We’ve Been Here Before

We’ve Been Here Before

It is a devastating time for many right now, feeling powerless and without remedy or perhaps experiencing a lack of agency. So how are some ways we can empower ourselves? Regardless of the how, when, why and what, we are most definitely in a global crisis. 

 

We have been here before. 

 

The Spanish Flu killed an estimated 50 + million people 100 years ago. 

 

The loss of life was beyond devastating. The economic impact globally was horrendous, with many soldiers and men of working age returning home from War with the infection spreading to families. Spanish Flu is one of the deadliest pandemics in human history as it killed an estimated 2% to 5% of those who were infected. Many women were forced into labour; families were left without a father and breadwinner. The Spanish Flu also had a significant impact on international development through trade, leading many countries to enforce trading blocks in an effort to save their populations from the deadly strain. People’s mental health suffered dramatically during this time, with grieving families struggling to get support; let’s remember it was the early part of the 1900s. Children grew up in boarding houses, finding themselves in an unfamiliar place surrounded by strangers.

 

Masks, lockdowns, mandatory vaccines and curfews have been a part of human history, and they don’t suck any less now. Mandatory vaccines have been in effect all over the world for decades, as have curfews. Imagine the loss of freedom when Nazi’s invaded and curfews were imposed? It was a seen enemy. This isn’t quite as forthright is it? An unseen enemy leaves it open for interpretation and gaps with information we desperately want to fill.

Loss of freedom imposed by those we elect to power or reign places stress and hardship on communities. The particulars of these measures being imposed for protection or sinister reasons is not a topic I want to get caught up in here. What is my point? Humans have been here before, and so we can use the accumulated wisdom from those who have walked before us without succumbing to fear and base behaviours.

 

Understand the meaning of Bias. 

Keep away from emotive “fact” givers who may have some agenda attached. Who do they work for? What is their medical background in their country? A medical doctor in the USA can be a chiropractor. A celebrity shaming you for not getting vaccinated; also not ideal. Are they using their ego to platform themselves or are they too wracked in fear and trauma?

True wisdom comes from understanding the facts from each perspective as much as you can; try and find the truth in your opposing views. Keep the emotion out of it. Any social media post or article that claims to be informing and contains name-calling, mockery or is sourced from fake news or opinion posts is not the best place to get your info. There is a place for Opinion posts, this is our democratic freedom in motion, but it cannot and must not be confused with facts. Facts will be unbiased. They do not support only one perspective and objectively present the information. This goes for Pro or Anti. Such opposing stances. 

 

How we feel about this information and facts is our human right. But the information in its truest form requires some critical thinking. So source information that reports as factual information as much as possible and then make an informed decision. We are living in a time where we can access this information. Do not rely just on the opinion of others. Seek many sources of information from people who have a balanced opinion. 

 

You cannot throw the baby out with the bathwater. 

 

Verbatim

Learn how to use the Verbatim option on Google. The Verbatim search option searches for your enquiry on Google in exactly the same words as were used originally rather than a user-enhanced algorithm based on past searches etc. You will see the Verbatim option under your search bar in tools. Look for medical journals that have been cited by peers and are not influenced by the media. You may want to look for words like genome, Retrograde virus in research trials, DNA and RNA, Genetic Sequencing and Corona Virus, Deciphering the COVID-19 cytokine storm, Calming the Storm: Natural Immunosuppressants as Adjuvants, Gene Therapy, COVID impact on existing brain aneurysms fatal. Hmmm. Medical journals also have amazing cited positive research on plant based antiflammatories and trials etc etc. Balanced, tried, tested and endorsed by peers. Chinese medicine success for treatment  along with gene editing and the extraordingary breakthroughs in mRNA delivery curing disease- medical journals are complex reading for some but they are there for the public. 

 

Control what you can. 

There will be things you cannot control. The big news is full of propaganda, and they want you to watch; they are players with agendas. The television is filled with fear and messages that capture attention. What captures attention? Covid. 

Seek balance

These are uncertain times. Balance out your concerns with positive activities, particularly around children and young people. I thought about the Berlin War, monsters under my bed, bad men, and ice cream when I was a kid. Now, where do I start for my kids? The world is ending with Climate Change, the global pandemic, social media, education, PINs, playdates, classes, online world…. a 15-year old’s world is like never before. This is without the problems we face with living an everyday life. There must be joy found amongst the haste. 

Be kind

Your opinion is important, but so is mine. This is what a democracy is. Be respectful. Remember, when things go to shit in the world, our friends and families are far more likely to come to our aid than an opinion. 

Budget wisely

Not only are so many facing horrific financial hurt already, but the compounding of this will also most likely continue. The global trickle down on trade, food, imports etc. and job loss will impact cash flow in the coming 12 months at the very least. So try and be wise, save your money. Second-hand cars and goods have never been better priced in Australia. Got goodies you don’t need or want a good dollar for? Now is the time. If you have more than you need, share some, acts of giving and helping our people is intrinsic to being human, so get primal and support. 

Other Stuff

People are going through other real-life issues aside from COVID. If we distance, if we charge the atmosphere with fear and anger- need I say more? Conquer and divide is not an option now in this time and place. 

Mental Health

There are waiting lists now piling up in mental health. Don’t underestimate the online resources available. Some are free, and whilst a mental health assessment is always the first and best call if you are stuck, and I know so many people are- ask your health providers to recommend online resources. I have heard of people using crowdfunding to share the load for private medical fees. Please see at the bottom of this post our link for Mental Health resources.

Get ready to demonstrate your rights when the time comes but think it through. 

Mahatma Gandhi changed political protest. He didnt punch horses and he didn’t fill kid’s eyes with tear gas. 

His non-violent resistance helped end British rule in India and has influenced modern civil disobedience movements across the globe.

