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Since childhood, I had been bothering by a skin condition called ichthyosis. For those who don’t know what ichthyosis is, it is a fish scale-like, dry, flaky inherited skin condition due to the new skin cells regenerate in a rate that is faster than the normal, and the old skin cells are unable to shed off in a speed that is as fast as the new cells. The legs show the scales most prominently, but it can be apparent on the arms, chest, back and even the face in severe cases. If either your mother or father has the illness, there is a 50 percent of chance that you will get it. And once you get it, you will have it for the entire life.

It was a very painful experience to me. Other kids liked to make fun of me for having “old skin”. The skin on my fingers crack easily, and it was painful to even just hold a pen in my hand. Sometimes, patches of eczema would just appear out of nowhere and left me emotionally frustrated and exhausted from scratching my skin intensely every single minute in addition to the constant rough, dry, flaky skin I had to deal with. Sometimes, it got so bad that I had to cry my aunt Morley to bring me to see a doctor. And then I would bring home some magic cream from the doctor’s clinic and couldn’t wait to apply it onto my skin. Often the next day, the inflammation would subside and then by the next following day, those red patches would totally disappear. Later on, I found out the magic cream that the doctor prescribed was a type of steroid cream. One day, my aunt bought a new cream at a local market for me (I’ve forgotten the name of the cream, but I’m pretty sure it’s steroid). To my surprise, it worked on my problematic skin as magically as the one that the doctor prescribed. So from then onwards, I got so addicted to those steroid creams that I ensured my aunt had them stocked in the house for me 365 days.

However, although my eczema problem was resolving as I grew older, my dry, flaky, scaly skin condition still persisted. Every time when I looked at those flakes on my arms and shins and those sheds that stuck on my clothes (especially when I wore dark coloured clothing), I felt so embarrassed. I had tried literally all the products in the market, especially products for dry skin—olive oil, vitamin E oil, petroleum jelly, natural plant-or nut-based lotions, expensive branded creams—you name it. While some of them made my skin feeling smooth and cut down the dry flakes, NONE of them actually diminished the flakes and scales on my skin. Believe it or not, I even tried to use a blunt knife to scrape away those annoying flakes! It was just so exhausting. I hated my skin, and I always wore long jeans or pants to try to cover up my insecurity and that awful pair of legs. All these years I dumped hundreds of thousands of dollars into this bottomless marketing trick hole only to find that I got disappointed again and again. Maybe I should just give up trying and accept this cruel fate…

And then—I found my cure! :D

Of course, the “cure” that I mean here is not the complete alteration of genes (you can’t change your genes, just so you know), but the total disappearance of those flaky scales. And all these magic products that I’m using don’t even add up to fifty dollars, and they last for more than three months! Note that I don’t work for these companies nor am I their spokesperson. I don’t get paid for it or whatsoever. I recommend them because these products really work. My intention is to use this chance to share my success with those who are also suffering the same skin condition as mine and hope that these products work for you as well.

I first got to know this brand when I was shopping at Sephora. It was just another try-luck day, I was screening through all the products on the shelves trying to see whether I could find something new to tackle my dry skin. And then I saw these bright pink packaging. I picked them up and read the humorous labels trying to find out what so great about them. To my surprise, I was Instantly attracted by thee! So I bought a body scrub called Flake Away by Soap & Glory home. Flake Away contains sea salt, grape seed oil, and almond oil. The first time after using it, my skin was instantly 10 times smoother and softer! It retains the water during the shower, and after padding dry, a rich layer of moisture is left on my skin—so rich that applying body oil on the next step is actually a redundancy! I am no longer flaky. Even after a week, my skin is still soft and smooth.

Of course, this wouldn’t happen without the help of another miraculous product–Alpha Hydroxy Lotion by Dermal Therapy. Everyone who has dry flaky skin must have this lotion! I apply this lotion every morning and every time after shower in conjunction with Flake Away body scrub, which I use every 4th day. The powerful ingredients in this lotion are alpha hydroxy acids and urea. Alpha hydroxy acids remove the dead skin cells and reveal new, more elastic skin; therefore, they improve wrinkling, rough, pigment skin. Urea, on the other hand, locks the moisture in the epidermis and keeps the skin moisturized. After one week of using Alpha Hydroxy Lotion, I could feel the difference of my skin: The scales were obviously fading. After three weeks, the scales were gone. Completely. No joke honey! :D

Here’s the summary of my solution to dry, flaky, scaly skin is:

1. Use a body shampoo that causes less irritation to the skin., even just a cheap one. However, one important note—NO SOAP! And avoid body cleansers that have antibacterial properties. It will only make your already problematic skin worse.

