Thursday, 24 April 2014

Big Decisions and not letting things stand in your way

For the past two years, I have been trying to convince myself that I want to be an English and History teacher. After my HSC results came in, I realized that all the time I had off school sick over the year had severely affected my marks and I would not be getting into any medicine or pre-med courses. I was a little bit heartbroken, but had been expecting it and knew it was for the better. 

The hunt was on for a new career, and I had only a few short weeks to make a decision on what I was to do for the rest of my life. My marks for English and History had been really, really good and I enjoyed the subjects so much, but ever since I was a little girl I had wanted to be a doctor and I still had a real fascination with the medical world. My two conflicting interests were tearing me different ways and the two career paths I decided between were teaching and midwifery. The appeal of 10 weeks holidays a year and good hours tore me away from the medical profession I'd so log desired and I chose teaching. 

I've now been studying literature, history and cultural studies for a year and a half, and while last year I enjoyed my studies immensely, changing to a new university this year has made me reconsider my career choice. I began to realize that I cannot picture myself standing up in front of a classroom for the rest of my life, and that I'm not challenged by the course work (a good thing for some but apparently I'm a weirdo who likes things to be hard?). 

So, after a few months of thinking, research and countless episodes watched of The Midwives and One Born Every Minute (they seriously need to make some Aussie midwife shows!) I have finally decided to change to midwifery! I put in my application yesterday and have already been accepted into nursing (which was my second choice and has the exact same first year subjects as midwifery) to start next semester! I have to wait to see what my marks are this semester before I find out if I also got into the Bachelor of Midwifery but I'm super excited anyway because I know I'm going to be able to do it whether I need to transfer again from nursing or not!

A big part of the reason I have spent 2 years trying to convince myself to be a teacher is my health. Even now, my close family and friends are concerned with how I will cope with night shifts and such physical work with lupus but I had to take the chance and make this decision. I may have lupus, but why should I let it control such an important decision in my life? I may not ever be able to work full time in my profession due to my illness, but the same goes for teaching as well. On the other hand, I could go into remission in a few years and if I hadn't taken this chance, I could really regret not following my dreams. 

I can't think of anything more magical than helping to bring new life into the world everyday as a profession. Being a midwife would be more than just a job to me. It would be a privilege to help women bring their babies safely earth side and I am very excited for my new career path!

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Wednesday Wish list: Retro Kitchen/Dining

Retro Kitchen/Dining

So, now Jake and I have been in our home a few months, we are starting to nut out how we would like our home to look. Jake hates isn't a very big fan of the chintzy, shabby chic, vintage look I love so much, so in the spirit of compromise, he is allowing me to still decorate in a vintage/retro theme as long as I stick to a more gender neutral colour scheme and make it what we call "mid-century industrial kitsch". He doesn't know what kitsch means and I'm not sure he would approve of those salt and pepper shakers, but since I know I'l be the one spending the money to make our place look nice, I like to think I should be allowed a few kitsch and novelty bits and bobs of my choosing! Most of this stuff is from ModCloth. I deliberately chose stuff from an international store so the postage would put me off spending all my savings on everything in one go haha. I would really like to get bits and pieces here and there though, and will mix this stuff in with vintage stuff I already own and stuff I find along the way.

What do you think of this kind of style?

Sunday, 30 March 2014

A day with lupus.

Jake is in the kitchen, getting ready for work and making noise. The first thing I notice is the heaviness in my body. I feel so heavy! I move a little and it hurts. My joints are stiff and sore. My muscles ache. I open my eyes. It must be early because Jake is still here and it's still dark. I let myself fall back asleep, stirring slightly as he kisses me goodbye. 

