First of all, I would just like to say that the reason I don't use my real name on the internet is because I am very self-conscious of writing in public.  There is nothing mysterious (or sinister) involved.  I am not a robot or a spammer and I'm not trying to sell anything - I am just a very private person.  Once upon a time I was born in London and lived there for 39 years. I got married, had 2 beautiful daughters, got a job, bought a house, and got a divorce. Then, 11 years ago I upped and left the Metropole to live in the countryside with my (now) husband and we have since had another beautiful daughter who is almost 9 years old. Most of my days were happily spent in the garden or making things with textiles (costumes, accessories - general crafty stuff that I love making and then don't really know what to do with) and readjusting to the much slower pace of rural living. I even tried making blackberry jam from the hedgerows that grow in the lane leading up to our house (it was an unmitigated disaster that ended up in the bin - jar and all). Life may not have been a rollercoaster ride of excitement and nailbiting tension (apart from the jam I suppose), but it was calm and gentle and just what I needed to soothe my soul.

Then in May 2010 I hurt my back. The funny thing is, I don't remember doing it; it might have been when I washed the windows, or painted the conservatory, or lugged some gravel into the garden, or spring cleaned the house. The fact remains that I woke up one day and my back hurt. And then it hurt worse. So the GP gave me pills and the physiotherapist gave me, well... physiotherapy, and the MRI people gave me an MRI and it came back clear, and the Osteopath pulled me about a bit, and the GP gave me some different pills. And still my back hurt. I could not bend or twist; I could not walk for more than 10 minutes; I could not lift anything; I could not open heavy or stiff doors; I could not run; I could not dance. But enough of what I could not do....what could I do? Well, I could still laugh, I could still lift up the rocks of life and look underneath instead of taking them at face value; and I could still hug my daughters and my husband (though swinging from the chandeliers was obviously a no-go now) and I could still cry.

Finally, in January 2011 the Physiotherapist and the GP told me that I would probably not get better and that the pain was not going to go away. They told me I have something called Chronic Pain Syndrome (CPS), which means that you still get pain long after the original injury has healed. Basically, my central nervous system has decided that, after many years of living in perfect harmony with the rest of my body, it wants to go it's own way and do it's own thing and it doesn't need my permission or co-operation to do so. I have to admit that getting my head around the fact that I will have to live with this level of pain for the rest of my life has been very difficult for me and has made me swear, cry and be generally negative. Now, I can let this thing take over my life and simply become the woman with CPS or, I can continue to be an individual that still has a lot to give in life; and who is more than just an illness or disability. Prior to January 2011 I had never heard of CPS. I knew nothing about it - I had no need to know about it. Well, I know a bit more about it now - and I expect I'll be a bloomin' expert in it by the end of the year.

To help me work through all these things and log my journey down an untrod track, I decided to write a blog. It may be read by someone else who is in a similar position to me and it may help them along their path or, it may not be read by anyone other than myself - but that's ok, it will act as a diary and a "get it all off your chest" mechanism, which can only help me in the long run.  My intention is that this blog won't just be about my problems, hell, there is enough doom and gloom in this world without me adding to it, so I am going to add pictures of some of the stuff I've made and write about my life in rural England (a far cry from the hubbub of my hometown - London), the places I visit and the people I come across.

Someday in the far future, this CRP thing may overcome me. But not just yet my friend ..... not just yet.