A New Chapter- Mental Health

This was my first week in a Mental Health ward, this time as a clinical pharmacist. Honestly, don’t think I made as many interventions as I would have liked…I feel.. lost… in my old rotation , I got into a groove of checking for VTE prophylaxis, checking the antibiotics were appropriate, checking pain relief was appropriate, and that regular medication was started/stopped as appropriate…. then I go go mental health.. where bloods could be done monthly.. my longest stay patient has been there SIX years..😱😱😱 and I am unsure what my role is …. it’s very “What the consultant wants”… and reminds me of the old days where I would have a chat with the consultant regarding some questionable things 😅. Consultant isn’t always right…

I feel like I am surrounded by unknowns and that sort of builds up my anxiety of what I don’t know. The anxiety of being in another hospital and not knowing how they do things and their practices.. messes with my head 😭😭… it’s only week one, but everyday just feels that I am unproductive and everything takes a long time to get used to …😓😓😓 Planning go do some learning this weekend!

In addition to that, its so strange to be fully into mental health. In mg surgical rotation I got a small taste of mental health, but now it’s like really full on in your face mental health…😭😭 Another big learning curve is coming for me..

People are so unreliable

I’ve pretty much all but given up relying on people. It seems like everyone is fickle, unreliable, and do not take responsibility for their actions. It’s been waves of disappointments on disappointments. I am just highly disappointed in so many people. It’s so frustrating for me, that my life is made harder by unreliable and inconsistent people. I really hate people honestly. At the end of the day I am still a person, so do I hate myself too? I should just become like them. Unreliable. Useless. And a liar. It is what it is I guess.

Slow down

A patient of mine told me to, SLOW DOWN. My job gets repetitive after doing the classic antibiotic and pain killers talk for the 100th time during this rotation.

I haven’t realised that I have gone 100 miles per hour, until a person from a non-English speaking country told me to “SLOW DOWN”. And I stopped, I really do go TOO FAST. Maybe due to the workload, partly because I am an inpatient person. I always want to be fast, effective, and try to do everything. But, I realised, what is the point in doing all this? To achieve everything so soon… to work yourself into a sweat trying to bend your head over for someone who really doesn’t care?

My goal from now on, is to slow down, take a deep breath and ask myself, “Why am I rushing”? What for? Am I late? Then I should change my habits and start being early. Am I not going to get things done? Then maybe it’s time to ask for help or see what else can be streamlined, prioritised to be done later.

Life flies by, and then you realised you haven’t even stopped to smell the flower, enjoy the food, make some friendships. What happened to me that all I became was someone so focused on goals, achievements, and I slowly became someone without a soul, perhaps coming off rude, and a loner.

If it’s too good to be true, it probably is fake

In the moment, you feel like everything is but a dream.. it feels too good to be true

You don’t want to wake up from your dream

Entranced by the surreality of the the life you live in

Chasing the end of the rainbows, seeking the treasures that you find

Heads in the clouds, hearts flying with the birds in the sky

When everything ends, you know you proved yourself right

It was really too good to be true. 💭

Things I’ve done in Lockdown

During the lockdown, I saw other people start to bake, cook, or go on exercise hikes… for me I haven’t done much out of the ordinary…

1. I’ve continued working as usual, but put my hands up for some extra activities.

2. Got more unfit, but have been trying to get into home stretching and exercises.

3. Been studying up on Covid-19 and their vaccines as I have out my hand up to be interested in being involved with the vaccine preparation.

4. I’ve restarted posting in here.

When will this lockdown end? Who knows?

Is it being lazy or being efficient?

Today I managed to do a weeks worth of cleaning in one day. I was recording in a voice message to my mum what I did today.. and it was a lot (imo)..!

