Saturday, 15 April 2017

Silent Grief.

A little over 2 years ago, My heart broke and nobody truly knew how that felt. 
My beautiful friend, My Max, was no longer in this world. 

The person i'd come to know, was no longer there. I wouldn't see him anymore. No messages from him would appear on my phone. No goodbyes would ever be said. 

For a long time, i didn't know how to feel. There was a void... A slight uncertainty that at any moment, more precious people would be taken from my life. 

For a long time, i pushed it away. Feeling like he might reappear and people had been wrong. That way, i wouldn't have to process what had happened. 

For me, there was no goodbye, no funeral, no comforting his loved ones, no reaching out to friends in a time of need. Circumstances at that time were very very cruel to me, and although i knew i had loved ones around me, i felt very alone in the world. 

Looking back, i would've handled it differently, but that's the thing about time. Things seem so much clearer when you look back on them. 

They still haven't found my dear friend, and at this stage, probably never will. That fact alone used to bring me to tears. But nowadays, that fact represents trust for me. Trust in Jehovah and true belief that he is in his memory... and that is enough. 

I've come to learn that grief is as individual as a fingerprint.

Take the time you need. 

Think what you need to or don't think at all.

Use the memories, the precious moments you'll only know about, and keep them close to your heart. Allow them to just be, to be a part of you and motivate you to keep on making more moments in your life that you will look back on. 

I still feel that void, but I'm grateful for the precious time i had with my friend. 

Monday, 9 January 2017

When small things become a big deal...

Sometimes, maybe i should say often, small things can become a big deal. 

I think there are many reasons behind this, procrastination being a crucial point to pick up on, but putting that aside, i think it is a result of having an illness. 

If you have a long term illness or are dealing with chronic pain, 
we can all agree that there is a certain amount of baggage that can come with that. Feelings of extreme exhaustion, never ending fatigue, anxiety about the future, social anxiety, stress, brain fog... I feel like that list could go on for another paragraph. 

But with this baggage, suddenly the very small, everyday things become giant steps that we have to climb up. Take, for example, the simple task of painting a wall. Ok, maybe that's not the simplest of tasks, but something attainable for the everyday person. They set aside a day, buy the paint, move the furniture away from the wall, cover it and have a go at painting the wall (hopefully having done some sort of research beforehand). 

Put that in the context of someone with a chronic condition. Maybe the thought of deciding on a paint is too much because there are too many options, maybe they don't physically know how they could stand all day, maybe going to the store to buy the paint will be enough to make them spend the rest of the day in bed. Maybe it all feels too much. 

I'm just using that as an example that's attainable for someone who has never had to process the limitations of someone with a chronic condition. 

It could be something as simple as sending an email. My fellow spoonies, will get and fully understand the phrase 'Brain fog'. But recently i had a case of brain fog and i thought i'd put off sending this email as i wanted to think it through and phrase it right. Well, days turned into weeks as brain fog then turned into anxiety as i still hadn't sent the email. 
Small thing + Consequences of chronic conditions = Big deal!

I wanted to let you know, if you've ever felt this way, I get you! So many of us are going through the same emotions and trying to battle through everyday tasks. 
Recently i've taken to writing a list of "things i really hate but i have to do"...trying to get a couple of these done in a week or month, whatever you can do, helps to contribute to a feeling of accomplishment. 

You got this! Or if you don't.... that's ok, one step at a time.

Love to all the spoonie community, Beth xxx

Saturday, 4 June 2016

Saying Goodbye...

I wrote this a few months back and as the days are flying by, i feel like it's right to share this...

It never feels right to say goodbye.

Maybe that’s why i keep putting it off.

The timing isn’t right. The feelings are too hard to address. Any way of commemorating you isn’t worthy enough.

 You see, you are too special. 

Too much of everything to just let go of.
 And that’s the problem. I. Can’t. Let. Go. 

I just can’t. 

but maybe thats ok.

 Maybe i have to find a way to let it be. 

To get by day to day and let little things remind me of you. 

Maybe that’s the way i deal with it. Not to “get over it” but to carry you.

To carry what precious little i have of you with me. 

Maybe i don’t need a day for you, or a commemoration to remember you. Maybe that’s the only way i’ll cope. 

Because having to physically mark that you are gone, is to let my world crash down. 

And i’m not ready for that. Not ready to say goodbye. 

So this isn’t goodbye. It’s I miss you. But i’ll remember you. Always. 

Sunday, 1 May 2016

I See The Light - Ukulele Chords, Lyrics & My Cover

Hiya folks! 

Recently i put up a cover up on Youtube of one of my most favourite Disney songs, "I see the light" from Tangled. I made a shortened version of the song, just singing Rapunzel's section of the duet.

