Saturday, January 24, 2009

Our Four-Legged Best Friends...Our Teachers

Bonjour from Geneva. Why am I greeting you in French some of you may wonder. Well, since Geneva is extremely close to the Swiss border to France, the Swiss in this region are greatly influenced by the French culture. It's early Wednesday morning and we have some time to kill before heading to the International Red Cross Museum. I came across this interesting article online and thought of sharing it with all you dog lovers out there. Hope you enjoy this profound wisdom as much as I do. Ruby, if you are reading this, I wish you a lovely day. The biting cold here doesn't seem to bother your four-legged swiss friends for sure :). They are frolicking so happily in the snow ;)

Dog Wisdom

From Dogs Don't Bite When a Growl Will Do

By Matt Weinstein and Luke Barber

Show me a dog, and I’ll show you a picture of happiness. Think about it. Have you ever heard anyone say of a dog, “Well, he’s very successful and lives in a beautiful house, but he’s not very happy”? One reason most dogs are much happier than most people is that dogs aren’t affected by external circumstances the way we are.
---from Lesson 1, Dogs Are Happy

It’s not the circumstances of our lives that make us happy or unhappy--- it’s the story we tell ourselves about those circumstances. Our happiness can be independent of whatever “blessings” or “catastrophes” are going on in our lives because happiness is an inner state, not an outer one.
---from Lesson 1, Dogs Are Happy

Dogs have an endless capacity to play. It is definitely one of their top priorities, and they do their best to remind us that it should be one of ours, too.
---From Lesson 2, Dogs Love To Play

Taking an occasional break is important in any kind of ongoing work activity, but if the break involves play, it is even more nourishing. If we want to take care of ourselves at work every day, taking a spontaneous play break is the best thing we can do for our health and mental wellbeing. As our dogs constantly remind us, anytime is the right time to play.
---From Lesson 3, Dogs Love To Play

I am certain that if the masses of humans begin to practice as much love as our dogs do, then the world will become a much more loving place.
---From Lesson 4, Dogs Know How to Love

For the next week, show your love to those you hold dear as if you were a dog. Run to greet them when they come in the door. Shower them with attention, affection, and kindness. . . . If you manage to practice this for a week, then you will have acted with the deep love that dogs provide to us every single day of our lives. I promise that everyone who comes in contact with you during that time will feel blessed. And so will you.
---From Lesson 5, Dogs Know How to Love

If we could learn to greet the people we meet with the same basic trust, openness, energy, and enthusiasm that is second nature to our dogs, the world would be a much friendlier place.
---from Lesson 6, Dogs Aren't Shy About Saying Hello

Our dogs’ capacity for listening is one of the most appealing things about them. The way our dogs cock their heads to the side and stare at us with deep concentration as they hang on our every word is enough to make them friends for life. One of the reasons that we appreciate the quality of deep listening in our dogs is that we don’t get enough of it from other people. We all know that being listened to is one of the greatest gifts we can receive, but one that doesn’t happen very often.
---from Lesson 7, Dogs Listen Deeply (Even If They Don’t Understand)

My dogs are happy to match their moods to mine. Whenever I get an exciting phone call, the dogs get excited, too. As my voice gets louder and more enthusiastic, the dogs can’t sit still. They run around in circles and start barking their own excitement. They don’t have to understand the subject matter. If I’m happy, then they’re happy. If I’m excited, they’re excited.
Buddhist teachers have a word for this quality--- “Mudita,” which means, “Joy in the joy of others.”
---from Lesson 8, Dogs Are Good Company

I believe the thing that makes dogs such connoisseurs of the simple pleasures in life is that they give them their full attention. When I scratch my dogs behind the ears, they are in paradise. I don’t think they are wondering about world problems or worrying about what they should do next. They are fully present for the joy of having their ears scratched.
The good news is that the small pleasures that life has to offer us are not only abundantly available, but are also usually free. The problem is that we are so caught up in pursuing the Big Pleasures that we let the small pleasures slip by. Giving our attention to the little pleasures in life is a difficult thing when we are always busy doing other things.
---from Lesson 9, Dogs Rejoice in the Small Pleasures

