Relate: The Best Medicine

13 Apr
Photo source and credit Relate.org.uk

Photo source and credit Relate.org.uk

Recently the charity Relate contacted me about writing a guest blog for their campaign, The Best Medicine.

Relate is a national UK charity focused on providing relationship support, guidance and counselling across all sectors of society.

Their latest campaign, entitled The Best Medicine, aims to draw attention to the crucial role our relationships play in coping with ill health, both mental and physical, chronic and acute. The role  of relationships in coping with ill health is huge and yet sadly somewhat overlooked by the NHS (the UK’s national health service).  To quote their own words, Relate are:

calling on the government to put relationships at the heart of the NHS, making relationship support available to everyone who needs it.

I was very pleased to have been approached about contributing to Relate’s campaign and more than happy to share my story. My relationships with friends, family and Mr B, have played a key role in my journey thru ME/CFS. I am very fortunate that I am blessed with many wonderful relationships and surrounded by loved ones who care for me and would do anything to help me cope with my illness. I would not be where I am today without their support.

My post was published last week on Relate’s site and you can read it here.

I hope you will read my post on Relate’s site and I encourage you to sign their petition on this campaign and explore their site. Relationships are a huge, and largely untapped resource, in coping with ill health. It is an interesting and thought provoking topic. Reading the other personal stories is eye opening and very moving. So why not pop on over to Relate and have a read for yourself.

A New Home

10 Apr
The stained glass window in our hall, I love how it's sunshine, so positive and uplifting.  © Jess Bruce 2015.

The stained glass window in our hall, I love how it’s sunshine, so positive and uplifting. © Jess Bruce 2015.

Hello from our new house!

We are all moved in and very happy in our new home.

The move itself went amazingly smoothly, despite our moving company sending a truck that was too small! We are largely unpacked and thanks to my amazing Mum and Mr B, the house is clean and already feels like ours. Mum blitzed every room and Mr B cleaned all the carpets – I supervised ;-)

Our new kitchen. About 6 times the size of our old one! © Jess Bruce 2015.

Our new kitchen. About 5 times the size of our old one! © Jess Bruce 2015.

We are loving our new life in the suburbs, it’s so nice waking up to trees outside the window rather than a busy road and train line. I am completely in love with my new kitchen, the red Range cooker and I are already well acquainted and having all my recipe books out on display and easily accessible is making me so happy – pretty much the first piece of furniture I insisted we buy was a new bookshelf for the kitchen! Having a garden and outside washing line is a joy! Simple things…

My pride and joy, cookbooks bookshelf :-) © Jess Bruce 2015

My pride and joy, cookbooks bookshelf :-) And still space to add some more to my collection!© Jess Bruce 2015

We did the stereotypical suburban thing over the long Easter weekend with multiple trips to our local DIY superstore and IKEA (my advice to you, never go to these places on a bank holiday). We are now the proud owners of a lawnmower and hosepipe! We also enjoyed a lovely country walk in our new area and tried out our new local pub – which I’m happy to report is amazingly allergen aware, providing gluten free dairy free bread, pizzas and even gravy on their roast lunch.

So all is good on the home front.

Health wise things are a little lot more shaky. After several very stressful and busy months, I guess it was inevitable that ME/CFS would catch up with me at some point. And it would seem our Easter weekend activities tipped me over the line (hopefully not the point of no return…) and I’m more symptomatic this week than I have been since my emergency retreat back to my parents in February. Fatigue and myalgia have both spiked. I’m trying hard not to panic and to use the Lighting Process to curb my symptoms.

Magnolia tree in our garden © Jess Bruce 2015

Magnolia tree in our garden © Jess Bruce 2015

Life tends to get in the way of managing a chronic illness and if I’ve ignored things for too long then my ME/CFS gets louder and louder until I’m forced to take notice and stop. It seems I’m at that point now. It’s not that I intend to push myself too far, I think it’s human nature (or my nature at least) to keep going whilst I’m feeling okay. That’s the hard thing. Okay masks a lot and is a bit like skating on thin ice. So it’s back to listening to my body and putting it first – this seems to be a pattern of my recovery…a bit boom and bust, think I need to reacquaint myself with the concept of pacing.