Once the vaccination rates have reached a point, perhaps you may use your democratic right to protest peacefully. Violent protest splits a community; peaceful protest is a healthy sign of democracy. See the article we wrote here with the Australian guidelines for our right to protest. https://ponderings.com.au/thou-dost-protest-too-little/

What is my stance, you might ask? You might not, but I will share it anyway. 

Well, here’s where the rubber hits the road, and this is not a clear cut decision. I did not really want to be vaccinated; the propaganda shocks me, the tomfoolery and clusterf**ck going on politically is concerning, and the gradual reduction of rights along with online censorship is deeply troubling. But just like a cancer patient who doesn’t want to line up for Chemo and the toxins it unleashes -commits to the procedure because they believe it is their most informed and best way to continue living, I have applied the same consensus with getting the injection. If I get COVID, it will impact my current condition severely. I have loved ones in the same boat. Some people choose not to get Chemo. Likewise with Vaccination. It is your choice. 

So how did I make this decision? Not from social media, not from watching the News or Youtube videos. They are such wonderful sources of information but with an Aneurysm and several other serious health issues that I am doing my best to heal, I don’t need nor want further damage or finale to this vehicle. So I knew I needed more indepth information.

I made an informed decision with the best information I could find over the last six months.  This was with the help of a Neurosurgeon who is not being paid by big pharma, along with several dear friends who work in medicine. But most importantly; I did my research to also try and understand the medicine in our world right now. Gone are the days of Penicillin. These are new times and it isnt the first time the every day person has been conflicted, confused and concerned about the bigger picture when don’t have a clear vantage point. I have quite literally saved hundreds of medical journals on just about every component from Genome, DNA structures and the RNA’s, I now know most of the major shareholders of big pharmas. I understand that for a person with an aneurysm a COVID-19 infection is accompanied by an aggressive inflammatory response with the release of a large amount of pro-inflammatory cytokines in an event known as “cytokine storm.” It is a vascular disease, inflammation acts as a critical contributor to aneurysm rupture. So can thrombosis, so with some vaccines, this needed to be taken into consideration. There was a lot to think about. We aren’t all sheep, and we aren’t all heroes, we aren’t all selfish and we are all doing the very best we can. Well, at least we should be. We are living through another big shift in the human story and it sure is getting interesting. 

Finally I quote from a very wise man;

 

“We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools.”

 – Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

If you are struggling or know someone who is, we have a link here with a bunch of resources. There are so many stories of people not knowing what to do or where to go. Click here: https://healthglobalwellness.news/2021/09/09/australian-mental-health-support/

 

Nerd fact: “Curfew” is a contraction of the original French couvre-feu, meaning literally “cover the fire”. The custom is said to have been introduced into England by William the Conqueror, but more likely, William enforced more strictly an existing regulation. 

 

Ponderers and counting...

Related Articles

Related

We’ve Been Here Before

It is a devastating time for many right now, feeling powerless and without remedy or perhaps experiencing a lack of agency. So how are some ways we can empower ourselves? Regardless of the how, when, why and what, we are most definitely in a global crisis. ...

read more

Filming Fever Set To Flare Again in the Geelong Region

What does Geelong have to do with the suffragette movement in New York City? Well, a hidden gem written by playwright Floyd Dell in 1915 about a love affair struck a chord with Geelong based actress Cassidy Krygger.

The Lion, The Witch, Tolkien and Atheism…We Ponder Into the Wardrobe of C.S Lewis

For those who know and love Narnia, a wardrobe will never ever be just a wardrobe. A lion will never just be a lion. Ever. What about that midnight stroll with Tolkien?

Lights, Camera Action in Geelong

As safe COVID-19 practices draw more Hollywood actors to Australian shores, the Geelong region is just one of many booming cities with film industry potential.  With an abundance of opportunity for major film productions, the Geelong region's future is looking...
Follow Us

Join

Subscribe & Support Positive storytelling

 

The Best Booknooks and Bookshelves For BookWorms

The Best Booknooks and Bookshelves For BookWorms

In September, Hermione Granger, Stephen King, George R. R. Martin and Roald Dahl Birthday all have birthdays. Given that nearly all of them are favourite authors of the Ponderings team, we decided to dedicate this auspicious month to an assortment of bookish loves. 

We thought it quite fitting to start it off by having a peek a boo at some of the best book nooks and bookshelf styling ideas. Instagram feeds full of them, and there are thousands of Pinterest boards dedicated to them. There’s nothing more divine to an avid reader than a bookshelf or cosy space to absorb one’s treasured paper gems.

 

Bookshelves have so much potential when it comes to practicality and design. While some might want to use shelves simply because they need somewhere safe where their precious volumes will remain dust-free, others may wish to utilize the space to showcase goodies. Mine is a mix of collectible figurines of the book characters and some lego, always a conversation starter! 

Are you a book nooker or a style maestro? How do you organize your books? Are you a cataloguer, colour coder or topic/genre arranger? 

I started as a Genre l’ organisateur and graduated to Author piles, and now I am playing with colour coordination during COVID. Hey, don’t judge me; it is my thing; at least I am not a compulsive book sniffer -this is a compulsion, truly. I know a book sniffer is reading this looking shamefaced. It’s ok; I get it. 

 

We loved these looks; they might give you some inspiration for your next home library or book nook.

Partition Magic 

A piece like this allows plenty of light, and with an open concept space, the divider acts as a gallery-style partition to keep the books and things you love. 

Quirky

We couldn’t get our eyes off this fine piece of master crafting with lighting from Wilson and Bradley Lighting. The sleek lighting is an example of Wilson & Bradley’s L&S Mini Octopus Flexible Strip Reel Lighting. A very sexy finishing touch to a visually interesting bookcase. 

