Cassie Stafford

An author, mother and foodie trying to live my best life, while navigating a chronic illness. Throughout my health journey, I have committed myself to find inspiring books, blogs, resources and people to help me understand ways to deal with a mind and body that at times feel so separate. I named my blog, ‘Dear Body’ because for me its an ode to the part of me that I wish I had been more loving towards, a part of me that I should have listened a little more to. The image I chose to represent my blog is how I see the inner workings of this chronic illness, a multiverse of pathways linking the brain to the rest of the body, but not quite functioning as it should. All of the symptoms that come with Fibromyalgia and FND are complex in nature and it is still not fully understood. Research seems to be ongoing and there is some valuable insight from credible sources on the internet. However, I have found that reading other blogs written by fellow warriors has been invaluable. I have listed some of them on ‘my favourite bloggers’ page.

This blog is for me to share my experiences and my knowledge in the hope it may be helpful to others, who may be on a similar path.

Look for a way to lift someone up and if that’s all you do, that’s enough.

Elizabeth Lesser

To blog, or not to blog..

When my husband suggested that I write a blog I said: “what can I write about?” and “who on earth will be interested in me and my story?” In fact, I had thought about writing a blog, but I was not sure what to write about, so I decided to look up other blogs for inspiration. I remember reading the do’s and don’ts of blogging and one of them had said, DON’T write about yourself, no one is interested in you other than your own mother! After digesting this and believing this as gospel from a successful blogger, I repeated this statement to my husband who said: writing about your experiences may help someone! That was it, that was enough! Even if one of my experiences, or current situation resonated with just one person, and it helped them in some way, that would be enough. My audience would be others like me, who want to read a blog that is real, no airs and graces, just little old me. I want to talk about what is real, the nitty gritty of life filled with love, positivity, with a few laughs along the way and so I started to write.

Childhood Antics

As a child I was the dare devil, the one who would take the challenge, take the risk. I never really thought about what could happen. I loved the adventure of life, I didn’t want to miss a thing. If I wanted something, I would work hard to get it, or achieve it. If anyone dare say, I really don’t think you can do that! Little pint sized me with a twinkle and a smirk was like “have we met?” I have pushed, pulled, twisted my body like a contortionist to do what has needed to be done to achieve my goals. Stories of my childhood equally haunt me and make me laugh, this cheeky little girl who was there one minute and gone the next. My mum told me of how she tried to keep me safe by locking the doors and closing the windows just so she could hoover. After a few minutes she realised I was nowhere to be found, and in a panic ventured outside to find that I had climbed the fence and was found in the next-door neighbor’s house, I was about three, or four.

My adventurous tendencies did get me into pickles, and I visited the hospital many times! Broken collar bone, broken arm twice, Knocked myself out as decided that it would be a good idea one rainy day to crawl across the monkey bars. Fell off a gate and cut the upper lid of my left eye and finally got hit by a car after playing tag outside my house. That was by far the worst! I have been knocked down many times, but miraculously I have always managed to bounce back. However, this time feels different. It’s like someone keeps hitting the snooze button and I have no idea how to turn it off! My body doesn’t seem to belong to me, and I am having to adapt, which is not an easy thing to do when your me.

Slowing down

I was told by someone very wise that when you wiz around at 100mph you miss the beauty along the way, so focused on the end result that you don’t enjoy the journey, all those incredible experiences of how you managed to get there are wasted. I think that is also another reason why I am writing this blog because I am on a journey and I want to remember it all and write it all down so that maybe one day when you are on a similar journey and feel like you cannot see how things are going to get any better, you may come across this blog. I hope it will help you.

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