riding high on a low

coming out of a bubble has its perks

but it also brings down the walls of my mind

i’m no longer protected by lies that i fed myself

im now confronted daily with the truth

truth of my own weakness to allow past insecurities

to manifest into trusting someone completely vicious

i always thought he was just weak and needed me

needed my love and my strength

when in reality, he’d been pulling the strings like a puppeteer

finding my fears and using them against me

i gave up everything for him

but what was ‘everything’ when i didn’t even want any of it?

i hadn’t yet believe that the strength was always inside me

the same one others see, and yet i never recognised

now i see, that he walked into my life

to show me just how delusional i used to be

i needed him to tear my world down

so that i could go find my reality

i’ve sat with my pain for so long

that i didn’t even recognise it as a stranger anymore

she became like an ex classmate

someone who knew you since way back when

but not really relevant to your life anymore

im reveling in this new high of feeling low

because i know it will only transform me further

one who becomes even more self-aware

and will continue eliminating my ego

i don’t yet feel grateful

but i know i am alive, and full of reasons to celebrate for

and this pain i feel will eventually be channeled into something

greater than myself

Till then, i’m trusting the process

I can’t cheat the healing process

I initially wanted to write something about celebrating my divorce. But while writing it, something didn’t feel right. I didn’t feel like celebrating anything. I didn’t feel happy.

I only feel rage. Intense rage.

I want to scream “You’re the one who _____________!!!!!!!!!!!!! You’re the one who _____________, I’ve been _______________, how dare you _________________” I want to yell this at him and burn my words into his mind.

I’m so angry that all my mind leads me to, are his actions and his words. And the fact that I ALLOWED HIM to bulldoze all over me and my family. I’m angry with myself.

I want to show the world all the proof about his gaslighting behavior. I want to pull him from the comfortable darkness he’s chosen to lurk in and expose him to the world.

I want to prove to myself that I wasn’t at fault for all his actions, and that I’m okay. I’m more than okay, I’m great!!!!! I’m fantastic!!!!! Isn’t that what I’ve been feeling?????


But then, these emails came along and triggered an avalanche of emotions. I’m not writing this after a day of receiving them, I’m writing this after weeks of observing my thoughts and reactions to his nasty emails.

Have I actually just been in denial/guilt all along, trying to make excuses for his behavior? Trying to be extra nice and polite so that I bluff myself that I’m so okay I can be nonchalant towards his behavior? Why should I pretend that these emails don’t upset me? So that I can pretend that I’m all good and that I’m better than him?

I keep asking myself – Does exposing his deeds to the world change anything? Will it make me feel better?

Sometimes, I flirt around with that temptation and I hover over the ‘Publish’ button, but I don’t ever click on it. Because the answer is always No.

Pointing fingers at the culprit and trying to claim back justice isn’t going to help me.

Trying to tell myself just focus on my own faults also doesn’t really help.

What I have to do is stop trying to cheat the healing process.

In therapy, they teach you to acknowledge the trauma. And for the last 1.5 years, I think I skipped this important step. I didn’t even know of the term ‘gaslighting’ and didn’t know it was symptomatic of narcissistic behavior.

I wanted so much to skip through all the steps in the healing process, to retain control over how I feel.

And if anything, now that I’m paying attention to my emotions and not shunning them out, I’m hearing that I have to let go. And trust the process.

Pay that money for therapy because my mental health is worth it.

Telling me to ‘move on’ is part of his gaslighting behavior. AND NO. I REFUSE TO MOVE ON UNTIL I’M READY TO. I’m not going to move on just so you don’t have to sit with your guilt anymore. Focus on yourself and if you don’t even have the decency to speak to me politely, you’re a disgrace to yourself. After all that you’ve done, and all that you’ve tried to blame me for. I’m sure you have a lot of guilt to deal with. Because who in the right mind, will tell someone you’ve hurt so badly to MOVE ON. Fuck you Dom. Fuck you.