A View

A window seat with a view. All I could think here was bring me the grapes James, a glass of your best Chardy and a new Lianne Moriarty book and call me Queen of the views. This stroke of perfection we found over at ICM.

Clever 

When the team was scrolling through, this one was chosen for practicality; a featured window seat, bookshelves within reach, and then check out the window/ bifold doors. Imagine this in Spring? Opening those windows open and bringing the outdoors in. This is a super cool example of making a space functional and aesthetically pleasing by pairing it with cohesion. This means that you want the style choices to be unified throughout the space to maintain continuity. So having the minimalist white cabinetry and window furnishing is a great way to showcase your favourite items inside your home – especially the books! 

 

Whimsy

Just a touch of whismy, this little cottage lover loved this one, goodness gracious. Snuggle me in and call Mr Tumnus won’t you? Photo credit to Southern Living, TI Inc. Lifestyle Group, Robbie Caponetto. The wooden elements, the ladder and that lighting creates a story and none of them contast too much, they all compliment the overall vibe. 

Fancy

This look will make you the pink of the ton,  swooning, waiting for the duke. I sip my tea from none other than a gold edged teacup from Cristina Re of course. Have I been watching Bridgerton? Of course. iCab cabinets are the folks behind this falir of fancy -don’t forget to tip your pinky.

Work from Home

This combination of a wide desk and a beautiful library make me want to drop the lot and get cracking on a novel; it screams writer. But, mind you, it would also make a fabulous space for the homeschooled student. The Hamptons theme with panelling and a touch of darker timber is my personal favourite. Worth noting- my digital media brain did a high five when I saw the window, desk, and shelving position. With working from home and Zoom meetings, this is the perfect spot for a live stream with the lighting provided by nature and a studious backdrop. I know, right? I’m a thinker. (or so they say.) 

 

If you liked these and want some more inspiration, check out our Pinterest style guide. 

CLICK HERE

In the meantime, drop us a line and share your favourite book nook!

Ponderers and counting...

Related Articles

Related

We’ve Been Here Before

It is a devastating time for many right now, feeling powerless and without remedy or perhaps experiencing a lack of agency. So how are some ways we can empower ourselves? Regardless of the how, when, why and what, we are most definitely in a global crisis. ...

read more

Filming Fever Set To Flare Again in the Geelong Region

What does Geelong have to do with the suffragette movement in New York City? Well, a hidden gem written by playwright Floyd Dell in 1915 about a love affair struck a chord with Geelong based actress Cassidy Krygger.

The Lion, The Witch, Tolkien and Atheism…We Ponder Into the Wardrobe of C.S Lewis

For those who know and love Narnia, a wardrobe will never ever be just a wardrobe. A lion will never just be a lion. Ever. What about that midnight stroll with Tolkien?

Lights, Camera Action in Geelong

As safe COVID-19 practices draw more Hollywood actors to Australian shores, the Geelong region is just one of many booming cities with film industry potential.  With an abundance of opportunity for major film productions, the Geelong region's future is looking...
Follow Us

Join

Subscribe & Support Positive storytelling

 

Hour of Power For Women’s Health Thanks To Innovative Doctor

Hour of Power For Women’s Health Thanks To Innovative Doctor

A new Medical Clinic launching this month will be a breath of fresh air for women. It could not come at a better time as our country battles the current health stumbling blocks of COVID. 

The initiative, delivered by Australian Skin Face Body is headed by Dr Renuka Balasubramaniam. The holistic approach this female-focused provider offers is radically different from the health standard, with consultations lasting a full hour as opposed to just minutes and health plans being created based on individual needs instead of generalized categories. 

12.8 million women in Australia make up just over 50 percent of the Australian population and almost half the Australian workforce. Based on the Australian Health Survey, -only 1 in 4 (26%)women had spoken to their GP about their emotional and psychological health. The National Health Survey shows that 1 in 2 Australian females have one or more of the ten selected common chronic conditions. A disturbing presentation of information. These chronic conditions including arthritis, asthma, back problems, cancer, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, diabetes, heart, stroke and vascular disease, chronic kidney disease, osteoporosis and mental health conditions.

Over the years in general practice, Dr Balasubramaniam found that she attracted female patients and this focussed on everything from internal medicine, mental health to hormone disruptions encompassing all phases of life. The common theme ushered in the genius idea for a women-focused clinic with an extended time frame. 

“So often, time constraints, or interruptions, and general practice appointments prohibits women the space needed to discuss at length medical things perhaps they may feel embarrassed about. We want to help them hold their ground without being interrupted, be open about what is bothering them without being judged. We look at all facets, and then we make a management plan and activate this right away. We look at day-to-day living, lifestyle, work, personal life, relationships, holistically means covering all different aspects; including primary medical care. Integrating treatment is important, so there is a seamless approach to healthcare,” says Renuka. 

 

There is no time wasting either! “There’s a lot of homework; when women make an appointment, our team will email them through a thorough questionnaire. This is because I want these appointments to be targeted, not wasting time. I want to get that historical health picture to really hone in and develop some areas for targeting and management, and utilize the amazing up to date tech facilities at ASFB to meet health care needs and goals,” says the passionate physician. 

So what happens in this hour of power? 

Dr Balasubramaniam explains; 

“There is intensive health goal mapping. Why are they coming to see me? What needs to be done, what has been done in the past? For many women, they may have had a health concern and have not been happy with the management plan in place, or perhaps it was not resolved, or they have sat on a problem and not had expectations met, or perhaps they have had a negative experience.” 

I love every component of medicine; during my time in my degree, I moved around a lot, met many patients, and worked with some wonderful colleagues. Whilst I know not all health concerns can be fixed immediately, I really enjoy helping women, and it’s fulfilling to see them again and hear about their improvements. Empowering women back into good health and practice is important to me. 