Dogs know that there’s always plenty of love to go around. They are not stingy with their love. In fact, dogs seem to know that the opportunities to experience love are limitless. It’s not that only a few people are worthy of our love. Love is everywhere because we always carry our love inside us. It’s only when we make the mistake of thinking that love is located outside of us, when we assume that love is dependent on being around a certain person or a certain set of circumstances, that love seems hard to find.
---from Lesson 10, Dogs Love The One They're With

Dogs know that love is not a precious jewel that needs to be hoarded and only taken out on special occasions. Love is everywhere. It’s not hard to find. You take it with you wherever you go.
---from Lesson 11, Dogs Love The One They're With

Dogs demonstrate that we don’t have to wait for a special day, the annual company retreat, or the occasional retirement party in order to celebrate. Dogs are ready every moment of their lives – in an instant – to throw a celebration. For a dog, no event in life is too small to celebrate. My dogs, for example, eat the same meal at approximately the same time every night. The way my dogs celebrate this impending meal would make one think that it was the greatest feast day of the year!
---from Lesson 12, Dogs Celebrate, Celebrate, Celebrate

There are many ways that we can use laughter and play to break through the artificial barriers that separate us as human beings. When we show other people that we don’t take ourselves too seriously, it is contagious. If we can feel comfortable with being the butt of a joke, we can help other people to lighten up as well. And we get to see once again that acting like a dog can actually make us feel more human with each other.
---from Lesson 13, Dogs Don’t Mind Being the Butt Of A Joke

The upbeat character of a dog is one of her most endearing attributes. Dogs are rarely depressed. In fact, even when things go wrong, dogs stay very positive. When they are confronted with the negative, they don’t get stuck there. If dogs could speak English, then I am certain that they would have been the ones to invent the phrase, “Get over it!”
---from Lesson 14, Dogs Stay Positive

When dogs don’t like someone, they have the good sense to stay away from him or her. On the other hand, when they need people to share their love, they find them. Seek out the good and take care to avoid the bad is the way a dog lives out his day. Not a bad way, I say, to approach life.
---from Lesson 15, Dogs Are A Good Judge Of Character

Whenever I hear someone complaining, “My boss is working me like a dog,” I simply ask the question, “Oh, really? Have you ever taken a moment to notice how your dog actually does spend her day? Today would be your lucky day if you were working like your dog!”
Dogs don’t make a distinction between work and play. Everything is fun to them, and every situation is a new one, full of infinite possibilities for joy and connection. We humans surely would be more successful in our jobs if we approached our work with the enthusiasm, dedication, sensitivity, and – in general – the wonderful attitude towards life of a good working dog.
---from Lesson 16, Dogs Turn Work Into Play

Dogs are virtually always deeply satisfied. I think if my dogs have a mantra then it might be, “This is good enough.” My dogs love long runs in the woods, off the leash. However, when all they get is a short walk through the city, they are satisfied – it’s good enough. . .
---from Lesson 17, Dogs Are Satisfied

I can’t imagine my dogs thinking about their next meal while they’re eating this one. They are too all-consumed in loving the meal they are having right now. The same is true of everything that they do. But this ability to be “in the now” is certainly not limited to our dogs. We can develop this same kind of awareness of being present for our life as it moves from moment to moment.
How wonderful that we have the opportunity to be as satisfied as our dogs. Life is there for the taking, you lucky dog!
---from Lesson 18, Dogs Are Satisfied

It’s always helpful to remember that we have a choice of how we view the world. The next time you catch yourself worrying and obsessing about the minor pests in your own life, it might be useful to conjure up the image of a dog that has just emerged from a dip in the lake. Whatever it is that’s bothering you, it’s time to make a choice: “Okay now, just shake it off!”
---from Lesson 19, Dogs Shake Off Their Pests

