Sunday, December 28, 2014

3 weeks after surgery

I don't know if it is just my feeling or the lump is indeed increasing in size. Sigh.. It is another week to go before another 'judgement' day to find out the identity of the lump and what needs to be done to remove it. Again I am worrying and getting scared although worry and fear do not help with anything.

After Christmas, I try to do daily Rosary prayer. In less than a week, I am already feeling bored. I guess I am beyond hope. I feel so distant from God that I think I am just talking to myself instead of praying. I pray for faith and it is still not given to me. Haiz.. I don't know what's going on with my life.

Thursday, December 25, 2014

Christmas runaway

After 6 months away from Church, it is sort of expected that my faith is kinda dead. Add on the health problems and the surgery I recently had, it makes me feel that these are punishment from God for my insolence which obviously does no good to my dying faith. I have no Christmas spirit, I don't even wish people "Merry Christmas", I don't enjoy Christmas songs this time around, and I don't watch Christmas-themed films that I always watch annually to lift up my mood. I try to pick up my bedtime prayer and Rosary back but it is tough when I feel so distant -in fact I feel nothing- from Jesus. Pray for faith-that's all that I am asking for now.

Recently, my dreams often involve running. I am talking about physically running. I don't know if I actually want to run because after the surgery, I tell myself that it is unlikely that I dare to do any sort of vigorous physical activities because I worry that it will cause the mesh to come off. Life is ironic. When my body is still capable of running, I am so lazy to do that. Now that I think I won't be able to do that anymore, suddenly I wish to do that.

In addition to running, my dreams also come together with "superpower" to break things when I get angry and upset. I guess subconsciously, I have underlying angst/anger/frustration that I may not realise or I don't know how to channel and they appear only in dreams. Haiz... Yes I wish I have such power when I am angry in real life.

I guess I need help...

And nope, still no Merry Christmas from me this year.

Tuesday, December 23, 2014


I received a reply from my doctor who suspected that lump that I have is seroma which is a collection of fluid after a surgery. Of course, nothing is certain until the doctor physically assesses it. Seroma is a common post-hernia surgery complication. On one side, I have to be thankful that I only experience this complication as there could be more serious and morbid complications. On the other side, I don't want to think on what needs to be done to settle this. I am still hoping for spontaneous resolution of the seroma as mentioned in some websites.
I received an email to offer me a complementary ticket for Jay Chou concert. Waaa... I am not a fan of him as I don't understand any Chinese word but I would love to attend this concert. I have never attended any concert so I would love to experience one. Not to mention that this is a famous Mandopop singer and the ticket is free!! Unfortunately, I am not in Singapore to be able to utilise this chance. Basket!!! Flying there is not an option. I tried to search for airplane tickets if I should return urgently to settle my seroma and very available dates for this week and the prices are also crazy. Sian.. basically I just missed a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

There is this song that caught my interest whenever it is being played in shops or shopping malls. I have not been able to find the title until last night. I was quite amused to find that the lyrics actually go: I'm all about that bass, no treble. All this time, I thought the lyrics g: I'm all about the face, no trouble. No wonder I always failed to try to search for the song title or lyrics. I even tried "Buddha face". Gosh...

I guess another thing I learn is that bass is another synonym for ass. Lol..

Monday, December 22, 2014

The Book of Life

Ok let's get this done as it has long been overdue. If it is not because of the the free movie pass that I got from the Maze Runner premiere event, I will definitely not watch this. As much as I enjoy cartoons, graphics is still the most important thing for me and although The Book of Life has a rather unique art style, it is not exactly something I like.

The story takes place using Day of the Dead which is a real-life festivity in Mexico in which the living prays to remember their dead loved ones. La Muerte, ruler of the Land of the Remembered (or call it heaven) and Xibalba, ruler of the Land of the Forgotten (or call it hell) get bored and decide to take a bet on 3 kids at the city of San Angel: Manolo, Joaquin, and Maria. La Muerte bets on Manolo to be the one who eventually will capture Maria's heart while Xibalba picks Joaquin. If La Muerte wins, Xibalba must no longer interfere with the life of the livings. If Xibalba wins, Xibalba will get to rule the Land of Remembered.

The bad guy will obviously cheat. Xibalba gives Joaquin a medal which will protect him from any harm. While this medal does not make Joaquin a bad guy, it allows him to be the hero and defender of the town from outsiders who wish to attack the town. When Manolo wants to propose his love to Maria, Xibalba sends his snake to bite Maria. People think she is dead and this makes Manolo feel very guilty. Xibalba tricked him to die in order to see Maria again.

Manolo goes to the Land of the Remembered, sees his ancestors there, and tries to look for La Muerte to find a way to save Maria because it is Manolo's "fault" to cause her dead. They discover that Xibalba is now the ruler of the Land of the Remembered and his tricks to win his bet. Manolo and his family decides to find La Muerte who is now at the Land of the Forgotten. Although it is usually impossible for souls to travel between the lands, Manolo is able to do as his Book of Life is empty. Basically it means that he is not supposed to die yet and his death is due to Xibalba's interference. La Muerte gets very angry after she realises that Xibalba has cheated and interfered with the lives of the living.

Back in the world of the living, Maria is getting married with Joaquin since Manolo is dead. The city is in danger of attack from a renowned bandit, Chakal who is the previous owner of the medal that Joaquin gets from Xibalba. To clear the mess, La Muerte and Xibalbla allows Manolo to return to live and for his dead ancestors to join his fight to protect the city. At the end, Manolo marries Maria while La Muerte and Xibalba also falls for each other.

On the surface, the story is quite simple but yet it offers a fresh plot. Despite the art style that I am not fond of, I am still impressed with the amount of details they put to make Land of the Remembered very beautiful. Well, it is the heaven in the story after all. I also love the way they use a different art style for the dead vs the living. To be more critical, however, I think the bet between 2 gods here are very petty. I mean it is kinda scary if the gods of this world also behave in this way: to interfere with human's life when they are bored.

I actually love little Manolo, Joaquin, and Maria. Unfortunately, the adult versions develop into cliche personalities. When they are little, it is quite difficult to tell who will end with Maria as both Manolo and Joaquin are nice. When they are adults, it is quite obvious that Manolo will be the one who will get Maria. However, it is really something fresh that Joaquin does not turn out to be the antagonist. That is something that people will expect from a love triangle stories. He may be irritating and obnoxious, but he is not evil or bad.

The message that the movie makers want to bring across to children, which is presumed to be the main target demographic of the movie, is that everyone's Book of Life is still empty and can be written in the way that we want it to be and the way to write is from the way we live. The message is good but the presentation is poor. I omit this part from the review but the movie opens with a group of delinquents arriving in the museum. The whole story int he movie about Joaquin, Manolo, and Maria is actually a story told by the museum guide to these kids. I find it very disruptive when the story gets interrupted with these kids asking the guide "What happen next? Why such things happened? Bla bla bla".

Let's end this with a good point: the audio. Surprisingly, I actually enjoyed listening the Latin accent used throughout the movie. In additioon, the music and some of the songs that Manolo sings are actually good and they suit well with the theme of the movie.

The Book of Life is a rare gem. I came expecting to be disappointed but I came out of the theater happy and satisfied. This is just my personal opinion but it is still not good enough for my personal taste. I mean although th emovie is good and makes me feel good, it is not good enough to make me want to re-watch the movie or get the DVD (or download it lol) or to buy the Making Of book.

Sunday, December 21, 2014

2 weeks after surgery

Good news first. I am now able to get up or lie down on the bed quite freely although there is a sensation in the stomach when doing so. Previously, there is no sensation when doing those. However, it is no longer pain that I feel so that is a lot of improvement. Sleeping on my sides and on my tummy is also possible now although there is still the sensation.

I did not mention previously but for the first week after the surgery, I kept waking up every 2-3 hours to pass urine. It made me kinda worried if the surgery caused some damage to my bladder or something. The funny thing was that it was always a full bladder. So let's say I sleep at 12, I will wake up at 3am to pass urine. Then I will wake up again at 6am to pass urine. It is very weird to keep having a full bladder because I don't drink any water at 3am. Before the surgery, I never get my sleep disrupted to pass urine. After 2 weeks, this problem occurs less frequently. I am not sure if it is back to normal yet though.

The bad news is the lump on my right scrotum is confirmed. Previously my scrotum was still swollen that I did not dare to jump into conclusions. Now the swelling is gone but the lump remains. Sigh... I am e-mailing the doctor and am waiting for his reply. I read a lot of "scary" stories on the internet on what that lump could possibly be. But what I am very worried is if that is a new hernia and I need another surgery :( I have not even recovered from this one.

I was very depressed when I realised that this lump would not disappear. As of now, I am more or less able to "accept it". After all, worrying will not help anything as well.

That's all for today before I roll down to an even more emo mood...

Monday, December 15, 2014

1 week after surgery

Before I am writing about my health, let me write about my flight back yesterday first. I will be spending some time home until early January next year. I guess the additional 1 week at home is the only positive thing that I can think about after the surgery. 

This time I took Airfrance. It was my first time taking a full service flight for Singapore-Jakarta trip after so many years. The last time I took a full service flight for a trip home was when carriers such as Thai Airways and Cathay Pacific still offered the route. It was pretty enjoyable right from the start. Since the plane was pretty big, the gate opened rather quickly and boarding was allowed not too long after that. I was quite lucky that the seat next to mine was empty too. Haha.. The seat was more comfortable than budget airlines and combined that with food, the 1-and-a-half-hour trip felt much shorter and less tiring. The food serving was pretty small but the quantity did not take away my enjoyment of having exotic food. The food served was: a Western bread with a cheese (or was it butter or margarine) that I never saw before, pasta + 2 slices of duck, and apple crumble. Taste-wise, they were pretty good too.

Thanks to my health I did not bring any luggage with me. There was a boon with that as my flight had to wait for available luggage conveyor belts. There were 3 flights that arrived before mine and by the time I exited, they were all still waiting for their luggages. If I had a luggage with me, I predicted another 1 hour to wait.

Okay let's go about my condition 1 week after the surgery. The pain on my tummy has very much improved. Getting up, lying down, and changing position on the bed are less painful now. My left and center are fine but my right side still feels abnormal. Sigh.. My hernia is on the right so I don't know if it will take longer to heal because more things were done there. Of course I can't stop myself to worry if something bad will happen on that side.

There is still no improvement with my right scrotum which gets me really really worried. I should have told and asked the doctor last Monday :( I really feel that there is an additional "layer of something" above the right testicle which was not there before the surgery. I am very concerned if it will affect my reproductive ability in the future. Sigh..

It was quite depressing to see that I walked more slowly than the elderly in the airport. I guess on the positive side, I should take things more slowly and I should have more patients with elderly. Basically I am still unable to walk quickly as I still felt some discomfort on my right side. I should not be walking or standing too long also as I would be "protecting" my right side and it placed burden on my left leg.

Some people say I am brave or I am strong to undergo a surgery. I don't know how to reply or feel when I hear such statement. It was painful, it was disturbing, it was affecting my reproductive ability and surgery was the only way out. I had NO choice but to for a surgery.

Haiz.. Life will not be the same after this. I still don't know if I will turn this into something positive or negative. It sucks.. But seriously, as of now, I rather to immediately die than having to go for a surgery and continue living in worry and pain :(

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Big Hero 6

It is very rare for me to watch a movie without reading spoilers first, even for something that I definitely want to watch. Nope, my hospitalisation was not a reason. So basically I came to the cinema only knowing that Big Hero 6 is based on some Marvel story, people generally find it very hilarious, Hiro's brother died, there is a guy called Wasabi, and there is something unusual with the antagonist.

The story is actually more down-to-earth and less superhero like. The main character is a 14 year old genius, Hiro Hamada. Similar to all genius young boys, he mainly uses his talents for gaming as he already knows what school is going to teach him. His brother, Tadashi, is also a genius who is studying in San Fransokyo Institute of Technology (no typo there, the name of the city is a hybrid between San Francisco and Tokyo) bring Hiro to his lab, show him his research (Baymax), introduce him to his classmates and to see what his classmates are doing with their talents.

The trip inspires Hiro to enroll and he invents microbots for the school convention to gain admission if his invention can impress the professor. I am not gonna mention what microbots can do but basically it is something revolutionary that even the owner of a renowned technology company, Krei Tech, is interested in purchasing it. Audience is hinted that this guy will be the bad guy.

At this point my bladder could not hold it anymore so I missed the part where Tadashi died. During his emo time, Hiro accidentally activates Baymax with his "ouch" and hilarity ensues. As a personal healthcare assistant, Baymax will do anything to help Hiro recover from his symptoms and this includes doing all the superhero things to solve the mysteries surrounding Tadashi's death.

Cartoon+comedy combo definitely scores for me. However, that does not blind me from seeing some things which can be improved. One example is how the team formation is rather 'forced'. Wasabi, Fred, Tamago, and Honey Lemon are essentially Tadashi's school mates so it is kinda weird to have them suddenly as people that can console Hiro and quickly form some emotional bonds.

I thought the "twist" was Tadashi did not die and he turned out to be the antagonist. Lol.. I was wrong. But I honestly feel that the final showdown is a mismatch between a personal revenge vs the level of catastrophe created. There are plenty of things which tug my heart strings but the mismatch at the final conflict kinda reduce the impact.

Overall, I think Big Hero 6 offers something very fresh. It is definitely not something that Marvel (or superhero stories) usually offers. Hiro's personality as a pubescent boy is spot on. Baymax is a robot but his "personality" is awesome. I think it is amazing that the voice actor (I shall refrain from using the word seiyuu lol) is able to inject personality into a robotic voice. Surprisingly, Aunt Cass and Fred are the more memorable supporting cast.

During my post-surgery emo-ness, how I wish I have a Baymax. Could he solve my hernia without a surgery?? Sigh.. if he asks for my pain score, my answer will be zero. The pain in the heart and mind is more than the physical pain. Grrrh.. I shall not pepper this movie entry with my personal emoness.

Now I am wishing for a life-size Baymax plushie which I think will be very cute and comfy to hug :) Hehe...

Monday, December 8, 2014

Post-op check up

I went to see the surgeon again this morning for removal of the stitches. The clinic was already very crowded and I did not have any chance to ask any questions. I was only told that everything was okay although my hole was rather huge. I had to return the operation video back as the doctor would like to use it for a presentation sometime in February. Sigh.. It had to be pretty uniquely bad. The doctor also informed me to lose weight (seriously!) as there was too much oil and fats beneath my abdomen. Haiz!! It is time to replace milk with yoghurt as advised.

I wanted to really know where exactly the mesh was placed and whether it could come off. I think it could come off but at least I would like to know what I could do or what I should avoid to minimise the chance of it coming off. I wanted to know the symptoms if the mesh came off. Of course my number one concern was still my right ball. It was not in a different condition from before the op. Sigh.. Was a mesh added to "protect" it? I can't help but wonder what is the additional layer surrounding the testicle. Haiz.. The good thing is that there is no pain and no bruising whatsoever.

Next follow up will be in 6 months time so meanwhile, I can only wait after 2 weeks if my right scrotum will revert back to pre-op condition.

After the check-up, I went to watch Big Hero 6. Wanted to watch it since beginning of November but I decided to wait until I could use the free movie tickets. It was a great show so I shall write about it tomorrow. Lol I know I still have yet to write anything about the Book of Life leh haha...

Sunday, December 7, 2014

I survived a surgery

I went to see a specialist on Thursday and the hernia diagnosis was confirmed. The doctor literally pushed in the intestines back to where they were supposed to be. It was painful and the hole was kinda large. I literally could feel a 'pop' sound as his finger found the hole.

The surgery was performed on Saturday at 3.30pm. Preparation-wise, I only needed to take 400mg of Ceftibuten. Since I have insurance, I might as well use the full coverage for a single room. Anyway, the main difference will only be the cost of the room ($500+ for single room, $300+ for 2 bedded room, and $200+ for 4 bedded room) as the treatment and consumable cost is not marked up depending on the room type.
The toiletries were even more atas than the hotel I stayed in! Haha..
As I was wheeled in from the room to the operating theatre, it was kinda demoralising as I was much younger than other patients. In fact, the porter who pushed the bed could easily be as old as my dad. I think the nurses would also be confused why such a healthy cheerful young man could be admitted to hospital. The surgery took about 2 hours and if I were not wrong, it took me about 1 hour to recover. It was painful and I was on pethidine IV until midnight. I could barely asleep if not because of the pethidine as the nurse had to check my blood pressure and temperature every 2 hours.

The surgery was a laparoscopy procedure. 3 small incisions were made: just below the navel, 1 on the right side, and 1 on the left side. Throughout the whole night I felt something at the middle which I didn't know if it was pain from the wound or the urge to go toilet. I tried to pee but I couldn't. Not sure if it was because the dizziness due to pethidine that I was trying to focus on standing or I was too self conscious to pee with someone around. Even when the nurse left me alone in the bathroom, nothing came out. The nurse was accompanying me just to make sure I do not fall,

In the morning, the doctor checked on me and I was only allowed to be discharged after I passed urine. In the end I managed to pass urine while sitting down. Jeez.. I became like a female already lo..

The post-surgery pain was not as bad as expected. I even walked back from the hospital to the hotel. Lol.. The buses were crowded and I doubted I could balance myself on a crowded bus. There was no pain when I remained stationery but it was painful when I had to move. Sleeping became a nightmare as it hurt to lie down or to get up. Laughing and coughing also hurt. Because of the intubation, I had some phlegm and blood down the throat and it took quite a while to cough them out. Passing urine also caused a bit of pain near the belly button/bladder area.

I think they did some shaving on my balls as it felt quite different. My right ball was swollen and it was bothering me as I thought the procedure was not at that area. Sigh.. I guess I gotta wait for a week to see how it goes.

Although I survived all of these, I seriously don't want anymore surgery and hospital stay. Seriously, God, just let me die straight next time :( Although honestly, I was more bothered about strangers seeing me naked and my oily butt thanks to a suppository that I thought I was soilimg myself than the post-surgery pain itself.

Because of this, I missed this year's Anime Festival Asia as well as the Standard Chartered Marathon. Haiz...