Life Stories, Uncategorized

My Great, Big, Independent Adventure!

 

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Anybody who knows me knows that I don’t go adventuring alone and I have never travelled all by myself.  I love when I defy my own thoughts and beliefs of what I think is possible.

I had put forward a proposal for a drought relief fund-raiser at my service provider, unbeknownst to me that there was already something in the works across all of our sites – we have several departments.  When I caught wind of what was happening, I thought “I got to be a part of this, no matter what!”. Unfortunately, it was on Friday, the day I have off.

I decided to ask whether I could get support for the day. It was unlikely, but I could get transport to and from. Then, I thought some more and asked my mother if I could catch a taxi to and from if a person I know met me on either end. Mum agreed and so began the next exciting chapter in my almost 28 years of being on this beautiful planet we call Earth. Initially, I felt scared but that’s a natural feeling of being frightened of the unknown. But I calmly gathered myself and started planning my day.

Gone are the days of ringing up and ordering a taxi. These days, yes I’m going to say it, there’s an app for that and for someone like me who has a speech impediment, it is so much easier. A few taps and bang, a taxi is ordered. How easy is that?

Next morning, I woke up bright eyed and bushy tailed. Today was the day I, Kaitlin Ann Lawrence, would not only travel in a taxi all by myself but would be embarking on my first solo adventure! My morning carer came in and got me ready for my day of firsts, and she would see me off then come back to greet me on my return. She even organised the taxi driver for the return journey. I felt so independent in the taxi, on my way to help raise much needed funds for our farmers and rural communities, a cause that has always been close to my heart.  A support worker whom I know met me at my destination and I texted my mother to say I’d arrived safely.

I headed straight for the office to get the fundraising started.  A Halloween bucket served as our donation container and together we raised $140 for our company-wide fundraiser. I’m beyond proud of our efforts and I proudly handed the money over to our main office.

Then I had an hour or so until my return trip so I did my time sheets while I waited (Yes, I do my own time sheets as well) and submitted them. Then the same support worker who greeted me, helped me board the taxi home. I was met by my morning carer on my arrival home.

All in all, I learned so much in four hours and I realised I am not a girl anymore, I am a woman! I have already began thinking about the next  solo adventure and how I can make myself more independent!

Be sure to stay tuned to find out what I come up with next!

Life Stories, Life+Style, Uncategorized

Yoga: My Life On A Mat

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Me with my fabulous yoga teacher and creator of Yoga Loft Newcastle,  Cveta.

I started yoga back in 2015 because I hated the gym I was at and I needed to keep fit.  I was also going through a tough time with anxiety as there was a lot going on in my life at the time.  My friend,  Amy suggested yoga as it would help not only my physical health but my mental health as well.  Anybody who knows me well knows that I don’t stick to things, I do something for six months and then I quit, get bored or walk away.  Not this time, three years down the track and I’m doing the best yoga I’ve ever done.

Yoga is a form of gentle exercise, with a focus on stretching and breathing.  I am a proud student of Yoga Loft Newcastle and I attend the Yin class on Monday.  I don’t do any tertiary education so yoga is also a time for me to learn and grow, listening to our teachers talk about anatomy, chakras and how a pose helps our bodies.  I also do my yoga practice completely blindfolded so I don’t get distracted, but it deepens my practice because my sight is taken away so my sense of hearing and touch are heightened as I need these senses to do yoga.  I never knew how much I relied on my sight, no matter how shocking it is, until I tried to do yoga with an eye mask on.

My classmates are my Yoga family and for the first time in forever, I’ve found somewhere I feel I belong outside of my family and close friends.  I’ll explain, I’ve never felt like I belonged anywhere outside of my family home and I felt like an outcast wherever I went.  Now when I enter Yoga Loft,  it’s like a sanctuary, quiet, peaceful and comfortable,  and it’s like coming home.

My family has noticed a change in my personality and my day-to-day anxiety levels have dropped dramatically.  Both, Mum and Dad plus other family and friends, are so supportive of what I do and they notice when I haven’t done yoga! For Christmases and birthdays, I get yoga clothes and equipment that I need instead of typical presents.  I believe that is a sign that my family and friends love the way yoga makes me feel and that they want me to keep achieving great things on the mat!

Life Stories

Friends Forever

I went to Lambton Public School for integration for most of primary school. I also commenced Girl Guides towards the end of year five, leaving me with a decision to either give up my dream of Girl Guides alongside my cousin or finishing primary school alongside my classmates I had been with since year one. I chose to be a Girl Guide, sadly leaving LPS without saying farewell.

I gained my Baden-Powell award in 2006, and subsequently graduating Guides. Once I graduated, I missed the friendships I had with my classmates and felt like something was missing. Since then I have searched on and off for my Lambton school friends and kept it on the quiet in case I never found them. I wanted to reconnect with my classmates, I wanted to get my group of friends back together.

I often wondered what it would be like at the year six farewell, year ten and year twelve formal, getting glammed up and dancing the night away with my friends.

Even at my own year twelve graduation, I vaguely recall standing on the stage feeling empty knowing people like Mat, Brendon, Bronwyn, Sam and Brock, weren’t there beside me. People who were there on the night wouldn’t have known – I hid it well.

Even watching high school films such as High School Musical and Grease, sparked questions. Would school life be any different, would I have excelled better and would I have the movie ending of everyone skipping out the school gate together, remaining friends forevermore.

The fear of being forgotten stopped me from getting into contact. I was afraid my friends wouldn’t remember me, so I faced the fact – I had Buckley’s chance of it ever happening. So I was quite upset about it all for a long time but I moved on, without getting closure.

One night as I looked at Instagram, as I do, I saw someone I remembered named Mat. So I tapped ‘follow’, unbeknown to me, that the missing puzzle piece was going to drop into the space. My life was about to change forever.

I received a message from Mat, asking if I went to Lambton, and I felt like bawling my eyes out in happiness. I replied with shaky fingers, and I said yes I did. I couldn’t believe it, I found someone who went through primary school with me. I still cannot believe people remember me and I am now in contact with a few people who I haven’t seen for nearly eighteen years and I now feel like I’m complete, because I’m reunited with my friends I thought I would never find – the people I grew up with.