Woke up. Had breakfast. Then took the first load of laundry of undergarments downstairs. waited half an hour or so then took the next load, work clothes -on delicate mode- and put the undergarments in the dryer. Repeat x5. As I was hanging up the work clothes I get a call from my Aunty who was checking to see if I was alright…

After the call I try to do some study.. but I am hungry again :(. So it’s time to cook from all the left over ingredients I bought last week! So today and tmoros menu consists of frozen eel (soo delicious), frozen fishballs, frozen mixed veggies ( so colourful), fresh bokchoy x3 (coz its cheaper), 2 onions, half a garlic, half a box of smooth tofu, left over noodles…and voila! 4 or so meals are done. It tastes good too. You can’t really go wrong with these ingredients. I left of mess after cooking (and eating) as per usual.

So I started wiping down the kitchen bench.. then I realised the floor was dirty.. so I got out the good old two in one mixed head mop.. sprayed some disinfectant and water. Well, one thing led to another… I had the spray out already.. should I just clean my toilet and shower today instead of Sunday? It means tmoro I can just relax… hmmm anyways. So I ended quickly cleaning the bathroom too.. I don’t think I did as thorough as the week before.. but I’ll survive🤣🤣🤣 always feels sooo nice to have a clean toilet, clean clothes, and clean kitchen bench. My sink is still full of dishes tho 🤣🤣🤣…

Some of my colleagues are horrified to hear how I only clean once a week…but hey I live on my own and the mess is my own. If I can live with it, then it’s fine right? As long as no one else is affected 🤣🤣🤣imho.

It is okay to have burger rings for breakfast

…every now and then anyways.

Woke up feeling shi* this morning with a splitting headache… my mouth has been super dry lately and I suspect it had something to do with the Asthma Preventative Inhalers I take… I do rinse my mouth out after each use.. but I still managed to get something called Oral Thrush 😦 thus is basically a fungal infection of the mouth which causes your tongue and maybe the side of your cheeks to become white and patch.. and for me … it’s hard to swallow and in addition to that I have several mouth ulcers…

I don’t think I’ve been taking care of myself as well as I should… it’s hard. We are in the middle of a pandemic and in stage four lock down in Melbourne… I have to follow by the rules.. and that means only been able to eat and drink during designated break times… which often ai will skip if it is too busy. Stress sucks :(.

But anyways, I digress. So I was feeling shi* this morning and because I woke up several times in the night.. I slept in till about 11am? My mouth was super dry and I was always thirsty, even though I drank water! My appetite wasn’t there anymore… I just craved something soft and tasty. I looked in my cupboard.. and ALAS. The Burger Rings which I got on sale for $1 at Woolies.

Should I? It’s breakfast for goodness sake…. screw if. Imma adult now and if I want to have Burger rings for breakfast .. I am going to have it. For those who might not know, Burger Rings are these ring shaped (clearly) orange/brownish delicious snacks packed with Burger Flavour (whatever that is). They are sooo addictive and tasty. I demolished a whole bag 🤣🙃. Guilty pleasure. Yup. Did it hurt my ulcers? Yup. Was it good for me? Nope. Do you think I would do it again?. Yup. But everything in moderation and I don’t have any left anyways..

Anyways, I better sleep.. big day tomorrow ..training is over and the real Residency starts. Wish me luck and also please remind me to buy some oral anti fungal drops…!

P.S. cover photo is of the Japanese Curry I cooked today which I will eat for the next few days 🤣🤣🤣

Treating yourself Kindly

I find that I am the harshest critic upon myself… when faced with uncertainty, I often doubt myself.. my qualifications and my ability to get the job done.

Amongst other things, I am quick to compare myself to others and hence, usually feel bad for myself. 😔😔 But what for? Everyone is different, unique, and has their own journey. There isn’t any point comparing your journey to someone else’s. That’s what I SHOULD think.. but anyway, other people will do it, even if you don’t.

But you just gotta drown that thought out and don’t pay attention. Just do your best! That’s all you can do. 😊

Week five of our stage 4 lockdown… we are due for review on September 13th.! Fingers and toes crossed we will have some restrictions lifted ✌️✌️🤞🤞🤞

Episode Three of Working in Melbourne up!

I haven’t been very consistent with the naming of the podcast .. is it even a podcast? More like a lazy way to diary my life… my sad Iso-life.

