If you missed part 1, click below 😀
A week or so after my birthday, I got really sick. A few hours after catching Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them with Chau and her siblings, I was home coughing up a storm.
I used to not be sick for long: I used to have what I like to call “The 3 Day Sickness.” First day I would be coughing a lot then develop a sore throat. The second day I would have a sore throat and have a lot of phlegm and mucus. The third day I’d only have phlegm that would be easy to spit out. After that I would be back to normal.
Not this time around, though. The sore throat lasted for days. The cough lasted for days. I also somehow developed an eye infection. It was already a week! I should never be sick for this long.
As Khoi luck would have it, I was home alone because my immediate family was on a cruise. Whelp I can fend for myself. Some friends offered to bring me soup and whatnot but I didn’t want people to see me like this.
Then I got a lot worse on Christmas. Sometimes it doesn’t really matter what you know or say because family will always say they know more about your health than you do.
“I’m still sick. I’m going to stay upstairs.”
“No come out and drink with your family. The liquor will help burn away the germs you have in your throat. Bring down whatever Jameson or Henny you have too.”
Nope. They also thought it was a smart idea to have a sick guy stand around a fire pit… The guy with respiratory problems even when he wasn’t sick, around burning ashes and logs, around trees that he’s probably allergic to since he’s allergic to every tree in Southern California but one… Great ideas all in the name of family bonding, right?
Guess who ended up in the Emergency Room that night because he couldn’t breathe? Another year, another trip to the ER in the wee hours of the night. I got a bunch of meds and shots to alleviate my immediate respiratory problems. I was there until early in the morning.
Even with my trip to the ER my priorities were stupid. I LINED my favorite person and told her to buy shoes for me. She really is my good luck charm when it comes to shoes because she was actually able to buy a pair. Thank you for coming through even when I’m indisposed.
After that visit to the ER, I was bedridden until mid-January. Can’t really exercise when you can’t leave your house and feel physically weak when you do any action. Can’t really socialize when you’re a biohazard. Can’t really talk to your favorite people when your eyes are burning when you look at your phone or a computer monitor.
Even after I was no longer bedridden I was sick as hell until two days before Lunar New Year 2017. Even then, I wasn’t back at 100. If Sumi wasn’t visiting, I probably would have resolved to stay home until I was 100 again. Any and all motivation and positive progress I got from my December epiphany were gone.
What the hell happened? I was unhealthy again and it felt like shit.
Even today, I’m still not a healthy person. If I was at my healthiest in 2015, I was back to being a terrible physical specimen in 2017.
Part of it has to do with my physical status. Like I’ve said before, being fat does so much damage to your body. It was unforgiveable that someone with as many health problems as myself allowed my weight to get out of control again.
How the fuck did I let this happen? I went from working out 6-7 days a week, eating 1200-1500 calories a day and eating clean to being a fat fuck that ballooned up again.
I thought it might be a food addiction. Anybody that knows me knows I love food. Honestly, I love food more than I love people. People suck in comparison. The only times food has let me down came from improper handling by other people. I can count the things that make me happy on one hand and food is one of them.
People eat to live and I live to eat. If there’s anything that keeps me going it’s knowing there’s more food to try, and more people I love to feed. I baked over 40 cookies for my favorite person the other day, but then decided to give them away because I’d rather bake her fresh cookies than give her cookies that were old by the time I saw her again. I even made a spreadsheet listing all the food places to try with her. (We’ll eventually eat at all of them… someday I promise)
One of the few friendships I made during my socially awkward butterfly period of 2016 that still lasts today came from a mutual love of food. It’s probably one of my better friendships too. We haven’t even eaten together but it’s that culinary connection that binds us. #fatlyfe even if she’s not fat. I love trading recipes and bouncing ideas of things to cook with other people.
Even still, I’ve always loved food. Why did this love of food become such a thorn now of all times? Working out counterbalanced that. I thought I gained discipline to overcome that but instead I let a lack of motivation lead me to being this.
I’m really hoping in 2018 I can find the discipline to do it again. I can’t rely on a broken heart for motivation this time around because the next time I’m happy I’ll just balloon like a whale again. I can’t rely on impressing someone else because if things don’t work out I’ll just let myself go again. Motivation is fleeting and even though I’m really motivated now, how long will that last?
My work ethic has always been like this and I hate myself for it. This applied to professional work as well.
How do I go from working 80+ hours a week in 2014, to now being incapable of being productive? I just get so anxious and I hate myself for it. I’m afraid of relying on someone to keep me sane again. One friend kept me from being bored and going insane while working, but it was also Chau that kept me being productive when I was too distracted by the previous friend because I knew she would bitch me out if I was being useless and not meeting deadlines. I took a short break when a friend and I had a falling out, but what prevented me from doing it again once we were close once more?
A part of it was a lack of drive and being disheartened. The last couple times around I was helping people pursue their dreams while putting my own professional goals to the side. Yeah, I was paid for my work but my heart was never in it. It sucks being good at something you hate doing. Something about seeing other people pursue their dreams, starting their own businesses and having something to call their own made me envy them.
If it was only hardworking, motivated, and dedicated people I would have had no qualms. More often than not, clients weren’t those things. I’ve gotten paid for jobs that were literally only “make a website for my idea,” “I want a logo like *** but different,” or one of those buzzword flowchart business ideas. If they could do this and not be afraid of failure, what was stopping me from pursuing ideas I actually wanted to do?
Well, my biggest fear: the fear of failure. Fear of failure and a lack of capital were stopping me. I know I have wealthy friends willing to invest in my growth and want to see me succeed but what if I fail? Failing is so scary. I’ve never failed at anything I put a conscious effort into. That sounds cocky as fuck, but anybody that knows me knows that that’s the truth. My heart is my indicator of success. That in and of itself, is a failure on my part.
I envy the people that keep failing and getting back up. I’m afraid the time I put my heart into everything and fail I’ll be crushed.
That’s part of the reason why I’m so scared of relationships. I’ve seen so many relationships fail recently, and some of them there really isn’t anything to learn from. What if I try my best and enter a relationship at my best, and it still fails?
Sometimes things are going too well and it scares me. Sometimes I have to self-sabotage to make sure I don’t set myself up for bigger disappointment if and when it fails. Sometimes I have to disadvantage myself so I don’t get too invested in someone and have an extraneous excuse. Sometimes I have to hide my true self because I don’t want to get closer or else it’ll hurt more if anything happens. Sometimes I have to be meaner so I don’t think I’m kind enough for them. Sometimes I have to insult people so they don’t think I’m that into them.
Chau says I act like a child whenever I talk to girls I’m actually interested in, and I can see that.
I used to use the excuse that I was just “looking for the perfect girl” but everybody knows that’s bullshit. Nobody’s perfect. Even if I find the perfect girl it won’t be the perfect relationship because every relationship has problems. I had this problem with trying to “break the scale” and talk to girls so far out of my league because I know I can just blame it on that when it fails or willingly get rejected.
Right now there’s someone I think the world of and would give the world to if I could but I’m so scared of it failing down the line I won’t do anything about it. There’s security in “not messing up a good thing.” I’m just standing there like an idiot and letting the chance pass by. I’m being passive while I watch the window close. I know that once that window closes I’ll just chalk it up to my bad timing. I’ll make up excuses. Nah it definitely isn’t my shortcomings. Nah it definitely isn’t my fear of failure.
Chau says I have a terrible mindset about this, and it’s true. I’m setting myself up for failure by thinking like this. All this crap is a self-fulfilling prophecy if I continue the way I am. If I keep thinking things are going to fail before I even give it a chance won’t it fail? I have to put my best foot forward when it comes to these things, but… I just can’t.
I know right now I’m not at my best, nowhere close to it. I’m not healthy, fit, wealthy, successful or even happy. And still, I see more broken people in relationships. I see jobless people in relationships. I see less well-off people in relationships. I see crazier people in relationships. I see fatter people in relationships. I see uglier people in relationships. I see unhealthier people in relationships. I see more awkward people in relationships. Yet there’s this idiot that’s just afraid of being in one. Chau tells me you’re supposed to grow with your significant other despite your flaws but I feel so flawed compared to other people.
I know it’s not good to compare and contrast yourself to other people but what else are you supposed to do when even your close friends ask you “What’s your excuse for being single?” I have a few close friends that’ll never initiate conversation unless they’re asking or commenting on my relationship status. “You got a girl yet?” “Who’s the girl?” “When am I meeting your girlfriend?” “I thought you were dating so and so.”
I guess I’m at that time in my life where I should start seriously considering relationships, but I have no excuse but my fear of failure.
7 years ago I wasn’t scared of failure. I wasn’t scared of getting my heart broken. I wasn’t scared of my spirit being crushed. I didn’t care. It’s good to fail because you learn! I knew that, and I still know that but I’m just so scared. You can learn from the failures of others, but nothing is a better teacher than your own failures.
I need to find that midpoint. I can’t do reckless and stupid shit, but I also can’t be too careful and scared to do anything at all. I need to take calculated risks and if I fail at least I’ll learn. I need reframe things from failure to lessons. Be it professionally or personally, I need to start taking risks again.
I’m still trying to improve to minimize those risks. From 2006 to 2011 I felt like I was the same person ingrained in my ways unwilling to change. From 2011 to 2013 I felt like I wanted to change but was unable to. For the past 5 years I’ve been trying really hard to change. To not change and improve is to stagnate and I don’t want to stagnate. Every year I’ve tried to at least improve one thing about myself, but I still feel like no progress is occurring. My goals for the other years were always one major change but I feel like I regress or lose that improvement every time something bad happens.
Sometimes I feel like I lose myself by trying to change too much. That’s another reason why I didn’t like medication I was prescribed. I didn’t feel like Khoi when I was on them. Never in my life did I even consider suicide until a week after starting medication. I’d rather feel sad or idle around the middle than feel absolutely nothing but a random thought about killing yourself a week later. Fuck that. I’ll change without medication.
I don’t know where all this desire for change stems from, though. Do I try to change because I actually feel I need to change and improve or do I change because I want to appease people?
I have to change. I have to. Nobody likes the current Khoi. I don’t even like the current Khoi. It really hurts because I’ve always been the person who has to change. Nobody’s ever happy with me and how I am. I’m not happy with how I am. I’m always the one that has to compromise. I’m always the one that has to appease.
Chau’s one of the few friends I don’t feel I need to change myself to keep around. She respects and expects me to improve as a person but I’ve never had to change a part of myself specifically for her. Anything that changed was all in the name of improvement or being a better person.
For some friendships, I’m always the one that has to put any effort toward maintaining the friendship. I’m the one that has to message them first. I’m the one that has to call. I’m the one who has to drive to them. I’m the one that has to pick them up. I’m the one that has to offer something. I’m the one that has to give up time. I’m the one that has to plan around them. I told Chau I feel entitled expecting other peoples to treat me better, I shouldn’t expect people to treat me like Khoi would treat them.
Part of that does come from me being over the top, though. I try to be the friend to other people that I would want for myself but maybe I go too far. I put too much time and emotional investment into people I know that won’t reciprocate. I just need to tone it down a bit. Nobody will be Khoi level.
Any time anything breaks down or feelings are hurt, I’m the one that had to apologize. I went through a period of time where I was always looking for someone else to blame. It’s not my fault. It’s their fault, obviously. There’s nothing to learn from this because I did nothing wrong. I can always find something to learn to prevent myself from being put in such a situation again even if it was their fault.
In recent years I’ve felt the complete opposite. Everything is my fault. I’m the one that has to improve to save this. I have to forgive them. I have to fix myself. In most situations, though, it’s a breakdown and failure on both parts so I can’t go to the extreme here either. I’m the one that has to find a solution. I’m the one that has to compromise. I’m the one that had to change myself while they were okay to continue being the way they were.
People nowadays are so averse to confrontation. I used to be those types of people. I would let grievances and problems build up over time and bubble over. I wouldn’t let out my problems in a constructive manner and they’d only ever come out when I was extremely angry. I was scared to the point I never wanted to say anything. I was so used to being sad I didn’t want other people to be sad even if it annoyed me. I was so used to being internally angry I never wanted people to be visibly angry.
That changed for me recently, though. Even if you go about it in a constructive manner, people are afraid of ruffling feathers. They’re scared to speak their mind because they don’t want to hurt feelings. They’re afraid it might be seen as drama. But sometimes your internal anguish and lack of understanding stems from not voicing that. Nowadays, when I don’t like something I’d tell them. That’s why I respect my friendship with Chau. Whenever we’re annoyed or mad at something we voice it. Talk it out and come to an understanding or address what needs to be changed. We’re both willing to change in the name of improvement. I mean we’re both kind of stubborn but like family we’re willing to change when confronted about it because we want to improve. I’d rather have my feelings and problems clear because I’ve always been one to wear my heart on my sleeve. Only when all parties involved recognize the grievances can people start to change.
But it’s still really frustrating. People don’t change unless you tell them how to. Even still, most people won’t change. If there’s anything I learned last year, it’s that very few people change until they absolutely have to. We’re creatures of habits ingrained in our ways.
If I resolve to crowdsource my happiness from other people and nobody else is happy about me how am I going to be happy?
It kinda ballooned into over 9000 words so I’m still editing it into more manageable portions. Some things came up so I need to edit it into more manageable portions. Hopefully I’ll finish part 3 by next week.