Jan 17 – week 1: A life changing plan
My sister is laughing hysterically on the phone. I’ve just sent a the picture of my ridiculous night-cap and I’m telling her about New Year Eve, which I spent covered in sesame seed oil with a tampon up my nose to stop it bleeding (see previous post).
She jokingly says: “You should write a blog about this. It’s too funny”.
An answer to my problems
Her flippant comment has sown a seed. Could a blog be the answer to the bizarre set of challenges I face?
It would give me a way of communicating with the outside world while I’m still too unwell to function in it. Having a voice again might help me cope better with my solitary confinement.
It would also give an outlet to the creativity which I’ve discovered since becoming unwell and, longer term, a blog might open doors which would never arise if I simply returned to my Local Government job as if nothing had happened over the past year.
This glimmer of hope makes me see my job in a fresh light.
For months I’ve been wrestling with an impossible catch-22, one which is undoubtedly familiar to anyone with a long-term health condition.
I’m convinced the prospect of returning full-time to my unfulfilling, demanding job is slowing down my recovery. A new, less stressful job would benefit my health but who on earth would employ me when I’m too unwell to even sit in an office?
The idea of a blog presenting new opportunities makes me realise a new job isn’t the only option.
The life changing plan
A re-occurring theme in my recovery has been the need to accept rather than fight my physical limitations and let everything go. I now need to apply this to my working life.
I’m going to put faith in the idea of future opportunities, be they blog related or not, and resign from my job. I’ll then rent out my flat and go to Hawaii and India to fully immerse myself in Ayurveda.
Wow! So many changes, so much adventure, so much life to live.
I’d feel overwhelmed if I wasn’t so excited.
Hawaii may seem random and that’s the point. Last month I bought an Ayurvedic cookbook written on the Hawaiian island Kauai. It’s has set my imagination alight and Hawaii has come to represent hope, fun and frivolity – the perfect reward for surviving a year from hell.
I won’t implement the plan straight away. Instead I’ll wait until I can work a five day week in the office. If you fall off a horse then you get back in the saddle. I want to resign with the knowledge that I’m physically able to do an office job again. Besides, if I can’t sit in an office then there’s no way I’ll manage a 17 hour flight to Hawaii.
The Ryan Gosling dream
Ryan Gosling and my friend Amy are sitting in my bedroom on two very tall, breakfast bar-style chairs. They’re peering down at me as I lie semi-conscious in bed. My skin is grey, my body’s so weak it feels like it’s super glued to the mattress and my pyjamas have that sick person’s smell to them.
I’m too ill to join the conversation but I hear every word they say.
I knew from her blog that she was ill but I had no idea that she was this unwell.
She’s very weak and sleeps for days on end. It’s been like this of 12 months. We don’t know what to do.
What do the doctors say?
They discharged her saying tinnitus isn’t caused by underlying health problems. But look at her…..By the way, I thought La La Land was wonderful.
Thanks. I love your illustration on her blog. Could you do the artwork on some invitations to a party I’m holding? I’ll obviously pay you.
I wake up confused. Was Ryan Gosling in my bedroom last night? I look at the news on my phone and discover he was actually in LA winning the Best Actor Golden Globe for La La Land.
It’s the most vivid dream of my life and it’s layered in symbolism.
My inner fear is that it’s stupid for me to aspire to a more creative future or to start a blog because I am neither creative nor a writer. In the dream two people from that creative world are symbolically perched above me, out of my reach. But there’s also reassurance as Amy (a playwright not an illustrator) and Ryan Gosling (a Hollywood actor not a jazz pianist) are both rewarded when they take on new artistic endeavours.
La La Land represents everything my life is not. I’m surrounded by the grey, heavy atmosphere of illness yet I desperately want things to be fun, whimsical and colourful like they are in the film. Hawaii will be my La La Land.
My insecurity about sharing my story is also in the dream. Reflecting my experience in real life, Ryan Gosling initially disbelieves the severity of my symptoms. I mean, who’d believe tinnitus can make someone so unwell?
Was it another homeopathic vivid dream? Was it divine intervention showing me the path to take? Or was it simply because I read a review of La La Land before going to bed?
Regardless, I wake up with not only the confidence to start a blog but also a vision for it. The Rapunzel theme, structure, illustration and the title of every post has been deposited into my brain.
The fact that this plan even exists is yet further evidence of Ayurveda’s healing powers. I’ve spent the last year unable to see beyond a single day but, one month after starting Ayurveda, I have the mental clarity to plan for the future.
And what a wonderful plan it is.
In 2016 I was Rapunzel, an isolated maiden too ill to leave her flat. In 2017 I’m going to be Prince Charming. I’m going to rescue myself.