This month of December mark one year I have been back living in Bangkok. One year is not very long but it seems there have been a lot coming through. I could say it is the progress after all those years struggling professionally, financially and mentally in Sydney. But every time you step on an accelerator, fuel is getting burned up as well. It all comes with the package. In summary, there are two main aspects that got me both progressed and exhausted:
The day before I left Sydney, I got a call from the World Bank in Bangkok about the job I applied for six months earlier to inform me that I got the offer. That changed the entire packing mood from uncertainty to some level of excitement.
There are so many challenges in new the job, it does not only acquire most of my skills: web stuff, video editing, photography, digital asset management and so on, but also takes a lot of my energy. In addition to that, there are so many new things to learn. I was worried that I would lose the mojo since I haven’t made a proper single personal work this year. And this blog now seems to be the archival of my declining tweets.
However, looking back, there were a lot has been done. It comes to realisation that I actually do what I would like to do for a living, not just to fulfil the needs to express how I see the world as I did most in Sydney years. And it does make me feel worthy again.
In July, I went for an annual check up. Everything was fine except the high blood pressure and the doctor found split heartbeats. I was recommend to see a cardiologist and had my heart checked with echocardiography. It turned out that I got stage-two hypertension. It was not actually a surprise even though I am considerably young for that since there was a heart palpitation earlier.
This chronic illness certainly changed my lifestyle. I joined the gym prior to the check up but did not take it seriously until the heart condition was confirmed. The determination to lower my blood pressure kicked in. Along with the medication, I started to go to the gym every chance I got and shed hundreds of calories out of the body. The personal trainer has become my new best friend (and also an expensive one).
I turn into an anal retentive in terms of diet, for an example, asking every restaurant what kind of oil they use for cooking. The generic cooking oil in Thailand is palm oil which is high in saturated fat. And street food are unfortunately my rare treat. And I keep track of the intakes and the activities on the daily basis as much as possible.
The only bad habit I cannot change is alcohol. I did try on the first month controlling it but, unlike the gym or the diet, I just could not enjoy it at all. You only need one last crucial thing to keep your disease going. To be honest, this post won’t be done without sitting down in a pub with a bottle of Shiraz.
However, four months later, on the latest visit to the cardiologist, the blood pressure went down to normal (although it comes up again recently, well, only if I could stop drinking). Now, I lost around ten to twelve kilos and took ten centimetres out of the waist. The body mass index (BMI) is down from slightly overweight to in the middle of normal range. Such a reward!
Working out is a new territory for me. I never thought I would be having fun with this transformation, especially later in the life like this. Maybe it is just the same as you create a video or photography work but this time it is your own physique. Or maybe it is just a joy of discovering a new adventure in your life.
A year wrap, if one could wonder how far they come in a year, just see how exhausted you are at the of the year. I am very, very, very exhausted. Although it is still a long way to get to the finish line, wherever it is, for now, what I am OK with the effort I have made in the year. Just need a break to reflect it, like tonight with a cheap shiraz under a cool night in my very homecity.