You don’t get to tell me when to move on anymore. And i no longer feel the need to protect your dignity Dominic Wong. You think you’re such a hotshot pilot, but you’re just a coward.

I’m at the anger stage. So you best leave me alone and not rub salt into my wounds.

I deserve to be angry after all the shit I’ve gone through. I need to be angry. I need to be angry because for the longest time, no matter how disrespectful he was, all i did was treat him with respect and kindness.

People say “Oh but you’re in such a good place now!! Don’t let him affect you”

I don’t want to pretend anymore.

Again, the only thing I can do is focus on me. And get to the root of my anger.

I’m angry because for all the things he did to me in the past, I just let it go. He has said so many things to harm me, and did so many things to hurt me. And there will never be social justice that I can get for it. Never. It’s not like I can go to a court, present the evidence and have him in jail. There’s no law protecting us from emotional and mental trauma. So does it mean he just gets to say whatever he wants to me and walk away cockily as if he’s right?

When talking to my friends, a lightbulb moment happened.

The person I’m also angry with – is probably myself. Because I know that even if he apologizes, and even I can get ‘social justice’ from exposing him, I will still sit here with myself wondering why the hell I ever made excuses for his behavior.

Why did I not stand up for myself? Why did I not fight back? Why did I let him treat me with disrespect?

I’m so angry with myself. And I know that I have to forgive myself.

It’s hard, because sometimes, Anger is like a ball of fire that you bounce around between your palms while you think of where to direct it to. Some people direct it to the culprit, some people internalize it until it eats them up alive. Me? I don’t know yet – what to do with my anger. I’ll lean on therapy for that.

But I want to acknowledge it. I want to give it a badge and name, and say I hear you. I feel you. Let’s work through things together.

I don’t want to suppress my anger until it manifests into an ugly person inside of me next time. This is how toxic behavior arises in everyone. Hurt people hurt. And I don’t ever want to become who my ex is now. I don’t ever want to let this trauma make me become someone I don’t recognize. That’s how he’s become like that. Or actually fuck him, who cares about why he behaves this way.

I hope that in writing this, I’m reminding myself that the healing process isn’t linear. One week, everything feels fine, and even if they feel less fine the next, IT’S COMPLETELY NORMAL.

Grief doesn’t get smaller, we just have to get bigger around it.

I take calculated risks – and no I don’t receive alimony

I roll out my yoga mat. And I spend 15 mins meditating. Meditating is a new practice I’m picking up and it’s becoming an enjoyable routine.

I walk to the first living room, which is my office space and I start checking my emails. Marin my housemate peeks in and asks “coffee?” I nod yes and carries on speaking to a teacher I’m interviewing for Learner Net.

My phone pings me and I see someone ask me on Instagram “I would really love to have your life, but how?”

I ruminate on this question for a while……and I keep trying to think. How can I share more?

The thing that troubled me is that I wasn’t sure who to write for. After reading the hardware zone comments, and some other comments on various social media pages, I realized one thing.

That my story divided readers by class. Or it accidentally alienated people who came from a lower income class. That fact stung hard. I didn’t want that be the point of my sharing.

I’ve been writing and re-writing this so it makes sense to me – the messaging I’m trying to put across.

And I keep thinking about the people who inspired ME to change my life. And when i picture their faces – few of them are better off than me (socio-economically). Most of them just took a leap of faith, and made it work. So i started seeing a pattern in all of them – me included.

It’s not about what we don’t have, but it’s about making use of what we do have.

I could sit here and talk about all the disadvantages of being female, being asian, etc etc and how it would have made me fear traveling as a solo female. But I’ve never once felt that those limited my opportunities or choices. I always just looked at how I could make use of my resources to get what I want.

One day i’ll start a series, and share my friends’ stories with you, so you can hear it from them.

Today, all I can do, is share some details that the RICE article didn’t cover, so it hopefully helps.

The one question that keeps coming up is – HOW DO YOU AFFORD THIS?

