Showing posts from June, 2017

Fibromyalgia: My Health Journey

Recently I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, a multi system chronic condition that is characterised by chronic widespread pain, extreme fatigue, brain fog, digestive complaints and depression. For a sufferer of Fibromyalgia, stress is a major driving force in exasperating symptoms. It is a lifelong condition (there is no cure) but with a range of therapeutic care, symptoms can be managed and even improved. It sounds like a lot, and it is. It has felt like I’d stumbled into a dimly lit tunnel filled with physical and psychological challenges coupled with medical puzzles that needed a large brains trust to solve. I’ve been in this tunnel a long time, but have now stepped into some sunlight. Rather than being completely devastated by this diagnosis, I felt a huge sense of relief, validation and overwhelming gratitude. For my persistent struggle with extreme fatigue, insomnia, digestive complaints, low moods and pain have for the past 7 years made me question my sanity, and doubt my capabil

Van Gogh Inspires

  I have long admired the work of Vincent Van Gogh; his use of colour and texture has always given me pleasure and his subject matter has been of an engaging nature. However, it wasn’t until I saw his work in the flesh (so to speak) that my appreciation and love of him grew. I can recall quite vividly the first time I stumbled upon one of his most famous paintings. Up until that point, my exposure to art had been 6 years of study at school and a board game called ‘Masterpiece’ (which was a family favourite we often played on holidays). At school, I’d had the privilege of seeing exhibitions of Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso, both of which I enjoyed, but never Van Gogh. It was not until the first year of living in London with my family, that I unexpectedly came to behold his ‘Sunflowers’. I had been through several rooms of the gallery, when I realised that there was a growing number of paintings I recognised from the well-worn board game I had played many years previous. A growing sens

Lessons in Mental Health

  If you had asked me 5 years ago, “What is mental health?” I would have given a vague answer that showed my ignorance; highlighting a subconscious idea that mental health held negative connotations. However, a growing awareness and education on this important part of well-being has shown me how little I knew.   While the experience of others has taught me, (and is still teaching me) that taking care of one’s thought life is extremely important and healthy; it was not until I began to explore what mental health meant in relation to pain management (concerning my back), that I have appreciated the value and importance of it.  For years I have struggled with bad back pain; to the point of which I lived on paracetamol and ibuprofen to get through the day. However, it was not until I started seeing a new Osteopath, that I began to have a new perspective.  The holistic approach to health encouraged me to examine more closely how I thought about pain, and consequently helped to change my thi