2. Use a body brush or face towel to rub your body every time during the shower. It helps to remove dead skin cells and improve the lymph circulation.

3. Use Flake Away by Soap & Glory twice a week. If your condition is very serious, consider to increase the frequency of scrubbing your body to 3 – 4 times a week. You can find Soap & Glory products at Sephora.

4. Apply Alpha Hydroxy Lotion by Dermal Therapy every morning and after shower or when necessary. You can go to its website.

Of course, in addition to that, drinking lots of water and taking multivitamin-mineral supplement every day contribute so much to maintaining a healthy skin as well. Water hydrates and replenishes the skin while vitamin A, C, and E activate powerful antioxidants to protect the skin.

There you go. I’m passing my secret on to you here. Take it or leave it, it’s your call. But if you, like me, have been unfortunately “blessed” with flaky skin and have been spending tons of money on a table full of insufficient products, my question to you is: If you are really committed to improving the appearance of your skin, do you have anything to lose by trying out a solution that only costs you fifty bucks and really works? :)

I work at a busy, fast-paced and dynamic medical-surgical ward. There are way too many patients and stressful events everyday—too much happen too fast to remember things for very long. Sometimes when we immerse ourselves in our work, we forget to take a step back, look at the garden and realize how amazing it is the environment we are in and the result we’ve produced. I’ve never thought that nursing can be so beautiful—that the distance between one another can be incredibly shortened by a simple humanitarian bond.

There he was, in his late fifty, Ponnusamy was, and is one of the nicest patients I’ve ever had.  Admitted for infection of collapsed T2, T3 and T4, fracture of bilateral shoulders and liver cirrhosis, he had since become a long-term resident in my ward. He had generalized edema and bowel and urinary incontinence. Additionally, he was bedridden and in pain most of the time. Nursing him really requires a lot of patience, attention and manpower. With less than two month of experience under my belt, I hated to be assigned to care for him. Everytime when it happened to be so, I cursed at my nurse manager for giving me stress and for screwing up my probation period. He was a real pain to me.

 I remember the first time I walked in his room, I greeted, “Hello Uncle, how are you today?” “Okay,” to which he replied with a serene smile on his face. Ponnusamy certainly liked to babble. His confusion at times made the conversation somewhat more interesting and fun. As days passed by, the sound of laughter leaking out from his room had become the norm. Little did I know a subtle therapeutic bond was formed between the nurses and him.

Nursing him actually became quite easy because he was so helpful. Whatever you requested him to do, he would put on cheerful smile and say, “okay!” And that’s him—even though he was in so much pain, he still smiled and said, “Okay!” One time, he was having an allergic reaction during blood transfusion. I first noticed the sudden silence in him. I checked his blood pressure; it suddenly dropped to low range. I looked at him and he seemed to have difficulty in breathing. Not sure what I saw, I asked, “Uncle, are you okay?” He tried to smile, nodded and said, “Okay.” Not believing what he said, I checked and noticed rashes on his body. “Jesus, of course you’re not okay!”

Having to cancel scheduled operation twice due to critical illness condition and based on the doctors’ presumption that he might die on the operating table, Ponnusamy had his woe. The third time when he was pushed to the operating theatre, I found myself started to worry about him and prayed for him.

The operation turned out to be a successful one. Just as we were happy for him that he was able to go home soon, his renal unpredictably shut down. One day, I was in-charge of him again. I walked in the room; I saw him quietly sleeping. Surrounded by a forest of IV poles running all the IV cocktails, he looked so lethargic. Again as usual, I asked him, “Uncle, how are you today?” This time, I had to wake him up. I found myself having an uneasy feeling. He struggled to lift both corners of his mouth and replied in the weakest tone I’d ever heard from him, “okay.”

After spending weeks at the ICU twice, Ponnusamy specially requested to be transferred back to St. Clare Ward. Likewise, we were happy to see him return to our ward again. We were happy to see him alive and on his road to recovery. We were happy to have the physiotherapist sat him on wheelchair and parked at the nursing counter everyday so that we could keep each other’s company. After all, it was a genuine bond between the nurses and him that will never be broken.

