted with a lot of very weird-looking and sparkly pencils) until these last two weeks, which leads me to this post.
What I like about using a good old pencil:
No hand-cramps – for some reason, my hand cramps up after about 10, 15 minutes of writing with a mechanical pencil
Nice and light – if you hold a good old pencil in hand and a mechanical pencil in the other, you’ll notice the difference in weight
Lead doesn’t break easily
Compare that to a mechanical pencil:
No need to sharpen every 30 minutes – a piece of lead can be used for quite a while but definitely need to watch out for the type of lead as not all pencil lead are made equal
The tip doesn’t become blunt which, in turn, makes the color of the writing lighter in color.
It doesn’t get shorter like the good old pencil – it can literally last forever if you treat it right
People may ask, “Why not use a pen, like a normal person?”
Well, unless your thoughts are perfectly clear and not jumbled like mine, go ahead with a pen. I am sticking with the pencil so I don’t have to use a whiteout on every other word I write.