One of the reasons we are attracted to dogs is that they are so uninhibited and free. Dogs seem to play by their own set of rules, their own inner logic. They live in a parallel, but different, universe from ours--- a universe that allows them a freedom of spirit and a passion for life that is hugely appealing to us. When dogs bark at the wind or howl in the night, it stirs something inside of us that wants to be expressed, too.
---from Lesson 20, Dogs Run Free

Dogs don’t choose their friends, associates, or lovers on the basis of breed, color, or culture.
---from Lesson 21, Dogs Don't Care About Breed

The loyalty of dogs to humans has been steadfast for thousands of years. Frankly, I don’t see dogs getting into free agency anytime soon. It makes no difference if one is a king or a street person, a dog’s devotion to his or her human companion is going to be . . . well, dogged. I have never been the friend of a dog who has – even once – demonstrated anything but the highest in fidelity.
---from Lesson 22, Dogs Are Loyal

Blue’s message in death was the same message that she had communicated to all that knew her throughout her life: “Celebrate your life every moment that you have. No event in life is too small to celebrate. Live fully. Love and laugh wastefully. Take pleasure in the little things. Play and roll on your back in the park. Forgive even if you cannot forget – grudges only make you an unhappy being. Don’t bite when a growl will do.” And, her final lesson that last day, “make every day of your life a dance, even when death is your final partner.”
---from Lesson 23, Dogs Dance with Life and Death

Friday, January 23, 2009

Missing In Action

I will be missing in action for the next two weeks. Hubby is flying off this Saturday to Geneva with relation to his work matters. I've decided to tag along cus I need a change very desperately. We are planning to head to Rome next weekend. We want to check out the Vatican. I'm not a Catholic but I do want to be immersed in its astounding beauty. By luck, we will be there during the last Sunday of the month.Thats when the Pope gives his we heard. Hope to catch a glimpse of him.

Its about time I unwind, heal, recharge and rejuvenate. Desiring to return as my former bubbly self. Wish me luck. Till then, you stay safe and sane ;). Be blessed and be a blessing.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The Power Of Forgiveness

After publishing my last post, I had a heated(one-sided) conversation with mum regarding the dramas. She is the innocent mediator who is caught in between me and my loved ones. Later, when I was much more composed and calm, this is what unraveled.... The Power of Forgiveness. I called up my loved ones, seeking their forgiveness. I apologized for harboring anger against them. I conveyed how much I loved them and how much I cared for them despite all these misunderstandings. As I spoke, I realized I'd forgiven them for misunderstanding me, for hurting me.The effect was potent. My anger and hurt melted away. The tightness in my chest vanished into thin air. I can finally breathe calmly without any heart palpitations. Carrying around a load of bitterness and anger at how unfairly you were treated is very toxic to one's soul, mind and body. Ultimately, this is what I have learnt from the roller coaster rides that I have been on for the past few months.

So mum, if you are reading this, thank you for helping me come to my senses. You have done a remarkable job in raising me I should say. You are and will always be my guiding star, my role model.

Too many dramas...Too little time

Too many dramas have been unfolding in my life recently. I could switch off easily and not give two hoots if it was a stranger or an acquaintance. But what do you do if you are misunderstood by your very loved ones who have watched you grow? Shouldnt they know you well enough by now? Shouldnt they give you the benefit of the doubt when you claim your innocence? I'm exhausted. Exhausted mentally and physically. Tired of being judged. Tired of trying hard to prove myself time and again. Tired of feeling hurt. Tired of crying. Tired of staying livid. Tired of resentments. Tired of being in pain. Tired of being sensitive. Tired of being emotional. Tired of not being myself. Tired of losing my identity. Tired of seeing my beloved mum and hubby down because of me. Tired of trying very hard to be accepted. Tired of playing the victim. Tired of being caught in a web of helplessness and despair.