It’s just very hard when life is so busy – whose idea was it to move house and get married in the same 6 months?!

I’m yet to get my camera out and take proper photos of our new surroundings so for now I hope you like these few snaps from my iPhone.

Leaving London Town

26 Mar
Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament at dusk. © Jess Bruce 2015. All rights reserved.

Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament at dusk. © Jess Bruce 2015. All rights reserved.

All being well, this will be the last post I write from our flat in London. Tomorrow is scheduled to be the day we complete on our flat sale and house purchase. It is the long awaited moving day!

I have lived in central London since July 2006 when I graduated from Uni and moved here to go to Law School. Mr B joined me a year later.

For the last 4 years we have lived in our flat in East London. Tomorrow we move 11 miles south from here to Chislehurst, a small town just on the border between the outskirts of Greater London and the county of Kent. It is definitely the suburbs with bigger houses and lots more greenery than we have here. Although we are not moving geographically that far, it is going to be quite a life change with a whole new lifestyle opened for us. I’m so excited about it, not least because the kitchen at the new house is huge and we will have our own garden. We have loved our time in London, but now we are looking to the future and ready for the next step.

I also see this move as another big step forward in my recovery from ME/CFS. I was severely ill when we moved here back in 2011, totally confused, lost and scared by my diagnosis of ME/CFS. It has been our home as we have charted my journey thru ME/CFS. And although, my illness is still a part of our lives, it feels like we are a drawing a line in the sand in leaving here. The worst years are over and the best is yet to come!

I hope to be able to keep blogging in the next few weeks but with unpacking and getting internet connected at the house, that may not be possible. But I will be back as soon as I can! For now I will leave you with a few pictures of London. I took these last year when we went for a ride on the London Eye. Enjoy.

The London Eye, River Thames and Big Ben © Jess Bruce 2015. All Rights Reserved

The London Eye, River Thames and Big Ben © Jess Bruce 2015. All Rights Reserved

The Shard, London's tallest building © Jess Bruce 2015. All Rights Reserved

The Shard, London’s tallest building with the towers of Canary Wharf in the background © Jess Bruce 2015. All Rights Reserved

Big Ben clock face © Jess Bruce 2015. All Rights Reserved

Big Ben clock face © Jess Bruce 2015. All Rights Reserved

Big Ben and Westminster Abbey © Jess Bruce 2015. All Rights Reserved

Big Ben and Westminster Abbey © Jess Bruce 2015. All Rights Reserved

Buckingham Palace in the distance. © Jess Bruce 2015. All Rights Reserved

Buckingham Palace in the distance. © Jess Bruce 2015. All Rights Reserved

Sahiba Kaur Photography

Art and memories.

gluten free b

fruit is not a pudding

A Jumble of Things Going on in My Head.

For the thinkers and the dreamers

Spoonie Chronicles

Hang in there, baby - this is the fight for your life

Strawberries and Sage

Vegan and Gluten Free Wholesome Recipes

Encouraging Life

I am just a normal human

Insight From A Woman's Heart

Woman to Woman and Heart to Heart...helping each other on our journey

Silver Threading

Join Me in Looking Back, Looking Forward, Looking Around, and Looking Within...

Shirley's Heaven

Exploring Mental Health Topics

The Noisy Songbird

Verbosity in abundance

CoeliacGal

Recipes, reviews, and gluten-free musings

Chitra's Healthy Kitchen

Recipes for healthy living

Kettles

I took a one way flight to Australia. I set out on a 2 year adventure across Australia and Asia. But now I'm back and having a go at the real world.

Poppyposts

Fighting depression with positivity

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,386 other followers

%d bloggers like this: