Scotland

If there is a place that I love more than anything now, it has to be Scotland.

It is truly beautiful, inside and out. There is so much history hidden behind the walls and curves of every road. It honestly feels as though you are in a movie or a book. There are so many nooks and crannies; from alley ways to hidden walkways that lead to unique shops and cafes.

You can see the beautiful Edinburgh castle, resting on the edge of a cliff. Looking as if it is about to tip over into the picturesque town. Brief glimpses of the castle pours through the spaces in between buildings.

When we had first gotten here, a smile was plastered to my face. I couldn’t help it, Scotland has a way of doing that to you.

So far we have gone on the infamous Harry Potter tour (which is free by the way), a night ghost tour, Edinburgh castle, New Town, and Old town.

You could sit in a cafe, reading, writing, and even people watching for hours at a time. The streets are filled with stores and covered with merchants in small tents. You also have the entertainers doing magic tricks, playing instruments, or simply just having a very cute dog with sunglasses on.

We are leaving tomorrow and we have sadly only been here for one full day but it was completely worth it.

I am in shell shock and wish endlessly to spend more time here.

Love,

Caity

P.S. here are some pics from the trip đź’› https://breathingwithcaity.files.wordpress.com/2018/07/img_2336.mov

The Hard Times

All I could feel was shooting pain in my abdomen and chest as I awoke from my drugged daze. It felt as though I couldn’t breathe and I started gasping for air.

I had oxygen pouring through the cannula in my nose yet it felt like every breath was not full, the pain resonating through my body leaving me in tears.

I looked around me to see someone I loved or knew. I was so scared. All I remember were seeing the doctors and nurses talking, telling me to relax and that they will give me more medication to help with the pain. Then darkness.

The next time I woke up, my mom and my grandmother were by my side and I had never been more appreciative than at that moment.

It’s when you go through the absolute hardest things in life, you realize who truly has your back; the people that are willing to be there no matter what difficulties you may be facing.

I was and am currently going through one of those very rough times. I am in excruciating pain because of my gallbladder surgery. Getting the surgery done has also affected my lungs which have led to an endless amount of coughing and crying in pain because of it.

Recovering from a surgery results in a plethora of time with yourself and your thoughts. It’s easy to feel isolated when watching through your phone, the lives of friends, family, and acquaintances living their life. And it’s easy to feel even more isolated when some of the people you love don’t reach out nor try to lend a comforting hand when you are going through those hard times.

Yes, I am strong and can deal with many of life’s obstacles with a smile. But that doesn’t mean that I am not suffering or in need of support time after time.

Living with a life-threatening illness, there’s this heartbreaking moment that forces its way into your life. The moment where you realize the people you thought would be there for you through absolutely everything, wind up letting you down.

In a way, it narrows down the people who truly care about you and the people who don’t.

It also makes you appreciate the amazing people in your life. Those that hold your hand through the ups and downs. Those who wipe away your tears and tell you that everything is going to be okay.  Those who run to get you your favorite food at Chic fil a. Those who send you mail filled with love and prayer. Those who come over just to lay down on the couch with you and watch movies.

Those are the special people and I am lucky enough to have them in my life.

It’s also through these hard times, that I have seen an outpouring of love. From people sending me messages to Facebook posts to getting me little gifts that make me smile. So many amazing people that have honestly made recovering easier and has given me the most positive outlook.

So this is for all of those people who have had my back and have supported me recently (and always), thank you so so much. I honestly don’t know what I would do without all of your love. I appreciate you more than you know and I will always remember how you were there for me.

Love,

Toronto, Canada (Day 3 and 4)

The journey continued into our two final days in Canada. The third day was spent exploring Toronto as much as we could. While the fourth day we squeezed in one more sight before heading back home.

On the third day, we went through the Fashion District, Kensington Market, and the Distillery District. The beginning of the day was spent in the Fashion District where we went in a bunch of different antique places and vintage clothing stores. To see all the different fabrics and designs dispersed through the clothing of different stores was fascinating. We were always welcomed with big smiles and questions as to where we were from.

From there we went to the Grafitti Wall. It was below zero but we were able to get a few pictures and tried to admire the artwork as much as we could. We also spent some of our time at one of the biggest malls I had ever been to, the CF Toronto Eaton Centre.

Our next stop was the Distillery District that had a plethora of shops and art. We had stopped in a building filled with art that had four floors. There were artists that had their doors open so people could come and admire their work. We talked to a few artists who explained their pieces to us.

The final night came to an end in a Mexican radio bar with Modelos, quesadillas, and some churros. We packed the car ready to leave for the next day. Upset that we couldn’t spend more time in a place where we made so many memories and laughs.

We woke up at 7 am prepared for the long drive but of course, we had to go to one last place to adventure; Niagara Falls.

Let me just tell you, if you have not been here before, it is a must that you go some point in your life. It was the most breathtaking view I have ever seen in my entire life. Driving up the road to see the very edges of the falls and the blue hues that resonated, was astounding

It was so beautiful.

We walked our way through the path, eager to see Niagara Falls in its entirety. All you could hear was the crashing of the water. You felt complete and utter peace. The water was an unexpected teal blue with darker hues interwoven within it. An eerie mist arose from the falls and made it even more breathtaking.

After seeing that, we picked up a few things from the souvenir shop and continued our eight-hour drive.

Canada, thank you for all of the amazing moments you gave me. You were the first place I traveled to without any supervision. You were the place that truly threw me into needing to travel as much as I can.

Don’t worry, I am coming back. Whether it’s this summer or next year, I can’t wait to make even more amazing memories with you.