Click here for Episode Three!

I promise to write a proper blog post soon! P.S. adulting achievement unlocked! Finally managed to make the skin on my salmon CRISPY!! 😍😍😍

Spilling Water on your laptop

So I bought some white rice the other day… brown rice is great, but it takes about two hours to cook in the rice cooker… well anyways, as you can see I am putting it to good use. As the responsible and clumsy me managed to spill my water bottle over the laptop.

I googled how to dry the laptop.. and apparently I have to wait a few days to dry it… before I can use it. 😭…

Other than that, I went to the Asian grocery for the first time… it felt like an outing… ! The supermarket is sooo huge… and I couldn’t find anything.. but still managed to buy quite a lot of frozen foods! Hopefully it will be healthier than the chinese pork sausages I have been using in my fried rice.

The Chinese pork sausage is so nice with the fried rice!! But so fatty .. cry.. other than that I am going to try do the 2 Week Ab Chloe Ting challenge xD.. hopefully can get a flatter stomach 🤣🤣🤣

Will report in 2 weeks on how I go…

Communal Laundry

So the thing about having a communal laundry means..you can’t just do your laundry whenever and wherever you want. You gotta lift all your clothes down to the washing machine.. and then load multiple loads coz it’s sooo small. You then set your timer so that you know when to come and take it out of the machine. But for some reason, it always takes longer so you are just waiting around.

I just want to whinge lol. But i am getting better.. its 2 pm and I am down to my last load! Woo hoo

Lasik failure :(

I was so worried about post surgery complications, I didn’t even consider that the procedure would be a failure…

Prior to the surgery, I was given the choice to take some sleeping tablets to help “relax me”.. and of course I took it.. I was nervous as hell.. but little did I know what would happen next.

I don’t know how often this happens, but I was all gowned up with the hairnet, shoe covers, and ready to get lasik. I had to go through numerous stinging eyedrops, face disinfected, text over my eyes…and then they propped openmy eyes with something so I couldn’t blink.. that was a bit painful. I had to stare at a green light above me that sort of suctioned onto my eye. It was uncomfortable, there was drilling sounds, I was scared shitless. I think I knew something was wrong because the machine kept coming off and back on to my eye…what felt like an eternity later (but was probably a minute later), the doctor aborted the surgery. He had made two incisions in the flaps of my eye to try lift them, but apparently couldn’t because the shape of me eyes were weird. But mate, aren’t you supposed to check that pre-surgery? At that time I was too drowsy to say anything and really remember much.. I was taken to a recovery area with a ned.. and given an icepack for my now inflammed rye.. they were talking about there being bubbles in my eyes. WTF.

The doctor pulled me back into his room and tried to explain what happened, but he used all this medical jargon (about eyes) which I didn’t understand and was too sleepy to ask about. Why do they do that? After drugging you up telling you all this important stuff? He took out the after lasik pack which had been shown to me by a optometrist assistant prior to going into the surgery. He chucked away the antibiotic eyedrops and said “You won’t need this”. But what if I do? You have made two cuts in my eye! I can see the blood lines there and it freaks me out.

I can’t remember the last time I felt so disappointed, dissatisfied , disgusted, depressed, and yet damn angry. I have been knocked out the rest of the day. All that damn anxiety and dread leading up to the surgery day…

They also made me pay upfront BEFORE i had the surgery. What scammers. In the end they apparently “refunded” it to me on my credit card.. but honestly I can’t see it there yet…I won’t let them get away with that one. 😤😤😤

Some of my friends have told me to sue them for medical negligence. Whilst it sounds like s annoying and long-winded expensive process… I wouldn’t want anyone else to go through what I did and who knows how long my eyes will take to recover? They didn’t even tell me if I can wear contacts again.. do I have to wear sunglasses everywhere? Am I not allowed to wash my hair with shampoo? Which is what their information sheets say, but they didn’t write one up for botched surgeries.

