Thanks to all who had put in words of comfort and advice in my "Stressed Out" posting before this. It felt good after I poured everything in the posting, but, it felt even better reading your comments. Thanks again :)
Just an update on what happened after that posting -
(1) I managed to finish all that was needed to be done by 5:30a.m, and somehow I also managed to squeeze in a 2 hour sleep before getting ready for work. That was the first step of me de-stressing myself (albeit just a bit).
(2) And I managed to improve on my slides for my presentation at the office and print out all handouts for my session. Felt better when I looked through the finished work. More de-stressing factor for me :)
(3) I delivered my presentation at 11:30a.m, and received some very positive feedbacks and suggestions. An Aussie Professor who also presented his paper during the same session had proposed that I expand my paper and write a book on the topic! And he said he would be more than happy to provide me with all the old maps which I might need for the book (he's a professor of maritime cartography, by the way). Now, THAT was a MAJOR de-stressing factor for sure :)
(4) We had our Faculty meeting at 3:00p.m. Thank God it did not drag on like it usually did, and this time around there was no intra-departmental bashing of this ONE particular Department at our faculty meeting. So, it was not as stressful as I thought it would be. I just so hate it when departmental issues are brought up at faculty level. Your mess, you clean it up yourself la, kawan... And please, la... keep your politics confined to the department. Buleh?
Anyway, that didn't happen that Friday - so, another de-stressing factor for me :)
(5) My MIL had a makan-makan session at her place for her staff on Friday night, so all of us had our dinner there. No worries for me - no need to think about what to cook for dinner and all. Bliss...(thus de-stressing myself further :)
(6) However, in the middle of dinner, I received a phonecall from my Mommy, informing that my eldest brother had been admitted to the ICU at Si*e D*rb* Health Centre. Ayah and I went to fetch my Mommy and Abah at KD and straight to the hospital. Apparently, my Abang I** had a stroke (bleeding of his brain-stem) while conducting a meeting at work, and the cause of it was his BP. He went in with a BP reading of 240/100+! (Hmmm...obviously HIS stress level was more than mine!)
But, Syukur alhamdulillah, he was alert and conscious, and did not have any weaknesses on any parts of his body. His grip was firm that night, and no slurs as such. He was only complaining of severe headache and numbness on his left side. As I'm writing this, he is now at the normal ward, and the doctors are trying to get his BP down, and he's been given 6 weeks to rest. (But, knowing him, he would be back at work next week for sure...Sigh...)
Anyway, of course this piece of news had brought my stress level up a few notches, and I need to de-stress myself more after that.
(7) Saturday morning - stress level went up a bit as it was my Supersupir Day, and I had to send and fetch the kids to and from a few of their classes.
(8) Stress level went down in the afternoon when we attended the Badan Anak Negeri Sembilan Raya Do at KG*A. I'm no anak Negeri, but I'm a member by virtue of being married to one and because my MIL is orang kuat persatuan. So, no choice. Hehehe! Anyway, good food can never go wrong. So, the raya do really helped the de-stressing process a lot :)
(9) We spent the rest of Saturday afternoon at Mak's as she was flying off to Ho Chi Minh City on Sunday. Right after maghrib, Ayah and I decided to bring the kids to One-U for dinner. The last time we went to One-U was just before Raya. We had dinner at Fi*h & Co., and after that, we didn't know what happened (probably there was something in our dinner?!), the kids managed to persuade Ayah and I to watch HIGH SCHOOL MUSICAL 3 at GSC! As we had nothing planned, and it had been a while since we went out on a proper outing with the kids, Ayah and I surrendered. We also had to drag Dar along.
I hate to admit it, but, I actually ENJOYED HSM3! The choreography was just superb, and the songs were very catchy. But, of course, like the previous HSMs there were so many lame scenes. Even Hanna and Hasya could not help themselves from giggling and laughing out loud during those lame scenes. But, overall - if you need a major de-stressing treatment (like I did), watching HSM3 should do the trick :). Go watch it with your kids!
(10) Sunday morning, went to Te*co for grocery shopping. Was there from 11:40a.m until 2:15p.m! Punya la banyak manusia!!! Stress level - CONFIRMED shot up. But, I managed to get everything to fill in my fridge and pantry. And there's no better way to de-stress myself than by looking at my fridge/freezer and pantry full to the brim later when I got home (and DAR kemas everything while I surf the net. Kalau I yang KEMAS, blood pressure sure go upstairs... Hahaha!)
I just love it when I open the fridge and freezer and the pantry, and I see that I have everything in there, just in case I suddenly feel like cooking something special. It doesn't matter if I didn't. Yang penting - the ingredients are there. Just in case. A good feeling - that one :)
(11) at 4:15p.m, got a phonecall from Ab*d (one of my MT friends) -
Ab*d : Are you there yet?
Me : There? Where?
Ab*d : Aw*n's House-warming and Open House?
Me : Errr... When did she move to a new house? And errr...I didn't get the invitation pun!
Ab*d : It was in the group e-mail lah!
Me : Ye ke? Alamak. Sorry lah - I've not checked my e-mails for 2 months laaa. Okay, never mind, I'll check it now, and I'll see you at Aw*n's house in an hour.
True enough, the invitation to Aw*n's new home was in one of the 2580 un-opened mails in my Inbox!
Another MAJOR de-stressing session at Aw*n's house that afternoon - with good food and good company in the form of other MTs and their spouses. After Isya', we later adjourned and convened at Ab*d's house in Vi**a Dsara, and lepak till about 11:00p.m.
(12) We left the house just after 9:00a.m and headed straight to the MPH Warehouse Sale at Section 13 PJ. We thought we were early, but there were already throngs of people there. Everybody managed to get books for themselves. Not bad at all - we got 38 books all in all, for about RM600!! That was definitely another major de-stressing point for me - hilang all my guilty feelings that I had with Hanna (especially when she got 18 books for herself!). And of course, it was also a very de-stressing moment when we paid for the books (especially for Ayah) because we thought they would cost us more than RM1,500! Happy, happy, happy!
(13) What better way to further de-stress myself than tucking in in some good food for lunch with the family. We went to Co*y Co*ne* at Jaya 33 and everybody had their favourites. Their sharks fin soup was so yummy...
(14) We then went to jenguk our BJ house (which we had not jenguked for more than 2 months!). Suffice to say, it's time for another call to Badhal Khan. And we also found out that the roof was leaking in a few places and there were water marks in some areas of the house. Stress level naik balik... But, I'm just going to tell myself that IT IS NOT A MAJOR PROBLEM. I'm not going to stress myself out over this. I'm not going to worry. I'm just going to be happy :)
All in all, the de-stressing process over the long Deepavali weekend has really helped. And I'm ready to face it all, insya Allah.
And I guess, what I could gather over the last few days ni - there'll be stressful moments everyday BUT, some things might just creep up while we least expect them, and make us feel better. And we have to always prepare ourselves for other unexpected things which might spoil our day again. The trick is to wait for the positive things to happen, or it they don't, we take things positively. Or we make them happen.
And however stressful we feel our lives are, there are others who lead an even more stressful lives than we do. So, we have to bersyukur with whatever it is that is thrown to us.
Cheers, you all :)