Five months back, on a Thursday, I woke up and sat for an early meeting. We had a production issue, and the entire team was firefighting. The CDN we use for our services and infrastructure had a global outage, and there was little we could do at that moment. I couldn’t eat any breakfast and had back-to-back meetings the entire day. When I got up from my desk, it was already 5:30 PM.

I put on beans to pressure cook in the instant pot and decided not to skip my workout. Somehow I wasn’t feeling tired and ended up doing an intense workout. I showered with very hot water, filled my tub with it, and decided to lay in it for a while. Then I suddenly stood up, started the shower back on with cold water, and came out of the bathtub.

For the first time in my life, I felt what it meant to have a feeling of fainting. My head got dizzy, and my vision got blurry, had a hard time breathing. I didn’t panic and switched off the heat lamps in the bathroom and sat for a while. I panicked, not because of what was happening to me but in fear that this might destroy my chances of ever becoming an astronaut.

I got up, got out and lay on my bed. In 2 minutes, everything was okay. My bathroom does not have any windows or proper venting. It does have an exhaust fan, but I doubt it does much. I messaged a friend I met at Stanford who was a doctor, and he called me the next day—explained to me that this was hypertension or hypotension.

I had little to no oxygen. I hadn’t eaten. I was drained out. And was showering with hot water. I suddenly got up, and my body had a jerk of high blood pumping. Hence whatever happened, happened. Therefore eat before workouts and during the day.

I am still not sure what happened as it has never happened before or after that incident. My friend said it was hypertension; a nurse sitting beside me on the flight to Boston said hypotension. The doctor said he doesn’t know but yet charged me $700 for a visit and tests. Some part of me wanted it to happen again because it was fun to navigate in that condition where you feel like you are not in complete control of yourself. Is this what it feels like getting drunk? I might never know because I don’t drink. It’s weird because I have tried to get drunk way before some years back. It just never worked. Even the person serving me asked me if I was okay after seven back-to-back shots and asked me if she wanted to leave me home or if I could walk straight. That was the first and last time I ever drank that much. It was when I had left one of my jobs and was ecstatic for leaving that workplace.

My metabolism back then was crazy high, and I was hogging food like crazy those days, but nothing was getting on my skin. I feel good about how I am right now. Not bulky, not thin.

I’ve never understood why people drink or smoke excessively. I don’t judge them at all, but I’ve lost a few people, and it hurts me to see them hurt themselves. I remember a coworker in one of my workplaces. I felt she was a talented engineer and programmer and wanted to befriend her. I rarely befriend anyone at work as it’s against my rules of “workplace-keeping.” Work is work. I will laugh, crack jokes, but when it comes to delivery, I am the person who will go over and beyond to get a job done perfectly. Idk, it’s just me. I understand it’s hard to build relations as we spend a lot of our time at work, but it’s not compulsory to only make friends at work.

A friend can be your mailman; our generations have tried to “level-up” their status quo but doing that, they have lowered it.

Anyway, (I go all over the place so fast, it’s like my brain firing millions of neurons every millisecond) I wanted to befriend the engineer in question, but one day we were at the happy hour and saw her leaving and coming back the bar. Long story short, she needed company to smoke. I enlisted but didn’t smoke. I felt lowkey bad for her. Why would someone like that would so something like that to herself? Some part of me wanted to ask her, but I left the workplace after two years and never got the chance.

Health is important. That’s all I can say.

Current VO2 max: 46.5