That day before his leaving for India to continue his treatment, I went and talked with him for a while. I told him to take care of himself well, and he promised that once he got well and was able to walk on his own, he would come back here to visit us. I was uncommunicative—I knew how long that day would come well. But still, I sincerely hoped that miracle would fall on him. I grabbed his hands and gave him my blessings before I turned around and tilted my head up trying to stop the tears from rolling down.

I was afternoon shift the next day. When I walked pass the empty bed, I knew I was going to miss him—the sweet bubbly Ponnusamy who was once our joy, who once accompanied us nurses getting through those endless tough shifts, and who taught us that: The news likes to talk about the ugly that makes us infused with the belief that humanity is on a downward spiral lead by the people’s greed and selfish. There are faith and beauty, in fact, still exist in humanity. People aren’t always awful. The bond between a human and a human can be wonderful and miraculous. A beautiful bond can be created by a simple greeting and a warm smile.

And I knew Ponnusamy was going to miss us as well. After all, it was a genuine bond between the nurses and him that will never be broken. Did I mention that already?

In today’s hectic and materialistic lifestyle, we are infused with the notion of having-it-all. We want a high-paid glamorous job, big beautiful houses and nice cars, a hot body that makes everybody jealous, a romantic relationship that gives us a constant roiling of excitement and love, a bank statement that shows twilight numbers in savings so that we can do whatever we want without worrying about anything, and etc. We constantly search for ways to strive to achieve the dreams. We are so busy chasing the satisfactions that we have forgotten and ignored our little self inside our core—soul.

We are drowned in this pool of water that fills with superficial pleasures that we have forgotten to nurture our soul. We stubbornly ignore this problem—thinking that it is not a big deal—that we have flung ourselves out of balance in life. As a result, our soul becomes sick. And when our soul falls in sick, things start to fall apart before our eyes.

This is when we start to panic. We run around looking for solutions like a mad person; we try to use everything possible to prop against the falling wall; or we simply stand there crying, wondering why it happened to us, and blaming others; some of us might even hide ourselves inside a deep hole, refuse to come out to face the truth. We feel heart-broken, abandoned, unworthy, guilty, powerless, and so on that makes us miserable.

When I was at the lowest point of my life, I lived like a walking corpse. I lost my appetite, withdrew myself from people, lost concentration at work, hid in the bathroom weeping tears, and lost interests in doing things I used to enjoy. My confidence and self-esteem hit rock bottom. I lost about 7 kilograms during that time. My life turned into mush, soulless. There were times I struggled so hard just to not picking up a knife.

It seemed like when one thing turned bad, other things would start to follow. My bank statement hit literally to zero; I started to receive complains at work; my so-called friends started to sway away from me and I got myself involved in a inevitable lawsuit in addition to my drama with my boyfriend. I didn’t know how to deal with this energy-draining emotion. I didn’t want to share these problems with others because I was afraid that people would judge me. Engaging in countless drinking activities seemed like the only way to go. Being drunk was good. I didn’t need to deal with another lonely night. I didn’t want to stay sober because my mind would start spinning and bring all sorts of thoughts towards until it was too overwhelmed for me to handle. That’s when I found myself crying at three o’clock in the morning almost every night. I couldn’t stop crying until I hit my head to the wall.

I hit my head to the wall.

Sometimes it takes you a while to realize that you are lost. My best friend Iky, bless her for being a true friend, finally talked me into seeing a doctor. That’s when I realized that I needed help. But admitting to people that I was having a mental illness was a huge blow to my ego. I didn’t want to depend on medication alone, so I decided to give myself a hand. I needed to pull myself back up from the mug. I quietly did the rescue alone.

I bought myself tons of self-help books. I was a self-conscious type of person so I wrapped all this embarrassing title books with magazine covers so that people couldn’t see what I read. I slowly built myself back. It was long haul lonely road but I never gave myself pressure. I took the time I needed to heal. And when my mind started to come clear, I saw the consequences of my deeds, how it unfolded, and why it happened.

All the while I had been ignoring my little self—soul. I ignored the fact that my little soul was severely deprived and screaming for help. Instead, I put all my attention and love onto another person. I ignored the voices coming from my soul and continued to torture myself. I built my happiness on others; I ignored my feelings; and I continued to fight until I burned out, lost balance, and broke down. My soul was severely undernourished. No wonder I wasn’t happy, because I didn’t even love myself!

When you disregard your own self and deposit all the attention to only one aspect of life (e.g., relationship), other aspects of your life (work, friendship, health, self-concept, etc.) will start to fall apart. And when it’s too overwhelming for you alone to handle, you become sick.

