Yay! Unemployment!

Happy 2017! *dusts away cobwebs from the skeletal body of my dying blog*

I’ve been contemplating really seriously about shutting down this blog and closing this chapter of my life forever. And maybe perhaps starting anew somewhere else. I don’t know yet. I guess suddenly finding yourself jobless really changes you as a person. Goodbye my only source of income, hello waking up at 12 in the afternoon and eating breakfast at 3 while society judges you (don’t tell me what to do, mum!!). While it’s understandable circumstances that’s led me to this very point, it’s sort of lit a fire under my ass and made me want to do better. To own this. 7 years of Mass Comm’s got to count for something right?

And so, I’ve updated my resume, started bookmarking jobs like nobody’s business (I’ll get to them all by this week, I swear), thought up ideas for a creative print portfolio, and hopefully 2017 will be the year the gods finally take pity on me and.. No! You know what, I can’t keep thinking that way. I’ve got skills right? I can write. I’ve got ideas. I’ve got LOTS of potential just waiting to be tapped. Any employer would be so lucky to have me. That’s it, *positive thinking*. Something I have to admit I’m really thankful for though, is the knowledge that my previous contract wasn’t extended, not because of anything I had or hadn’t done. (You hear that, future employers??) It’s something that I could in no way have prevented. So there’s that, at least. It’s also comforting that my direct supervisor fought so hard to keep me, even if his efforts turned out to be all in vain. I mean, if the big boss suddenly changes his mind and decides he wants someone way more experienced, well what can you do right? All I can really do is pick myself back up, go back out on the hunt, and gain that ~~*~experience~*~~ everyone talks so much about.

Unemployment aside, what’s happened in the last couple of days: I turned 24 and I’ve been questioning myself, is this what I want my legacy to be as a blogger (I still feel uncomfortable calling myself a writer, it’s like saying that every person who can string sentences together is a writer, every person who paints is a painter, every person who can play a song on the guitar is a musician, you get the point… Actually does blogging once every 3 or 4 months even make me a blogger..idk)? Point is, I need to find my own voice!! And that’s why I’m considering starting a separate blog (see how we’re coming full circle here), title to-be-confirmed. I just want to start everything afresh and have a blog that I’m proud to show people, a space that I can confidently say, yes this is the Justine I want to put forth, this! is a true reflection of my thoughts! my identity! Not this chaotic mess of ramblings about life, reality TV or whatever cute famous boy I’m currently crushing on. Not that there’s anything wrong with what I’ve been writing about. They’re true to the me that was then, but the me that is now, is at a different place… from then. Yeah, I can be deep.

Hashtag deep, hashtag feelings

I hate to say it, but I’m not at a very good place right now. As I slowly make the scary but inevitable transition into adulthood, I have to find a way to merge the me I see as a student for the last twenty or so years of my life, with this new role as a full-time adult with a full-time job. I thought I’ve built up my self-esteem to a point where it was solid and unshakeable and I’ve convinced myself that I was done with being insecure about my capabilities as well as who I am as a person, but I’m learning to see that maybe that’s a feeling that you can never really get rid off completely.

While I like my job, being on contract puts me on shaky ground and I start questioning every single thing that I do. Am I doing enough? Am I making a difference? Could they do without me? My boss has brought up converting me to full-time and I’m always included in conversations concerning the future of the team but there’s always this nagging doubt that one wrong move could easily turn that around. I want to get comfortable but at the same time, I get so anxious and afraid. It’s…not the best feeling. It’s a little reminiscent of when I first started university and I was just plagued with so much self-doubt, being surrounded by peers who were so good at what they were doing that it made me feel like I didn’t belong.

Thankfully, I met up with a good friend on Friday and I’m just really, really grateful to have someone like her on my side. I laid out all my insecurities and self-doubt for her to see and it probably wasn’t a pretty sight. But she’s one of the realest I know and she talked me through a lot of it. I guess when it comes down to it, I’m a little hard on myself and I tend to overthink things. It’s an uphill battle trying to overcome this anxiety, but I’m a firm believer that everything gets better with time. Sometimes if I’m facing a particularly difficult situation, I’d give myself a little pep talk and say, “It feels like the hardest thing in the world right now but think about how in an hour’s time, a week’s time, a year’s time, you’d look back on this moment and think that it was nothing at all.”

