Melancholic Malady

October 2nd, 2006   •   7 comments   

I am sure you have all have experienced this some time or other. The butterflies in the stomach that approaches as the weekend winds down on Sunday evening and you stare hard at the ceiling at night, many things on your mind, and worrying about the morning after. I don’t know if they have a medical term for this, but practically everybody suffers from it. From school kids to NS boys to working adults.

I knew that it was coming for my son (34-month old Ethan) as he kept asking in the last few days if he had to go to school. He started showing all the classical symptoms of Monday Morning Dread – fussiness, crying, inability to sleep throughout the night, loss of appetite, wanting to play. This morning, his fears rose to a climactic high, and he burst into tears and clung tightly to my wife like a Koala, unwilling to go to childcare.

Naturally, we will be asking his childcare teachers if anything is the matter, as he normally doesn’t exhibit such behaviours. Being an optimistic, cheeky (very), and jovial boy, Ethan has many friends in school, and seems to be generally well-liked. However, as he nears 3 years of age, his behaviours appeared to have changed. It appears as if the neuroses of adulthood are slowly creeping in. Scary.

Watching my son in action (or inaction rather), I wonder why it is necessary for us human beings to go through this. Is there a way to make the transition easier from a wild weekend to a manic monday? How do we ease the pain of going back to the grind after staying up late? How do we escape from the hangover effect of a happy though hurried weekend?

I guess this is a question that we may never be able to answer. It is a rhythm in life – a circadian rhythm and biological clock that has its peaks and troughs. You work and go to school from Monday to Friday, and play from Saturday to Sunday. There are no two ways around it right? Or are there?



  1. posted on Oct 05, 2006 at 4:10 PM

    Maybe if we didn’t have to wait so long for a rest day. E.g. if we rested every other day, that might make the wait less long 🙂

  2. posted on Oct 07, 2006 at 1:43 AM

    Absolutely briliant idea. Should we float it to PSD?

  3. posted on Oct 08, 2006 at 9:10 AM

    We? : )

    But seriously — it does mean 12hour workdays (to meet the 42 hours a week). I’ve had a chance to try out a 12hour work shift. There are tradeoffs. You get your offdays but you are also at work longer, and it’s hard for those who have to be on their feet most of the time. Also, unless almost everyone you know is on 12hours, you are not likely to be able to meet them — your family, friends etc. We’re still rather ingrained with a 5 to 5.5 work week.

  4. Tan Wee Kiat
    posted on Oct 08, 2006 at 10:55 AM

    >There are no two ways around it right? Or are there?There are.
    One way is when you reach my age!! It’s called retirement.
    The other way is to strike it rich, such as hitting First Prize in the monthly big sweep.

    There is a third way accredited to the famous comedian, Bob Hope. He said he regarded his work as a hobby and therefore he played every day of the week.
    Wee Kiat

  5. Anonymous
    posted on Oct 11, 2006 at 1:02 PM

    You know what Waltz ?

    I think the Sunday night book-in during BMT was the pits for most guys. It was like going to hell on Earth.
    My kids had been kind of “institutionalised” as the Shawshank character (played by Morgan Freeman) so aptly put it.
    The eldest (Mandy) as you know too well, had been lying & conjuring up fancy stories just to avoid school. 2nd kid (Ariel) often complain of headaches, tummyaches whenever she has spelling tests the next day…3rd kid (Isaac) just tell us straight – “tired” (men don’t beat around the bush)

    Mondays are still tolerable at work, I suspect not for long though. However, I’ve been able to take everything in my stride these days…things could be worse…jobless, in-debt, family quarrels, bad relatives, ripped-off by some con etc. It had been for me…so this is still WONDERFUL !!!

    By the way – I am Walter’s real life brother. Cheers Bro !!!
    SG days were de BESTest

  6. posted on Oct 11, 2006 at 2:06 PM

    Yes, I remember the Sunday night book ins, especially when I was doing BMT at Pulau Tekong. The long drive to Commando Jetty at Changi, followed by the ride on the al fresco RPL as it cruises away from the jetty, the bright night lights of Singapore’s city twinkling away in the night as you set off for the pitch black island of Pulau Tekong. The cool sea breeze brushing against your face refreshes you for a second, but this momentarily lighthearted feeling disappears the moment you reach the island and march to camp.

  7. Lam Chun See
    posted on Nov 09, 2006 at 8:08 AM

    I heard a prog on BBC radio where this chap in India blogs full time. He said that his income exceeded that of his previous job in an MNC. I sure do not mind that type of work. As it is, I often feel guilty blogging during my ‘working hours’ even tho I am self-emplyed.

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