Saturday Morning

Really nice to have a Saturday morning lie-in; it’s unusual for us both to not be busy early in the morning. Just discussing whether to make bread, or pancakes, or both. The sudden drop in the temperature outside is welcome. Had enough of sweating 3 litres every night! Might be time to bring the pineapple and avocado in though – they’ll have to squeeze in next to the others at the end of the futon!

Posted via email from Joseph’s posterous

Japanese spouse visa extension

So, as I mentioned on Facebook a couple of times over the past few weeks, I’ve been waiting on immigration to notify me that my visa extension application has been processed and I can go back to their Shinagawa office to get the stamp in my passport.

My visa expired at the beginning of this month, although immigration law states that I can stay for up to 2 months after expiry provided I’ve submitted an application for a new visa / extension. I’m now 6 weeks into that 2 months period.

Reading the notice stapled into my passport (above), I was assured that they would process my application by Sep 22nd – two days ago. Unfortunately I failed to read to the end of the paragraph in which it states that you’re just supposed to go to the office within that period to get your stamp – you don’t have to wait for the notification postcard (as has been the case until now, and as I have been doing).

I guess I’ll be heading down to immigration tomorrow, and hope that they don’t mind that I’m two days late!

Thanks to W00kie for pointing out my mistake.


When I arrived at immigration I was told that, as I had missed the deadline, I would need to report to the Inspection Counter. I did this, and within a few minutes was issued with a 3 year spouse visa – something I’ve wanted for the past two years!

Looks like I’ll be staying here a little longer then.

The Road to Recovery

It’s now almost two weeks since I first came down with this virus. The full-blown fever lasted for about 5 days – that’s been followed by an extended period of complete exhaustion and confusion, and continued weight loss (5kg now). It’s felt a bit like being permanently stoned, needing copious sleep, and having bizarre hallucinations.

One dream kept on coming around. It was a mild nightmare, and would see me waking up talking what must have seemed like rubbish, feeling trapped, stuck in a loop.

The dream was centered on a blurred text document on my mac, much like the one above. I can’t recall the exact wording, but the implied meaning was that my attempts to fix the current problem (that is, having a fever) were resulting in an error because there was an underlying problem that needed sorting out first. (This meaning wasn’t all that clear at first, thus it was only on the third day that I was able to discover this).

This really disturbed me, waking me fully and leaving me feel trapped.

But it made sense. I mean, this illness didn’t come out of nowhere, and had I been in a good space to begin with I’m sure my body would have dealt with it no problem. To become so ill and take so long to recover suggests that I was already pretty weak – something that doesn’t surprise me.

Thinking about it, the move from full-time work to managing my own time to meet the needs of my clients has been tremendously stressful. I took on too much work, made too many promises, and as a result found myself working crazy hours. I became more stressed than when I worked for a very difficult boss! It wasn’t all that good for my relationship with *Twinkle* either.

This illness then has given me the opportunity to reassess the way I’m doing things. For one thing, I need adequate sleep. Thus, I now have a curfew: At 10:30pm, no matter what I’m working on, I stop. Secondly, I need less screen-time. Last week it was made abundantly clear that I’d been looking at screens too much: just looking at my mac for a few minutes brought on a blinding headache. My eyes needed a rest. So I’m having more off-screen time.

I also need to be more realistic in terms of what I can achieve in the time I have available, and not make promises that are impossible to fulfill (and thus result in a great deal of stress).

Stress management in general is something I need to work on, by being more conscious of when I’m feeling it, and taking regular breaks to relax my body by stretching etc.

So where are we now then? Well, certainly not back up to 100%. I remain 5kg underweight, and very tired. Thankfully the skin on the inside of my mouth (which has been missing since I burnt it off with unripe kiwi fruit acid!) is really healing now, so I’ve started eating a lot more. This will hopefully help speed up the recovery process so I can be back on top form before the end of the month.

I’m also generally feeling less stressed.

So, we’re heading in the right direction, and ultimately my body will benefit from the experience of the past two weeks as I start to look after myself better.