Among this list of tiredness, one thing is for sure. I am not tired of living. I want to celebrate ME. I want to celebrate LIFE. I want to celebrate my role as a daughter, a sister, a wife and an aunt. I want to fight back for my bliss and peace. I want to prove my worth to myself..not to anybody else. I want to regain my identity. I want to get my innerself back. I dont want to be something I'm not just to please others, even if they are my loved ones. This is me. No mind games. No dramas. No facade. No hypocrisy.This is purely me. Take it or leave it. Its your call!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

The Joy Of Caring For Others

"In our world today everyone is looking for personal happiness. So, I always say, if you wish to be happy and aim for self-interest, then care for other people. This brings lasting happiness. This is real self-interest, enlightened self-interest."

~ The Dalai Lama

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Happy 3rd Year Wedding Anniversary My Love :)

My husband is a man of character who understands commitment and does more than his share to make his family comfortable, safe, and secure. I adore him.

My partner is a man who is patient, optimistic, caring, and wise. His sense of humor and support holds me up when I can't do it myself. I'm grateful to him.

My friend is the only man with whom I can share my deepest secrets and know they'll be safe. Time with him is always good. I cherish him.

You are all of those things and more to me. I'm so thankful you came into my world, for if you hadnt, I'm sure I never would have known the kind of happiness you've brought into my life.

Happy Anniversary To My Soulmate...My number one Fan!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

A Letter To My Beloved Dog In Heaven

Dearest Vicki boy,
It has been almost 13 years since your demise. My life has never been the same ever since. I miss you immensely. I remember seeing you for the first time. I was taking a short nap one afternoon when my dad walked in with a box. He woke me up, asking me to open it. Feeling flustered, I did so reluctantly. To my surprise, there you were, peeking through the box with those soulful eyes of yours that pierced right through my soul. I fell in love with you instantly. You were a small black fury ball, with many bald patches on your head. How badly you were injured then! To think that someone had the heart to abandon a two-week old puppy in a drain! Thanks to dad for bringing you home or else I cant imagine what would have happened to you. Do you remember how our neighbours used to insult you by calling you an ugly stray? You did not give two hoots because you knew in your heart that you were part of a family that was so crazily in love with you. Your tricks and silly antics always left us in stitches. Do you remember how you used to bravely snarl at the kitten and quickly hide for cover behind my legs when her mother appeared? You were such a braveheart...not!

Vicki Boy, you were the best friend a young girl could ever get. You were there to waltz away with me whenever I played 'Hungry Eyes' and 'Time of My Life' in the background. You were there to lick my tears away when I broke up with my boyfriends. You were there to cheer me up when I was having a tough time in school. You were there to see my mum off faithfully every morning when she left for work. You were there to welcome us home every evening. You were there to protect us when dad spiralled out of control in his drunken stupor. You were always there for us and in everybody's hearts. In our eleven years together, not even once did you disappoint us. You were always such a joy to be with. You taught us how to laugh together as a family. You taught us how to express unconditional love. You were truly an embodiment of love and joy.

Your physical transformation over the first year was such a pleasant surprise to all of us. From a black fury ball with bald patches, you transformed into this brownish white handsome mutt. Adults and children alike couldnt take their eyes off you. With your refined mannerisms and cultured poise, you became our neighbourhood heartthrob. Even our dear neighbours couldnt stop singing your praises. You were the ugly duckling who turned into a beautiful swan. Simply, you were our four-legged miracle.

You know how much I love your friends. Ever since you left us, I have been passing my time with your friends at SPCA. I used to take your friends in whenever I found them lost or injured. I would keep them for a night at home and the very next morning I would return them to SPCA. In short, in your remembrance, I turned our home into an animal sanctuary. However, we have not raised another dog in our family since your passing on. At the point in time, we felt that none of your friends could ever take your place. Lately, my hubby and I have been contemplating on adopting one of your friends from the shelter. It's about time I moved on...dont you reckon? I so badly want to give one of your friends a good home with lots of unconditional love, care and tenderness. But I have to debate on a few issues here before making up my mind. Firstly, I'm not sure whether I will start comparing your new friend to you. I know its not fair to your new friend but what if I cant help it? You made every transition amazingly smooth.

Due to our busy work schedules, we will be away for long hours every day. Your friend has to be alone most of the time. Would that be fair to your friend I wonder! Thats my first and foremost worry. Secondly, how am I going to toilet train your friend without any expectations? Toilet training you was such an easy feat to us. Thanks to your ability to learn things fast. You guys are no different from helpless babies and I'm fully aware of that. But what if I lose my patience? It's now a battle between my head and heart. Heart wants to adopt one of your friends badly but head says no. Who shall I listen to??? Show me a sign will you......

I will now end my letter with this touching poem. It came to me in the nick of time as a soothing balm to my sorrow. Come March, it will be your 13th year death anniversary. I have decided not to mourn for you. On the contrary, I want to celebrate you. I want to celebrate life. Till we cross this rainbow bridge together, you stay content in the heaven of bliss. I Love You Vicki Boy!

The Rainbow Bridge

Just this side of heaven is a place called Rainbow Bridge.
When an animal dies that has been especially close to someone here, that pet goes to Rainbow Bridge. There are meadows and hills for all of our special friends so they can run and play together. There is plenty of food, water and sunshine, and our friends are warm and comfortable.

All the animals who had been ill and old are restored to health and vigor. Those who were hurt or maimed are made whole and strong again, just as we remember them in our dreams of days and times gone by. The animals are happy and content, except for one small thing; they each miss someone very special to them, who had to be left behind. They all run and play together, but the day comes when one suddenly stops and looks into the distance. His bright eyes are intent. His eager body quivers. Suddenly he begins to run from the group, flying over the green grass, his legs carrying him faster and faster.

You have been spotted, and when you and your special friend finally meet, you cling together in joyous reunion, never to be parted again. The happy kisses rain upon your face; your hands again caress the beloved head, and you look once more into the trusting eyes of your pet, so long gone from your life but never absent from your heart. Then you cross Rainbow Bridge together....

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Utter Devastation

My beloved and I have been trying to conceive for sometime now. The last few days have been really trying for both of us. My period was delayed by a few days. For someone who has been very regular and spot on, this delay was seen as a glimmer of hope for two souls who have been wanting to experience the bliss of parenthood desperately. We thought we had finally hit the jackpot. Carried away with a combination of excitement and anxiety, I even started looking up the net for our baby's due date (despite cautioning dh and mum not to get too optimistic). Our bundle of joy was supposed to arrive on or around 23rd of September. 3 days later, that excitement shortlived. My 'best friend' arrived last evening. Guess she was suffering from a hangover...thus the delay. Cried for a few minutes upon seeing her. Then I pieced myself together. Enough of crying...its time to move on. I went on with my daily routine with a heavy heart just wanting the dreadful day to end. I could so relate to this saying now: MAN PROPOSES, GOD DISPOSES. At least, that's the only way we can console ourselves and continue to look forward to a promising future. For now, we will keep on hanging onto a fine thread called HOPE. Keeping our fingers crossed and waiting patiently....for God's disposal.

Friday, January 9, 2009

What would be Your 'Miracle' Tool for Weight Loss?

For most of us who are battling with weighty issues, don't we ever wonder how wonderful it would be if we can just discover one tool that would make our journey to transformation much easier and smoother? When I first started Weight Watchers, I was like a kid in a candy store. The whole 'transform yourself' journey was very fascinating. I started counting points diligently and made a conscious effort not to fall off the wagon. However, after sometime, I became kinda bored of counting points for every morsel I put in my mouth. The no count programme was not my cup of tea either. This struggle became a daily ongoing battle for me as I found the process too mechanical (but I still persevered and succeeded). Please dont get me wrong. I wasnt becoming complacent. On the contrary, I was really desperate for a more dynamic approach to keep myself motivated.

Afterall, one's journey doesnt stop when one reaches her goal weight. You have to work even harder to maintain that weight you have worked for diligently. That's when I started to ponder. Why cant we find other creative tools to make the entire process more, say, inspiring? For example, talking your weight away. We need not go to counsellors or pyschiatrists for that. Why cant we form a face-to-face support network where we could unleash all our inner demons without being petrified of being judged. Let me dwell deeper into this. Through this tailored support network, you put yourself out there without any inhibitions. You share your battle with strangers who are travelling in the same boat. By doing that, you help them realise that they are not alone and so are you. You might even be able to find like minded people in your very own community or close proximity (someone who could be there for you even physically). Either way, you could help others along as you rediscover yourself....the self that has been held as a prisoner by your very own weight.

