Thursday, December 8, 2016

2016: Lost for words

Lost for words
[Originally written on my phone & full of typos *shock*. Edited early 2017, with additional content.]

Yes! You read it properly (twice, just to be clear)! I have not been very good at blogging this year - specifically for 16 months, really, because life became so jumbled up & messy, I genuinely couldn't (can't) find the words to describe it all.

Anyone who knows me personally, or who has followed my blog may be having some doubts right now... I am not one to be stuck for words. Ever.  And I'm not a fan of being stuck for words - so this ends now!  For once I am making a 'real' new year's resolution to focus on my writing (blogging included obviously; but all my writing projects); and art projects in 2017 - a year of creativity.  Art heals, right?!

However, as December is quickly passing by, and a new year approaches, I feel this urge to try to 'get it all out' - out of my head, free to float around in cyberspace instead of in my own mind - so I can move forward and approach 2017 with a sense of optimism and hope.

To 'get what all out'? My subconscious asks me - all that stuff you just said you have no words for? Well.... yes. I haven't figured out how that will work: if the words need to be written, or if I can simply THINK stuff out of my head. Either way,  I'm trying. Perhaps simply starting to write will draw it out of me, either tangibly (or maybe through some sort of intangible higher-consciousness superpower that writing, blogging and thinking can combine and combust when I try to put certain memories into words.... it's a cool idea - what a great way to eliminate trauma, or negativity... okay, I think I've watched too much Black Mirror.  I do know that's not really going to happen - it's been a hard year, but I've not totally lost it; my imagination remains happily, crazily intact though!)  Moving on.....  in the real world outside my head.... perhaps I will find the words; or perhaps writing about different things will provide a release anyway.  Really, I just need to clear some space in my head for positive thoughts for next year. I don't exactly know how (did you guess?!).... I'm just diving in anyway.

This particular blog post started on instagram, in a blurb about a painting I posted. I have been attempting a 'challenge': 100 days of creativity.  I  did it last year, and it was great ambidextrous therapy, following right shoulder and left wrist surgeries, so - with the same underlying physical reasons, and the whole art therapy idea, i started it again in April this year, but things just continue to overwhelm me.

January 2017 will mark 12 years of severe chronic illness (& injury) for me. Out of 12 years, i can honestly say this year has been the worst. It should have been a year where improvements continued; instead, improvements seem to have crumbled, despite my best efforts to continue building on them; my Lyme-related issues have firmly nosedived into major relapses; and my strength and emotional well-being seems to have been tested at every point. It has been a TOUGH year, and it remains difficult to delve into every detail.

I gave up on this art  challenge after spending quite a bit of time in hospital in the summer, and even longer being 'iller' than usual between my stays in hospital. It's just one point that leaves me stuck for words, because after about 3 months of feeling severely ill (on top of my 'normal feeling like sh!t), a total of 21 nights spent in hospital, over multiple admissions;
 I have no answers. Symptoms have somewhat calmed down, but flare up sporadically.  I still feel ill again; 'it' has not been fixed, 'it' has not gone away, but I have given up on  answers for now.

I later I decided to finish this art challenge. It might seem silly, but it has come to represent something bigger; it may be my only 'accomplishment' this year (although survival probably surpasses it!). So I have 22 days and 28 pieces to post 😞.... but in a silly way, it represents my year. So I WILL finish! & if I can squeeze that in, hopefully in some crazy way it will help me leave 2016 behind & move on to 2017 looking forward. 

There is a large part of this that I feel mirrors 2016 globally too and hopefully the world can move on in a positive way too. Hopefully instead of divisiveness that dominated 2016, humanity can come together & support one another. Hopefully 2017 can be a year filled with compassion, love, safety & unity (& good karma!) This safetypin movement -inspired painting seemed the perfect place for trying to start somewhere (again!) with my blog.

Initially I started this blog to raise awareness about Lyme Disease;  it quickly became an unexpected method of communication - somewhere I could upate friends about my shoulder,  as I was not allowed to spend much time online following surgery. Over time it became quite cathartic as well, at times an outlet for a frustrating long recovery, and many times a place for positive quotes to self-motivate.  It has helped me stay positive & optimistic - and enables me to 'meet' other people with shared experiences. 

I very much hope I can get back to writing and continue all of those things in the new year.

Multicolored Safety-pin

"You must be the change you want to see in the world."
~ Gandhi ~


  1. The similarities in your blog to my life is insane... I was diagnosed with Lyme a year and a half ago and have been on and off antibiotics and I am getting scapular muscle reattachment surgery in two weeks. I'm going to keep reading your old posts through my own recovery. Thanks for raising awareness and sharing!!

    1. Sorry, I've just seen your comment (I'm doing really well with that New Year's resolution to keep writing... in my defence I have a horrid cold too!) I guess you will be having your surgery this week - good luck! I hope it goes well. Are you going to Kentucky or having it elsewhere? If you like, please feel free to email me :
      Despite everything that is ongoing, having the scapular muscle reattachment surgery was the thing that has given me back use of my right arm. It has a bit to go to be fully functional because of my nerve damage, but without that surgery, it would be nothing. It's hard, but it is 100% worth it. I hope to hear how you get on! Gail