We Shouldn’t Be Ashamed of Failure

…so long as you’ve given it 100%.

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I was a high achieving student in high school – I graduated as the top girl in my grade with the highest possible exit ranking. I used this to land a position in the Bachelor of Veterinary Science program at a good university – a very difficult and challenging course.

All seemed smooth enough while I was beginning – I wasn’t expecting high distinctions all round, but I was happy with distinctions or credits. My marks didn’t begin the best, no matter how hard I tried, but things really hit home in the first exam period, where one exam was much more difficult than expected. I passed with a credit overall, but it scared me to think that failing a subject was a real possibility despite my results in high school.

Second semester rolled around, and it was much tougher with higher expectations and a higher fail rate. In week 5, I failed my first test – worth only 7% of my final grade – despite studying for days beforehand. I was disappointed in myself and insanely upset. In week 10, I failed my first assignment due to my own mistake of answering the wrong questions. In week 12, I forgot to put my name on a lab report and markers couldn’t locate it, resulting in 0%. Despite all of this, though, I was still sitting on a 75% average leading into the final exams.

The first exam was a practical anatomy test, which I felt okay about. It was challenging and nerve racking, but I passed overall. The final exam was my only opportunity to pass the second component of the subject, physiology – which I needed to pass to pass overall.

The exam was certainly tough, and a lot of people struggled. I came out of it passing anatomy, but failing physiology by a small amount, earning me a second chance in the form of a second exam a few months later.

In the gap between the first and second exam, I realized that even though the first exam had all us vet students asking for help in our Facebook group, I heard absolutely nothing regarding a second chance exam. No one posted anything, possibly out of feeling ashamed of the mark they had received. Admittedly, I was afraid to reach out too – afraid that my classmates would judge me for not passing the first exam, and afraid that I would be close to the only one who had failed. So I didn’t post anything.

I didn’t post anything despite having given my all to the first exam. I gave it everything I had, I studied every moment I could, yet I didn’t get the result I wanted. Why should I be ashamed of that? It’s not like I slacked off. It’s not like I didn’t focus during the exam. I gave it 100%.

I shouldn’t be ashamed of trying my best. I shouldn’t be afraid to let other people know that I failed a test. I should be proud of the effort I gave, and be prepared to figure out where I went wrong. I should get over it and move on. After all, I gave up sleep, fun and relaxation for that test. I sacrificed, yet fate wasn’t on my side when it came to the types of questions asked on the exam.

It happened. I failed. I learned from it.

I’m not going to be ashamed and I can’t blame anyone but myself.

I completed the second exam yesterday and am awaiting the result. If I pass, I continue to second year. If I don’t, I have to repeat first year or reconsider my options.

But you know what? I tried my best the entire time. And that’s what really matters.

Sarah May xxx
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Life Update

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As I am writing this, I am at a house on a huge farm in Cootamundra, NSW (about 2 hours from Canberra), completing 10 days of beef cattle placement and 5 days of sheep placement as part of Uni. This of course means that I am now living in daylight savings time, which is really messing with my head. Still light at 9pm?? Really??

In order to get here, I needed to catch a 7am flight to Brisbane (requiring me to be awake at 4:30 AM the morning after Australia Day), before boarding a second flight to Sydney, and traveling five hours by car with one of my good uni friends staying at a nearby farm. So much traveling!

After this placement, I head home for two hectic days of packing my life away again and somehow finding time for Valentines Day before making the big move up to Townsville for uni for another year. So yeah, it’s uni time again.

So placement + an upcoming exam + not much more time at home + uni starting again + the house I’m staying at for placement having no wifi = a very busy and post-deprived Sarah.

SO as you’ve probably guessed by now my posting schedule has reverted back to my regular semester schedule of one post per week. I’ll be scheduling these posts for Sunday nights at 6 PM Australian Eastern Standard Time (GMT+10) and I have a LOT lined up, so just wait!

I’ll see you next Sunday with a little post from my phone, since I’ll still be on placement.
Sarah May xxx
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100 Questions No One Asks Tag!

100 Questions No One Asks Tag

I love doing tag posts, so after seeing CutiePieMarzia‘s recentish YouTube video of her doing this tag, I thought I’d do it too! I doubt anyone will actually be reading all of these questions, but if you do… well, you’re going to know a whole lot more about me than you ever really needed to know!


1: Do you sleep with your closet doors open or closed?

I don’t really have a preference – it just depends on whether I’ve forgotten to close them during the day. So usually… open.