From my own experience, this is the kind of support I would have loved to enjoy. I started battling with my inner demons only after losing weight. It was then that I came to this realisation that both these issues should be handled simultaneously. The moment you share your insecurities, you feel lighter emotionally and physically, because you have stripped yourself down to your innermost being. You are now on the path to healing. Wouldnt that be an adrenaline rush itself? Once you have realised the real cause behind your weight issues,then you are on the right path to resolving them.

This realisation is likely to free yourself from the clutches of your inner demons. The positive energy which you get from your new found freedom can be channelled towards your innermost being. Even exercising becomes much easier as it has become part of your identity rather than a chore. You wanting to take control of your body becomes your second nature. You do not need other incentives to lose weight. The biggest incentive you could get by losing weight is YOU...A NEW YOU, who is no longer stuck in a emotional rut and feels like a million dollars. Wouldnt that be just wonderful! This is my 'miracle' tool. What would yours be?

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Nourishing Souls With Compliments

Have you ever wondered what stops one from complimenting or appreciating your gestures, no matter how minute they are? Why do souls take each other for granted? Why is it so easy for one to shower you with criticisms but not compliments? If we could make a conscious effort to eat healthily just to nourish our body, why cant we do the same by nourishing someone's soul with appreciation and compliments? Does it boil down to cultural differences or the way we were nutured?

Complimenting can be therapeutic for us. If you ask me, I would say compliments generate mutual feelings of happiness and joy between the givers and recipients. Compliments to others are like small gifts we give ourselves when we pay attention to how we appreciate those around us. The interesting part about compliments is that the giver can be transformed by the experience.

How many of us have made an attempt to notice the good that people do to us instead of looking at their negatives? How many of us are aware that giving compliments validates their presence? By simply expressing how impressed we are, we make them feel acknowledged. Ultimately, we make them feel less alone and show them that we care. We need not go the extra mile for this. A genuine smile, a sincere: "thank you", "you look ravishing", "this dish tastes fantastic" is all it takes.

Why is such a simple, effortless gesture so tough for one to put in place I wonder? Would love to know your take on this.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Weighty Confessions of the Soul

Hmmm... where do I start! I've never been an ardent fan of writing. My 3 years in the varsity were good enough to drain all my creative juices out of me. Thanks to my lecturers, I was suddenly attacked by a deadly syndrome. The joke of the century was that I was struck by this curse in my final semester. I was drowning in this vicious sea called the writer's block syndrome. Not one word came out of my small cutsey brain. Oh well... the nightmare is FINALLY over. It better be after 2 years of recuperation. So here I am. Ready to blog myself away.

This year, I came to the realisation that I can only heal completely if I share my innermost secrets with the universe. The universe is my church for confessions...for now.

I have been a fervent believer of the very fact that words do have the power to heal. Especially when you share it with the universe. You come to realise that you are not alone and you will never be. These very words of ours do also have the power to attract positive, beautiful souls into our lives. That is what my innerbeing is yearning for I believe!

Firstly, please do allow me to walk you down the path of my painful memory lane. God has been kind or shall I say more than kind to me in one regard: He over blessed me with a 'healthily plump' figure. I wish he chanelled his blessings towards creating a highly intellectual, self-confident and highly-esteemed me. But oh no! He decided to short change me in those areas through crisis. From young, I've been at the centre of mockery wherever I went: School, family gatherings, friends. I was even too ashamed to eat in my school canteen. I would be famished. Don't get me wrong, I do have hunger pangs too. But if I see a group of students, sitting beside me, laughing their heads off, I'd immediately throw my food away without even touching a morsel. Born in a family of athletes, I was, yours truly, a blacksheep. How I wished I could run as fast as my brothers...lets forget the word fast. How I wished I could just RUNNNNN! But I couldn't... thanks to you my dearest friend ASTHMA. So I would sit out every physical education class so that I could be spared the ridicule of being mocked. It did not help that my uniform was not that flattering either. Fast forward...

