As some of you may know I was in a documentary back in 2012. It followed the PIP scandal, where it had been found that non-medical silicone had been used for internal breast surgery.
I had no idea at the time of filming that it would be on a primetime BBC3 show, or that people would still remember me from it!
I've managed to at last get a copy of it and I've popped it onto You Tube. Hopefully they won't mind now that BBC is no longer a channel apart from online. My shop had a rebrand after the documentary (it used to be called Silicone Sally, and you can see my section at around 48 minutes 50 into the documentary. I would never actively argue against breast surgery and believe in choice for all women, but regardless you may find it an interesting thing to watch.
If you need any help or advice about anything raised in the show you can email me at any time.
I'm not a big reader and oh how I really wish I was. It's something I've tried to change and I'm never giving up hope!
There are some series of books I can read so easily and be so surprised by. Like James Herriot. I wasn't expecting much when I picked one of his up at my Grandmother's house, but there was just something about it. I used to watch the show on the TV, but the books were different. Set in the 1930s, they were real stories with atmosphere and characters from his journey as a new vet, rattling around in the cars of the time in the Yorkshire Dales. I laughed and cried and whizzed through every chapter in the entire series in no time. So I know I can read when I find the right books, it's just that they don't come along too often.
I've read the odd book on and off through my 36 years on this planet, but it did get to the stage when I had 9 part read books on the go. Yes nine, that's not so good is it. The last couple of years have had an extra challenge to my reading. Lupus has entered my life and it's most challenging symptom is extreme fatigue. I get so tired, even when I've only been up an hour in the morning on some days, so sitting down with a book can mean sleep time in around 30 seconds after starting. Needless to say falling asleep is a real challenge to reading and means I don't get too far through books these days!
I realised something I love though that could help though. I always love wearing headphones and I love music, so I thought that I'd give audiobooks a go and woah ...they are great! I can listen to them when I am driving, when I am cooking, doing simple tasks on the PC and other times in life when I would have popped some music on. I can go through books as I've always wanted to, just in a different way and a way that suits my needs better. I can completely focus on the words at times when I am not fighting to keep my eyes open. I am fighting a losing battle with books in printed form all the while I have this extra battle with fatigue going on but I now have another avenue in to reading and that makes me very happy.
So, the point of all this is that I've been reading, well listening to, a great book.
It's called Mastery and it's by Robert Greene.
I seem to have gravitated towards biographies and non-fiction since finding my way to audiobooks, and I saw some great reviews that lead me to this one in particular. It's a beast, as in really long, but I seem to have got that lovely whizzing through feeling like I did with my James Herriots. The book is so interesting as it looks at the reasons that some people master the field that they are in. Rather than just being a huge book of theory, Robert talks us through the lives of Leonardo Da Vinci, Albert Einstein, Mozart and some amazing contemporary masters. It's a bit black and white at points, but I think it needs to be in order to really drive home his ideas and keep us on track with the theory and fibre of his argument at the time. He shows us that we don't need to be born with a gift or be some special human being, we just need to find what makes us unique. We need to keep a wide view of our calling and let life guide us through, even noticing the things we feel are our flaws, and help them guide us. It takes practice to become a master of anything, which is something that we are not so good at during this digital and age of instant gratification. We also need a mentor who can help guide us and impart knowledge to us during our apprenticeship phase, before we break away and find our own path as we follow the last part of our journey to mastery. It's a fascinating book and I've loved it so much it's made me write a little blog post about it. I've even got it as a printed book now too so I can highlight bits and jot my thoughts down in. Who knows, one day I might even be able to kick this fatigue and sit down with a cuppa and read it as well :)
I always think that people should be celebrated, especially those flying under the radar.
I recently heard about this amazing woman and I just wanted to share. Yoky is a Japanese Neurobotics engineer and an absolutely wonderful role model for young women especially. She has spent her life researching neuroscience and robotics and combining the two to create the most phenomenal prosthetics and especially a prosthetic hand.
She played tennis when she was young and was semi-professional until she was forced to retire due to a repeated ankle injury. She dreamed of creating a robotic tennis opponent for herself right back when she was young and this is something that she carried forward when she moved from Japan to the US when she was 16.
She has worked on so many projects during her life and is now in the hands of Apple, but she came to my attention with the prosthetic hand she created. It is an absolute work of art. It is robotic but modelled bone by bone on the human hand with multiple motors each corresponding to muscles and with strings playing the role of tendons along each digit. Her knowledge of the use of a hand in tennis, merged with her knowledge of neuroscience as well as robotics has created something revolutionary. As Matthew O'Donnell, dean of the U.W. College of Engineering states, she is "a mechanical engineer, neuroscientist, bioengineer, robotics expert and computer scientist, all in one… [with] …the ability to see what is possible by combining all these disciplines."
It's a wonderful achievement for a woman to rise so high in so many many dominated fields. She is an inspiration and I salute you Yoky.
I sit on a busy train not talking to the person next to me, but why? Conversation enables us to learn, teaches us empathy, opens us up to the lives of others, makes a tedious train journey fly by, boosts our confidence and self-esteem, acts as vital stress relief and a multitude of other things.
There are reasons against it of course - not wanting to annoy the person next to us, not wanting to come across badly, wanting to catch up with the last episode of Downton, wanting to act like everyone else. It's good to take time out on our own to reflect and chill, but sometimes we should just start a conversation and see where it takes us.
Peter Sharp makes absolutely inspirational videos about this and other social topics.
Take a few minutes out to watch his amazing train dance party in Perth. I should imagine this train ride was the best one these people will ever have:
Next time you sit next to someone you think looks interesting and have some spare time, maybe say hello and see where it takes you.
Hi everyone! It's a lovely sunny morning here in Sussex and I am sitting here with Fleetwood Mac on and a cup of coffee :)
I just want to take a few minutes to pass on this lovely article that I came across on Twitter. I have talked to a lot of breast cancer survivors through the years and it's certainly true that everyone moves forward with their life after a mastectomy or lumpectomy in a different way.
She is in the US and the tattoo studio that helped her has now started a lovely new project across the US. One day every year, the 10th of October, they encourage mastectomy ladies to come in and get a tattoo of their choice, across their scars or somewhere else, in a supportive environment. It's a wonderful idea and a wonderful story. The P.ink project as it's called is in it's second year this year and going from strength to strength. Their lovely video is also simply wonderful and well worth a watch.
It seems such a wonderful idea and would be an excellent event to have here in the UK don't you think?
I love taking a look around to see what is on offer when I can. From nice stories that give a warm fuzzy glow, to funny anecdotes to wise words. Today I came across a blog on positivity and I thought I would share as it had some very good points.
There are also some lovely quotes in there, with my favourite being:
“One important key to success is self-confidence. An important key to self- confidence is preparation.” Arthur Ashe