 

“We work as a team to reach a common goal. But, ultimately, they are the boss; I am working for them to help them achieve better quality and healthier lifestyle. They need to take control of their health. I am there to help them do this!” 

How do I make an appointment?

The women’s health clinic is a private service, the reception team at ASFB can provide fee information upon booking your initial appointment or making an enquiry. Medicare rebates are available.

No referral is necessary to see Dr Renuka.

You can book a Women’s Health and Wellbeing session with Dr Renuka by calling 1300 502 732

References and further reading:

https://www.abs.gov.au/statistics/labour/employment-and-unemployment/labour-force-australia/latest-release#data-downloads

 

https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/men-women/female-health/contents/how-healthy/chronic-conditions

 

https://www.aihw.gov.au/reports/men-women/female-health/contents/how-does-the-health-of-females-and-males-compare

 

https://consultations.health.gov.au/population-health-and-sport-division-1/establishing-a-national-womens-health-strategy/supporting_documents/Evidence%20ReviewThe%20current%20state%20of%20womens%20health.pdf

 

JAX Tyres for Ponderings

Ponderers and counting...

Related Articles

Related

We’ve Been Here Before

It is a devastating time for many right now, feeling powerless and without remedy or perhaps experiencing a lack of agency. So how are some ways we can empower ourselves? Regardless of the how, when, why and what, we are most definitely in a global crisis. ...

read more

Filming Fever Set To Flare Again in the Geelong Region

What does Geelong have to do with the suffragette movement in New York City? Well, a hidden gem written by playwright Floyd Dell in 1915 about a love affair struck a chord with Geelong based actress Cassidy Krygger.

The Lion, The Witch, Tolkien and Atheism…We Ponder Into the Wardrobe of C.S Lewis

For those who know and love Narnia, a wardrobe will never ever be just a wardrobe. A lion will never just be a lion. Ever. What about that midnight stroll with Tolkien?

Lights, Camera Action in Geelong

As safe COVID-19 practices draw more Hollywood actors to Australian shores, the Geelong region is just one of many booming cities with film industry potential.  With an abundance of opportunity for major film productions, the Geelong region's future is looking...
Follow Us

Join

Subscribe & Support Positive storytelling

 

The Story of a Woman’s Journey to Business Success and a Little Girl Called Zoey

The Story of a Woman’s Journey to Business Success and a Little Girl Called Zoey

 Tw:/ warning; this article contains information and recollections of infant death, neonatal illness and readers discretion is advised.

 

Dominique Ho, or Dom as she is affectionately known, gets stopped several times by people when I meet her at Ocean Grove beach for a walk and a chat. 

First, each person recognizes her and her beautiful dog, then their faces light up like the Geelong Christmas tree. Next, there is a mention from an approaching runner about her work for the local business group. Finally, a few school mums sporting grins stop to say hi, and this is when you get the vibe that the company you are keeping this day might be a little bit exceptional. 

The digital media go-to has a contagious, vibrant energy and humour, but a discerning eye soon senses a steeliness and resilience beneath her subtle confidence. For Dom and her husband Greg, it’s a no-brainer; family life must always come first; ideology isn’t waxing lyrical; it’s scaffolded quite seriously. Their business, Viewpoint Digital Media, works around the team. But where does this idea stem from? Dom tells me it is all because of Zoey. 

This successful businesswoman has a story, a precious gem she has kept close to her chest. Finally, after many years she is brave enough to share it with us. 

 

So talk to me about Zoey. 

Greg and I had our first baby Zoey when I was 25. I knew something wasn’t quite right during the pregnancy. I had dreams, and I felt quite intuitive. I just knew something was wrong, but I couldn’t show anybody. 

I had my scans early on as a normal procedure, the doctors said everything looked fine and the baby looked well. But after 20 weeks or so, I knew something was not right, but I couldn’t prove it. So, I just rode it out and thought it was just my fear. 

When I was ten days overdue, I delivered her and nobody was home. She was blue all over with black eyes. Being my first, it was an extremely painful delivery, as I’m sure many women experience. Zoey was rushed to emergency and I had no idea what was going on because I was so high on whatever the nurses gave me for the pain. 

Zoey, the doctors and Greg rushed off to the postnatal intensive care ward where they tried to stabilize her. Dad rushed in to come to be with me. The nurses helped me express my milk so Zoey had something. I had an epidural, so my legs weren’t moving. We learnt Zoey was going to the Children’s Hospital as she needed more care. My Dad said, come on, you’ve got to work your legs out. 

I had to be with my baby. We made our way to the Royal Children’s. We stayed there for basically four weeks, and the nurses cared for me because of complications with my blood type. Around the third week, Zoey seemed to be stabilizing. 

I can’t even begin to imagine the layer of hormones, grief, hope, limbo, all wrapped up in an intense parcel of suffering. It must have been so mentally and emotionally tasking.

Greg and I didn’t particularly feel like we were going downhill mentally. We were crying every day but more so because of the sadness of what Zoey was going through. But then I felt myself going downhill and realized that it brought me down when I was around other parents talking about their sick children. Finally, it got to the point where she was doing well, and we started to remove a lot of the medication because she didn’t have any food at all. So, I was expressing my milk, I had milk for days, and I wish someone had educated me on donating my milk because I had an enormous amount. 

I filled up their fridge to the brim. What am I meant to do with that all if my baby doesn’t need it all? I was bummed to see my milk go into the bin after all of that! Zoey started waking up, and she could hear me, and she was reacting! I talked  to her and read her stories. She slowly sort of opened her eyes, and she saw me, and she saw Greg. So we didn’t leave her side. Greg and I read her Alice in Wonderland. And it was sort of, we’d always, I guess, pictured Zoey going down the rabbit hole. We thought she got lost down the rabbit hole. We were 25-year-old kids; I remember thinking, “I don’t know what to do with this.” It was incredibly intense. 