My alarm is ringing and I open my eyes. Time to get up and ready for Uni. I try to reach out my arm, but it feels like a dead weight. It's 8am. I've had 10 hours sleep but I am still exhausted. Somehow I turn off the alarm. My eyes flutter as I try to keep them open. I slowly move one leg, then another. It hurts but I know I have to get myself moving and out of bed. My eyes start to close again and I shake them awake. Then begins the process of sitting up. I have to sit up so I stay awake. I give myself a pep talk, all the while shaking my head to keep my eyes open. Must make it to the closet. Must get dressed. I'm too tired. I'm not going to make it to Uni like this. 

I make my way to the shower, running into both door ways and stubbing my toe in my exhausted daze. In the shower, I sit and let the hot water wash over me, easing my stiff and sore joints and awakening me. I can't wash my hair today. It will take too much energy. Now, wrapped in a towel, a little more awake, I make my way back to the closet. I sit down to dress, not trusting my aching, tired body to stand. Next up is breakfast to give me the energy boost I need to start the day. 

I'm always late out the door. At some point in the morning, I know I'll fall back to sleep. On days when I need to be up at the same time as jake, he sometimes finds me asleep in the shower, or sprawled on the floor in front of the closet, still wrapped in my towel. Every little task is something I have to build myself up for. I only go to Uni for three hours a day, but when I get home I need a nap again. I'm exhausted. There are days when I start nodding off in the car and scare myself by going over the lines. There are days when I can't cook dinner, because I'm too exhausted. There are days where I literally have to choose between hanging out the washing or washing the dishes, because I know I don't have the energy for both. 

My illness might be invisible, but it's something I will have to manage for the rest of my life. I rarely drink alcohol anymore because its not worth the flare that it brings. If I stay up late, I'm risking not being able to get out of bed the whole next day. There are days that I can't get out of bed even after a good night's sleep, so I know not to risk it now. 

Sometimes I get tired of my lot, we all do, but despite the anxiety and depression this illness has brought me, I will never give up. Every day might be a battle, but whenever I can, I will battle with a smile on my face. 

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Thankful Thursday #6

Some of my cousins and second cousins. Love them!

How are the weeks going by so quickly lately? Seriously, it's Thursday already? What?

Anyway, this week I haven't really thought much about what I'm thankful for, so I'm kind of struggling to write this post, but I think it's because I've had a really good week (in a very ordinary way - i.e.. I was relatively healthy and nothing terrible happened), so this week I am thankful for:

Extended family - I may have mentioned before that I have an absolutely ginormous extended family, and I'm incredibly thankful that at my uncle's 50th on Saturday night I got to see many of them. Get togethers with the Cioffi's are always a memorable and amazing experience. I can't explain my love for my aunts and uncles, my cousins (all 14 of them) and their kids (all 21 of them). It is an amazing thing that our family is so large, yet so close to each other.

Car pooling - one of my friends from school who was a few years younger than me goes to uni the same time as me on Wednesdays and lives about 2 minutes away from me, so we decided to car pool! Besides not having to drive every second Wednesday now, I am so glad of the company on the drive and getting to chat with a friend on the way to uni and back. Still feeling a little on the outer since moving back home, so this simple little thing has helped a lot.

Rain - It's finally cooled dan enough to have soup for dinner and wear jeans over here with the last few days being a rainy and cool 20ish degrees and I'm kinda, surprisingly grateful! I'm a summer baby through and through, but we've had ridiculously hot weather since last September, so I'm feeling grateful for a drop in temperature and an excuse to snuggle on the couch!

Good news - I found out on the weekend that one of my cousins is having a baby in August! I'm so happy for him and his wife! He was my absolute idol growing up and mum always tells this story of how when I was 18 months, I had Giardea and he was only about 12 or something but I wouldn't go to mum or dad or any of my aunties, because I only wanted him and he held me for 5 hours while I screamed my head off in emergency. If anyone needs proof that he is destined to be the most fantastic dad ever, there it is! He will be so great and I'm so excited!

Friday, 21 March 2014

Friday's Finds: The Pyrex Gods are kind!

Last week saw me with a lot of doctors appointments, blood tests and other such goings-on relating to my illness. There was a lot of running around town associated with this and so to break things up a bit, I decided to call into the op shops that are located around my specialist's office. Lately, I haven't had a lot of luck at the op shops as my local ones have inflated their prices a ridiculous amount for anything they think even might be vintage or collectible, but I was lucky on this day to find not one, but three things that caught my eye and were actually cheap enough for me to justify bringing them home.

First was the large Pyrex dish - I don't own any rectangular pyrex and so I had to bring it home with me! It's a little scratched up, but still in pretty good shape for something that  don't doubt was very well used! Then I found the gorgeous little orange and brown, retro Pyrex ramekins for just $1.50 each. There were only three which is a shame because I'm sure they come in sets of four and I would have loved a complete set, but they are cute nonetheless and so I had to have them! Just as I was about to walk out the door, I found that little retro saucepan hidden down on the bottom shelf and I just had to have it! I think I'll use it as a planter on my verandah. Perfect with the floral pattern, right?

Have you had any luck in the op shops lately? Have the Pyrex gods been as kind to you as they have ben to me? I'd love to hear about your finds!

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Happy - We Are From [Byron Bay]

It's International Day of Happiness today, and to celebrate, people from all around the world are posting videos to YouTube featuring Pharrell Williams' catchy new song and the place where they live. This song and this film clip are literally the embodiment of where I live - Byron Bay (well, just south of Byron Bay anyway). I am so happy that I am able to live in such a fantastic place.

Check out YouTube to see if your hometown has a Happy - We Are From video and comment below with the link because I'd love to see your happy place! And, if you haven't seen any of Tommy Franklin's other video's then check those out as well! He is Byron's Dancing Man and is probably the happiest man on the planet, spreading cheer as he dances around the streets of Byron Bay on the daily.

Happy International Day of Happiness, everyone. I hope you find something to smile about today! xx

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Wednesday Wishlist - Three Outfits from Warehouse

Beloved British Brand, Warehouse, has recently expanded it's reach into Australia and their SS14 campaign, "Fashion Shooters", shot by Helena Christensen caught my eye from the moment I saw it. The campaign, to me, really encapsulated the ideal of the fashion blogger where the blogger is both subject and photographer, as Helena Christensen has been. All of Warehouse's clothes are so beautiful - bang on trend, but still really wearable, comfortable looking pieces that would easily be incorporated into any wardrobe. Here I have compiled three gorgeous outfits with different purposes from Warehouse's beautiful range that I think would be perfect for Australians as we come into the cooler weather (which I'm kind of hoping is soon. I'm sick of this humidity!) and which I would love to be able to shoot as outfit posts if I win the $500 wardrobe currently on offer by Warehouse and E-Tail PR.

Warehouse Comfortable and Casual
First up, a comfortable and casual outfit that would be perfect for just going shopping in or hanging out with friends. I love the Peony Print Woven Front Jumper so much! Florals are definitely not just for spring and summer, in my opinion and the hint of pink in amongst those darker colours is perfect to me. 
Warehouse Business Savvy
This look is one I'd be proud to walk into the office in (if I had an office job) and one that I think I'd feel really sophisticated and pretty in doing Arbonne consultations. The Ditzy Print Organza Blocked Top is fun and sophisticated and adds that pop of colour which I think every business outfit needs! The subtle jacquard pattern on the slouchy jacket adds such a nice texture to the outfit, as well  and I think it compliments the tailored pants perfectly. 

Warehouse A Formal Affair
How stunning is the detail on this dress? I am totally in love with it! The femininity, the texture, the silhouette - it is perfection! Paired with the blush coloured coat you would feel like a princess!

What do you think of Warehouse's range? Anything in Particular caught your eye?

Disclaimer: This post was written as a part of a competition with E-Tail PR. No compensation was given for this post and all opinions expressed are my own. For full details of each outfit, check my Polyvore. All Items from Warehouse. Only select items linked in post.