• What’s Self-Care When You Can’t Care for Yourself?

    When we finally found it, I felt like there was hope again. There are very few clinics set up for treating people with M.E. and Linus and I heard about a clinic in the Breacon Beacons, near where we live. It looked amazing, set amid parkland, with an on-site nutritionist, physiotherapist, occupational therapist and pain management experts. People whose job it was to help me live, to encourage my body to heal and hurt less. Quickly, where do I sign? Self Caring But then the fine print; you couldn’t go unless you were “self-caring”. I care for myself – I love myself – I really, really care about my well…

  • Releasing Perfection in Healing

    It was winter when my doctors told me that the pain, exhaustion, cognitive dysfunction and muscle weakness I was experiencing were permanent. They said, “no cure” and left me to my own devices, along with a shiny black wheelchair and a packet of painkillers. I was 19 years old. There was a time I didn’t push to be well. I didn’t want to focus on “getting better”, because what was better, really? When does one know when they have arrived? After being told, definitively, that there was no cure, chasing after “getting better” seemed foolhardy. Too hard. Pointless. It’s so easy to put things off; we say we will buy a…

  • Hospital Shops Branded Too Expensive: Healing Boxes Offers an Alternative

    Further to news about hospital shops expensive prices, reported by The Times here social entrepreneur, Grace Quantock, Founder of not-for-profit gift company Healing Boxes CIC, based in Pontypool, Torfaen, has this to say:    “I believe hospital gifts can be affordable, useful and ethical, which is why I founded Healing Boxes, selling tailored gifts for people with illness/disability/in hospital at non-profit prices.   We offer an alternative to expensive hospital gift shops and post affordable, ethical gifts worldwide (even to your hospital ward).   In hospital gifts and cards can be essential – a vital connection to family, friends and daily life“. Check out our new Hospital Box, designed by people with illness (and…

  • Trailblazer Interview: Tiphany Adams – Push Girls

    At age 17 Tiphany Adams was a high school senior with dreams of modelling when the car she was riding in was hit head on by a drunk driver on October 15, 2000. Three lives were lost in the accident and Tiphany was the only survivor of the 130 mph impact crash. She was diagnosed as a paraplegic with a T10 fracture and L2 movement and persevered through months of painful recovery to graduate with her class the following June. Born in Lodi, California, Tiphany has always been a small-town girl with big dreams. Today she pushes forward, pursuing her passions as an actress, abilities advocate and fitness evolutionary. She…

  • Bad Day and Work Mounting? There’s Another Option.

    Photo Credit: Esme Wang “The options when one is unwell and it seems like all of the options have dried up.” – Esmé Wang You know those days when you just feel awful? Maybe you are in a pain flare, perhaps your joints are swollen and painful because of the rain (me, today), or you have a migraine or anxiety is tearing you up right now. Bad day – it hurts. I believe in our power to affect change by our actions. But some days you just aren’t feeling good. The type of not-good that rest/yoga/meditation/medication/your healing modality of choice isn’t making any better. You work really hard on your…

  • How to Make a Hospital Stay Easier

    Whether we are visiting hospital for a day appointment, as an in-patient or a visitor it can be a challenging place. Hospitals are wonderful spaces of healing but also where the most intense things in life happen. http://bit.ly/1fG7tAG @Grace_Quantock Click To Tweet This alone can make them very charged and very challenging. But there’s lots we can do to make a hospital stay easier, for ourselves or for a friend, colleague or family member. Bring a Bag If you’ve had to get to hospital quickly you may not have brought anything with you and even if you have had time to pack and prep you’ve probably forgotten something! Useful often…

  • ~ Behind the Scenes ~ My TEDx Talk: Dreaming BIG…and Being Invited

    You read that headline right, friend. I am on my way to becoming a TEDx speaker. (Click to Tweet!) Like, officially. (Yeahhhhhh!!!) Come May 9th of this year, yours truly will take the stage at the Waterside Theatre in Aylesbury to give a Ted talk, on a theme near and dear to me: Misfits and Pioneers. To say I am thrilled to pieces would be a huge understatement. Pause. Rewind to 2013. I sat my writer-speaker self down and wrote three lofty goals: To be featured on the Huffington Post To speak at TEDx, and To sell my Healing Boxes in hospitals. These goals seemed next to impossible. Unachievable. Especially, the…

  • Guide to Painful Periods: Claiming The Power In Your Reproductive Healing

    Listen to your womb, cervix, uterus, ovaries, belly. Do you hear them? They are places of deep power, often neglected, but with such profound lessons to teach. To contribute to your wholeness. To help you heal. So long as you are willing to connect to the parts of yourself that are hurting and listen to what they have to say. Some raw food literature suggests menstruation is the body’s way of detoxing, that if detoxed enough, menstruation will naturally cease. That amenorrhoea due to low weight is actually a sign of raw food and detox success. Our reproductive organs are powerful, dark, creative spaces. So often they are viewed negatively;…

  • Disability Creativity: Co-opting Clothing for Accessibility Part 2

    Living with disability can ignite creativity – at least it has for me in terms of my wardrobe. Check out Disability Creativity: Co-opting Clothing for Accessibility Part 1 – Outerwear here. Companies design clothes for people with disabilities, however, most of those clothes are what I imagine the companies think ‘elderly’ people will wear. But I’m sure most of us will value style and self expression, as well as comfort, at every age. (Click to Tweet!) Clothes that work for your body and life can be challenging to find. Maybe you need Velcro, not buttons, or perhaps things that are easy to pull on and off, or don’t get caught…

  • Disability Creativity: Co-opting Clothing for Accessibility

    Peek inside my wardrobe and you’ll see the evidence of a life spent in pursuit of adventure. From wetsuits and jodhpurs to ski wear and jewel-bright dresses. But the mix is misleading – they’re all ideas I’ve borrowed from other disciplines to make living with disability and dressing for wheelchair use easier. What’s neoprene got to do with life on wheels? Read on… I’ve lived with disability for 13 years and learned to get creative. Disability doesn’t have to mean dismal dressing. (Click to Tweet!) I’ve yet to find disability clothing brands that suit my sense of style, so instead I’ve co-opted clothes from other areas that work for wheelchairs…

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