All plans and no follow through

I’ve got a ton of posts in my drafts and I make plans to write about so many things, but then I procrastinate, and then time passes, rendering them all irrelevant in my mind. I’ve barely posted about all the places I visited while on exchange in 2014, when I travelled to Jeju, Geoje, Tongyeong and also Japan. So many beautiful places and experiences I never wrote about! Then I swore to myself I’d do better and update when I went to Korea again earlier this year. That so didn’t happen… I even brought my laptop there and everything!!

I think the problem with me is that I don’t know how to edit. When I get all absorbed writing a thing, I get so into it and I end up going on and on until it becomes this monster of a post. It’s too long to finish in one go so I vow to continue it another time, but that usually never happens so I end up with a bunch of 1000-word essays that never see the light of day.

So I realise it’s probably best to do my life updates in point form so here I go:

1) I finally have a full-time job!!! After I was done with FYP, I started freelance writing for Mediacorp whilst also doing part-time work at Jurong Regional Library as an Assistant Library Officer (lol that makes it sound so much cooler than what it actually is. Basically I (wo)man the customer service counter for a measly hourly wage). During this time, I was still looking for a job but I think I was being too picky / not trying hard enough because I wasn’t hearing back from anywhere. Anyway, point is, I heard about this position from a friend, applied, and 3 days later, I started work as a Marketing Executive for this company. I’m currently on a three-month contract so we’ll see how that goes. Fingers crossed, because I really enjoy what I’m doing so far!

2) I went to Korea again in August for like… 4 days. Short because I wasn’t working full-time then and had only about $1000 saved up for this trip. But the main aim was to go for 2 days of Elysium. It was something I’ve been thinking about ever since the concert was announced but when I couldn’t get tickets, I was like aww shucks, I guess it’s not meant to be. But then one week before the concert, Cindy was like Should we go? and I was still a little torn until finally, I was like, you know what, YOLO and so we got our tickets from some Starlights on Twitter, booked our flights and our accommodation and off we went.

Yes, I totally get that it’s kinda crazy to fly all the way to another country just for a concert but at the same time, I felt like I would have regretted it if I didn’t? If you thought the K-pop concert experience in Singapore’s good, wait till you see your faves on their home ground. They’re so relaxed and comfortable on stage, and the banter with the fans comes so naturally since it’s all in Korean. The sets also look so much more grand. It’s just a whole different experience! I really don’t regret it because at this stage in my life where I’m at, I don’t have to worry about bills and mortgage yet, so VIXX is something that I’m willing to indulge in on such a level. They bring me happiness and supporting them makes me feel good so that’s what I’ll do until there comes a time when my priorities shift and I have to reassess the way I spend my money. I’ve seen VIXX so many times this year and I still miss them. LOL *whines sadly about my first world problems*

3) I’ve started watching RuPaul’s Drag Race again since All Stars Season 2 has been airing and honestly, we need to have words, Show. Ru changed it up this season so that instead of the bottom 2 having to lipsync for their lives to stay, the Top 2 would lipsync to win $10,000 each week and then the winner would have the added responsibility of sending someone from the bottom home. I like that the queens (minus Phi Phi) this season are goodhearted people and genuinely nice to each other but come on, this isn’t RuPaul’s Best Friend Race!!! It’s honestly pissing me off how the good ones are being sent home week after week in favour of friendship (R.I.P my queens Tatianna and Alyssa). I swear to god, if Roxxy stays over Katya, I will burn with the rage of a thousand suns. #TeamKatya

Ok, I guess my point form is kind of a cheat since it’s basically 4 full paragraphs that I’ve ordered into a numbered list… Told you I suck at cutting down on words.

Eye can’t believe this

The strangest thing happened to me this morning. It all started when I woke up with a start at 9am when my McDonald’s surprise alarm rang and I realised I was going to be late for work. I quickly washed up and hurried to put on my contacts but then saw that they weren’t in the case. Where could they have been? The last time I put them on was on Thursday, when I had work. Could I have thrown them away? But there was still more than a week left to the end of the month! What a waste. Nevermind, no time to ponder. Moving on. I grabbed a new pair from the box, figured I’d put them on before work and rushed out of the house to catch my uber ride.

The whole time in the car I was looking out the window, feeling totally stumped because there’s no way I would’ve thrown the lenses away, not when the month wasn’t even up. And then… as I looked out at street signs, I realised that I had no issues making out all the words and oh my god, even license plate numbers were suddenly clear as day. What’s happening to me? Could this be the work of divine intervention? Did I suddenly have 20/20 eyesight? Was this like the time my brother broke his glasses in a boating incident and miraculously developed perfect eyesight and didn’t need glasses anymore?