A mixture of guilt and sadness also lies within my mind. Why did I want so bad to not have glasses? I guess they might be the safest option now…

-Sad

Tolerance

I have found that there are so many things that require building up a tolerance to… once you get to a roadblock in which you stop that activity building up your tolerance.. it comes impossible to do what you could do before with high tolerance…

I thought I had overcome my fear of blood… when I worked at the clinical research facility, initially I was super queasy and almost fainted at the video of someone having blood taken from his cannula…in order to work there… I had to change myself to someone I was not…then I slowly exposed myself to videos of people having blood taken … then I watched from afar .. seated and not with an empty stomach… I made sure I was well hydrated and not too tired. I exposed myself more and more until I felt more comfortable.

The first person who I was training under to take blood from, though I thought my big fear of blood would hinder me from being able to take blood…When push came to a shove…I managed to do it. And not pass out. Densensitation. I think that’s how you spelt it(?). Repeated exposure to something makes you tougher and more able to withstand it… same with tolerances to spiciness… you start small and build up.. but you lose it when you stop doing that thing for a while.

That’s what happened to me today. My dad suddenly ran into the house and said, “I bumped my head!” And started putting his head under running water. In my training as a nursing assistant, I got him some clean make up pads and told him to put pressure on the wound to stop the bleeding. I made him sit down, incase he fainted from the blood loss and asked him if he wanted water. When he had pressed for a few minutes I applied a clean waterproof bandaid on his wound and told him to try keep it clean so that it doesn’t get infected.

Anyways, that is besides the point… after I did that.. I started feeling sick in my stomach…maybe it’s because I am hungry.. most likely because I have stopped taking bloods for over five months now.. I’am not immune to the fear of blood, or should I say my tolerance of blood has gone back to what it is before.

I am now lying in my bed now… trying to fight My queasiness and become calm again.

The doubtful thoughts entered my head again, what future doctor can be afraid of blood?

Almost the end of 2019…

I think it’s time for a reflection.

Big things, small things, decisions… risks, investments..friendships, relationships, money, time, study, work, career….goals and dreams.

If only we were able to do it all and achieve it all… Sometimes you feel that one life-time is not enough. You feel like there is much to chase after, yet you also fail to appreciate what you have achieved already and what you have.

Sometimes I feel regret at what I sacrifice in order to get closer to what I want to achieve. I question myself, is it worth it? To be so driven towards something that gives you temporary joy when you achieve. I am somewhat afraid that when I finally reach the goals and final destination to where I want to go, I fear it won’t make me as happy as I had hoped.

This fear… will it stop me from trying? I think I will regret most not trying hard enough. But even though i am striving towards my goal…I am also trying to pursue my career goals… and then there’s my bucket list of things I wanna do before I am 30.

I think I am going through what I call a “one third of life crisis”. Not sure what I want, but everyone around me seems to me talking of marriage, getting married, having kids, buying houses… and then there’s me.. not sure what I want to do. I am sure I am not the only one who feels that way though… life is meant to be more simple than we make it. We complicate it by over thinking, by worrying about what hasn’t happened yet… or worrying that something will never happen.

FOMO is so real. I try to avoid it, aside from Linked In and a fake FB account.. I don’t go on social media. But even in the brief moments I have gone on these apps…I’ve managed to make myself feel bad.. I compared myself to this person because they got into medicine this year… oh and this one got a “Senior Pharmacist” position, even though I graduated first!! Or this one got into the hospital residency program…so much to compare myself to…you get my gist. I know I am supposed to feel grateful for where I am, so many would kill to be in my position..two well-paying jobs… good work place… mostly good colleagues…

But sometimes, your brain just shuts down and just wants to run away from it all and just have a break, before your break.

Nobody knows

Nobody knows what goes on inside your head

In turn, you don’t know what goes inside theirs.

We go through life guessing, assuming, and dictating what we think others are thinking. Little do we know how wrong or maybe right we are.

How can we know someone, better than we know ourselves? We could know someone, but maybe they changed or perhaps you were only seeing an act that they put on?

How do you really really know someone? I guess you can’t. You can just hope that you do and trust they are who they say they are.