Until very recently I was quite happy with my presence in the virtual world. I had (still have) a website, on which I share my art, writing, photography, write the occasional bit of news, and even have a page on the art in Lismore and the women I admire. I also have a page about M.E.
Last night I realised that it was quite a generic page, not about me with M.E., but the bare facts and a few links. Have people go somewhere else to find out about the illness...
I think the need to change my presence on the web stemmed from a very challenging time I had in March.
I love life, at times a bit more than my energy allows. So, just after my birthday, celebrated with friends for lunch and a monopoly game (which I gloriously lost ) at night with other friends, I felt that I needed time off. Time for a breather. Time to slowly get back to a routine of writing and pottering in the garden.
As it happens I had made an appointment for reiki, although this turned into a treatment with the Scenar. This treatment, which in short works on the nervous system, knocked me into a breakdown. The day after the treatment, I was so incredibly ill. I was in a huge amount of pain. Physically and mentally. I was told to be in a 'healing crisis' and received treatment the following day, to counteract the effects. This helped to the extent that the pain became bearable.
For weeks I slept, cried, rested, wrote, and tried to figure out was this treatment a good thing... A time of absolute confusion. I felt so ill, was so incredibly tired, looked terrible, but... can this treatment really be as good as suggested and that it really is a way into recovery? Is there really so much 'stuff' from my past in my body that, if it is 'scenar-ed' out, I will be well?
I continued with the treatment and continued to feel ill, and in a lot of pain.
I talked with various friends and a cousin from Canada. To her it sounded that I was being 'bullied' and that I was defending the illness to the therapist. This made sense. And yet it didn't... Maybe I needed this treatment, yet it felt so wrong. Maybe I needed this 'kick up my behind' to go forward.
Around the same time, the Journal from the 'Creative for a Second' Project came to my house. A wonderful project where people with M.E. from all over the globe, have the opportunity to write-draw etc in a journal for a two week period. The journal then moves to the next person on the list. The work I created (see Facebook link) received a lot of positive feedback. AND I felt hugely honoured to be among these wonderful creative beings who happen to have M.E.
I was also invited to exhibit my art at the M.E. Institute in the virtual world 'Second Life' (see earlier post). I had NO idea what this Second Life was all about, but I agreed. Kirsty, the woman behind the project, (to help people with M.E. make contact and have a place to visit when housebound) became a very important person to me. I became a member of Second Life and visited the Institute many times. There again I found myself among other creative people with M.E. and came to the realisations that 'we can't all be mad', M.E. does exist.
Again the comments on my work were heartwarming. Thank you all!
I realized that I have something to share with the world, and that I was finally able to embrace the fact that I have M.E. I was ready to add my voice to make other people aware about the effects of this illness on ones life. You might say I have done that in the past, but now I felt ready for it. Reached the point of acceptance (again! as they come in many forms...)
I felt that my work and voice needed to be 'out there' in a more coherent way. I asked Shannon to 'sort it all out for me'! She did. Thanks Shannon! She suggested that I needed a blog. To which I agreed. She knew what was good for me! And a new website... I must admit that for me this has become a NEED, not so much a want anymore!
The thinking about how I would like my new website (which is in the making!) to look, and the creation of THE blog, or maybe the events of the past few months made me see 'where I am in life' and 'who I am in life'. What are my hopes? What would I like to share? What is important to me?
Nature. Creativity. Writing. Friends. Life!
Last night I wrote the first draft for the M.E. page for the revamped website, and ... it is about what M.E. means to me. The good and the difficult.
I'll let you know when the new site is up and running.
Thanks for 'listening'!
Ps. I did stop the treatment and feel the better for it.