This is my Life

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So many asked me to write about the story of my life of the struggles and I have decided to share with you guys!

I was born hearing impaired, with mild cerebral palsy (which is invisible) and also epileptic as well. During my childhood, the deaf school fought with my parents trying to persuade them to send me to their school in London and my parents refused. They told the school for the deaf they will be keeping me at home and attend regular school with my siblings. My parents were approached by the deaf boy telling them to keep me home and get me all education I needed so they took that guy’s advice and my parents knew exactly what I need and my best interests. I finally had a full time interpreter at school and I was amazed what school had done and supported me through all of this, my friends, my teachers including interpreters and they all tried their best to assist me in school… My interpreter had after school classes to teach my friends to learn how to learn sign language and I begin to notice all of my friends knew how to sign and I felt so happy.  A teacher from the deaf school attend my home once a week to teach me and my family how to sign before I go to school.

My teacher Keane and my mom planned a trip to London to pay a visit to the school for the deaf to see if they could further assist more for my education. Mrs. Keane, her daughter Allison, my mom and I all went to visit the school and I really liked was “swimming pool” and the school permitted me to swim in their pool and my mom asked me after I got out of the pool “are you going to tell Barb” and I replied “Yes.” On our way back to Owen Sound, my teacher told my mom that she wasn’t feeling well and my mom agreed to drive so that my teacher could rest so my mom agreed to drop her off to the hospital in Owen Sound. Her daughter, Allison, my mom and I were all waiting for an hour on Keane’s condition but unfortunately the doctor came to us giving the bad news telling us that she had died from a brain tumor. We all attended her funeral and I didn’t understand why she has to go same day after we went to London. I know she tried her best to help me and I am really glad that she is in a better place with the creator of the universe.

I was with a different interpreter for 8 years after that and her name is Mrs. Nickel and she worked and helped me so much. I was diagnosed with epilepsy and struggled with it for approximately 10 years. My doctor put me on epilepsy medicine and my mom didn’t believe in any medication but he told her that I really need them to control my seizures, after three nights she realized he was right so she agreed to have me on medication. He told her that I will take pills for the rest of my life and doctor warned my mom that I’d die from seizures  and he estimated I would die at 14 and it worries my mom that she’d lose me. When I was camping outside of my parents house with my sister and we were enjoying our time and then I went to sleep it occurred that I almost died. I could remember my whole family were crying so much and they thought I was gone but when I woke up and my family was in relief that they didn’t lose me. My sister was in her tears and said, “Carolyn, we almost lose you” I told her “I am still here and alive so you should be happy” I can tell you that I am always afraid of seizures and so scared of it through my childhood and I struggled. I would panic after I had seizures and my doctor had to give me calming medication for it. I totally understand how people feel about having seizures and living with it.  My condition had improved when I entered in high school and I was in relief. I prayed to God that I didn’t want to have any more seizures and I kept going on my life and I think he is answering to my prayers. I did complete my education and received diploma and certificate. Then I moved out from Owen Sound relocated in Kitchener and I started eating healthy and love being vegetarian plus it did help me with treating seizures. I am on lower dosage of medication and is seeing epilepsy specialist and he mentioned that I’ll be off medication soon. I am so thankful for the life God has given me and I feel so lucky.

I am so thankful to my family, my friends and including the creator of the universe helping me get through all of this and I would love to share my experience and help more epileptics that went through. I stopped having fears of seizures and is so happy with my life and focus the positivity around me and focus on my life.

By: Carolyn Bulsink

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My Exclusive Interview With Fashion Designer

Here is my exclusive interview with Fashion Designer’s Adria. She is very down on earth individual. I am very delighted to speak with her via email and she is just amazing at what she does in life as a fashion designer. She knew she wanted to be one at a very young age and sew clothes as a child. I’m amazed that she loves slippers and so do I. I liked the idea of keeping my feet warm, even though I should own one. As matter of fact, I never owned or purchased slippers – I am always on the go and always out. I am never in the house so I find myself seeing that she creates slippers and loved the quality of them.

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Carolyn: Can you tell me about yourself as a designer, how did you discover yourself into fashion industry?

Adria: I’ve always had a love of fashion! I learned to sew as a child & like to make my own additions to my clothes. I still make little additions to my clothes nowadays.

Technically I started out in the retail industry owning boutique locations. I got my feet wet in 2007 by designing for one of my vendors. It was such a great experience and I was invited to design whenever. Eventually, it became my occupation and I couldn’t have a better one!

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Ciccibella’s Wardhouse

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Carolyn: How does your clients treat you as a fashion designer?

Adria: I guess I don’t really run around saying I’m a/the designer. I think most are amazed at how hands on I am in so many facets of my business. The designing is by far my favorite part.

When I do talk about my designs I get many compliments. So many times they are duplicated…which is the sincerest form of flattery…I guess.

Carolyn: Your Logo name is so cute and it reminds me of Cinderella, What made you come up with that name Cicciabella?

Adria: Cicciabella is an Italian term of endearment for “pretty little one.” The original owners, the ones I designed for in 2007, are Italian. Such amazing sweet people that I adore!!

Carolyn: What are your favourite fabrics to work on?

Adria: I have to admit I love silk brocades and any lux fabric with just a hint of sparkle!

Of course we use a lot of suede’s and cotton blends for embroidery. Those might actually be my favorites because then it’s our design and nobody can duplicate exactly.

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Cicciabella at the Fashion Market

Carolyn: How long does it usually take you to construct a piece of a slipper?

Adria: Well, if I’ve made the drawing, bought the fabric and deliver it to the factory it’s a matter of days (sometimes hours). The entire process can take a while or be fast depending on how fast inspiration hits. Usually it happens pretty fast. I looove that part!

Carolyn: Do you travel and promote your products internationally or just in the single location?

Adria: I travel internationally to make the products but not to sell them.

We are wholesalers so we sell to many boutiques that retail our products. We do have interest overseas in our products but generally sell within the United States primarily due to shipping costs (our warehouse is in the states).

Carolyn: What are some of your favourite clothing stores? Or an online clothing store?

Adria: Mmm. Mmm Mmm! I’m a huge sucker for Robert Rodriquez clothing. I don’t suggest you look right now because it will hurt your wallet like it does mine! 😉

Carolyn: Where do you like to shop to purchase fashion patterns?

Adria: There are several favorite fabric markets that I go to in Shanghai. I typically travel there twice a year and spend many days perusing ALL the fabrics.

Carolyn: Are you going to promote different products in the future than just slippers itself?

Adria: Cicciabella has eye masks, bags, socks and some other items. For sure our main item is indoor/outdoor slippers. I’m sure we will venture to try new things as we are struck by inspiration.

You can check Adria’s work at www.cicciabella.com/gallery and you could even shop online on her website!

By: Carolyn Bulsink