I've been enjoying this shelter-in-place situation that's been in effect since March earlier this year. I no longer need to make excuses for staying indoors all the time or feel bad when my coworkers talk about their extravagant hiking trips or exotic intercontinental flights. Honestly, I can understand it when people say "revenge of the introverts". With this turn of events, there is also a great risk of getting COVID-19 (I definitely don't want to catch that) and some inconveniences (e.g., restaurants closed, badminton is limited). I almost feel sorry for the extroverts, but this is definitely a net positive for me.

Sometimes, I wonder what other people are going through. I like slipping into people's blogs, vlogs, whatever they post to get a peek at what they're thinking. This isn't anything new; I've always been nosy like that. I recently found Alex Chiu (inventor of Immortality Rings) on YouTube, and spent basically my whole weekend listening to his videos. At first, they seemed a little crazy and ridiculous... but as I listened, I started to see a shred of logic behind what he was saying. I also started to feel bad for him because it seemed like he had psychological and interpersonal issues that may trace deeply back to his upbringing and may still be going on even though he's nearly 50 years old of age. It's too easy to rule him out as a crazed man, but if you listened to him, you'd know how it'd be so easy for any one of my friends to turn out like him too.

On a related note, all of this gives me the time and space to think about my own life. I'm almost 30. I've been doing fairly well for myself, but challenges at work can sometimes make me wonder if I want to keep doing this for the rest of my life. Lately, I've realized that my previous career interests, like helping abused children or being a teacher, are still interesting to me. I've also been thinking about finding time to study psychology or criminology part-time. Unfortunately, I haven't found an opportunity that I feel like it's good enough to take right now.

There are certainly new career directions I can take, but it might not be the smartest decision perhaps given where I am in my life. I'm considered mid-career and working in one of the best places for this industry, so there's reason to stay here and grow as much as I can. I still enjoy what I do and there's more I can do before I try something else. I've also been seriously considering whether parenting is path I want to take. I know that I'd been bullish about it when I was younger, but now that it's become closer to reality, I've been really trying to think it through.

When coworkers and parents on the internet talk about their kids, it gives Terence and I an idea of what it might be like for us. People usually talk about the positives in a more abstract form while negatives in a very tangible form. This makes it harder for us to understand what the advantages are, especially how someone might still make a conscious decision to have children given the known disadvantages. But at the end of the day, we realize that answer to the question doesn't lie in what others do -- but what we want to do.

I know we'll come to a shared decision in the end, as we always do with big decisions. However, it's a bit stressful because there are some real time pressures. I don't only mean my biological clock (as I'm only 29 years old), but rather my parents want to help me take care of my child while they're still young. My mom told me yesterday that her knees were starting to hurt when she takes the stairs. She told me to hurry up and have children soon, so that she could help with the first 2 most tiring years of childrearing. My mom is in her late 60's and is still working to support the family. She is honestly the most responsible and talented mom I've ever met, and I would trust her without a doubt with my future child(ren). Also, my house doesn't have stairs and I would like to take care of my parents too.

All this talk about children is still slightly too soon to make a decision anyway. Our wedding plans were postponed, and at this point, we're just trying to get the marriage certificate so that we could file for an AOS (Adjustment of Status) together. My process as a Canadian is much shorter than Terence's, so waiting upwards of a month (fingers crossed) is much better than waiting 3 years for him to be able to file. Also, I would want to research nearby hospitals to decide where to go for maternity care, but it's not a good time now that COVID-19 is still widespread and a risk.

I imagine I could probably keep rambling about current happenings, but it's almost midnight and there's a full day of work tomorrow! I'll try to be as well-rested as I can because I'll also be returning to badminton training after a bit of a hiatus. Tomorrow seems mentally, emotionally, and physically daunting. Well, until next time I remember to write!