Counting Blessings

It's 12°C where I am at 0900 hrs. The highest temperature will be around the low 20s today. Not too cloudy, not too sunny, no rain. This kind of weather makes human beings happy. My friend winkingdoll commanded me to be 'positive' for once. Others reminded me to stay positive at all times. I don't think it is beneficial to think positive at all times. I always believe in equilibrium where positive and negative is concerned. Too much of a thing isn't always good. For example, cheese itself is a decent food. I have to admit I love cheese and had too much of it for the past 1 year. At some point, I had heaps of it for meals almost everyday. Sandwiches, pizzas, spreads, desserts, you name it. So I got into trouble and by the time I realised the possibility of cheese causing cancer - not all cancer but specifically bladder ones - it was pretty too late.

To some people living in countries suffering from chronic famine, having the chance to get bladder cancer by having lots of cheese everyday is a blessing. After all, whoever reading this blog understands the unvolunteery suffering of  hunger on a day-to-day basis? To these impoverished communities, I was over blessed with rich food till the body had to raise the stop sign. It wasn't difficult to think positively at all. See, I did exactly that. In fact the blog is filled with posts depicting my happiness and gratefulness what life have been offering to me but it is human nature to pick out the negative and dismiss the positive. That was how negativity conquered my positive friends without them even knowing it.

Like anything else, committing an over-indulgence of positivity isn't a good thing because it inevitably leads us from experiencing diminishing returns to eventual immunity. That is the same as the effects of anti-biotics have on our body system. Humans are, after all, ran by a living brain not a computer software. 

Having said all that, it is time to indulge in a healthy once-in-a-while blessings count.

1) Food

I have (perhaps permanently) put away some of my favourite foods like cheese, yogurt, chocolates, ice cream, pastries etc. from my menu. The standard of my cooking also drastically decline having to abstain from using a few common cooking ingredients such as sugar (no, I will not consider artificial sugar either), and many processed products as such noodles. Contacting a critical illness that requires a big shift in diet patterns can be cruel to someone who loves cooking. As always, I constantly improve so long as I don't give up. That goes for my condition as well as cooking. I'm sure I'll cope with both under the new rules. 

Singaporean Mum, M, was practically exclaiming in horror when I told her what food I have to swear off. The positive part of this was that it wasn't as bad as it sounds. I had 2 weeks of 'withdrawal symptoms', such as opening and closing the fridge without taking anything out, constant hunger pangs even though I had proper fills. After that it was better as the interval of these cravings began to extend each time.

In the past half a year or so on every Monday, my work pants felt tighter. I had to watch (in vain) what I ate for the rest of the week only to see the good work undone during weekends. After being out for 2 weeks and slacking at home doing nothing but sleep and eat, I thought I wouldn't be able to fit into my pants. I was wrong, it slipped in effortlessly with extra space in the boot for luggage.

2) Care

Fruits turn up magically at my place after having cancer. The magic was of course, conjured by friends here and even my lovely neighbours back in Singapore, who ordered a basket for me online and got them to deliver to my home. Of course, like first-home owner's grant, it can only be claimed for the first time and I do not expect anything more. In fact though touched,  I felt uncomfortable receiving fruits but I found it hard to reject the friends who put aside time and made themselves to my place to see how I was coping.

Having an illness like that also allows you to differentiate people who are really concerned from the ones doing lip services. That has nothing to do with gifts or fruits - please I am not fucking shallow. It is all about the subtle but distinctive signals from the heart. Other than coming from the same solid friendships whom I long secretly swore loyalty to, the other sources came from people I have never even met before. It was in times like that the eyes can see a bit clearer than before and distinguish who lives life wearing a smiley mask. 

3) Alive

I'm still alive. I have a lovely toddler who can't stop making me laugh, hugs me and sit on my lap everyday. She is my best medicine. She is my best doctor. With her around, I can recover and I will recover, perhaps even stronger than before. Behind me is my wife, the support pillar behind it all, the one who makes all these possible. I can't not get well. I have to. I am not willing to give up everything I have painstakingly built so far, even though the attempt may have caused my condition in the first place. There will be a sacrifice and then there will be the reward. I will claim it. I am claiming it.

"Yes? Patient? You need appointment? Come take a sit"

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