Monday, February 27, 2017

Breathing and Baby Shower

Saturday we had my sister's Baby Shower! We tried to keep it a surprise and we kind of succeeded for the most part at least! It was a really nice afternoon and I hope she had a memorable and fun celebration! We're all very excited to see if it's going to be a girl or a boy! One thing is certain though, this is going to be the most spoiled baby EVER! It was also really great having my friend Antoinette here.

I have been feeling more short of breath and tired for the last two weeks, and eventually decided to see my Dr a week earlier for my check-up. It's so hard to know when you need to see the Dr because you might be getting sick/worse, or it might just be how you're "supposed" to feel with low lung function. Appointments are also booked so far in advance and he is sooooooo busy that you don't want to just mess schedules around for nothing. After a lot of deliberation I decided to just do it, and went for blood tests as well.

So on Thursday I went to see him. I have no infection and my lung function was actually up a bit. The 6 min walk test results were a bit down but relatively good as always (I seem to be able to walk pretty fast with my oxygen set on 5 litres considering my low lung function). I know this is supposed to be good news, but it's also really frustrating. Is being anxious making me feel more out of breath? Is it hormones affecting how I feel? If it is anxiety, why am I anxious if I'm already on meds for anxiety? Is it just a bad week or two? It also feels like my body played tricks on me then! I could do without my brain playing tricks on my lungs.... really! So in the end I feel a bit like the boy who cried wolf, and also a bit like an idiot. You would think after 32.5 years I would know my body a bit better, Oh well.... just carrying on and focusing on more fun stuff like the trip away for my dad's birthday soon and other fun stuff planned with friends.

We've also had a sh%tload of rain! It's been great, as we've had such a drought for the last 2 years. Even though our roof is NOT loving the rain, I am. As well as my garden! And it has made the kitties extra cuddly. There might be some more this coming week :-) Enjoy the last 2 days of Feb!!!!

Friday, February 17, 2017

Valentines Day and relatively boring week.

I was super spoiled for Valentine's Day this year. When I went downstairs on Tuesday morning to make coffee and breakfast there was a vase full of red roses, a potted succulent, a chocolate and a very awesome card waiting for me. What an awesome surprise, not sure how Chris pulled that off exactly! We went out for Indian food in the evening at Ghazal (Melrose Arch). Their food was amazing as always, although this was actually our first time at the Melrose Arch branch, we normally go to the Sunninghill one. We were both pretty tired so we didn't stay out for long, but it was great.

The only other cool thing I did was brunch with Andrew yesterday after bio, at Milk in Rosebank. Haven't been there before, and it's so nice to try out a new place (especially in my current life situation where I feel a bit stagnant). It's right next to Circa Gallery, which I also haven't been to before, so we popped in quickly. Didn't stay long as there was some sort of class happening there but at least I know what it looks like now.

Feeling a bit bleh, in a stange mood. Next week will be much busier so hopefully I won't have time to feel bleh. Going to the gynae later today for quaterly visit, and dentist on Monday for a clean... so that's those medical boxes ticked. Have a good weekend everyone and Happy Fifth wedding anniversary to my sister and Pierre tomorrow! I know this year will be amazing for you guys!

Sunday, February 12, 2017

35 years!

Happy wedding anniversary to my parents for tomorrow! 35 Years of being married is no small feat! May there be many happy years ahead still! We love you!

Had a fairly boring week. Bio has continued to be a killer for this whole month now and feeling more short of breath. Not fun. Had quick brunch with Andrew on Thursday which was nice, and met up with another friend I used to work with for coffee at her house later that day. Yesterday we saw Cecile, Dean and their cutest little boy Ben! Friendliest baby EVER!

Had supper at my parents' house last night with the sister and Pierre, and today we've done nothing apart from lying on the couch and watching a movie. (I did to a load of laundry and washed the dishes at least). Finished another toy for the soon-to-arrive niece/nephew.... was supposed to be a koala but looks more like a mouse?? In 2 months' time the baby will be here! Nothing else to report on.... have a great week!

Sunday, February 5, 2017

"Breathe" - by Brian Mark

So this is the result of Brian's visit 2 weeks ago...

You can listen to it on soundcloud here, and check out Brian's website here!

I really love it (apart from not liking the sound of my own voice!!), and hopefully one day he will be able to organise a performance here in SA!

"Breathe was written for pianists Izzy O’Connell and Kathleen Supové, which incorporates pre-recorded sound design and spoken narration. The concept of this piece comes from my interest of the condition known as Cystic Fibrosis, a genetic disorder commonly affecting the lungs, and other organs of the body. A good friend of mine was born with this condition, and her stories have shaped my view of my own fragile health and mortality. Born in South Africa, Alice Vogt is still surviving her first lung transplant since her operation in 2008. For myself that has a very serious case of asthma, I’m aware that my own health is a small comparison to the struggles of someone who has CF, as I am constantly mindful of what they experience on a daily basis when I take my asthma inhaler every morning. There are strong arguments in the medical community that Frédéric Chopin may have very well suffered and died from our modern diagnosis known as Cystic Fibrosis. Due to this research and revelation, the piece is constructed in many forms, as it incorporate elements of music quotation from Chopin’s various works (Nocturne Op. 9 No.1 in Bb MinorPrelude No. 15 in Db Major, and Prelude Op. 28 No. 4 in E Minor) juxtaposed with sounds of breathing and circulation, with splices of narration from an interview of my friend talking about this disease. I was intrigued of Alice’s transition into her new lungs, and how she felt the first time her new organs felt completely fresh and new, which therefore lead me to also incorporate chord progressions from Pink Floyd’s Breathe (In the Air). The use of two pianos in this work is a multi-sided canvas of both experiences, the prognosis of this condition, and the new freedom that is given to successful lung transplant receivers. Although not all surgical procedures of lung transplants are successful, the gift of a new life from this medical perspective intrigues me on a profound spiritual level…The interview with Alice for the spoken narration component of this work was conducted at her home in Johannesburg, South Africa on 18 January, 2017. In addition, I would sincerely like to thank Oli Lewington, Engagement Director from the Cystic Fibrosis Trust in the UK for his assistance and guidance on this project.Breathe was made possible by a grant from the American Composers Forum with funds provided by the Jerome Foundation, and was premiered at the Yamaha Piano Salon in New York City on 26 January, 2017."

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

February and travelling!!!!

It's Feb!!!!! First month of 2017 is done, yay :-) Been an awesome year so far, Jan was a great month for me. Let's hope Feb is just as great. Feeling very positive at the moment... about life, what the future might hold, the friends I have, Love Life; Gift Life, becoming an aunt soon.... everything is just in a good space at the moment (well apart from my physical constraints).

Had a laid back weekend, just saw my mom and sis for some tea. Did some gardening on Sunday (I use the term loosely.... I sat and pulled out some weeds and cut off a few stuff before collapsing on the couch drenched in sweat)... Chris jumped in and did some more significant stuff. It's looking great after all the rain we've had.

Last night we went out for supper with Andrew, caught up on his Europe trip! I really hope I can travel again one day!!!!! So badly want to see Europe (the few days in Sweden with WTG doesn't really count). And New York!!! Watched 2 episodes of the Netflix documentary series "Metropolis" this morning.... San Francisco and London. Those are the two cities I've been to among those featured. Didn't want to watch the other ones yet as I know I will just want to go even more badly. At the same time I'm also really grateful that I HAVE been to these 2 places (and London 3 times at that!)... I think for a lot of people travelling is addictive.... I would rather sacrifice other luxuries and use the money to TRAVEL. Right now the only "travelling" we have planned is a trip to Magaliesberg for my dad's 60th birthday at the end of March... it's very close to Joburg so it doesn't even count as travelling but at least it's something.

Anyways.... may your month of Feb be filled with LOVE!