A few books I’ve DNF’d lately

Fire round coming up … I’m going to give short statements as to why I DNF’d these books. I can say with absolute clarity and honestly that I will be going back to these books. They are not leaving my shelves. They have just been started, stopped and then removed from my bedside table (immediate book grabbing pile).

Twisted Love by Ana Huang

  • Writing was a big rough for what I was looking for at the time
  • Have been told by a beautiful customer that this was her least favourite in the series and also believes I will like further books in the series more
  • My mood for smutty reading slowed down

Five Bush Weddings by Clare Fletcher

Iris by Fiona Kelly McGregor

  • Written with no quotation marks – something that doesn’t resonate with my reading style
  • Dark Australian mafia read and comes across as a strong feminist read as well – love that
  • Gritty, well-written and researched
  • Based on fact and will need to be in the right mood to read of possible gruesome and graphic retellings

I am now currently onto The Night Travellers by Armando Lucas Correa and it is fantastic! What are you reading this week and how is it travelling?

Real Talk Thursday: That feeling of self-doubt

I find it challenging to convince my brain sometimes that I am the best person for the job. Self-doubt can weigh in on decision making in my life far too heavily at times.

Let’s talk an example; recently, I decided to expose myself to a new opportunity/challenge and perspective. At the time of this challenge taking place, my thought patterns when a little like this … “YES! I can do this.”, “I tick all the boxes.”, “I have the ability to make this fit in my life and thrive.”. All great and probably truthful things, correct?

However, a day or so after being in that positive frame of mind, performing at a happiness rate and with confidence that is a true part of myself, I began to doubt my ability. Thinking thoughts of; “Maybe I won’t be good enough”, “I probably wouldn’t be the right fit.”, “What if I can’t handle it?”, “Surely, there is someone better than me to do this”. These overpowering negative thoughts tend to hold more traction in the human brain than the positive thoughts. Why do you think that is?

For me, I think the negative thoughts can trigger that overthinking part of my brain where hypothetical downfall is more and more inevitable. The hardest part is challenging those thoughts and proving to yourself why they are not true.

Therefore, I am attempting to change:

“Maybe I won’t be good enough” INTO “I am good enough and capable as I have succeeded in this task or identical before in X,Y,Z.”

“I probably won’t be the right fit” INTO “Why should I try and fit when maybe what this experience is asking me to do is be myself and that in fact might be the perfect fit.”

“What if I can’t handle it?” INTO “This experience may be hard at first but if I am strong enough to ask for help when I need it, learn from those with more experience and take on valid feedback, I most likely will be able to handle it.”

“Surely, there is someone better than me to do this” INTO “I am capable and strong. I am intelligent and have an abundance of experience in preparation for this challenge. I could in fact BE the BEST person for this.”

I think a lot of these affirmations are in fact transferable to many experience and aspects of life. As I can only speak from my own experiences, I have learnt that self-doubt will stop my personal self growth if I do not challenge it and remove it from my thought patterns. Growing is part of life and changing paths is also part of life. I guess that is just some of life’s beauty, we manifest what we wish to get out of this life and self-doubt is not on my list people!

Book Review: ‘Heartstrong: Chumpy, Minnie & Me’ by Ellidy Pullin w/ Alley Pascoe

Chumpy, Ellidy and Minnie’s story is one for the ages. Their perspective on love, life and strength is unbelievable. In particular I strongly admire Ellidy’s ability to keep living through her grief and bring Minnie into a world swirled by strong belief that she is loved, she is a miracle creation and first and foremost, that she is the daughter of Alex ‘Chumpy’ Pullin.

Let’s start by chatting about the big and colourful being that was Chumpy.

Alex ‘Chumpy’ Pullin was an Australian snowboarder who competed at the 2010, 2014 and 2018 Winter Olympics. He held the honour of carrying the Australian Flag in the opening of the 2014 Sochi Winterย Olympics. He won the snowboard cross World Championship – twice. He was an athlete. He was the musical creator and singer behind Chumpy and the Sunsetaroonies. He was a bright soul and he was Ellidy’s person for this wonderful thing called life.

On the 8th of July 2020, the life that Ellidy knew took a devastating turn. Chumpy tragically passed away in a shallow water diving blackout at the age of 33. This unfathomable accident shook those who knew Chumpy personally, had followed his athletic life and achievements, those who competed with him, those in his home town, celebrities across the globe and just ordinary people like myself who heard this on the news one morning. A fit, healthy and active man who was incredibly experienced in the water, passing away. Surely this doesn’t happen right?

A little about Ellidy – she and Chumpy met at the age of 21 and fell immediately in love. She had studied nursing, commerce and worked in a variety of jobs. Chumpy used to describe her as someone who was ‘always happy’ and ‘woke up happy’. For Ellidy to still find that light within herself and for Minnie, even now after the tragedy she’s experience, I’m just in awe and admiration. A really large part of what Ellidy’s purpose, advocacy and awareness is around shallow water diving blackouts. She also aims to shine a light on post mortem sperm retrieval, as this is how little Minnie was created.

Ellidy and Chumpy always knew they’d start a family and they’d been trying for the past 12 months before Chumpy’s accident. Luck was never on their side. They felt as if they came close a few times, but sadly never fell pregnant. IVF appointments were discussed, plans were made and then suddenly, Chumpy wasn’t there. In the hours after Chumpy’s passing, a close friend that actually brought Ellidy and Chumpy together in the first place, relayed to Ellidy’s brother this amazing procedure called post mortem sperm retrieval. Ellidy only had to hear the words, “There is still a chance you and Chumpy can have a baby” and that was enough for her to say “Yes, go, do what you need to do”, for close friends and family to jump to action. There are a number of loop holes in making a procedure like this happen, including time sensitivity after a persons passing, legal requirements and state legislations. The stars aligned and Ellidy likes to believe that Chumpy was along the journey pushing for those green lights from above.

Even through her grief, Ellidy knew that having Chumpy’s baby was something she had to do. She had her parent’s support, her brother, Chumpy’s parents and sister, as well as her multitude of close friends encouraging her to make this happen when she was ready. 15 months after Chumpy’s passing, que the creation of Minnie Alex Pullin. And let me tell you folks, she’s bloody gorgeous!

I’m so glad this heartbreakingly beautiful story was one of my first reads this year. I love watching my daily Instagram stories of Minnie, as found on Ellidy’s profile, and watching her grow surrounded by love. I encourage you to read this book, educate yourself on the power of true love and absorb the wonderful miracles that are created through modern medicine. Below, you’ll find one of the most heartwarming videos of Minnie and her dad ๐Ÿ’ซ๐Ÿ’–