Things Remembered #HAWMC

Today I start the first day of the Health Activists Writers Month Challenge. I didn’t find the challenge until yesterday so I’m a few days behind but decided to challenge myself to get back on track with my writing. Todays topic is what is an item you have kept with you that reminds you of an important time in your life. The question then asks was why does this item remind you of that period of your life? Not an easy question to answer because that requires going back over the last 30 yrs or so and trying to remember everything good, bad, and ugly! One thing however really sticks out because it means so much more now since my being diagnosed with my CRPS.

When I was in my early twenty’s my father gave me my first 35mm camera! Do you remember those? Those were the cameras that you actually had to put film into, and then after the pictures were taken you had to get the film developed. I’ll always keep that camera because its so much more than a gift. Who knew that receiving a gift as simple as a camera could mean so much down the road. At the time that my father gave me the camera he knew just how much it meant to me. If he were alive today I’d want him to know just how much that camera has been responsible for saving my life! How do you ask?

When I was at my darkest moment after being diagnosed with CRPS, I was having a hard time finding myself while I was in those greiving stages that most people go through when facing something of this magnitude. My independence and confidence had been stripped to the bone, and I wanted desperately to get that back but I just didn’t know how I was going to do it. In so many ways I just wanted to do something that would give me that independence back, and give me the confidence that had been so badly shaken. Photography had been a passion of mine up until all of this had happened. I had all but cast it aside however because I never thought I’d be able to continue it with only the one hand. Several people suggested however to use my passion as a distraction from the pain.

                      Then one day I happened to be going through some of the cupboards and I came across that amazing gift that it had all started with. It was as if it stirred something in me that nobody else could! I know that sounds crazy but its the truth. The memories of getting that first camera came rushing back and it was at that point I made the decision to find a way to pursue my photography. After a few disscusions with people I managed to modify a new dslr camera so that I could get back out doing what I love. A year or two later and now I own my own photography business. I’ve kept that precious gift however because its had such a meaningful impact on my life.

There isn’t a day that goes by when I’m out shooting photographs where I don’t think about what that gift meant to me!

 

 

Where Is Your Confidence Level At?

Well we’re back from Easter holidays ready to get back to the regular routine. Actually for a few days now we’ve been getting back to it, I just haven’t had the chance to put up a post. Our family spent the holiday out at our cottage which is always relaxing. It was a much needed break with my CRPS having a mind of it’s own as of late. We also didn’t want to be around the house in the city because we were having new flooring put in through a few areas of the house. It’s kind of hard to cook when your kitchen is in your living room. There is still no news as to a surgery date but I just have to remain confident that it will happen soon.

Today’s post is about self-confidence! The reason I chose to address such a topic today is because its something that you have to keep such a close eye on. CRPS can shake your confidence to the very core, and lately I’ve had to stay on top of it in order to stay confident within my situation. Some days I do a good job and others not so good! When I get irritable it’s easy for the pain to try and take control of my mind, and then my confidence starts to slip and it isn’t so easy to stay positive. Just ask my wife about the times that I get a bit grumpy or short with my family! The pain can push me to the point  of no return, and if I don’t give myself a pep talk to turn it around it can start a spiral in a direction that I really don’t want to go.

Recognizing what causes you to lose self-confidence helps you to change your situation. Can you identify what’s causing your confidence to be shaken? The stakes are high with CRPS and there are a lot of things at risk or that can potentially change in ones life, and because of that sometimes you become paralyzed in fear. As a result your confidence becomes shaken and you might give up on your hopes and dreams. If you want to identify what’s causing it to be shaken then you need to ask yourself a few questions. Are there to many “unknowns” and do you lack control of your situation? Do you have a clear path or plan on moving forward? What about your situation is causing you to be unsure of yourself? Once you ask yourself those questions and figure out what’s causing your self-confidence to drop then it helps you formulate a plan and change your situation.

When I was first diagnosed there were a lot of unknowns and it paralyzed me with a lot of fear! I’d lost control of my particular situation and so I had to hand everything over to God. I didn’t know what my future was going to look like or what day to day life was even going to look like. I had to entrust that God was going to handle everything and every situation that I faced. CRPS tries to steal away your confidence in so many different ways, and early after my diagnosis it was being attacked on all sides. Through a determination from within however and a lot of help from God I was able to stop that attack that was affecting me so much. It doesn’t mean that I don’t have to stay on top of it though because I do. As you face various situations as you deal with your CRPS, it’s only natural that your confidence level is going to come under attack. How do you handle it?

So often we focus on dealing with pain or the symptoms that come as a result of CRPS. I really wanted to speak towards an area that is just important! It could be the reason that you find yourself stuck and unable to move forward with your life. It could be the difference between you achieving your hopes and dreams and not achieving them. I don’t know about you but I want to achieve mine!