Your soul is YOU SELF living inside the core. This is the One who sees your whole life, knows exactly what is really good for you, and can guide you to develop your own unique destiny in this world! This is the One who will never abandon you, forgives everything unconditionally, and supplies you the greatest love and support that you could ever imagine.

When you love your soul, you love yourself. When you live in a balanced life, your soul receives appropriate balanced nourishment. When you relate to your soul in the most open and intimate way, this relationship is what saves you. When you hang onto your soul in the midst of challenges, the rewards you will receive are contented ones.  Relax all that hurtful striving, fear and worry and start living from your soul. It will then open the door for your very best work to develop, the best mate to appear, or to receive satisfying prosperity in ways you couldn’t have predicted.  That’s when real happiness comes.

LETTING GO

The drama between my ex and I had dragged for long time. I couldn’t even remember how many times we broke up and made up. I tried to ignore our apparent incompatibilities; I tried to convince myself that this relationship would last. Because how could I not be together with the man I was madly in love with? How could a relationship I put my whole heart into fail? It had to work! Or perhaps, the reason I blindly and stubbornly cling myself to this sick relationship was because I was afraid of being alone. It’s the feeling of loneliness and loss that killed me, that kept me on this track forever, even though it was a bad track that led me to nowhere.

During the period of recovering from depression, as hard as it was, I was practicing to live. I tried to do things that made me happy and that restored the balance I had lost in life. It was this period of time that made me realize that I could actually live alone and be happy at the same time. I told myself I had tried my best to nourish this seed and to make it grow. Even though it failed, I had done my part. Now I should let him go for good.

I should also admit that I am always a stubborn control freak. When I aim on something, I put myself into it whole heartedly, whether it works or not. When it becomes rotten that it can no longer be repaired no matter how I try, I beat on myself for being such a failure in life. I don’t admit that sometimes life doesn’t go the exact way I want; I don’t admit that sometimes letting go is the only way to go; I don’t admit that sometimes the universe has something better in store for me.

When I finally let him go for good, the sadness was overwhelming. At the same time, the relief I felt was like a huge stone has been moved off my chest. There were times I doubted my decision, but I knew I had to stick to it. And I’m happy that I did. Because I wouldn’t have met my current boyfriend, whom I very much want to share my life with, if I stubbornly stayed back and continued to lick the empty can.

Is there anything in your life right now that you can’t seem to let go? Perhaps a sour relationship, something that is no longer working, or something that doesn’t belong to you? Can you let it go?

Of course it is hard because there is no a best way to do it right without feeling like suffering a multiple-personality disorder and questioning our decision at all times. Although the sadness you feel is devastating, trust me, the relief you feel at the same time is like a stone taken off from your shoulder.

When something in your life seems to be going badly, it is an indication that a change is needed. And this is the only way to do in order to get to the right place. When you resist to let go of what’s not working, you turn your back against the future. However, often, it’s not the actual issue that holds us back. It’s the emotions and thoughts behind that kept us from moving on. We beat ourselves up with the tedious constant stream of anger, grudges, denial and fear.

Thus, in order to let go and move on, you will have to first deal with the inevitable emotions and thoughts that come with it. Take the time to process them. Life is all about perceptions. Try to see things in a different light. Insert positive thoughts into your mind.

You are what you are today. Acknowledge that you have done your best, then DROP IT. Realize that how the result unfolds is out of your control, then DROP IT. If it turns out the way you want, that’s great. If it doesn’t, it’s okay too. It’s not the end of the world. At least you’ve tried what you think it’s the best at the time. It just means that you need a different approach. Everything happens for a reason. Always know that God/the universe/higher power (whatever you feel comfortable with) has a unique plan for your life.

NOW DROP IT. AND LET GO.

As hard as it may be, do let go the things that is no longer working in your life. Clear out the space in your mind that you are using right now to obsess about the thing, and let God/the universe/higher power to rush in and fill you with a better thing. It will definitely turn out to be a blessing in disguise.

Asking for forgiveness is not an easy task, so as forgiving. Because forgiving someone who has hurt you so much needs a lot of courage; because letting go of grudges requires a strong willpower; because fading that painful memory away requires years of brainwashing and psychological counselling.

When my ex cheated on me and took all my money away, I was furious and heart-broken. I couldn’t believe that he betrayed my trust. The anger accumulated inside me had grown to become a momentum that sometimes, without my acknowledgment, I lost control and took out my frustration on others. As a result, I started to have conflicts with friends, family and people around me often. Holding grudges to bed every night had such a significant influence on my temperament and relationships with others.

