Life is Grace

I am changing my blog’s name to fit the direction I want to take it, and my writing. There will still be plenty of photography, and if anyone should be interested in making a purchase, just click on “Gingerfancy Photography” above the blog header. To read more about why I am changing the name, and how it fits with the past history of the blog, please keep reading. Also refer to the pinned post at the top of the blog, the quote by Frederich Buechner.

Welcome! I’m Barbara and one thing I want to make clear straight away is that I am determined to live a full, generous, and creative life, one filled with love and laughter, despite chronic pain and disability. This is a good time to plug in one of my favorite quotes, by Joseph Campbell:

We must be willing to let go of the life we planned so as to have the life that is waiting for us.

Continue reading “Life is Grace”

Wordless Wednesday

My chronic migraines are giving me a rough time the last year especially, which is why I am doing less writing and more posts with primarily photographs. It’s hard to concentrate on writing when there is an entire percussion section going mad inside my skull…but hopefully soon I will have some decent writing days. I hope. 

In the meantime, on a happier note, here are some peonies! 


welcome to gingerfancy photography and art! 

I’m finally gathering my courage together and taking a few more baby steps towards my new endeavor. My plans are, primarily, to sell photos (still life, nature) online (on this blog, a Facebook page, and a site like Fine Art America) and possibly through Etsy or a similar venue.

I’m not going to be doing weddings or portraits however. My chronic pain problems are so disabling they rule out anything that involves keeping regular appointments and having the energy to do a photo shoot with couples and/or families…I get exhausted just thinking about it! This way, I can take and edit photographs on my good days–or mornings or afternoons–and spend entire days in bed or doing whatever I need to do to take care of myself. If I’m having a fibromyalgia flare and am stuck at home for a week, that’s okay, no appointments to cancel.

Another plus is that this is a way for me to be creative even when I’m too tired and headachy to write. This has been one of my biggest frustrations for years. I haven’t given up on my dream of becoming a writer (although how does one know definitively when one can say “I am a writer”?), but it’s definitely on hiatus right now thanks to my horrid chronic migraines and other headaches.

Speaking of headaches…mine is growing exponentially. I’m going to add a couple of photographs from our mini-vacation to Bayfield and Cornucopia, WI, last week, and leave you with the promise to write more tomorrow.:)


Have a lovely week, my friends!

wordless wednesday (my journal)

my journal…a place for me to gather my thoughts, and a source of healing

fibro fog, etc.

Schematic Examples of CNS Structural Changes i...
Schematic Examples of CNS Structural Changes in chronic pain (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So now I’ve reblogged two times in a row. Bad girl, I am. But talk about writer’s block…I’ve got it. So much that it’s painful, almost, to look at my blank computer screen, with the cursor blinking at me anxiously. Why did I ever think I could be a writer? Writers play with words, and at the moment I’m completely out of words. Interesting words, that is.

Which brings me to fibro fog. If anyone reading this has fibromyalgia, you’ll grasp what I’m talking about immediately. I think someone has stolen my brain, or flicked an “off” switch that has shut everything down. Whoever you are, I’d like my brain back, please.

I sit here in a stupor trying to figure out what letter on the keyboard to punch next. I keep remembering that foggy day when my mom decided it would be good idea to introduce me to modern poetry. I’m about, maybe, ten or thereabouts. We go out on the front stoop and stand, blanketed by fog, while my mom recites Carl Sandburg’s poem Fog to me.

The fog comes

on little cat feet.

It sits looking

over harbor and city

on silent haunches

and then moves on.

And of course, I can’t figure out how to get the darn text to single-space the poem, so it will just have to stay there. Sometimes, learning to accept a little imperfection is a good thing, I guess. But anyway, when this foggy haze envelops me, I remember my mother and my introduction to modern poetry. Sandburg captures, in his spare modern verse, exactly how fibro fog feels inside.

The funniest medical advice I’ve ever seen about fibro fog was on a medical site, a good one, like the Mayo Clinic or Web MD, and it said that the best way to cure fibro fog was to lower one’s pain levels and decrease fatigue. In other words, stop having your fibromyalgia flare and the fogginess will go away. Um, yes, thanks, not terribly helpful.

Actually I suspect that the cause this time is the result of really bad hay fever (my throat is so sore I’ve lost my voice), a fibromyalgia flare brought on by not being able to do my walking routine thanks to sky-high levels of ragweed pollen, and a muscle relaxer I’m taking because the flare is aggravating my neck pain from of  last summer’s car accident.Especially the muscle relaxer. I see my pain specialist tomorrow, and we will have lots to discuss! (Actually, he has recommended a course of acupuncture, but I can’t start until late October.)

So at least I know what’s causing it. But I can’t help feeling that the fog came in on little cat feet, stole my summer, and then moved on. Evidence is accumulating that fibro is a disease related to the central nervous system, so it makes sense that it would cause my fuzziness. But really, enough is enough. If I could just go for my walks, I’d be able to fight the fog. The first frost, a nice, ragweed-killing one, is all I need. That and a spell of decent weather afterward, although that has been quite rare this year. Or maybe a membership at Snap Fitness or Amazing Fitness, one of those places that have the treadmills, the bikes, and the elliptical machine. I refuse to let my fibromyalgia define my life.

English: Common signs and symptoms of fibromya...
English: Common signs and symptoms of fibromyalgia. (See Wikipedia:Fibromyalgia#Signs and symptoms). To discuss image, please see Template talk:Adult female diagrams References fibromyalgia-symptoms.org Retrieved on April 19, 2009 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Letters – a Bloggers for Peace post

I’ve joined Bloggers for Peace and discovered this post from last month. I love this writer’s playful creativity! (It’s the post I wish I had written.) Read and enjoy–it’s too good not to share.

Becoming a writer

This month’s challenge was to write a letter about peace, or send a letter out to peace, or imagine a letter coming back from peace or any and all variations of the above.

Well, I’ve interpreted this a little differently.  It’s not a letter to peace, but letters of peace: an A-Z of peace-related words.  Well, almost – I couldn’t find a x that I liked!

I always thought that ‘actions speak louder than words’ – that is, you can say you feel something, but if you don’t show that through your actions it has no meaning.  There should be a follow-through of some sort.

But I also realise that words have power (which is lucky for a writer!).

Words can wound and heal, words can be barbed and get stuck inside you, or they can  break through a wall you’ve built up.  The problem with words is that we…

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