2023 – A Retrospective

Dec 31, 2023 | Life, Travel

Folks have been telling me that 2023 has been a year of massive change for them. I remember at the start of the year, my bestie told me her feng shui master said that for us born in the Year of the Pig, we’d have to be in motion to ward off the bad energy that 2023 would bring us.

January – Lunar Celebrations and New Beginnings

I figured I’ll continue with my pilates sessions at the studio, travel and that should keep me “in motion”! 😆 Well, I’m not sure whether the feng shui master was right or not. Certainly 2023 has been a busy year for me personally.

January saw Chinese New Year come early! It’s the first time since the pandemic that we could host a party of larger than 8 people. So it was lovely to see all the family get together. Mum was very pleased.

I was a lot more organised for Chinese New Year, like I anticipated when the banks would open for online appointment booking to withdraw new bank notes for ang pows and with better planning around shopping for the Reunion Dinner, I didn’t have to fight for the last cabbage on the supermarket display unlike last year…

February – Health Challenges and Discoveries

February was a month of dealing with health concerns. I’d been battling very bad menstrual cramps for the past 6 months… to a point, my gynaecologist recommended that I consider a full hysterectomy. The cramps were so bad that I could not move from bed for a couple of days at a time. It was so frustrating as I couldn’t work, and had a constant headache due to the pain.

But I discovered a great TCM massage place along Joo Chiat Road, and after consulting them, I started my treatment. After 3 sessions, when my period arrived, there were no cramps. I was amazed. I kept the information to myself as I wanted to continue observing for the duration of my 12 week treatment. Suffice to say, the pain disappeared completely by the second month. My therapist said it was about releasing the muscle memory and re-aligning the spine.

This was also the month that my partner and I visited Chiang Mai in northern Thailand and were quite taken up by the place.

Snippets of our visit to Chiang Mai, Thailand

March – Milestones and Celebrations

March was a fun month celebrating Mum’s 80th birthday with my cousins and Mum’s siblings. It was a special day, with lots of Mum’s favourite foods, cake, good company and laughter.

April – Reflections on Loss

April was a quiet month despite it being my birthday month. My partner was away in the UK to visit his father, Len, who was not well and who sadly passed on shortly after my partner arrived. It was extremely poignant. Len was not his usual lively self after his wife Iris had passed away the year before. 

I was really lucky to have met Len and Iris. Long and happy marriages like theirs are hard to come by these days. Len was devoted to his wife and he reminded me very much of my aunt’s husband…

May – Family Bonds and Work Opportunities

May was a time for extended family get-togethers. My favourite relatives from London visited and it’s been a busy time keeping track of a wandering uncle and spending time with my cousin.

In between all the family events, I got invited to join the ASK Method Company support team for the upcoming summer launch campaign. I was super thrilled about it because it’s a huge learning experience working in a 5 time INC 5000 company…

June and July – Work Adventures and Milestones

June – the Hybrid Expert Accelerator programme by the ASK Method Company marketing campaign starts and I’m back to working on US hours!

July – my brother turns 50. Egad. I can’t believe that little pest is now 50. It was great celebrating his birthday and catching up with his childhood friends.

August to October – Transitions, New Additions and Loss

August – my partner’s landlord decided to increase the rent of his apartment by 75%. He decided to bring forward the plans to move to Thailand. So it was a flurry of having to deal with packing up his home, putting items into storage, clearing away unwanted things. 

It was also a time to celebrate a new addition to my family, my brother and his wife had a baby girl!

September – our helper who looks after Mum goes home for a month’s annual leave. This meant that I was now on night duty with Mum, sleeping with her, taking her to the loo, changing her diaper and making sure she takes her meds.

Max’s health is starting to deteriorate quickly too… I am worried. He’s developing a lump in his abdominal area. 

October – Max has suspected liver cancer, and it’s spread to his lungs. I don’t know if the signs were there earlier because he’d been battling a nasal discharge since early on in the year. He passed away on 12 October. At least Max passed away peacefully at home and that he didn’t suffer. The night before he passed, his breathing became very laboured and I slept part of the night on the floor with him. It broke my heart as the weeks went by to see him lose heart when he realised he couldn’t do some of the things he liked to do, like go up the ramp to get into the car boot and go for regular walkies. I will never forget how he looked at us on the morning of his passing, he was staring at us as we all gathered round the breakfast table, there was such a look of intensity on his face. It was like he was trying to imprint the memory of all of us. 

November and December – Coping with Loss and New Beginnings

November – I ramped up my pace catching up on launching my own business funnel. Thank goodness for the help of AI.

Organising another big family lunch to celebrate my aunt’s 86th birthday, and attending to my uncle visiting from London. Seeing my Dad’s siblings getting on has brought home to me the fact that they are not as active or agile as before. Elder care is quite a serious and time-consuming responsibility.

In the meantime, I am missing Max very much.

December – this is the month I was looking forward to with great anticipation as I had planned a 2 week holiday in Thailand with my partner. 

Unfortunately my father tested positive for Covid, followed by me 2 days later…

It was hard for Dad as it was his first time with Covid. Luckily for me, it was not severe as I had Covid before. I had considered postponing my flight to Thailand but everything was fine at home; Mum was doing well, Dad only needed one more day before he would be out of isolation and our helpers were running the show.

After a wonderful break, it was back in time for Christmas to wrap Mum’s gifts for the family, and roast the turkey for a family lunch of 20 guests.

And I got to launch my business funnel too! It’s a soft launch of a digital course on how to use quiz funnels to generate leads for your business.

Reflecting on the Year and Looking Ahead

In retrospective, much of my year was taken up by family events, and I am blessed to have such a supportive family. However, 2024 is the year where I need to focus on my business. It’s been long coming and things I wanted to do are no longer relevant with the onset of AI.

Here’s wishing you and your loved ones a very Happy New Year and a fabulous 2024! May all your dreams come true!