 

Did you have much support around you?

I didn’t realize the emotional effect or know how intense this was on everybody else. I didn’t even have my phone. I didn’t have my phone for four weeks. 

Both our parents were there, and my Mum was good at reading me. We are very close. She was there when I needed her, and she was not there when I didn’t. She actually kept everything going in the background. She kept all of our friends and family up to date. Our parents were very supportive. We didn’t want to cut our loved ones off, but Zoey needed us, and we became quite protective of our time and shut out the outside world. 

 

How did you and Greg cope together? You are a dynamic team, but this must have held incredible weight. 

 

Greg and I have always been close, always been on the same page and best of friends. We just grew even stronger together; we only had each other. At the time, Dr Wood, Zoey’s specialist, said it’s not often that he came across a stronger couple after this. He said he saw so many couples pull apart. It’s very sad. But Greg and I were solid, and we’ve been solid since. 

Did you have a strong feeling? I find sometimes it is hard for people to voice intuition because there can be judgement from others. Or the ‘woo-woo’ perception, rather than the truth of it- instincts are kicking in! 

Greg was probably a bit more optimistic about her recovery than I was.

But, for a long time, I already knew that I wasn’t going to keep her and I think it was because instinctively, as I said earlier, I already knew that something was wrong, but I couldn’t prove it. I couldn’t visualise her in our life.

Zoey was four weeks old. She gave it everything. The doctor, when she initially got into the hospital, said, you know, she’s got a 10% chance of surviving the next couple of days. So knowing this information and having no idea of what’s going to happen, she’s made it to four weeks. It was the bloody longest four weeks. But during the third week, something changed…Dr Wood told us, we’ve got to make a decision. She’s not getting any better. She’s got a third of her lungs. She’s got pulmonary hypertension. 

 

She’s hit rock bottom. She can’t keep going. 

 

We thought this is not fair. Greg and I had to make the heartbreaking decision to turn off her life support so she wasn’t suffering anymore. 

We held her in the room that we were staying in; we had her in a little yellow dress. 

What’s your fondest memory of Zoey? 

Her waking up. Her waking up, we were pretty excited that she saw us. 

What would you like people to know about Zoey and your experience?

What was more important than this grief is that Greg and I were so happy, appreciative and grateful that we had her; I carried her and then we were able to experience all of this regardless of how sad it is. 

There are people out there who can’t become pregnant, there are people out there who cannot conceive. There are people out there who don’t find husbands that love them as much as Greg loves me. I’m grateful for everything and the experience of Zoey. The fact that we met Zoey, and I was able to produce all that milk. I felt Zoey kicking, and I had those, you know, connections with her. Some people never get to have that. Even when they miscarry, they don’t have that the same way. I got to talk to her. We read her stories. We changed her nappy; we were able to wipe her and dress her. We got to say goodbye which gave both Greg and I so much closure.

The medical staff on the Butterfly Ward are beautiful. They opened their hearts, and I would imagine that that would be so hard for them in so many situations. We are so grateful for what the doctors and nurses did around the clock. We got to know them. I also wondered how emotionally tasking our situation was for the nurses and what they were taking home with them. After Zoey, we decided that everything we did would be forged with the intention of being of service and benefiting others. You always have a choice in life and we wanted to contribute to the community.

I look at how you protected that space around you, Greg and Zoey, and how you had the discipline to know ‘I’m not having my phone,’ that this needed to be what it was. You sound incredibly present, even in knowing and trusting your dreams. That takes real ownership and authenticity of self which is uncommon at such a young age. I can see now how that translates into everything that you do. Where did that all come from? 

My Mum worked her ass off to help me understand my feelings at a very early age because I was a handful. I always wanted more. I wanted more of everything. I wanted more of a laugh, more adventure, more fun, more learning. I didn’t have time for school. I hated school. I was like, this is going too slow for me. I was bored. I was misbehaving. I was sent to the office. I got detention all the time for talking and being disruptive. My Mum helped me work through these feelings; she would get judged! Nobody understood the way she parented me. She was indulging me too much, according to some (she laughs heartily). But, she taught me to understand myself and my surroundings, to better read people and my situation. My Dad taught me to have thick skin and not worry about what others are doing or what they think of me which has helped me alot through my career.

I wasn’t really accepted in High School, and I didn’t feel like I belonged. I was headstrong, and I decided I was wasting my time. So I told my parents I’m leaving. They said, okay, well, what are you going to do? You can’t leave unless you go to do something. I said okay. 

My Dad mentioned my love for cooking; what about becoming a chef? 

Done, I’ll be a chef. Sure thing, no worries. 

I went and got myself an apprenticeship. My Dad loved ironing my chef uniform and popping in my little buttons. I worked weird hospitality hours every day when I was 16 years old. Everyone else was doing school, and I was working. I didn’t go to parties. I worked early, and I worked late, and I worked all the bloody time.  

The connections that you have to have to dance around the kitchen are big, right? So it’s not for the faint of heart! 

It was a dance, and it’s a beautiful dance. It’s a fucking hectic dance! 

I completed my apprenticeship which took me through to meeting Greg in Melbourne. He was the general manager at a bar two doors down from me where I would enjoy my well deserved knock off drink.

You were quite successful at a young age, too, right? But this was interrupted?

I guess you could say that. I had a lot of learning opportunities which put me in a good position to help open up a new restaurant for somebody in Toorak with a team. I was 19 or 20 at the time. Then, only a couple of months after opening, Greg and I were in a car accident.  My passenger seat detached; it was pretty bad; it was all over red rover. I had a back brace and couldn’t work. The impact twisted my insides; everything was stuffed. I could barely walk for a long time. So again, I was faced with a choice, I had a choice to either moan and groan and sit around or get up and do something about it. So I had to rethink my career, so I went and got my teaching qualification, and I became a commercial cookery teacher. 

I did this for maybe 8 years, I then took a side step and worked in automotive for a few years as the international market for students coming to Australia to do commercial cookery dried up a bit. It was here that we were fortunate enough to fall pregnant with Zoey.

 

Dominique Ho Ponderings Magazine

So how did you become a digital media expert? 

Both my parents are entrepreneurial. They both had successful businesses for a long time, and they’re both very creative but so different. My family, including my brother, share that motivation, determination, and hard-working ethic. We’re all creators.  

Dominique’s father, Peter Lamont, is an award-winning filmmaker, photographer and the creator of the Australian TV show InsideArt. 

After Zoey’s passing, I was miserable. Ii didn’t want to go back to my job at the automotive place as I feared people would pity me. My Mum and Dad checked in every day if not every hour to see how I was coping. Dad always said to just focus on making it through the next hour. When that hour is up, focus on the next hour. After about a week or so, Dad asked me to come in to work with him so I wasn’t home alone all day as Greg went back to work. Greg and I had several weeks off work by this stage.

I started there a couple of days just doing bits and pieces to keep me busy. My brother was there along with my cousin. I felt safe there with my family. It was just what I needed. Then after a few weeks I became really interested in Google Ads and it got into my veins, and I just kept learning more and more.

Not long after working with Dad, I fell pregnant with Aaliya. We spent the next 2 years in Melbourne before making the sea change to Ocean Grove. 

Greg began working for Barwon Health, telling people’s stories through incredible Video and Photography. He’s a visual storyteller, and he has travelled the world with his videography; he’s also a musician. Greg actually learnt his videography and photography skills from Dad. But that’s another story in itself. 

 

You then had another tragedy, didn’t you?

After we had Aaliya, and before moving to Ocean Grove we tried for another baby. I  already had some dreams from Zoey to tell me that this wasn’t going to work. Sounds like a bit of that woo woo, right? 

Zoey said to me in the dream, Aaliya will be perfect, but the next baby won’t be. Our next baby didn’t make it. She was 17 weeks old. 

She had a whole lot of other issues completely different to Zoey; I had all the tests, no answers. I wanted to try again, about a year later but after seeing a specialist, they said I was too high risk and not to try again and the doctor basically said, don’t bother. So I had to come to terms with that, which was hard. I wanted that choice for myself. I didn’t want that choice made for me. So I was pretty angry about it. 

I decided I wanted to be really grateful for what I have, all over again. I think that’s when I realized where I was working was not making me happy. I wasn’t happy having Aaliya in daycare. She would cry at the gates, and she would be hysterical when I picked her up. I had to reconnect skin to skin every day just to bond all over again. We needed the flexibility. I didn’t want the guilt. Aaliya is my only baby. 

Greg and I realised Aaliya needed us more. We needed to be more available for her. Greg supported me 110% in taking the leap of faith in creating my own business with the intention of growth, then when it was built up enough we could have him onboard full time too. He never doubted me. Not once. He shared my vision and was all in.  I managed to attract a couple of clients, and it went from there.

That was November 2017. Aaliya and I spent quality time together. We would disconnect from our phones, iPads, and go bushwalking. We built her up, so she had enough strength to bushwalk for a few hours at four years of age. I wanted to be able to go to a school assembly. I wanted to be there, pick up and drop off and if I needed to go to appointments for myself or for whatever it is. I wanted to be in business, I wanted to help people grow their business which could mean they can do more for their families.  I visualized what I wanted. Then the portfolio grew; we needed a team, and we wanted them to enjoy these qualities. 

The rest is history! 

JAX Tyres for Ponderings

It rings true for me that you are emotionally invested in your clients and your team. 

I’m very loyal to all of my clients, and I’m emotionally invested in their business. Their digital media success is based on other people sharing the brand journey, values, and story. So it has to be authentic. The digital media space is rich with storytelling, and it’s crucial that the platform captures it. You can’t fake it. I think it is because our team are always encouraged to prioritise family and to take time if their kids are unwell or have something special on for school, they are never made to feel guilty. We have deliberately systemized the business to support this. 

We are working together to achieve the same goal. Both Greg and I want them to prosper in all of this.

 

Dominique and Greg Ho Viewpoint Digital Media

Photo: Greg, Aaliya and Dominique Ho

It is crucial to create a safe space for people to be just as authentic as you; that’s a big deal because it’s less of an “us and them” situation. When there’s not that connection, there’s not that friendship. Your scarcest resource in business is to maintain a seamless longevity with your team so you can grow without forsaking quality. I think we have managed to achieve that. 

Is there an aspect of business you would like to see change?

When people comment on our ethos, it really makes me question, why aren’t there more businesses like this? Why can’t businesses value people’s lives outside of work? How do they not see that if you put value back into your employee’s life, they will work so much harder and more efficiently if their family life is looked after? 

You know, in life, growth and positivity can come in the most traumatic sources; you must recognize it and transform it. We have gifts come into our lives. I started Viewpoint Digital Media to honour Zoey and what she taught us and to embrace our life with Aaliya and as a family while giving that to our team and clients in some way shape or form. 

 

Viewpoint Digital Media is lead by Dom and her husband Greg; they have developed a culture at VDM, a trend-bucking hybrid – where business and family life is synergetic. Viewpoint Digital Media has grown from one person to 9 within three years and is on the lips of most SMEs in the Greater Geelong region. To find out more about their dynamic offering, go to: https://viewpointdigitalmedia.com.au 

Side note; good luck from Ponderings to Dom, Greg and the team for the upcoming Small Business Awards!