It took me years to walk out of his shadow. Although I wouldn’t like to see him again, I’m no longer angry at him. As my chosen believe says, “Everything happens for a reason.” I have learned a great lesson, and he has made me a stronger person. I shook the dust off my feet and moved on. Once the hatred is gone, I no longer struggle with the trust issues. I handle my money better, and my relationship with friends, family and the people around has become a harmony one.

The issue is learning how to transcend the hurt and free yourself from the burden of chronic hatred. And it is a challenge.

The idea of forgiving others is more about your peace of mind then it is about their feelings. You don’t have to make it known to those who have hurt you that you have forgiven them. Note that I didn’t actually go in front of my ex and tell him that I’ve forgiven him. I did it in my mind.

Maybe the experience is so bad so painful that you will suffer to some degree until you pass on because you will always be angry at the person who hurt you. In this case, do not try to force yourself to forgive the person. Instead, FORGIVE THE INCIDENCE. Switch your focus on the experience, not on the person; and treat the experience as an incidence. When you forgive the incidence, which means whatever has happened to you, in a way, you let go of the grudge you have on the person.

When you hold grudge at those who’ve hurt you, you turn your back against your future. When you forgive, you start walking forward. In the end, what’s gone is resentment; what’s left is memory of happiness. Life is too short to hold grudges to bed every night. Allow yourself to go free—to live in joy and love and peace. At the same time, release all others from any expectations and demands you have placed on them. Forgive yourself and forgive them.

So you’ve made a mistake—big or small—at work. You took responsibility, fixed what’s broken, and appreciated what’s still remained. The problem now is that you couldn’t seem to get over it.

Does this sound familiar to you?

When I made a medication error, I was devastated. The embarrassment I felt at that moment was definitely a humiliating one. I just wanted to hide inside a hole and beat myself up thinking I was so stupid and maybe nursing wasn’t really for me. Bless my nurse manager; she purposely called me up because she knew that I wouldn’t have a good sleep that night. “All good nurses have made mistakes,” she said. “That’s how we learn, and that’s how we become better. We are all human being, and we all make mistakes. If we don’t, then we shouldn’t be here; we should be in heaven as God instead.”

Apart from fixing the mistake, moving on from it—how you stop the imagination fights in your head and put yourself on the road to recovery—is a challenge.

 The followings are the recipe that has helped me to stay strong and go on.

 

#1 Seek support from healthy and positive co-workers,

At this point what you need is positive energy that cheers you up and give you strength to move forward. The good coworkers will comfort you with encouraging words and share with you their past mistakes. Their overall intention is to make you feel better

#2 Filter every comment you receive.

Take what’s useful and leave out what’s not. Let the intentional hurtful remarks go with the wind. Make it a point to only accept positive comments. Negative comments won’t make you feel and perform any better.

#3 To err is human.

My manager said it the best—All good nurses have made mistakes. That’s how we learn, and that’s how we become better. We are all human being, and we all make mistakes. If we don’t, then we shouldn’t be here; we should be in heaven as God instead. Whoever says that they have never made a mistake at work is just pride talking, or they must be a member of The Liars Club.

#4 Think “how could I have done better” instead of “I’m so stupid; I should’ve done this and that”.

We nurses all tend to be a perfectionist. We put a lot of weight on our shoulders and then strive to make it through the day without falling apart. But how do we reflect our work is what brings us either sunshine or thunderstorm. How do you want to learn from the mistake is a choice. Learn the fine line between helpful reflection and self-defeating inner commentary.

#5 Delay any major decision-making.

In the midst of an emotional meltdown, it’s easy to commit career-suicide. Take the time to process your emotions and pick yourself up. Get yourself motivated again before making any major decision.

#6 Be nice to yourself.

Take over the control of your own thoughts. Do not beat yourself up with the endless procrastinating faults and errors that keep you up all night and take away your happy time away from the job. The world is still spinning and others are still going on with their lives whether you are happy or depressed. Life is indeed too short to live in your little pathetic self-pity world.

#7 Realize that who you are and what you do are two different things.

Do not look to your job to validate your existence. What you do represents just a part of you. It’s not the whole of you. You are more than a nurse. Just because you are a nurse, it doesn’t mean you have to live and be like Mother Theresa. Likewise, just because you made a mistake unintentionally at work, it doesn’t mean you are any less of a person.