You can see my cover here:

Here are the Uke chords and lyrics i used for my cover: 
All those days, Watching from the window
All those years, Outside looking in 
All that time, Never even knowing,
C        D7     G7
Just how blind I've been 

C             G7               C
Now I'm here, Blinking in the starlight
C             G7         C
Now I'm here, Suddenly i see
F              Em    
Standing here, It's oh so clear, 
Am        D7           G7
I'm where I'm meant to be

F                     C
And at last i see the light 
G7                        C
And it's like the fog has lifted
F                     C
And at last i see the light
    E7                Am7
And it's like the sky is new
        F                  C
And it's warm and real and bright 
        Em                F
And the world has somehow shifted
C           G7               C
All at once everything looks different
F        G7    C
Now that i see you
F        G7    C 
Now that i see you 

Have a great day!
Much Love, Beth xxx

Wednesday, 20 April 2016

Art Focus: Get out of your own way!

I read a quote recently that said "Great things don't come from comfort zones"

The reality of running your own business is that you can very easily get comfortable and stuck in a routine that isn't challenging you. Being your own boss has it's benefits but you defintely have to be on top of your game! 

Enthusiasm for your business is a must but that's easy to say and harder to actually maintain. So here are a few things i've found helpful when i've mentally hit a brick wall. These can apply to running a business, working from home, running a blog, youtube channel etc. 

1. Talk to others about your business - and be excited!

This is probably the hardest step, even still, for me. I'm naturally a very introverted person and find it hard to express myself in day to day life never mind talking about my business. But i've learnt that talking about what you're up to not only keeps you excited about your work but also you get so much inspiration from throwing ideas around with friends.

2. Have a few projects lined up. 

Another must for me is knowing where my business is going. Every 6 months or so i'll re-assess and plan out a few major projects i want to complete in the next few months. This way, you don't get lost in the day to day routine, rather you're working towards bigger goals or targets that give you needed motivation. 

3. Embrace social media!

If you haven't already... really??? Do it! There's nothing more awesome than instant feedback. Building a community of followers takes time, so be patient. But if people are interested in the subject area of your work they'll stick around and even better, give you much valued advice!
A warning with this though, don't listen to just one voice. What are the community as a whole telling you? Don't let one negative comment put you off the project you've always wanted to work on. 

4. Have a work environment that suits YOUR needs. 

For me, that means space, space to lay everything out. It also means letting things get a bit messy while I'm in the middle of projects - so my big desk suits my work style!
Try a few different set ups and figure out where you are most productive. 

5. Do your best to have regular work hours and stick to them. Don't do too much "over time".

Working from home comes with the added challenge of learning to leave it alone. Sometimes i'm tempted to do a bit of work in the evening, despite already working during the day. But i've learnt it's best to leave it. Be strict with 
yourself and enjoy the recreation time! Also, having scheduled work hours means i'm more productive in that time now. Rather than thinking "Ah, i can get around to that later" i'm more strict with myself meaning i usually get more done compared with what i used to. 

6. Make it fun!

Working from home can be a bit monotonous, so change it up where you can. Whether it's new projects, sitting out in the sun to do a bit of paperwork, regularly changing up your work hours, or being creative with your workspace, be sure to diversify your work and keep it fun!

I hope some of these tips help you. I work as a self employed artist and illustrator, if you'd like to see my work you check it here:

Have a great day!
Much Love, Beth xxx

Sunday, 3 April 2016

Living with Anxiety & Learning to drive...

Anxiety is without a doubt one of the most vexing things you'll go through in life. 
It's hard to describe and even harder to understand.
For me, it's an underlying thing and then, all of a sudden it consumes me. 

Learning to drive was probably one of the most daunting things to challenge my anxiety. Heart palpitations before my lessons were a regular occurrence. Often i couldn't sleep the night before a lesson. The whole day leading up to my lesson would spur my mind into a panic, leading me to think i wasn't good enough, i should give up and that i would never remember enough from the lessons to eventually pass my test. 

At the time I felt an overwhelming amount of determination, even if my mind wasn't at a good point to deal with new things, i felt like it was a necessity not to give up and that if i succeeded, this would be an incredibly altering thing and ultimately, unbelievably empowering. 

Every single mistake i made in my lessons stayed with me. More fuel for my mind to be anxious! But i carried on. I did a lot of breathing exercises before my lessons. After each lesson i tried to take a bit of time to appreciate everything i'd done right. 

I think it's important to acknowledge that anxiety doesn't go away. I try to not let anxiety prevent me from doing things. But it's still there. 
Every time i think about driving, my mind tries to tell me that i don't remember how to do it. Or that it would be wiser and safer for me to stay at home. 
It sounds absolutely bonkers! And it kind of is. But it's a reality. Like an inbuilt reaction that i can't stop. I hope that as i gain more and more experience that voice of anxiety in my head will get quieter and quieter. 

The biggest lesson i have learnt is that whilst we do acknowledge our anxiety, and that is a very important step, It's not always correct to listen to it. We can prove ourselves wrong and do things we never imagined. 

You have just as much potential to reach for your goals and pursue what makes you happy.

Anxiety is a part of me, but it doesn't define me. 

Much Love, Beth xxx 

When i passed my driving test last year....