Love,

Toronto, Canada (Day 1 and 2)

I have never done so much nor had so much fun in just the bit of time that I have spent at a place like I have here.

My cousin, her two college besties and I, road tripped from New Jersey to Canada with only knowing where we were staying.

Not a day was planned out. We obviously made a list of things we had to see and do but other then that, it was all up in the air and I absolutely loved it.

The trip to Toronto, Canada started at 4 am and ended around 12 pm. I was only living on three hours of sleep so I could barely keep my eyes open but we made it (thank god).

It was actually kind of peaceful, driving. Everyone else was passed out while I just played my jams cruising down the winding roads (which I didn’t realize how dangerous they could be even if you tried to stay at the speed limit).

The car ride was spent either sleeping, stopping at Dunkin, getting gas, gossiping, jamming out, or searching up what to expect when we got to the border.

Right when we got to Canada, we screamed our heads off because we couldn’t believe that we actually did it.

Us, 19/20 year olds, going to another country all by ourselves. It was a pretty big deal to us at least.

After driving further into Canada, we went to a restaurant around our Air B and B called Loose Moose. They had the best burgers ever and it was super artsy.

After that we got to our Air B and B and slept for a few hours since we were all pretty exhausted.

We woke up, made more food, and went out to the town. We looked up different bars we could go to and went for it.

The first bar we went to wasn’t really for the younger crowd but we still hung around and had a good time.

The next bar was called the Underground. It was covered in different colored lights and bras were strung across the ceiling like decorations. Music blasted from the speakers and from the moment we stepped into the place, we couldn’t stop dancing.

We had an amazing time meeting very different kinds of people. The night ended with a visit to Tim Hortons (which is kind of like a Dunkin Donuts mixed with a Wawa). As we tripped and stumbled our way back home, we couldn’t stop laughing and talking about everything that happened earlier in the night.

I didn’t know Kristina’s college friends all that much but we definitely got to grow closer from all the memories we made. They are the sweetest, most kindest people.

That was just all the first day and the second day would be even better.

We spent the second day going to the CN tower, it was so beautiful to see the city and everything that surrounded it. We also went to Ripleys aquarium that had a 360 view of the shark tank which was pretty awesome.

For dinner, we went to a restaurant that Drake, the rapper, had been involved with (he named it). It was so delicious and a bit more expensive than anything else we ate in Canada but definitely worth it all.

Our day turned into a night spent at a Harry Potter themed bar called, The Lockhart. If you love Harry Potter (even just a little bit), you HAVE to go here. From drinks to the posters and art that covered the walls, it made you feel like you were truly in Harry Potter.

We only have two days left here but I plan to spend all of them the right way. I can’t wait for more memories to be made. I feel so lucky to be able to even experience this and do it with amazing people who truly bring out the best in me.

Love,

Here is the video I finally got done:

Coming to Terms

Yesterday, I had a doctor’s appointment that shook me to my core.

I don’t really want to go into details but there is a lot that I need to think about with my future.

It’s crazy to think that every choice I make about my health right now, will affect how long I live.

I am only twenty-years-old and I have to consider making a living will.

How is that possible?

I have just begun my life of exploring myself and the world.

It’s in these moments where I want to go up to every person that walks by me and say, “Live your life to the fullest. Live every day like it is your last. Appreciate every moment and memory you make and never regret a thing because it was meant to happen that way for a reason. Love your body and take care of it. Treasure every breath and step you take in life, it means more than you think.”

I always try to stay positive but over the years I have realized, it’s okay not to be positive.

It’s okay to feel down about yourself or down about life.

For there to be positivity, there needs to be negativity to balance it out.

After all, the awful things that you go through in life make you appreciate the good.

It’s taking those situations and realizing that its a part of life and you just got to keep going. Keep hoping. Keep praying that it will all work out in the end.

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Gracie’s Wish

My beautiful little sister made a wish to go to Disney World and it was finally granted!

The smiles and laughs that I have seen and heard from her, have brought so much warmth.

My sister has been through a lot in the little time that she has been on this earth. From hospitalizations to missing months of school because of Cystic Fibrosis, she is always in pain and suffering.

These moments with us on vacation are the things that I hope can make her forget about all the pain she faces on a daily basis.

I wish I could leave her in these beautiful moments forever, where she is so unbelievably happy and carefree.

I would do anything to make that possible for her.

The trip has been absolutely amazing so far. Make-A-Wish has been awesome in making sure that all of our travels have been smooth and successful (especially when it comes to getting in the express lanes for rides).

We are residing at Give The Kids The World and let me just tell you, the people who volunteer and work here are the kindest people you will ever meet.

They have really made the stay here so comfortable and stress-free.

All the volunteers want to do is help you in any way they can, whether it’s bringing your food to the table or making you ice cream or even doing your hair and nails. All they spread is love and positivity to every child and adult they interact with.

Give Kids The World has events going on constantly such as birthday parties of characters or Christmas nights. They have horseback riding, movie nights, arcades, rides, pools, golf, fishing, you name it they probably have it somewhere around here.

So far we have been to Hollywood Studios, Magic Kingdom, and Universal Studios: the Island of Adventure in just two days.

I had my go-pro with me since the beginning of our journey because I want my sister to remember these moments.

To remember that there are so many amazing moments in life that outweigh the bad.

That she has a family that loves her and adores her. A family that will always be there for her.

So I made a video, that way when the pain is too much or she just wants to look back on all the things we did, she can.

I love you, Gracie. Always.

Part 1:

Part 2:

So many memories made that will never be forgotten.

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