Before I got this job at Learner Net, I wanted to just continue volunteering.

When I first quit my insurance job, my main goal was simple.

Find what you love Jane. Find what interests you. Find what you’re passionate in – and follow that longing.

I went back to giving private tuition, I also started teaching toddlers and babies to swim at Jump! school. Twice a week I worked at Playfacto after school centre, taking care of children. Twice a week, I worked at Adler’s hostel as a receptionist. I also worked at Ah sam cold drink stall as a waitress/bartender.

I went back to basics. I went back to what I remember loving. I didn’t care that these jobs were ‘less desirable’. I didn’t care what society deems as jobs suitable for NUS graduates.

From when I was 14 to uni, I worked in service-oriented jobs. And i loved them. I worked in Starbucks, in restaurants, in sentosa as a segway guide, in events, a tour guide with Dynasty and even as a lifeguard in Morey’s piers (in the USA).

Even during my insurance days, the thing I loved the most was servicing my clients and helping them achieve their financial goals. Till now, most of them still keep in contact.

I’m a people person – I just didn’t know what else was out there that I could learn from.

Volunteering on Workaway was huge fun for me. I loved mowing the lawn. I loved babysitting. I loved sanding down bricks. Of course, I knew that I didn’t want to do these things forever. But i loved these experiences and what I was learning from them.

When I left my insurance career – it was very clear to me that my 20s and early 30s are for me to grow my skills, expand my network and grow as an individual. I wanted to learn how to be more resourceful.

I didn’t feel that just by sticking to one job I disliked could do that for me.

Every experience we go through is an opportunity to learn about ourselves. And I wanted a variety of experiences.

So before I got my current full time job, my plan was to do volunteering and find paid jobs where ever I went. It could be waitressing, it could be babysitting, it could be doing copywriting. It could be teaching English. It didn’t matter. I was ready to do whatever it took to earn a small income in exchange for a life of adventure.

In the end, my current company came along and offered me a job. They even accepted my request to move to Europe and work remotely from there.

Now. How do you afford it? – this question is really asking so many things.

Jane, how do i still plan for retirement? How do i afford housing? How do i still give my parents allowance? How do i still pay off debts? How do I still pay for holidays?

I can’t give you a solution because it’s your life. But this is why my current life solves many things for me.

When I was living in Singapore doing insurance, I earned a more than decent amount of money.

But not only did I not like my job, I didn’t enjoy living in Singapore either.

I’m not a city person. I would choose living in Sabah or a rural village, or a small town somewhere, over a bustling city ANY DAY.

That’s why I know that moving out of a mega huge city like Singapore was a clear choice for me.

What many of us think is necessary to be happy – is not for me.

What makes me happy, is being able to learn about cultures and history, picking up new languages, connecting with people from different backgrounds, learning how other societies have been shaped due to so many political and socio-economic differences.

I’m an explorer at heart, and so traveling around slowly and experiencing living in different countries excites me.

Also, because Singapore is such an expensive city to live in, I didn’t have much disposable income when I was living there.

Now, because my rent is lower, my food is cheaper, alcohol is cheaper, standard of living is cheaper, I have more disposable income. I can save more than 60% of my salary, and I’m living large. If I was living large back in Singapore, I couldn’t save so much money. Having more disposable income means having more money to invest.

I know many Singaporeans rely on CPF to plan for their retirement but personally, I’ve never trusted CPF as a safe vehicle to provide for my retirement income.

My rent is now between $350 to $500 sgd a month. In Singapore it would be at least $800 – $1000 for the same kind room. Close to city, good room size, includes wifi and utilities etc. That’s an additional $300 a month I can use to invest.

I love drinking wine/alcohol. A decent bottle of wine in Singapore is $20. Here it’s $5.

Back in Singapore, I always felt the need to escape. So i spent alot of money on holidays. I travelled very frequently. Maybe 4 or 5 times a year.

