Thursday, 11 August 2011


Wow - such a long time since I have written here.

I shall get to the gratitude part soon, promise. Firstly, just a quick update on my living arrangements and my general level of health.

Last Thursday saw me move out of the house I shared with my ex-girlfriend and into my own little apartment. Healthwise, I am doing surprisingly good since the move - which leads on nicely to the main subject of this post... gratitude!

I was struck today by a feeling of how much I have to be grateful for.

The house move is complete and I am in an apartment I adore. It is such a pleasant place to live, to convalesce and to reflect. Sunlight streams in through the massive Georgian windows, the character and age of the property makes for very satisfying aesthetics. It is quiet, for the most part. Birdsong is the most prevalent sound - so all rather pleasing on the ears.

Today I managed another short walk in the grounds and ventured a little deeper into the undergrowth, leading to the canal. I ate wild berries from the bush and I marvelled at how an area left untended by humans blossoms into something most skilled gardeners would struggle to match. An abundance of supposedly endangered bees were sharing in my appreciation of all the wild flowers that were around.

Sure, the first few nights of living here were strange. I felt very isolated - especially as I had no internet connection. I missed my ex-girlfriend, I missed my cats, I reflected on a 7-year chapter of my life closing. Moving was right for me though. It was right for many reasons. My quality of life is already infinitely better due to having the whole property on the same level. My ability to feel like I can move forward and begin a new chapter in my life has increased too. My desire to be as independent as I can be alongside having M.E. is being tested and satisfied too.

The past few days have been filled with a sense of how lucky I am. My mother has been conscious of me being a little 'needy' during the adjustment phase and has been ringing regularly to chat and reassure me. My postman has been delivering a constant supply of 'welcome' cards and postcards from kind-hearted friends. I have been managing to dawdle around the apartment doing what needs done, slowly but surely. Everything has been positive and has reminded me of the connections, both old and new, I have made with people.

My ex-girlfriend has dropped in since the move. We were able to chat as friends, effortlessly. Of course, I am sad that the relationship is over but I had already done the grieving part of that prior to the move. Now comes the acceptance and the joy in knowing we will always be friends and that we can happily spend time together.

And today, I received a visit from an old friend. I surprised myself by being able to engage in conversation for 4 hours. We put the world to rights, shared memories and laughs and had tea and cream cakes.

It was wonderful to be able to catch up with her but it also gave me a sense of confidence in the future. That I can carve out a bit of living amongst being sick. I have been very cautious with my health since I got ill, scared to trigger any flare-ups for full-blown crashes.

Now, I think it's time to cast off that caution and replace it with a more balanced approach. To be sensible and careful but to make sure that my life also includes a connection to the outside world. I have felt trapped in a bedroom for the past year or so, partly due to my own choices, and it's time to give more focus to the freedom I can allow myself. I may never be the person I was before M.E. entered my life but I am okay with that. I can live with the uncertainty and the lack of control I have over the outcome.

Much to be grateful for :)


  1. 'I may never be the person I was before M.E. entered my life but I am okay with that'....true but you'll be a different person and now you have the opportunity and space (physical and emotional) to go and grow at your own pace without feeling the same responsibility to others.

    Really glad you are settling in well and seeing the benefits xxx

  2. Dear Friend,
    You wrote these words:
    "The past few days have been filled with a sense of how lucky I am."
    When we first "met" feelings were so different. Back then, this gratitude and awareness of all the little beautiful things hadn't happened yet. I felt a bit Pollyanna when I wrote you then - that illness can be a Teacher, a gift even, hard to explain until you experience it. It seems that you have, you are. Of course, I know that each day brings something different and the ups and downs are difficult - part of the lesson for me is staying aloft and hovering, aware of it all somehow, in between the lows and highs. I think of all this as some sort of evolution. All we can hope is that in the back and forth we gradually move forward on that chain. Thanks for sharing this, and for your friendship - yet another gift that might never have happened. =)

  3. wow! such an inspirational post ... your words have really helped me to cast off a bit of the fear surrounding my own situation. I am so pleased that you are feeling more free and able to actually have some sort of life!! How very exciting!!!xx Cant wait to see photos of your new place :)

  4. I reached the conclusion only a few days ago that I would make my life more normal and less cautious. Sometime when we are overly worried about what damage we are doing when we try and live normally it is worse than actually what we have done. That's not to say we should all go out and run a marathon. I remember when I was first told to restrict my diet, I became so stressed about what I could and couldn't eat that I think I made myself sicker.

    I am so happy that you have settled into your new house so easily. You make it sound like a beautiful poetic place to be. I hope this is the start of true healing.

    Love Mel xxxx

  5. such a grown up blog to read.i am inordinately chuffed for you.and proud of you.

  6. sounds like you are in a very nice place, conducive for new beginnings. i also marvel at my surroundings when i am able to 'venture out'. this is a really nice post, thank you for writing it. all the best.