Further resources:

Victorian Milk Bank : https://www.mothersmilkbank.com.au 

Butterfly Ward Royal Children’s Hospital; https://www.rch.org.au/butterfly/

Still Birth Foundation : https://stillbirthfoundation.org.au

Sands Australia  https://www.sands.org.au/contact

Photo: Viewpoint Digital Media

Thank you to our sponsors Australian Skin Face Body- click here to find out more about them!

Ponderers and counting...

Related Articles

Related

We’ve Been Here Before

It is a devastating time for many right now, feeling powerless and without remedy or perhaps experiencing a lack of agency. So how are some ways we can empower ourselves? Regardless of the how, when, why and what, we are most definitely in a global crisis. ...

read more

Filming Fever Set To Flare Again in the Geelong Region

What does Geelong have to do with the suffragette movement in New York City? Well, a hidden gem written by playwright Floyd Dell in 1915 about a love affair struck a chord with Geelong based actress Cassidy Krygger.

The Lion, The Witch, Tolkien and Atheism…We Ponder Into the Wardrobe of C.S Lewis

For those who know and love Narnia, a wardrobe will never ever be just a wardrobe. A lion will never just be a lion. Ever. What about that midnight stroll with Tolkien?

Lights, Camera Action in Geelong

As safe COVID-19 practices draw more Hollywood actors to Australian shores, the Geelong region is just one of many booming cities with film industry potential.  With an abundance of opportunity for major film productions, the Geelong region's future is looking...
Follow Us

Join

Subscribe & Support Positive storytelling

 

How Pets Save Humanity

How Pets Save Humanity

COVID-19 has affected our lives massively, and pets have emerged as an integral part of coping with the pandemic. Animals provide us with unconditional love, reduce stress levels, and help fill social isolation gaps society faces during these trying times.

Consequently, the world has seen a significant rise in animal adoptions and purchases. According to PetRescue Australia, over 2.3 million pet lovers jumped on to PetRescue during the first few months of lockdowns in our country, collectively contributing to over 49 MILLION page views. 

In just three months, 20,350 adoptions were successfully made.  

According to experts, these are the unique qualities that make pets so valuable for people worldwide during COVID-19.

Pets Can Pick Up On Your Emotions

Pets can sense your emotions. So whether you are happy, sad, depressed, or tired, your pet always knows it and will try to give you company to put you in a good mood. Moreover, you can share all your feelings with your pet without getting unwelcome advice. Pets are great listeners, and sometimes, simply saying things out loud can help you overcome troubling thoughts triggered by COVID-19.

Pets are a Good Source of Laughter

Pets are incredibly adorable and funny. If you have ever watched your dog chase his tail, or your cat startled by noise, or your parrot copying your sentences, you have probably had a good chuckle.

Remember that pets love human attention. And if they notice something they do gets them your focus, they will keep milking the moment to make you laugh, and laughter is the best medicine to relieve stress.

Pets Can Accompany You on a Walk

Even during the pandemic, it’s impossible to stay at home all the time. Change of environment is essential for the brain to stay healthy, and going out on a walk is a great way to achieve that. Whether on a leash, on your shoulder, or in a stroller, you can always go out with your pet to say hello to your neighbours from afar. 

Pets Are Safe To Hug

While touching humans may not be safe during COVID-19, you can still snuggle with your pets to feel relaxed. Currently, there’s no evidence that pets transmit this disease, and therefore, hugging them is completely fine. According to experts, snuggling your pet will produce a feel-good hormone called oxytocin and lower cortisol levels, a hormone responsible for triggering stress, anxiety, and depression.

Pets Help You Spread Happiness

Nowadays, both TV and social media are filled with depressing updates about the pandemic. However, during these tricky times, a cute photo of your cat, dog, hare, or parrot can add joy to your loved ones. Besides, it’s the simplest way to bring a smile to the faces of people who are close to you. All you need to do is take a picture or make a video of your pet being adorable and share it with your loved ones through text, email, or social media platforms. Indeed, nothing makes people happier in a stressful situation than a funny pet photo or video sent to them by a loved one. 

Interesting fact to ponder:

Pets can help you survive a pandemic.

During the 1918 flu pandemic, pets were used to help detect infected people and alert doctors before they got sick. They were also used as guards in quarantine camps to protect humans from one another during this time of crisis. 

Pets are a wonderful addition to any household, and they provide many benefits for the owner. One of these is an increased sense of well-being when times get chaotic or stressful. So if you got a new pet over the last 12 months (or know someone who did), we would love to see your pics! Use hashtag #ponderingspets- we want to hear about how this furry friend has changed your life or helped during periods of isolation–we’re sure there are lots more stories out there! So grab those camera phones and snap away while giving us some good feels with your pics.

PetRescue is a national animal welfare charity with a vision of a future where every pet is safe, respected and loved. https://www.petrescue.com.au/about 

Kirsten Macdonald

Kirsten Macdonald

Writer

Ponderers and counting...

Related Articles

Related

We’ve Been Here Before

It is a devastating time for many right now, feeling powerless and without remedy or perhaps experiencing a lack of agency. So how are some ways we can empower ourselves? Regardless of the how, when, why and what, we are most definitely in a global crisis. ...

read more

The Best Booknooks and Bookshelves For BookWorms

In September, Hermione Granger, Stephen King, George R. R. Martin and Roald Dahl Birthday all have birthdays. Given that nearly all of them are favourite authors of the Ponderings team, we decided to dedicate this auspicious month to an assortment of bookish loves. ...
dr renuka asfb

Hour of Power For Women’s Health Thanks To Innovative Doctor

Dr Renuka Balasubramaniam is here to save the day with a radical new approach to women’s health. Learn about her clinic, her methods, and how you can benefit from an hour of power!