With my heart pounding, I whipped out my mirror to double check… only to find… that my contacts were in my eyes. They were in my eyes ALL ALONG. I cannot even begin to describe how unbelievable this is. I mean, that would mean I haven’t taken them out since I first put them in on Thursday, THREE WHOLE DAYS AGO. Seriously, what in the world?! What were these magic contact lenses and why have my eyes not shrivelled up and fallen out of my sockets yet? Could I have woken up today in a daze and put on my contacts without realising? I don’t even know. Weird day.

Travelling and other things, but mostly VIXX

April 19 is the date of my final presentation of my final university semester but April 19 not only means freeing myself for good from the shackles of school life, because now it also means a new beginning in more ways than one…….VIXX comeback!!! *sad trombone anti-climactic sound* Sorry, if you were expecting something more profound and philosophical. Feeling just a little overwhelmed here because finally, a comeback! But more importantly, it’s happening as the same time I’ll be in Korea!

It’s just so amazing to me, how of all the times to make their comeback, it happens to coincide with the 4 weeks out of the 52 weeks in a year that I’ll be in Korea. There can’t be any other explanation for it… it’s… it’s fate. My destiny to see them during a promotion cycle. I guess I have no choice but to accept this fate. *proceeds to rewrite entire itinerary and plan it around VIXX’s schedule* Okay fine, I guess I’m only half-kidding…

I’ll be in Korea from April 27 and fly back on May 24, but will be spending the first few days in Busan with my mum. I’m actually really excited to be going back to Busan! I wonder how much it’s changed… It’s still quite unbelievable to me that I spent an entire four months in this beautiful city.

 photo DSC_0133_zpswoprqrwb.jpg
All the huge lilac clusters that stretch out for miles are all cherry blossom trees!
 photo DSC_0021_zps5ebqmgbr.jpg
Igidae Park was torture to climb but holds some of the bluest seas I’ve ever seen

This place will always hold special memories and it’s gonna be that one thing that’ll likely bond Kiat Jiun, Gen and I for a long, long time, even despite not meeting up as often as we’d like to now. Busan will forever be what connects us together, and I love that. Sometimes I’ll see Kiat Jiun in class and we’ll catch up now and then, but most of the time, I have no clue what’s going on with her… which is kinda strange. To think, for a period of time, we spent practically every single day together as both classmates and roommates. We took almost all the same classes, had the same circle of friends and went everywhere together – even travelling to Japan! Life can be so amazing and unpredictable sometimes.

 photo DSC02399_zpsfghjfyzm.jpg
Three Musketeers teehee

But I digress. After my mum leaves, I’ll spend a day and a half by myself (hopefully VIXX has something on or maybe I’ll try and make it for Leo‘s Mata Hari arrival just for fun) before Cindy, Fel, Alex and Mel arrive in Seoul. Squotongs, unite! Buuut if I’m being completely honest, I’m a little wary about travelling together as a group of five because I feel like there’s going to have to be a loooot of compromising.

Because I’ve been to Korea, I’m quite clear about what I want to do or don’t want to do (not that the list is very extensive), especially since I’ll already be doing some of the things with my mum the week before. So I’m afraid I’m gonna end up feeling like the bossy hard-ass that tries to impose her opinions on others (which is kinda a new feeling because on most travel trips, I’m pretty hands-off when it comes to the itinerary). Either that, or because two of them are first-time visitors (and thus willing to try everything) and the other two can be more free with their money, I may end up feeling obligated to spend on food or activities that I would probably prefer to spend elsewhere. Team player and all that. And I’d hate to keep harping on money, so I might just go along with it (as I weep on the inside).

Of course, I’m still really, really excited about spending time together in a place we all love, but I can’t help but worry. Travelling and living together for two weeks is a lot different from occasional outings to the mall and one another’s houses. But now that VIXX has entered the (love) equation (hurhur), I think it does make things a little easier! We can bond over that no matter what, and we’re all keen to try and make it for some schedules while we’re there so that does fill up a chunk of our two-week itinerary. Yep, gonna be lugging all my official Starlight merch there. No doubt about it.

And if anyone’s been counting, yes, that does leave quite a few days where I’m by myself (hashtag HanSeoulo). It’s mostly an opportunity to prove to myself that I can do it. I haven’t decided yet what I’ll do during this time but I’ll probably try and go to all the places that I didn’t manage to in the three weeks before that. And if VIXX happens to have a schedule too… well. :-)