The thing about writing a blog is that i don't. Or at least not very often. And unlike other activities i also don't do much (like ironing or going to the gym) i always know exactly how long i've not been doing it for. Each time i check in here i see how long it is since i last wrote anything, i end up feeling vaguely silly and run away. Months pass...
September is the cruellest month. It's the month Summer ends, sometimes slowly, but always inevitably ceding to Autumn. It is the month my children go back to school and we all pick up the threads of our lives, after that close and precious holiday time. To me September has an ache of melancholy to it. Once i've let go of Summer i can enjoy Autumn but the letting go, of our family time, of my children and of long, warm, lazy days is hard.
On the positive side September is the 'start' of the year for those of us still dominated by the academic year. It is the time of fresh starts and new beginnings. A few years ago i decided not to make New Year's resolutions any more (you can guess why) but Autumn seems a good time to plan my year and look ahead a bit, and to make a few decisions about how i want the next year to be. So that's what i spent September doing and now here comes dear old October.
It is almost exactly a year since i was diagnosed with Lupus. The list of things i haven't done or have missed is long - projects lie unfinished, blog unwritten, photography 365 project shamefully uncompleted, novel still just scraps of ideas in a tatty notebook. I've spent days in bed or on the sofa, missed parties and get togethers, had weeks off work and struggled to find the energy to do anything at all at times.
Yet when i look back at this year i'm surprised at how much i've achieved and at what a great year i've had. I've completed one big project, held a successful Open House, did my art course and produced my best work so far for the end of year show, and made sales of both my photographs and drawings.
My consultant said to me this time last year "Give yourself a year to accept and cope with this disease" and she was right. It has taken me this long to accept it and begin to manage it effectively. I now know i will have about one awful week to two better weeks, and my drugs are still helping me to improve. It's not bad. Not bad at all. I can get enough done in my two ok weeks to see me through my bad week. And i'm working on ways to enjoy the 'bad' week more too. The photograph above shows my bedroom window, which i love to look out of when i'm poorly. It's good to lie there and think how lucky i am to have such a great view, always changing with the seasons and reminding me the world is there for me to step back into when i fell better.
Looking ahead i feel only optimism. This must have been one of the toughest years of my life and it was brilliant! Next year can only get better... Happy Anniversary Wolfie.
p.s. Sorry for banging on about Lupus but October is Lupus Awareness Month, so i feel i ought to mention it. Next entry will be disease free :)