#8 Your loved ones are your guardians.

Stay close with your family and friends. No matter how independent you are, you’ve got to have somebody there to support you and cheer you up in any aspect of life—you family and best friends. They are the SOMEBODY you need to talk to; they are the HAND to hold on to when you fall. Strengthen your bonds with them to create a support system that will be with you through thick and thin.

#9 Look at each shift as a fresh start. Everyday is a new day; every shift is a fresh start.

You can’t go back and change the situation, so stop worrying about yesterday and start living for today. It is never too late to move on and to start all over. Make it a point to walk in to your ward each day and say, “It’s going to be a new, fresh, happy, excited, and productive day today. It’s my intention to get which that I want to get.”

#10 you are just a small potato.

There are way too many patients and stressful events everyday—too much happen too fast to remember things for very long. I know how embarrassed and humiliated you feel in the mist of the incident. However, it will be long forgotten before you realize. Everyone is worrying about what he/she is doing or might have done wrong. You are just a small potato in the end.

 

It doesn’t matter how hard you fall; what matters is you have the courage to get up. Take the time to process your emotions and pick yourself up. Seek supports from positive fellow workers and family and friends. Surround yourself with positive activities. The world spins continuously; everybody is minding his/her own business. In the end, you will realize nobody has been thinking about you at all. All the time you are wasting worrying about what others think about your mistakes could all be better spent on thinking about and doing the things that will achieve your goals.

I’ve always admired those backpackers, or wanderers, or world travelers, whatever you call them to be.  They live a rootless life, globe-trot, plunge into a foreign culture and make everywhere they go a home. Meeting new people, trying the local delicates, learning new languages, seeing breathtaking attractions are just few.  Deep down, it is making memories of a lifetime that hooks the travelers.

The burning desire to explore and experience in order to learn and live—the roaming syndrome, I call it. To acquire it, you will have to go through 4 stages. It will never resolve; it will only evolve into different form as time passes.

ROAMING SYNDROME STAGE I—The Prodromal Stage

My love for travelling began probably when I was 4, my mom used to bring my brother and me to Penang Island once every 3 month; or when I was 12, my auntie Moy decided to bring me to go on a cruise because my application of following school trip to Singapore was rejected, and it cried me a river for days; or maybe just when I saw how glorious the joy sparking from my aunt was everytime she traveled across the continents.

The grass is always greener on the other side.

I wanted to find myself by becoming a world traveler, I remember I told myself.

ROAMING SYNDROME STAGE II—The Chorus of Solo

The first time I left my family, friends and beloved dog Bean behind and embarked my solo explorations, I was 18. And I was nervous. I didn’t know how and what to plan; I just knew the destination I wanted to go to. So I bought a one-way ticket and there my journey began, against all advice. My friends were rooted. To them, doing anything that was out of order from the customary psychosocial clock—going to college after highschool, starting a career, getting married, buying a house called home—was like running away from the reality.

Well, it didn’t go quite exactly the way I wanted it to be. However, I had grown so much as a person, and I had experience so much—so much that let’s make a testament that living in my own country the whole life would not have made me who am I today as to how magnificent the impact of years of living in foreign lands has on me.

ROAMING SYNDROME STAGE IIIThe Break

After years of roaming on the other side of the globe, for the first time, I saw the different stream of contentment and happiness my rooted friends had. They had a grounded foundation that I lacked, attracting people to them, to their planned activities, to their homes and dining tables.

I’d forgotten to come home. But I realized that I had no home to go back to.

So I declared to the world that I would take a break. I went back to school, got a nursing license and started my practice. But nursing was contradictory to my first love. After all, it is a career that requires you to be there everyday and has less vacation leaves than any other jobs out there.

But my love for travelling didn’t stop there.

After all, once you fall in love with travelling, it is forever.

ROAMING SYNDROME STAGE IV—The Evolution

I wanted to have the serenity that my rooted friends had, but I also wanted the pleasure travelling gave me. So I began to think of ways to make it work. I decided to work and live abroad: I’d live and work in a country for 2 to 3 years, whilst making at least 3 vacation trips a year. I’m trying to develop a grounded foundation in my own right. I didn’t give up my love. In a sense, I am actually still travelling the world, but in a slower pace and different form.

“I know you Amanda, when you fall in love, you will give him your whole world and begin to settle down,” my close friend once said.

She knows me well.

Well, till then, I will continue to stick to the plan—to roam, work and live abroad.

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