I bet the first thing you thought was, ‘she’s having a flare’. But you know what? I’m using the word ‘fire’ in the way that people living with chronic pain only dream [...]
Lockdown time appears to be crucial for pacing back to whole life. Every lockdown has given me a leap of some kind. I genuinely think lockdown together with my spinal cord stimulation has armed me like never before in this 14-year journey. There are moments I'm so comfortable. Of course, it's seconds and minutes, but it's soooooo freeeeeeeing. I 'just' walk over to get something – nothing is restricting me. No fog, no warning signal; it's just me moving in the space. So I can totally focus on what's in front of me, I can hear the quiet, notice the dust and envisage all the things I plan to do.. to the end! It's an uninterrupted dreamy sequence! If memory serves me correctly, this is a typical experience and a sequence that should be totally taken for granted instead of awed. I haven't experienced this before lockdown. EVER. CHECKPOINT: 14 years, 4 months and 21 days (or 5257 or 172 months, 21 days), I have experienced a short uninterrupted sequence of normality.
That was my endnote for 2019. As life evolves within my 3km radius, I find myself looking back less and less and looking forward more and more. Bitter, defines the heartache of not being able to see loved ones as often and the missing perks of our previous city life. Sweet, is being defined by new friends, the gallery, our new home and the sea that surrounds us. As for confused, another year has passed and I still don't feel anyone can quite define what's going on with my body. Does it matter heading into a new year?
GPADD 2018 Dealing with Addiction Conference – I'm Presenting! It's a topic that needs serious attention and I'm honoured to be invited to speak and share my personal experience. My aim is to share the resources that I've found that have helped me avoid dependency, and to share resources that have helped me understand my complex chronic health issue. Education is key for both the patient and the professional in the management of chronic health issues.
It's been a while since I posted a personal update but it's probably accurate to say that PN's weather patterns need to be documented seasonally. I mostly have turbulence, like it's sunny one day/stormy the next, or otherwise described as I take two steps forward and about 1.9 steps back. It's incredibly frustrating. So rather than report all the fluctuating details in between, it's best to leave some months go by to really figure out the progress. So now, the months have gone by and I can deliver to you, Soula's PN weather update for September 21, 2013.
I was walking to my studio from where I had a clear view to the sky through our balcony doors when the largest strike and thunder occured that honestly seemed like it had come through the doors and landed on our kitchen bench a few centimetres away from me. I flinched, sort of ducked in some auto response and next thing I knew I was on my knees and had fallen to the ground. My legs were so weak Theo had to lift me off the floor and we made it to the couch where I chilled, a little terrified for a while. At that point I couldn't piece together what had happened, even now I'm not sure it was all so quick, but the fact remains, I landed somehow on my knees with the back of my legs feeling like jelly unable to stand me up.
I had tried to paint myself in pain but it was deeply upsetting. It would have also been concrete documentation - forever - and that's the last thing I wanted to do with this pain. Immortalise it. The pain wasn't staying. It wasn't forever, and there was no way I was going to make it mine. My artwork takes me to happy places, but of course I couldn't ignore these years of my life.