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Hi guys,

Thought it about time I updated my journal. I am graduating a Bachelor of Medical Laboratory Science at the end of this year (it was a 4 year course), and in fact, my final placement finishes in 3 weeks! I recently got a job in microbiology at our local hospital pathology laboratory (microbiology is my favourite specialisation) which I will be working fulltime at until the end of the year (since in 3 weeks I will have finished all my uni work). 

Then next year I will be moving interstate to do honours research investigating Lyme disease in Australia, which I am so excited about and can't wait to get started! Lyme disease is a tick-borne disease common in America and Europe, but there is significant controversy as to whether or not it exists indigenously in Australia, despite cases of Australians contracting the disease who have never left the country. With very little evidence and awareness as of yet, and Lyme's frustrating ability to mimic many other diseases, Lyme sufferers in Australia take an average of at least 7 years to be diagnosed, and by then there is significant multiorgan damage including nervous, cardiac, arthritic and psychological.

And FINALLY getting their diagnosis isn't the light at the end of the tunnel - then there is the difficulty of getting sufficient treatment, as chronic Lyme is not so easily treated as if it was found within 6 months of contraction! Getting treatment in Australia is difficult, with very few doctors even acknowledging the disease, and in Queensland now, only infectious disease specialists are allowed to treat it, after one doctor lost his licence for treating Lyme sufferers! So I am determined to gather substantial evidence on the existence of this damn bacteria in Australia so that this political controversy can stop stuffing these patients around and improve their earlier diagnosis and treatment! 

So I guess although I am graduating uni this year, I am just going back again next year XD 

Anyhow, in between my scientific career, I have been enjoying painting in my spare time :) 

Hope you're all doing well! 

~Melissa 
On the weekend I entered this painting into an art competition at our local "Seabreeze Festival". It was people's choice, meaning the winner was based on the highest number of votes. I was up against people older than me, and even professional artists.

Serenity by In-The-Distance

AND I WON!!!!!
I won $1000, in fact! I was so excited!! I am glad so many people liked my artwork ^^

Just thought I'd share that :)


~Melissa