2: Do you take the shampoos and conditioner bottles from hotel?

Nope – not only do I rarely stay at a hotel, I need so much more shampoo and conditioner than is in those tiny bottles for my giant mop of hair!

3: Do you sleep with your sheets tucked in or out?

… I don’t really sleep with sheets… but my blanket is tucked out?

4: Have you ever stolen a street sign before?

No!

5: Do you like to use post-it notes?

They’re good in theory, so I own heaps, but I never really use them.

6: Do you cut out coupons but then never use them?

I’ve never cut out a coupon, but if I did, I’d probably never use them.

7: Would you rather be attacked by a big bear or a swarm of a bees?

A bear – I hate bees so much and feeling them fly around me and sting me so many times would be so bad! At least with a bear it’d be a quick death.

8: Do you have freckles?

Yes 🙂

9: Do you always smile for pictures?

ALWAYS.

10: What is your biggest pet peeve?

People who never ever listen to what I’m saying!

11: Do you ever count your steps when you walk?

Nope.

12: Have you ever peed in the woods?

Probably as a kid, but with other people around I couldn’t bring myself to do it.

13: What about pooped in the woods?

No.

14: Do you ever dance even if theres no music playing?

Yes! Only occasionally though.

15: Do you chew your pens and pencils?

I used to, but not anymore.

16: How many people have you slept with this week?

As of the week I’m writing this (9th January), just one – Sam 🙂

17: What size is your bed?

Double bed at home, king single at uni.

18: What is your Song of the week?

Uptown Funk – Mark Ronson ft. Bruno Mars

19: Is it okay for guys to wear pink?

Definitely! Each to their own.

20: Do you still watch cartoons?

No, but I’m not against cartoons at all! If I found a good one, then I would.

21: Whats your least favorite movie?

I thought for ages about this and couldn’t come to a definite least favourite movie, but if there was one movie that I didn’t enjoy that I had to list, it would be Mary Poppins (oops).

22: Where would you bury hidden treasure if you had some?

Probably just my backyard for the next owners of the house to find!

23: What do you drink with dinner?

Before my health kick: Coca Cola. During my health kick: water.

24: What do you dip a chicken nugget in?

I’m a no-sauce kinda girl, but I do enjoy myself some sweet and sour sauce if the nuggets are from McDonalds.

25: What is your favorite food?

Pretty much any kind of creamy pasta dish, especially spinach and ricotta cannelloni!

26: What movies could you watch over and over and still love?

The Harry Potter series!

27: Last person you kissed/kissed you?

Sam! Or my dog Maxxie/my cat Bella, if they count.

28: Were you ever a boy/girl scout?

I was a Girl Guide between the ages of 8 and 13 – I was a patrol leader and everything!

29: Would you ever strip or pose nude in a magazine?

I would only ever consider it if it was done tastefully, and definitely never for any ‘porno’ magazines! But realistically, who would want me to pose nude in a magazine!?

30: When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper?

June 2011, to Sam.

31: Can you change the oil on a car?

… no.

32: Ever gotten a speeding ticket?

… yes 😦 In November 2014, I got pulled over on the highway while going down a hill on my way from Townsville to Mackay. Down. A. Hill.

33: Ever ran out of gas?

No way – I’m way too cautious for that!

34: Favorite kind of sandwich?

Chicken cheese and avocado.

35: Best thing to eat for breakfast?

Croissants for sure! I don’t care whether they’re savoury with ham and cheese or if they’re sweet with some sort of jam.

36: What is your usual bedtime?

10pm – 10:30pm usually.

37: Are you lazy?

YES.

38: When you were a kid, what did you dress up as for Halloween?

I remember being a witch, a devil and other miscellaneous ‘creepy’ things.

39: What is your Chinese astrological sign?

1996 – year of the rat.

40: How many languages can you speak?

Just one (English obviously), but I learned a tiny bit of French and Japanese in school.

41: Do you have any magazine subscriptions?

Nope – used to compulsively collect DOLLY and Girlfriend magazine as a preteen!

42: Which are better legos or lincoln logs?

Is this even a question? Lego. Nothing else will compare. Ever.

43: Are you stubborn?

If it’s regarding an opinion I have, yes.

44: Who is better…Leno or Letterman?

I’ve watched neither.

45: Ever watch soap operas?

No.

46: Are you afraid of heights?

If there’s a serious risk of me falling, yes! If it’s safe, I have no issue with it.

47: Do you sing in the car?

If I’m alone and a good song comes on, of course!

48: Do you sing in the shower?

Not since I moved out of my uni room (which had its own ensuite). If other people are around then definitely not!

49: Do you dance in the car?

No – I’m still new to driving so I don’t like taking my hands off the wheel.

50: Ever used a gun?

NO. Never will.

51: Last time you got a portrait taken by a photographer?

2013, when my family got family photos.

52: Do you think musicals are cheesy?

No way, I love musicals!

53: Is Christmas stressful?

I suck at gift giving, so the present buying is stressful, but the actual day is great!

54: Ever eat a pierogi?

What is that?…

55: Favorite type of fruit pie?

Apple pie.

56: Occupations you wanted to be when you were a kid?

I wanted to be a vet nurse (cute), a weather presenter or a singer (even though I couldn’t sing).

57: Do you believe in ghosts?

Not “ghosts”, but spirits being around.

58: Ever have a Deja-vu feeling?

Pretty much every few weeks.

59: Take a vitamin daily?

Nope, but I take medication daily!

60: Wear slippers?

Nope.

61: Wear a bath robe?

Nope.

62: What do you wear to bed?

Pyjamas?

63: First concert?

Short Stack in 2010 (for non-Aussies: they were THE band every 12 year old girl loved back then)

64: Wal-Mart, Target or Kmart?

I’ve never been in a Wal-Mart, but I LOVE Kmart!

65: Nike or Adidas?

Neither.

66: Cheetos Or Fritos?

What are Fritos? (I guess that means I prefer Cheetos)

67: Peanuts or Sunflower seeds?

Sunflower seeds 😀

68: Ever hear of the group Tres Bien?

No.

69: Ever take dance lessons?

I never took “lessons” but I was in my high school dance troupe for four years.

70: Is there a profession you picture your future spouse doing?

Electrical/Mechatronics Engineering (hi Sam)

71: Can you curl your tongue?

Yes! I figured out how to do it only recently!

72: Ever won a spelling bee?

Back in primary school, I actually did.

73: Have you ever cried because you were so happy?

Probably only once in my life, and I can’t even remember what it was for! Since writing this, I cried from happiness when someone handed in $70 that I’d dropped at a nightclub into the front desk! I was a mixture of intoxicated, emotional and extremely tired, plus $70 is a LOT of money to me! Thinking I’d lost it devastated me, so seeing that it had been handed in was just so overwhelming.

74: Own any record albums?

No 😦

75: Own a record player?

No 😦

76: Regularly burn incense?

No

77: Ever been in love?

YES

78: Who would you like to see in concert?

Ball Park Music again, San Cisco, Katy Perry or Taylor Swift

79: What was the last concert you saw?

Ball Park Music!

80: Hot tea or cold tea?

No tea.

81: Tea or coffee?

Coffee!

82: Sugar or snickerdoodles?

I have no idea what a snickerdoodle is.

83: Can you swim well?

I’m not the fittest of people but I could swim the length of a pool with no issues, so sure!

84: Can you hold your breath without holding your nose?

Yeah, I didn’t realize there were people that couldn’t.

85: Are you patient?

It depends on what I’m being patient for.

86: DJ or band, at a wedding?

It’s more about what music they’re playing, but probably a band.

87: Ever won a contest?

No 😦

88: Ever have plastic surgery?

NO

89: Which are better black or green olives?

Green olives all the way.

90: Can you knit or crochet?

I used to be able to knit when I was in Girl Guides, but not anymore.

91: Best room for a fireplace?

The living room, I guess? (I don’t have a fireplace)

92: Do you want to get married?

Yes!

93: If married, how long have you been married?

I’m not married >.>

94: Who was your HS crush?

Sam :3

95: Do you cry and throw a fit until you get your own way?

No way – how old do you think I am?

96: Do you have kids?

Not yet!

97: Do you want kids?

Probably, yes. No more than three!

98: Whats your favorite color?

Lilac / whatever colour pink I use in my blog

99: Do you miss anyone right now?

Yes.

100: Something that happened to you in middle school.

Middle school is years 7 – 10, right? I had my first kiss in a game of spin the bottle, I met Sam and some other amazing people that I still call friends now!


Well, that was a lot of effort. If you made it to the end, leave me a comment – personally, I congratulate you for not clicking away by question 10. I’m sure you didn’t want to know so much about me but hey, now you do!

Sarah May xxx
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2014: Year In Review

2014 Year In Review

2014 was a huge year for me – I moved cities, began university, started blogging, turned eighteen, endured a long-distance relationship, met heaps of new friends and I have matured as a person from the experiences I had this year. This post is more for myself as a permanent reminder of the highs and lows of my first year out of high school, but if you’re reading this – it’s gonna get a bit personal.


My Year In Blogging

2014 MapLate June, 2014 was when I opened my blog and began posting on it. This is really the first blog I have kept up with, and I’m proud of what I have put out this year. As of today, my blog has been viewed 1,386 times – 494 Australian views, 473 US views, 154 Canadian views, 85 UK views and views from nearly everywhere around the world – which I definitely didn’t expect!

273 people were referred to my blog from Search Engines, using terms such as “my first time tag”, “a quiz about me”, “long term long distance relationships”, “popular british youtubers”, “trxye”, “my first semester at the uni”, and my personal favourite: “tyler from pentatonix is he gay” (there is no Tyler in Pentatonix). 136 people were referred through my Twitter (*cough* follow me). More of my traffic came from my Tumblr, my Pinterest pins, WordPress Dashboard, plus a variety of Tumblrs that have reblogged my posts for their followers to see!

My most popular post was by far my College Room Homewares post, with 106 views. Coming in second was My First Time Tag with 57 views, and then Supanova Brisbane, 2014 with 52 views (thanks to Oliver Phelps for replying to my tweet about it, which drove most of the traffic for that post).

Oliver PhelpsMy least viewed post was my Update: I Have A New Theme post, with only 5 views. Photos from my posts have been clicked on 13 times, and 10 people have clicked through to YouTube videos or channels that I have linked to in my posts. My Twitter, Tumblr and Instagram have been clicked through to only three times, and my Pinterest only once!

My most popular day of 2014 was September 13th with 72 views, predominantly on College Room Homewares.


My Year at University

My first year of university was filled with many highs and lows. I endured horrible Chemistry lectures but got to cuddle goats, horses, cows, sheep, rats, mice, cats, dogs, chickens, fish(!!) and pigs. My first semester ended with a GPA of 5.5, with a High Distinction in Biodiversity, a Distinction in Veterinary Professional Life and Credits in Chemistry and Biochemistry. My second semester was a bit more of a struggle – I received a Credit in Veterinary Professional Life 2 and my results were withheld for Anatomy & Physiology because I didn’t pass the Physiology component. Early February is when I have to sit a supplementary exam for Physiology, so my studying isn’t over yet.

Despite my results, I had an amazing time experiencing university life and meeting lifelong friends. Tertiary education is definitely much more of a struggle than high school, but I am proud of where I have come so far.


My Year at College

2014 was when I resided at Western Courts, a dodgy run-down college composed of demountable buildings. My room was 1/4th of a demountable building about 1m wide in the bedroom and another 1m wide in the ensuite. This year, I learned how to fend for myself and live alone – I had friends living near me but most of my time was spent studying alone. I gained confidence and independence, especially once I could drive at uni. Next year comes with a new chapter at a new college and I couldn’t be more excited!


My Year of New and Old Friendships

This year, I met Blair, Tarryn, Jess and Sarah (aka Barry), fellow first year vet students. We all met on our orientation when we were put into the same group, and Blair and I got lost, oops! After semester one, Blair and Sarah drifted away, but my friendship with Tarryn and Jess only grew stronger. I met Priyanka, Nethmee, Hannah and Jane while at college. I met Priyanka as I moved in, as she was moving into her room two doors down at the same time. Days later, we both chose to eat lunch with Nethmee and Hannah, who also lived in our block, who we then became great friends with! We met Jane in semester two when she would sit with us every night at dinner. She lived a few blocks away but we’d all catch up at dinner!

When I came home from uni, I always had friends here for me. Our little group consisting of Sam, Imogen, Hayden, Jesse, Brittany, Lachlan, Ben, Daniel, Eka, Katelyn and Stella continued to stick together even though Imogen was overseas in Denmark and Jesse moved to New Zealand. We drifted away from Gideon and Jake, who changed a lot since high school, but the rest of us would have so much fun catching up whenever we could!


My Year of a Long Distance Relationship

2014 began my five-year-long long distance relationship with long term boyfriend Sam. It was hard being apart, but we would iMessage every waking moment of the day and have a weekly Skype night every single Friday night. Whenever I would come home from uni, we would make up for lost time. We went on our very first holiday this year, to Brisbane for Supanova. We both got our licenses and could finally stop relying on parents to drive us to each other. Our relationship has matured and evolved so much, and we are ending the year spending ten days house sitting my aunt’s place. I love spending days and nights with him, and it’s great practice for living together – which will definitely happen after I graduate in 2018!


The People I Lost

This year marked six years since we lost Dad, and two years since we lost my great-grandmother. This year, my grandma on Dad’s side joined them, and I was unable to attend the funeral due to being up at uni. Late in the year, a close childhood friend of mine who was a few years older than me took her own life, which deeply affected all of us. I’ve still remained very lucky to still have the people in my life that I do, especially my Nana and Pop on mum’s side and all of my aunties, uncles and cousins.


Thank you, everyone who was a part of my life this year. Here’s to a better 2015. Make this next year your year! Whatever your resolutions are, keep them if you can, and stay happy!
See you next year!
Sarah May xxx
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What I Am Most Grateful For…

What I Am Most Grateful For

It’s Christmas time, and as I live in a country where Thanksgiving is not widely celebrated, Christmas is seen as a time when we should all be thankful for what we have, in addition to spending quality time with family and be in the spirit of giving. So before the big day hits in just two days time, I thought it would be appropriate to share what I am most grateful for in my life.

I am grateful for having a loving, supportive family. My family will always support me throughout anything, no matter what I decide I do. Through the highs, through the lows, they support me fully and always have confidence that I am trying the best I can, even if my academic marks don’t reflect that. I also have a family that will allow me to do whatever I want to do without question – whether it be going out with friends, having my boyfriend stay over, or even move cities to attend university. Thank you mum, and the rest of my family.

I am grateful for keeping my high school friends. I can always rely on Sam, Stella, Brittany, Lachlan, Eka, Ben, Daniel, Imogen, Hayden, Jesse, Katelyn and Henryette to be there for me when I am not away at uni, and all the times in between. We may all be separated across three countries and five cities, but we can always catch up like no time has passed when we all happen to be home.

I am grateful for having met such great friends at uni. Whether its my vet friends or my college friends, my year has been made so much easier by having such great, supportive people around me. Although next year is leaving one of my vet friends behind, and my college girls have moved off-campus, I’m sure the friendships I made in my first year will last a long time.

I am grateful for not having to sit alone. Having friends in my uni course is such a small thing that I’m glad I have – I couldn’t stand having to spend every lecture, tutorial and practical alone, and even having people to walk to classes with. As a shy person, I’m so glad I made the friends that I made.

I am grateful for not struggling financially due to saving money before uni. I worked as a cashier at Woolworths for two years before I moved away to uni and had to resign, and throughout these two years I managed to save up $12 000 of my own money which went towards my accommodation. Thanks to this, I was able to support myself while living away from home with only minimal help from mum. Next year, I will be fully supporting myself with no financial assistance whatsoever, thanks to how much I was able to save while I still had a job.

I am grateful for having my own car and being able to drive it. It’s true that you don’t truly appreciate what you have until you don’t have it anymore – while I was still on my learners, I was prohibited from driving for a year total due to medical reasons. This prevented me from driving during my first few months at uni – so once I was able to drive again I definitely appreciated the novelty of being able to transport myself around.

I am grateful for being accepted into the course of my dreams. Getting accepted into a veterinary science degree is not easy and most applicants are turned away. I am definitely grateful I got accepted on my first try and didn’t have to complete a year of another degree to get credit to transfer in – instead, I was able to start my dream degree as soon as possible.

I am grateful for being able to share my life with my pets. Living on college where no pets are allowed really made me appreciate having my dog and cat around when I’m home. There’s something about an animal’s cuddles that really cheers you up, which is definitely needed around exam time.

I am grateful to have not suffered many losses in my life so far. In my eighteen years, I haven’t lost many family members. In 2008, my dad; in 2012, my great-grandmother; and in 2014, my grandmother on dad’s side. The losses of all of these family members have been sad, but I am glad to have three of my four grandparents still with me, and that my uncles, aunties and cousins have not died young.

I am grateful that all of my family can get together on Christmas. All of my immediate family lives in the same town, which makes it easy for all of us to spend Christmas together. I know that many families cannot get together at Christmas time, so I am so grateful that we can all spend time together on not only Christmas Day, but on various occasions throughout the year.


I hope everyone has a merry Christmas on Thursday, whether your family is around or not. Spend some time with anyone you love, get into the spirit of giving, and have a happy new year!
Sarah May xxx
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