I'm now stepping into adulthood. Still not being spared from the constant ridicules of family and friends. They love using me as the butt of their jokes. It is every young woman's dream to dress up fashionably and pose like Tyra Banks for snapshots. In my case, the Asian retail industry was my number one enemy followed by cameras. Boy, did I detest walking into malls, trying on clothes (which were only deemed fit for walking sticks in the disguise of the human anatomies) and seeing myself in those photographs. Slimming pills came to my rescue. They hung around me not for long though. I said adios to them after 3 good years. May your souls rest in peace and may you vanish without any traces from my system. Fast forward...

I'm in my late twenties. I've had enough of dramas in my life. I have decided not to play the victim anymore. It was like an awakening. I wanted to take control of my life. I went overseas with the support of my beautiful family. You guys ROCK! Pursued my degree. In the process of healing, not only did I rediscover myself, but love as well. I met the man of my dreams. The man who slowly helped me gain control of my life. August 2006, I joined Weight Watchers and that was one of my major milestones. My life fully transformed. I realised that weight loss is not a destination but a journey. A tough one at that too. But with my will power, discipline and my beloveds' ardent support, I started to embrace all challenges with open arms. Lo and behold, I started shedding weight. Running in the public without any inhibitions became part of my identity. Infact, I found running very therapeutic. I started running my pain away. Buying clothes were no longer an issue. Even my worst enemy at one point, the scales, became my best pal. I started looking forward to our once-a-week meetings eagerly(I still do). It has been a pleasure knowing you my friend. Fast forward...

I'm in my early thirties now. The path to self-discovery has been an uphill task. With my 2 newly discovered tools to weight loss, exercise and portion control, I'm able to keep my weight down and in check. This 6 letter word, WEIGHT, which once upon a time, stripped me of my very identity, esteem, confidence and above all, my sheer existence, has now bestowed upon me the power of wisdom, knowledge and healing. The knowledge on how to treat your body as a sacred temple and not abuse it. The wisdom to pave your way towards your inner bliss and peace. If you believe in yourself, YOU CAN ACHIEVE ANYTHING and YOU DESERVE THE BEST AND NOTHING LESS have been my mantras ever since. And not to forget the beauty of healing, which has helped me expand my horizon of self worth. I have opened myself up to the world.... especially to those who once inflicted pain on me. The power of forgiveness is unfathomable. Dare I say, that the reason behind my present harmonious relationship with my ex-alcoholic father, boiled down to one fundamental factor... Me losing weight. Had I not lost weight, I would still have been a prisoner of my own insecurities and pains. I would have done injustice to myself by not opening my heart and letting the power of forgiveness take control. The path to healing, as challenging as it was, has opened up this beautiful relationship that I never dreamt would ever take place... that of a father and daughter bonding without any resentments, hurt or anger. Just a relationship solely based on love.

Weight has not been the only enemy I have battled with all those years. Dynamic experiences, such as an alcoholic father, being molested by a hairdresser at the age of 12 and then again at the age of 14 by a maths tutor, a string of abusive relationships(was on my path to self-destruction), best friends who loved playing mind games, and a workforce where I was sexually and emotionally harrassed, have also played significant roles in my life. But without life throwing its curve ball at me, I won't be what I am today. I owe everything I am today to all these souls. My "Survivor of Adversities" Award, which I got from the universe, goes to all of you who made my life a LIVING HELL.

I would love all of you to know that with an amazing support from beautiful souls like a selfless mum, brothers, hubby and a godma, the sky is the limit for wandering souls like me. They are and will always be my pillars of strength. Thank you for being with me this far. I am here to stay and you will be hearing more from me!

May God bless you all and may 2009 be OURS to conquer :). Cheers to blogging!