Now, because I’m living in foreign countries, there’s no need for a holiday. Every day is a holiday. Every day is an adventure.

I don’t worry about retirement, because I don’t see Singapore as the only alternative to retire in.

I could always live in Lombok, buy a piece of land there and grow my own crops. If I really wanted to, I could sign myself into a retirement home in Thailand or China, where you can mix around with other retired people and enjoy a luxurious retirement life. There are just so many other options out there, that we don’t know of. Because we haven’t explored what’s out there. And we think that the media tells us everything we need to know.

I didn’t know about volunteering opportunities until I was traveling. I definitely had never heard of the concept of working 8 months a year and then 4 months backpacking. My point is, there is so so many types of lifestyles and solutions out there, that I don’t know about.

If I had given into fear, and stayed back in Singapore, knowing that I would spend more unhappy than happy days there……I wouldn’t have known of all these different alternatives.

My standard of living has become more affordable and the quality of my life has increased by folds.

I understand that many people have considerations.

My parents wouldn’t support me. I have children to consider. I’ve already gotten to a point in my career that I can’t waste it. etc etc.

Please don’t get me wrong.

The point of the RICE article is not to encourage everyone to come out and live life like me.

The solutions to my problems cannot be the same for yours.

My point is to consider what your problems are, figure out if there are really no alternative solutions. Because sometimes there are, but you’re holding out on them because of fear.

It could be a job change. It could be deciding whether to break up an engagement. It could be deciding whether to go to JC/Poly. It could be deciding whether or not to give your parents allowance. It could be whether to get a divorce. It could be how to speak to your boss for a promotion. It could be a career switch. It could be deciding to have a child.

We’re all facing crossroads and different phases of our lives.

In sharing my story, I’m showing you that when you face your fears, and you change your perspective on things, sometimes the solutions become less scary. You have more confidence to believe in yourself and make the decision that feels right, even if it scares the hell out of you.

Heart made of glass, mind of stone

When we first meet people, it’s common to start putting them in boxes.

So we can know what to expect of them. So we can know how to behave infront of them. So we can protect ourselves against them.

What do you do for a living?

Where do you live?

When was your last relationship?

Why did that broke apart?

What do you want out of me?

Our minds are so powerful.

They have the audacity to prison you, but also the generosity to liberate you. They have the strength to cripple you, but also the kindness to comfort you.

My heart might be broken and at times completely traumatised. But my mind is not.

My mind is clear.

It’s not that I don’t have swaying thoughts. It’s not that I don’t second guess myself on decisions I make.

But I choose to select the thoughts like I select my outfit of the day. And when we actively sieve out thoughts we don’t want, we actively select the kind of person we become. I choose not to become bitter even when bitter is what you feed me.

The last 2 days have been a complete roller coaster. Just a few nasty words from someone I once gave so much love to, tore me down completely. I was in a beautiful place, filled with beautiful energy. But it was like I carried my own personal dark cloud around. Nothing could cheer me up. A full day felt like a year. Because those few words took me back through the full year I spent last year, piecing myself back together slowly.

But I needed to let myself grieve. I took myself out for a long walk, and observed my thoughts. I didn’t want to stop them. Or deny them. I just wanted them to be expressed. To me.

And just when I started feeling alone.

Hundreds of messages poured in. Thousands of people stood in spirit with me. So many of you have sent me your stories, and shared with me your pain. Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.

One of my closest friend checked in because she knew I was hurting. I don’t know how she knew but she just did. And just like that, with a text hug I didn’t know I needed, my sadness flowed freely through my tears. I let my heart be broken.

Jane, people in the world are dying. People everywhere are suffering. You don’t have a right to be sad. You don’t have a reason to feel down

I had to abolish that thought. Because that’s when we don’t acknowledge our own right.

No one’s suffering is greater than another. Because there’s no need to compare.

We are all a work in progress.

We are all just trying to lead better lives.

We all just want to be respected.

We all just want to be properly loved.

I write this moment down. Because I want to let go of it. Its not 1 step forward 2 steps back. Its just becoming more self aware of why some things matter, and more things don’t.

I dedicate today to everyone healing from something. A healing process can be beautiful when you mark down moments that were turning points. When you can pinpoint exact periods of your life where you saw growth in yourself.

It’s beautiful when you can almost hear your mind expanding, your heart growing.

I’m at the ‘anger’ part

They say the expectations you have on others come from the ones you have of yourself.

Earlier on in the week, I came to the realization that Anger had a great power to share.

I was chatting with mum about an instagram post i made a few days ago. She wanted to know if I was okay.

“Yeah I’m just finally feeling angry about the way I didn’t stand up for myself when D walked all over me. How I allowed them to disrespect not only me, but you and Dad.”

My mum replied, “YES! I wanted to tell you this, but I didn’t know if it was time to yet.”

“yeah I had to process things myself…..I had to forgive myself for things I felt guilty about first. Parts that I’m responsible for in the breakup of the marriage”.

“Yes…..and now you’ve learned something about yourself. Learning to get angry is so important. Learning to differentiate between when it’s your fault and when it’s not is so important. ”

We both agreed that getting angry was the first step to getting justice for ourselves. It doesn’t mean we can do anything about the injustice done. It just means we acknowledge our worth – enough that we can highlight when we are being bullied.

I didn’t know how much I was being bullied, until I started believing in myself. Until I started to forgive myself for the failure of my marriage. I hadn’t realized I had blamed myself for so many things. I had made so many excuses for my ex’s actions. Yes of course I had made mistakes too. But I shouldn’t have taken responsibility for his. I definitely didn’t have to feel responsible or inadequate because of his actions.

When we make excuses for people’s wrong doing, and accept them by making excuses for them. Are we really loving them?

I remember a friend I had, who confided in me that her husband beats her from time to time. That she has been enduring this for years. She never left because she has children, and because he constantly shifts between ‘good’ behavior and abusive behavior. A few times, she even had to go to the police.

It took her 10 years before she left this man. And only because she saw her son start to hit his sister. It took her 10 years to get angry at him and its only because her mother’s instincts finally kicked in to say “if you don’t leave for yourself, leave for your children”.

When we allow compulsive lying, abuse and dishonesty to become traits that we accept of our partners, we actively participate in watering that bad behavior.

We know that beating someone is a hard no. We can identify that it’s definitely an unacceptable behavior. But certain traits are less easy to distinguish as toxic or not. Certain behaviour is harder to raise as red flags.

It took me an argument with someone to discover a trait of mine that I consider as toxic.

I have a bad habit of expecting people to respond in a way I want them to. Sometimes when they tell me their truth, their perspective, and it triggers me the wrong way, I start getting defensive. And I said to him “I didn’t ask you for advice. I just wanted you to listen and comfort me.”

It’s precisely because he was right, that I got defensive.

I knew that I was being reactive. So I calmed myself down and I told him he was right. And that I’m thankful he gave it to me straight rather than pander me with words he doesn’t believe in.

Toxic behaviour can change.

But we have to first be aware of them. Next, be determined to change bad habits.

I make it a huge distinction that we are all people who make bad choices and not bad people.

But the longer we allow ourselves and our loved ones to get used to toxic behavior the more we are not showing proper love – both to ourselves AND the people we love.

Anger can be powerful, when channeled into being even kinder to people. To standing up for people who need justice. To standing up for yourself when you finally realize your self worth. We don’t have to be friends with our bullies, but calling them out for it is an action of love. It is saying “what you’re doing hurts, and it’s not right. You should know this so you can change to be better”.

There is no justice for alot of injustices done to people in this world.

Blind anger can be fuelled into ugly actions. But Mindful anger can transform yourself into the person you deserve to be.

Croatia life

There’s an incredible source of freedom, when you make decisions that are free from obligations or responsibilities towards other people or societies.

I keep waiting to wake up from a good dream, and I’m still waiting I suppose.

Anyhoo, here’s how life has been as a digital nomad.

It’s been 3 weeks in Croatia.

I’ve been to one pole class in a very dodgy looking building. The security guard greeted me in Croatian, and asked me in English “dancing?”. This was an industrial park with hundreds of different businesses, all under one unit number – Radnicka Cesta 27. Yet he took one look at me, profiled me correctly and sent me down unmarked paths to find the pole dance studio. Surprisingly, I found it with no help from the non-existent signs. I’ve realized sometimes, when you just set an intention on something with no real pressure to find it, it finds you.

During class, the dance instructor went to great lengths to include me in the lesson. She taught in Croatian, but came up specially to me each time, to give me specific English instructions. I felt like she really cared that I had a meaningful class, and her effort made me enjoy the class so much I couldn’t help but smile widely to myself a couple of times. I’ve heard so many people say Croatians are hard to approach, but this was just one of the many times when I met really hospitable Croatians. They remind me of Singaporeans – guarded but full of heart, once you get to know them.

I haven’t settled the problem of a SIM card. So i walked out of the studio with no data on my phone. I approached the nearest person and asked her to direct me to the tram station. She walked with me for a little bit and we had a nice exchange about Zagreb, and I get to my tram station. There, I approached another girl, who recognized me from pole class. She missed her tram to accompany and lend me data, and we talked about me being a digital nomad. She’s been doing copywriting jobs in English (her second language) and dreams of having the job I have. I thought about having to work in Mandarin and I shuddered at that thought. It made me realize how much harder it is to work in a second language, and how lucky I am that my first language is English.

We exchange contact and make plans to meet again.

In the grocery stores, you have to weigh your vegetables and fruits. Unlike in Singapore, where they price every single item for you, here you follow the numbers on boards and weigh the fruits and vegetables according to the number. Unfortunately, the names are all in Croatian. And other than “Limun”, I don’t recognize anything else. So I usually play the guessing game, and see if the cashier spots my mistake. I might be paying celery prices for avocados.

Some Croatian words

Hi – Bok

Good evening – Dobra večer (veh-ceh)

Thank you – Hvala

Goodbye – Doviđenja (I still butcher this sometimes)

Life as a digital nomad isn’t as exciting as it was as a backpacker. But I enjoy that there’s a routine around my days now.

I get up about 7am and start checking emails.

8am to 12pm I have meetings with my colleagues in Singapore/Philippines

12pm I eat a little and let my brain rest a little

I work more till about 4.30pm

5pm I meet my friends (Marta from Italy and Nina from Belgium) and we do a workout together

7pm I start making some dinner/have a drink

8pm onwards I do whatever!

The days fly by and weekends come quickly. The good thing about weekends in Croatia is that you have options. We can choose to stay in Zagreb and host dinner parties for friends, go to bars, go to parks…..

Or we can choose to drive out to a mountain somewhere, or even 2 hours down to the coast, to be near the sea.

More updates next time! Ciao

Wait – is this really happening?!

Me at four or five

It didn’t hit me when I was packing my bags. It didn’t hit me while I was saying goodbye to friends and family. It didn’t even hit me during the 13-hour flight from Singapore to Amsterdam.

It probably hit me for the first time…….In the toilet stalls of Amsterdam – when I made an amusing observation of the many number of pegs put up for people to hang more bags/cloaks.

That I’m leaving. For an indefinite amount of time. I don’t think I ever allowed myself to dream of this as my reality. But the moment I did…….. It set me free. It allowed me to think of the many things I can be and the versions of myself I want to explore.

Really so many – think there were at least 2 or 3 more around. So great for travelers who have 30000 things to hang

In August, I was still wrapping my head around getting divorced, not even ready to worry about the future. I was at times having the time of my life, but unable to fully enjoy it because I was still a little sad about the divorce. I have to tell you the truth right? It was just December 2019 that life threw a major curveball at me – there was little possibility I could have closure within 9 months.

In December 2020, I arrived back in Singapore, a few days before the end of the year. Still giddy from the year long backpacking experience. Still unsure of what I’m gonna do for 2021.

The day after I finished SHN – I signed the divorce papers and started massively clearing clutter out of my house. It meant revisiting alot of the past. I looked at many material things I owned and couldn’t help but judge myself. Why did I need 8 pairs of ‘going out’ shoes, 4 pairs of heels I never wore, and 5 pairs of slippers????

Also, how am i divorced?? How did I ever get married when the me NOW, isn’t even ready to be married?? Hahaha….(nervous laughter)

Sometimes I feel that the last 7 years of my life – after graduating from uni, was me playing ‘Family’ in kindergarten.

Does anyone remember being a Kindergarten kid, playing this game where you and your three friends run around holding hands, taking on ‘Daddy’, ‘Mummy’, sibling roles??

“Okay now you Darren must hold hands because daddy mummy will hold hands one”

“Okay now you sleep finish already, wake up and make breakfast for me and korkor”

Very much like Kindergarten, I think I tried too hard to pretend to be “an adult”.

Why? No idea.

No idea is my favourite answer to myself for many questions I plague my mind with.

No idea landed me this great remote job I have now, because I kept doors open until something I’m passionate about came along.

I now spend about 7 to 8 hours a day working for a start up that I believe in – contributing and pouring out my heart into building something I feel will bring real value to people. My bosses let me work remotely, even from Croatia, and better yet, allow me to work Croatian time 7am to 4pm.

Could I have imagined this job existed if I had made exact plans for it? I don’t know. Maybe. But I’d like to think that “No idea” was the culprit behind this. That because I opened my mind to the possibilities of life, life happened.

It brings me to my greatest lesson of 2020.

Control what you can, and focus on what you want RIGHT NOW – not tomorrow, not yesterday, but right now.

If I don’t know whether I want to be married in 3 years, I don’t think about it.

If I don’t know whether to have kids at all in future, I don’t think about it.

Of course, with certain things, it’s always nice to plan ahead for, like retirement income and whether or not to buy a pair of shoes on sale.

But I no longer want to operate on a FOMO mode. I don’t want to over worry about things in the future, if I have no control over them right now. I want to be content with what I have at the moment and to really seek what purpose in life can look like to me. I’m learning how to listen to what I really want. Something this simple….. Took me 28 years and a divorce to learn.

In August, spending some time with Paulie – favourite chicken from living in Leicester with my workaway family

I don’t know how sustainable this lifestyle can be for me. I’m officially a digital nomad so having this job allows me to move around countries and work remotely. It’s a great position to be in, and I’m glad I have passion for the work we’re doing.

Do i miss my friends and family. Every single day…..sometimes I wish I could teleport to them.


Still, I’m very excited for life here in Croatia. I’m completely in my element (being on the road). I think better, I feel clearer, and I smile wider.

Till the next time, adiosssss ciao ciao everyone


Yesterday I had a conversation with someone really close to me. And as I was trying to explain how I’ve been feeling recently, he said certain things that suddenly triggered some tears.

These few weeks, I couldn’t put my finger on why I felt a particular sadness. Perhaps not sadness, but a feeling of nostalgia.

I’ve enjoyed so much… Just spending time with my friends and family.

There have been moments where all time stands still, and I quietly take in the sights of them laughing, watch them glance at each other in love. I take one of their hands and grip it a little tighter. I sit back and I soak in these moments, trying to freeze them in time, and sear them into memory.

I think making a conscious decision to leave, and pursue the life I want, for the person I want to be, will inevitably put some distance between me and my loved ones. I know that bonds like these don’t break.

I know the friendships I have will withstand time and space. I know my family will always be there for me, as I’m always gonna be here for them. But can I really be? For every time they need me? For every small argument I can possible mediate? For every small achievement they celebrate together? I can’t help but feel sad already, for the moments I’m going to miss.

Still, I’m really happy I’m observing this moment. Because it’s that feeling you get before you leap off a cliff that really makes you feel alive, it’s in that moment of hesitation that tests your will. To jump or not to jump?

I’m jumping. Head first, feet later.

“I don’t belong here”

The last few weeks have been interesting to observe.

The general observation I make of myself, is that I don’t want to be here. But why?

I’m really happy for my friends. They’re doing well, pursuing goals in their careers, getting married, having children. When I think of every single one of my friends, I feel only happiness that they’re enjoying life here in Singapore.

But yet, I feel an odd sense of alienation. Not from them….But between us. I’m alienated by the circumstances and preferences we all have. I’m alienated by the choice I’ve made to stand aside and leave.

It’s a lonely road to take, this nomad life. I can’t relate. To many things that my friends want. And I’ve been this way for a long time. When everyone seems to find joy in the same things, or strive for the same things, and you don’t…..It’s hard to find a sense of belonging.

What does it feel to belong somewhere?

I’m home. These are the streets I know by heart, these are the languages I recognise so well. These are the people I grew up with, who have stood alongside me through life. Yet, I don’t feel like I belong here – not anymore.

I observe myself try to explain these feelings of mine to people around me – and I fail at communicating what I’m really longing for.

I think a part of me is beginning to change drastically, and I’m feeling like this will put an even bigger distance between me and the people I love. I’m not ready to let go of having common topics, of knowing their little jokes. Yet, every day I spend here, I feel as if I’m tolerating life.

I know it’s not the environment that’s the problem – it’s my state of mind. Singapore just happens to trigger a lot of questions I have for myself. Questions I don’t yet have answers for, questions I’m not interested to be worried about. But being here, it forces you to emote.

There is so much to process. But the noise here blocks my ability to do that.

I can’t feel what I’m trying to feel.

I need to get away. I need to be alone. I need to walk for hours. I need to breathe.

A mental drain

I haven’t been able to hear my thoughts well for the past month. I feel a strange disconnect between my mind and my body. It’s almost as if I can see my daily interactions with people from a third person’s point of view, and I recognize how distant I feel.

“I don’t want to be here” was what I kept repeating to close friends who asked if i was enjoying myself back home.

But why?

Life is good. I started a job in a tech start up, with a good boss and great colleagues.

I’ve been meeting up with friends and family whom i’ve missed so much. Yet, there is a feeling of transition that makes me feel restless. I liken it to waiting for a train at a busy train station. You know where you’re going to, and all the stops you have to make before that. Even if the stops themselves bring you to great places and you see amazing views, you’re still waiting to get to your destination.

What is my destination? “Anywhere but Singapore”

Why? I observe my thoughts and my obvious disdain for being back home but I cannot pinpoint what it is.

Perhaps it’s because I’m too familiar with people and surroundings here. Perhaps I miss life on the road, where every tree seems more tall and fascinating, every body of water more inviting. Perhaps it’s my eagerness to shed ‘old skin’ and create a new life ahead.

Then I realize, that this is an old habit of mine. Not being able to live in the present, and only making plans to enjoy the future. I remind myself to stay still. To meditate in the pockets of silence I find between waking up and rushing around all the way till I hit the sack. I remind myself that life can be consisted of moments as fleeting or as frozen as I want them to be. I only have to stay still – and be in control of my thoughts and my breath.

I choose to change my perspective of things now.

I choose to be grateful for being able to go out in the sun everyday – to swim, to run, to walk in the never ending summer of Singapore. I choose to hold every friend I meet a little tighter, and smile a little wider at strangers who will think I’m odd. I choose to appreciate how I can be at my family’s place in under an hour, and see my cousins, aunties, uncles and niece anytime we arrange to.

I choose to stay in these moments, that will pass us by as quickly as the next heartbeat.

It’s not easy – this thing of living in the present.