The Story of a Woman’s Journey to Business Success and a Little Girl Called Zoey

A mother shares her story of business success and the little girl who inspired it all – Find out more about how Dominique Ho discovered what she wanted from life, why family comes first as well as the decision to turn tragedy into hope.

Follow Us

Join

Subscribe & Support Positive storytelling

 

How Aromatherapy Can Make Your Household Feel Calm

How Aromatherapy Can Make Your Household Feel Calm

– Is Aromatherapy Good for You?
– Can Essential Oils Make Your House Feel Better?

If you want to create a calm and relaxing environment, there are many ways to do it. One of the most popular methods is using aromatherapy. Essential oils have been used in aromatherapy for centuries because they can be harnessed as powerful tools that promote physical and emotional well-being. So given we are candle makers, why is essential oil in candles so good for us? It all has to do with our sniffer.

The nose is a complex organ that can be compared to an antenna that picks up scent molecules from our environment and then transfers them into the brain. This allows you to perceive smells. Do you know why your sense of smell is so important? It’s because it helps you avoid dangers, find food and drink, and discover new things. Without a good nose, life wouldn’t be the same!

These essential oil blends might not keep you out of danger, but they might help you achieve your goal of creating an atmosphere where peace reigns supreme!

Lavender is an excellent example of a profoundly calming essential oil. Lavender’s aroma has been shown in studies to produce feelings of relaxation and well-being, promoting calmness on both the physical and emotional levels.

Orange essential oil is another useful oil that can be used to promote a calm atmosphere. The sweet, citrus aroma of orange essential oil helps to uplift mood. It is said to help with feelings of depression while also reducing anxiety and stress. In fact, an in-depth study in 2017 in aromatherapy showed potential to be used as an effective therapeutic option for the relief of depressive symptoms in a wide variety of subjects. 

Patchouli is another calming blend that can be used in aromatherapy. It is said to help you let go of mental tension and worry by promoting balance on an emotional level.

Basil oil is reputed to have a very calming scent that helps promote feelings of serenity and peace. It may also help with health issues like insomnia, anxiety, or depression and boost energy levels due to its refreshing aroma.

Rose oil helps with uplifting one’s mood and promoting self-love within oneself. It is also used for skincare treatment due to its rejuvenating qualities. Studies show at an emotional level, subjects in the rose oil group rated themselves as calmer, more relaxed and less alert than subjects in the control group

Lemon is one of my favourite smells. It’s fresh and light but still has a bit of zest to it! This bright and citrusy scent is perfect for fighting fatigue! Said to relieve anxiety, balances moods while uplifting the spirit and energizes.

Science is really unwrapping the facts when it comes to aromatherapy. For example, Peppermint essential oil benefited brain performance with demanding cognitive tasks during an extensive study on its impact on Brain Function

A similar study in 2018 showed Bergamot essential oil aromatherapy on mood states, parasympathetic nervous system activity; the primary aim of the present study was to obtain the first clinical evidence for these psychological and physiological effects. 

We recently partnered with Angel Sent Aromatherapy to make our limited edition candles. For those that don’t know, I am the founder of Angel Sent from some 13 years ago. Insider fact- We like to use Bergamot as a bottom or middle note to our blends to accentuate and strengthen the depth of an aromatherapy experience. 

The evidence is in, and it’s clear that aromatherapy works to promote a state of calm. Suppose you want to experience the benefits for yourself. In that case, we recommend checking out this month’s Ponderings Pinterest collection on Aromatherapy recipes. 

Want to try out one of Angel Sent’s latest essential oil candle blends?  Check them all out here!

Disclaimer; Ponderings makes no health or medical claims in this article, please see a qualified medical practitioner for all health advice and concerns. 

Further references and reading; 

Hongratanaworakit T. Relaxing effect of rose oil on humans. Nat Prod Commun. 2009 Feb;4(2):291-6. PMID: 19370942.

-Kennedy D, Okello E, Chazot P, Howes MJ, Ohiomokhare S, Jackson P, Haskell-Ramsay C, Khan J, Forster J, Wightman E. Volatile Terpenes and Brain Function: Investigation of the Cognitive and Mood Effects of Mentha × Piperita L. Essential Oil with In Vitro Properties Relevant to Central Nervous System Function. Nutrients. 2018 Aug 7;10(8):1029. DOI: 10.3390/nu10081029. PMID: 30087294; PMCID: PMC6116079.

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25824404/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30087294/

https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/19370942/ 

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5241490/

Thank you to our sponsors Australian Skin Face Body- click here to find out more about them!

Ponderers and counting...

Related Articles

Related

We’ve Been Here Before

It is a devastating time for many right now, feeling powerless and without remedy or perhaps experiencing a lack of agency. So how are some ways we can empower ourselves? Regardless of the how, when, why and what, we are most definitely in a global crisis. ...

read more

The Best Booknooks and Bookshelves For BookWorms

In September, Hermione Granger, Stephen King, George R. R. Martin and Roald Dahl Birthday all have birthdays. Given that nearly all of them are favourite authors of the Ponderings team, we decided to dedicate this auspicious month to an assortment of bookish loves. ...
dr renuka asfb

Hour of Power For Women’s Health Thanks To Innovative Doctor

Dr Renuka Balasubramaniam is here to save the day with a radical new approach to women’s health. Learn about her clinic, her methods, and how you can benefit from an hour of power!

The Story of a Woman’s Journey to Business Success and a Little Girl Called Zoey

A mother shares her story of business success and the little girl who inspired it all – Find out more about how Dominique Ho discovered what she wanted from life, why family comes first as well as the decision to turn tragedy into hope.

Follow Us

Join

Subscribe & Support Positive storytelling

 

%d bloggers like this: