My Life Is Average 

So today I was mulling around thinking about the current state of my life. Basically kind of bored.

I just finished a 10 day working stretch including weekend and then slept for 11 hours straight.

I woke up and it was hard to get into a mode where I don’t think about work.

You know people bang on and on about “work-life balance” like it’s some magical equation that’ll make your life perfect. I bet all of them would agree that I don’t have such a “balance”

Mostly because people think that this “balance” is either being able to have babies and being a working mom (if you’re a woman), or being involved in some kind of group activity like sports or tree planting club or something.

I basically stay home and browse the internet and talk to my friends. I’m not part of any club and I’m not particularly athletically inclined. I’m sure most of these balance people will say that’s not good enough.

I kind of disagree. I think work-life balance is more about being able to give your best at work and outside of it. And let me tell you, I am giving 100% to being lazy right now.

But also it’s that point in my life where there are no big goals and nothing much to work towards.

Like I spent a lot of effort and time working towards becoming a doctor and it’s like, well now what?

So that’s what work-life balance is kind of a question mark for me. Now what do I do with my life?

A friend of mine said it may seem a bit messy but if you sum it up, it doesn’t sound that bad. He proceeded to say “I’ve got a good job I’m about to be promoted in, I’m engaged and planning a trip to Japan this year”

I had to laugh.

Mostly because that actually sounded great and my summary wouldn’t sound as good.

“I’m a doctor, working in Middlemore hospital… and uhh….”

Yeah I don’t know. It required much more thought after that initial sentence. Like yes I’m a doctor, and that’s pretty good I suppose. I’ve just started, I’ve got my whole career ahead of me, working towards becoming a gastro consultant etc.

What else do I do? I’ve got my blog. I’ve got my writing. I like taking photos, I like playing the guitar.

But I’m not exactly fantastic at any of these things. I’m basically average.

I’d like to be someone who does a lot of things. But I don’t know what.

Oh well. Today I at least made a point to play guitar, write, and take photos.

Macro shot of my bamboo plant/tree thing!

I’m going to get back into taking photos I think. Macro today. But hopefully will get back into going places and taking landscape photos. After all, the season is perfect for some soft, pastel photography.

Trust And Disappointment

You can trust or attempt to trust lots of people in life. But you never know trust and disappointment until you’ve had a bad haircut.

I’ve had a straight fringe for most of my life. I don’t know what they’re called now. “bangs”? Well whatever.

Last year I decided that my fringe made me look even younger than I was so I  wanted to grow it out to make it a side fringe. So for the last few months I basically had no fringe or a “side fringe”.

My mum convinced me that while this was a good idea, it made my forehead look even bigger than it already did and I’m better off with my straight fringe.

So I thought oh well I’ll get it cut straight again then.

Does everyone have a hairdresser they trust? Because I sure as heck do NOT. I went to where I always go, the mall hairdresser. You’d think a salon would hire “hair experts” who were good hairdressers and also knew what customer service was.

But no. I walked in and was faced with a lady who may as well have “kill me now” stamped on her forehead. She didn’t smile. She didn’t ask how I was. She basically said “What the heck do you want?”

Not in those words exactly, but that was the vibe. Not a great start. I should have left. But I told her I wanted a straight fringe. She said, “up to your eyebrows?”. I said yes and sat down in the flat, fake leather chair. But clearly she didn’t hear me. She must have heard something to the effect of “blah blah cut fringe blah blah”

The haircut took all of 3 minutes. She sprayed my fringe with water, grabbed it and made 3 or 4 blind snips, then stood back and took the synthetic robe off and moved away without giving me a chance to have a look or correct anything. Not that it would’ve mattered.

It was too late.

The damage was done. My fringe fell to halfway down my forehead. Not my eyebrows. Too short.

You’d think being the “hair expert” she’d realise that since my hair is curly, once it dries, it’ll curl up and be even shorter. Nope. She didn’t realise this. She simply did what was in her job description and hacked away at my hair.

“But I trusted you!!” I wanted to scream at her. But I didn’t. Instead I paid for losing my hair and went home.

Only to find out it wasn’t even cut straight! My fringe was cut in a wave shape, for lack of a better description. Now I have to sweep it to the side until it grows out enough to actually be fixed. What a futile exercise.

This is why I have trust issues.

How does one find a hairdresser they can trust? How many more heinous cuts do I need to have before I find someone good? I just now have a long list of places I know I’ll never go back to given their uselessness. Maybe I should just quit medicine for a bit and join a hairdressing course. This is just depressing.

First world problems, I know. But my poor fringe! It’s just not good enough.

Pastel Shades 

I know I’ve gone on about Summer feels and how things look very exciting and bright in pictures.

I’ve also talked about how winter makes everything look calmer and deeper.

I’ve recently noticed that coming up to Autumn, everything has pastel shades.

Like the pictures I’ve taken above. The colours are just so easy on the eyes. Everything is just the right tone to show that seasons are changing and the air is becoming more crisp. The sun is there but only just. The weather is lovely and calm but not too cold. 

It’s a different kind of ‘filter’.

Christchurch Massacre

https://www.nzherald.co.nz/nz/news/article.cfm?c_id=1&objectid=12213039

It really is a sad day in New Zealand after what happened in Christchurch.

Everyone keeps saying that this is not what New Zealand is about.

People are saying that New Zealand is a safe country. And this is beyond shocking to have happened here in our little country.

What bothers me most is that nowhere in the world is “safe” really.

It’s not the place. It’s the people. It’s the hate that saturates the world everywhere.

One of my friends posted a status on Facebook in relation to today’s incident

“Instead of discussing political debates, spend effort, money and time raising awareness and investing in mental health”

And I couldn’t agree more.

We should be nurturing an environment without blindly assigning blame and hate. One of the reasons people say New Zealand is so safe is because it is incredibly diverse. Everyone should love the differences amongst each other and love what is common, more.

That’s what should be taught to everyone.

It’s about time people started treating each other with respect for whatever it is they are or believe in. Nobody should have the right to hurt anyone else just because they’re different from who they are.

Every single person hurt in Christchurch today was unfairly and unnecessarily victimised.

I hope things calm down in Christchurch, and humanity everywhere moves forward.

Mutually Exclusive

A big issue in the news lately has been the shocking documentary called “Leaving Neverland”. I’m sure you’ve heard of it.

And I, like many people, used to love Michael Jackson. I still have his History album on cassette (audio tape, for you young’uns. Google it) and used to listen to it a lot throughout my childhood and sometimes still do.

Now, I’m not going to comment on the documentary. Yes it’s shocking beyond belief and everybody seems to have an opinion on it.

But there was something the director of the documentary said which sounded weird to me. He said:

“We’re going to have to re‑evaluate the way we see Michael Jackson… People will have to listen to his music in the knowledge that he was a prolific child rapist. If they’re comfortable doing that, fine. If they’re not, well perhaps listen to something else for a while.”

Then I heard that many radio stations in New Zealand have declared that they will not be playing Michael Jackson songs on the radio anymore. Radio stations that had played his music as number 1 of the top 500 songs of the ’90s for several consecutive years.

I think this is kind of ridiculous.

People are trying to make others feel guilty for listening to music. As though they somehow become a privy to his crimes or his character just because they play his music on their phones or radio stations. The music isn’t tainted.

I don’t get why his music has to take a hit. Especially 10 years after he has been dead. What about the 30+ years they were being played and listened to around the world when he was alive and doing the things he’s currently being accused of? Just because there wasn’t enough “proof” of what he was doing when he was alive, his music was okay to be played, but since this documentary, suddenly it’s tainted? These allegations were around when he was alive too, you know.

People seem to be acting as though his songs are no good anymore. And anyone who listens to them are also somehow supporting his paedophilia.

And that makes me very confused.

He is not his songs. The two are mutually exclusive, in my opinion.

I listen to Bad and Beat it and appreciate the music. The music alone. Even if they were sung by someone else, they’re still great songs.

You can’t associate an art with a person to the point where you have emotional attachment with that person. If you believe that every famous person is good and pure, you’re living in a very naive world. Everyone has something hideous about them. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t super talented and can’t produce something that everyone loves.

Every singer/actor you like probably has something you would find horrifying about them. About their character. You just don’t know about it.

I don’t think there’s any point mixing the two up. He can be a terrible person and still make great music. It’s like that saying about giving the devil it’s due. And listening to his music isn’t something you should feel guilty about. They’re still bops. You’re not supporting his crimes or anything. You can still listen to his music and not approve of the things he did when he was alive.

Just appreciate the art for what it is.

Self Pity

Can I just take a moment to pity myself?

I don’t like self pity. I don’t encourage it in anyone. But at the moment I’m feeling rather pathetic about the situation I’m in.

It’s not that I didn’t really see this coming. I kind of expected this to turn to custard. But I had still hoped that it maybe sorta kinda wouldn’t.

Well, I was wrong.

And I thought to myself well hey, gotta keep going anyway. How else can I screw up my life right? 

But today I just want to feel sorry for myself. That things are just not going well for me.

Just when are things going to be sort of acceptable? 

Or when the HELL am I going to be able to take a step back and look at this mess and be the kind of person who is unaffected or can actually deal with it?

So today I’m just going to pity the pathetic-ness that I and my current situation is

There are some things in life, “lessons” they call them, that I think I could have learnt without the shit experiences that you need to go through to have to learn them. 

Like if someone tried to teach me these lessons verbally, I would have happily believed and learnt them.

Ugh. 

Real Mature

What is maturity? 

I’ll tell you what it’s Not.

It’s Not telling someone else that they’re immature. 

I find that a lot of people go around these days telling others they’re not “mature enough” because of the way they deal with certain situations. 

I don’t get this. 

I don’t pretend that I’m mature. I don’t pretend I know what a mature person is. I think people are all different and we all have different ways of dealing with things. I don’t tell anyone they’re not “mature”. Because I don’t think anyone is truly “mature”

It’s definitely not an age thing. I’ve seen 50+ year olds act like absolute children, and I’ve seen children show surprising levels of “maturity” for their age. 

But I don’t think there’s such a thing as becoming a mature person.

I think it’s a progressive thing. I don’t believe that you ever reach a stage where you can say oh I’m mature now. If you do say this at any point, I guarantee that you’re not mature. I’m sorry about it.

If you’re in your twenties, and you look back at your teenage years and think oh God I was so immature back then, that’s fine. That’s good. You’re more mature now. But you’re still immature if you think that’s it. Or if you think you’ll get to 50 years of age and not look back on your twenties and think oh God I was so immature back then.

Maturity should be about growth. It should keep increasing as you age, forever. 

And I think anybody who has some level of maturity, would realise that they don’t have the right to call anyone else “immature” or even “mature”. Because nobody is going to say “oh they’re more mature than I am”. If you say someone is mature, I bet you anything you’re comparing their level of maturity to yours, and deeming that it’s the same.

And if you call someone else immature, you’re again comparing them to your perceived level of maturity and deeming them less so.

I guess I don’t really believe in the whole maturity thing. I think it’s more about personal development and thinking about how you react to things. Don’t classify others as mature or not. There’s no point and it’s really not accurate.

That’s Gen Med 

First week of gen med done! And it was very refreshing.

Good news is that my team still exists as we have a consultant covering the missing one. And my registrar is quite nice, and I’m the only house officer on my team. So yay that worked out.

And it’s wonderfully busy! I barely have any time to think or worry about anything else! Going on a ward round takes up half the day, then doing jobs takes up the other half! With a couple of late finishes too! 

Needless to say, I’m enjoying myself so far.

But this was a short week. I only worked Monday, Thursday and Friday. Because incase you didn’t know, (and you’re not likely to because this isn’t big news like Lady Gaga and Bradley Cooper possibly being in love or Taylor Swift hinting at new music) the junior doctors of New Zealand are on strike! 

We are on strike for safer hours. Basically we work 12 day stretches (including weekends) without breaks and are demanding that we should not work any more than 10 days continuously at a time. Which I am totally behind. A lot of the other house officers are strong advocates and unionists so I hear a lot of noise from them.

I’m not a big unionist. I do support the cause, but I feel like sometimes people take it overboard in a “Us vs them” concept. And people complain about a lot of things that I don’t think ought to be complained about. There’s a lot of “they don’t care about us!!” Talk from a lot of the other house officers but I think I can atleast be grateful that I have a job. 

But anyway. I am part of the union and so I have been going on strike!

In the midst of that however, yay gen med is good so far. It’s been an interesting week. I got shot down by the radiologist when trying to discuss my first case (he basically said your patient is 90. She’s done with life, what’s this investigation going to change), ordered a blood test for the wrong patient (I’m sure I’ll be screwing up a lot of these little things) did atleast 10 discharge summaries in 2 days, and worked late. Not too bad for the first week

Hopefully things stay manageable.