05 July 2021


 I had my first mental meltdown today at work. I'm writing it down now so that I will remember the exact date when finally my willpower all but succumbed to the pressure.

It was just another day at work, and when I put it like that, it was another one of those 'normal' days where the pressure keeps accumulating from the previous busy day, and I was this close to losing it. Last week I had to settle the payroll, allowances and whathaveyous on Firday. My company had just reshuffled the operation and my workload has went from unbearable to ridiculously unhealthy, at least to my mental health. From 5 accounts, now I have to take over more or less 20 new accounts.


So the payroll and all the other workload has quadrupled from 5 to 20. 


I tried so hard to keep it all together, hyping myself up whenever the odds are stacked against me. Yes, this is hard but this is just temporary. Yes, I can do it albeit slowly. Look at the light at the end of the tunnel. But I could only control what's inside my mind, not outside. The workload keeps stacking, and no matter how much that I do, they kept coming even when the previous tasks had not yet been completed. This slowly erodes my mental well being.


Today, coming to work, an endless stream of messages flooded my phone. An employee questioned why her salary was not yet in her account, two of the higher ups questioned me. Upon checking, it was revealed that her IC number was inaccurate and that the money has bounced because of this error, and nobody checked it before they sent the summary to me. But of course, it was me who had to bear the brunt.

Another employee mentioned that she didn't get her full allowance this month. I didn't know how much she should earn, I only transferred the amount that I received from the summary. I was not the one responsible for her enumeration calculation, the data is only available to certain people.

Another one asked why we haven't paid EPF contribution from April, now that the EPF office is chasing after her. I only received this account in June. How could I answer for something that somebody else didn't do.


On top of that, I have to arrange account opening for 5 of our accounts. Liaising with the directors were a challenge when they live outside of Putrajaya with the travel restrictions and all. More documents to be prepared, appointments to be arranged with all the directors and the bank, board resolutions have to be requested at the company secretary.

The aircond in my room was not helping either. It won't start and the weather was hot. The remote control batteries have died. The aircond would run for a few minutes before it abruptly stop.

My breaking point was when the auditor named me as the reason the company audit report hadn't yet be completed, for not giving him the documents that he requested, because the file got lost somewhere in transition. I looked back at the summary and I realised how hard for me to assemble the documents the first time around, and now that I have to do it again I just can't take it anymore.One year worth of documents has now lost, and I have to answer that as well.

A negative cocktail of emotions began to surface, like small bubbles boiling up from the deep bottom. Slowly it rises to the surface and pop. Anger, despair, sadness began to take over my mind. I'm so tired. I have tried my best, I have done everything within my power to do my job and to keep it all together. Week after week after week after week of endless slaving myself, what I had rewarded back with was only misery. 

I raised up from my seat, and made way to the office's surau. I locked the door behind me, threw the sejadah to the wall and sat on the red carpet. The emotions began to vigorously boil. I covered my fingers around my face, and the bubble arising erupts into a shriek. A hideous shriek. First it was slow, but the latent energy was too great my voice couldn't contain it from reaching higher decibels. What left my throat was a visceral pain wrapped in a scream I could barely recognised. I never wanted this to be like this, but at this point, it was not me who's in charge. My body wanted the pain to go away, it wanted this to be over with. It wanted the ugly emotions to escape, to be gone and stop rotting my self from within. I was only a mere vessel for these ugly, negative energy wanting to be released. 


I remember staring at the walls blankly, thinking whatever. What is this? I remember screaming and shrieking because that's the only way the primal suffering could ever be let go. When I was not screaming, my body rests only to sob and to cry the suffering out. I was shocked myself. I had never gone through this, I had never let such emotions overwhelm my body. I always had this under control. I would never cry over work. How did it all come to this? I must have had enough. This is not normal. 

Azahari came running to the door, knocking it 'BAD KAU OKAY TAK??' as if my body was ready to stop. No I wasn't okay, yet. A simple question could not quench this outburst. That was a question that should have been asked before I had this meltdown, not after. My uncontrollable sobs answered the question.

I'm not ashamed of the meltdown, I'm only ashamed that I am not brave enough to direct the energy to the source of this great pain. 


Azahari wanted to call the police, he feared for my safety. But something stopped him. I was a Schrodinger's cat, I was okay and not okay. 


It took me minutes to compose myself, and I was not doing a great job. Something snapped inside of me, I felt broken. I made it into my room while I was still sobbing. What comes next? What will happen from now on then? Now that my inner self has unleashed this monster unto the world, how would my sober self cope with the aftermath?


Azahari came into my room, so many questions asked. 'Kau okay tak? Kau okay tak?' and it only served to open the floodgates. I was such a mess, I couldn't control myself. The ugly emotions which had never really left me came back to take over. Azahari embraced me while I was on my chair, and he asked me why? I could only muttered 'Aku stress' under all the sobbing. 


'Aku ada kan?' Azahari tries to console me. Didn't I already know that? It didn't make me feel better, even when I knew he was there I was still so very tormented with my workload. I still felt so lonely and I suffered alone. It doesn't matter now, does it? A part of me that wants this to be unleashed, has unleashed it. That part of me sends this warning to myself to never pretend that I am Okay when I'm not, to not bury my emotions under cheerful texts with emojis, with never ending yeses even when I should have said no. Even if my brain tricked me into saying this is alright, my heart begged to differ.

This leaves too many questions, even for me. Am I depressed? I'm not, right? I mean, I laugh everyday. I'm functioning just fine. This meltdown is just an outburst. Or is it? But what I felt at that moment was, these past few months have rendered me too broken and emotionally unstable that a single notification sound on my phone can send me into a panic overdrive. I can not afford to pretend that I'm okay anymore, to convince myself that I'm alright when I am barely living. That perhaps me feeling that I was not Okay is an indicator that I really am not Okay.


How do I move forward. I'm embarrassed, but I have suffered too long and too much I couldn't keep it in anymore. My mental health has suffered tremendously, that my body was crying for help after I denied it for so long. I wanted to apologise, but maybe I really should start apologising to myself. Now that I had my meltdown, random things could be the trigger for another. Notification sounds, a simple question, even the thought of locking the door.   

I spent the rest of the day with Azahari, feeling a tad better. We went through our workload together and upon realising that it was almost time for him to go back home to his family, I pretended to do something else, because the thought of him leaving me behind with my own damn self is crippling me and it triggers my anxiety. My eyes watered when he was preparing to leave, but I could not do that to us, to him. I am a mess today, but I can't make him leave me feeling that he had failed me as a friend. I felt like I have burdened him enough by being the only witness to my meltdown and I felt so guilty to put him in that position. 

I spent an hour after he clocked out crying while packing my belongings. 

Something shifted today. Something has changed.  And the date will be forever carved into my history.



Write curses
  1. Replies
    1. Amin. Terima kasih tuan. terharu menerima kata2 semangat dari seorang yang asing :')


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