Posted on Leave a comment

Why I started my craft business…

Chloivia post natal depression helped me start to craft and how being in the supportive community of Conscious Crafties is helping me cope

In this blog I have decided to write about why I started up Chloivia.

It all started on the 23rd of August 2014! I’d been searching high and low for a frozen hairband for Chloe (my eldest daughter and hence the chlo in Chloivia). I couldn’t find one anywhere. So I searched good old ebay and came across some frozen ribbon and some plain headbands. I remember sitting there on the 23rd of August not knowing what on on earth I was going to do with this ribbon. Well I managed to transform it into a lovely headband, which Chloe loved and still does!!

As I have mentioned previously I received some lovely comments from family and friends, and so I decided to make some items to sell.

That’s the reason I started Chloivia, but the reason I carried on with my venture was because it helped (and still does help) with my post natal depression (PND). It gives my brain something else to think about, it makes me happy and I thoroughly enjoy crafting!

I say crafting as I don’t just make hair accessories anymore, I make a wide array of alsorts of different crafts.

I was diagnosed with PND in April/May 2014 shortly after Olivia was born (my youngest daughter and hence the ivia in Chloivia). I realised hat I had gone way past the stage of “baby blues” and wanting to cry was not normal!!

I’ll never forget the day I was diagnosed. I can’t remember the date but it was a Friday. I had fought the tears all the way to school, dropped chloe off, got back in to the car and sobbed. About 20 minutes later, after I managed to compose myself, I phoned the doctors and managed to get a cancellation – it was meant to be!! I don’t know about you but I believe in fate!!!

I am still being treated for Post Natal Depression – it has been a long and windy road and I don’t know when/if it will end – but I WILL keep fighting!!

I just want to point out that PND or even depression is an invisible illness and unless you’ve had it, it is very hard to understand it. PND/depression etc is not an excuse, it’s an illness and people like myself cannot help it if we are having an off day or one minute we’re fine and the next we’re in tears – it’s all part of the illness and unfortunately it cannot be helped.

During my first 12 months of Chloivia I have met some friends for life and people that actually understand! My family and my doctor have been amazing too!!

(You know who you are – thank you!!!)

A few months ago I was looking for another branch to jump onto, another platform to sell on. I have already set up my items on a couple of platforms including Etsy, but I felt I needed something else! I put the question out there on a Facebook group and a lovely lady replied asking me to have a look at Conscious Crafties

Hmmm I thought – that’s not one I’ve heard of. I popped over and the first thing I read was

Creative people crafting through Chronic Illness, Disability or Caring for those affected

“Dedicated craft selling site, supporting people who are chronically ill, disabled or caring for those affected.”

 

Now people may read that and think ‘but Becky, you’re not chronically ill, disabled or a carer so why even bother to apply?’

This thought also crossed my mind. PND is a chronic illness and like I said earlier, it’s invisible!! A chronic illness is an illness that persists for more than 3 months. I’ve had PND for over 12 months!!

Anyway I filled the form in and I thought, the worst they can say is no!! But within minutes I had a lovely message welcoming me on board.

Conscious Crafties is a lovely platform to be on and I highly recommend it to anyone. There is so much love and support on there! I love it. Thank you for being so welcoming, supportive and there when I need to talk etc!!

Well that’s all from me for now, I’ve probably bored you to death and if you’ve read until the end you deserve a medal xxx

 496 total views

Posted on Leave a comment

See me 

Invisible Illness Awareness Week

Invisible illness. INVISIBLE illness. I N V I S I B L E illness.
Nope. I still don’t get it. How can my illness be invisible? Is it because of my invisible wheelchair that I use on my invisible bad days? Or even on my good days when I need to walk further than a few feet? Maybe it’s due to my invisible lift, and invisible adaptations within my home? Or it could be the invisible hours I spend in hospitals?
No. They’re not invisible. But you don’t get to see them. I hide away at my worst. I put on a smile to hide the pain. I wipe away the tears, and rarely do I share my hospital journey anymore. So is that what makes it invisible?
No. My illness is not invisible. I am not secretly disabled. You, my healthy counterpart, are blinkered. Please, I’m asking you, take off the blinkers. Look closely.
Look at the way my hair is roughly brushed, but not styled. See how I don’t wear makeup, those dark circles under my eyes. Notice the winces and sharp intakes of breath when I move. The stumbles, trips, slurred speech.
See how my life has changed. Where my job and social life has gone. See how my friend circle has reduced. See how rarely I leave the house. How much I desperately want to.
Just look beyond my smile.
Our illness is not invisible. It’s just not quite as easily seen as some other disabilities. But often, we feel invisible. Forgotten. Left behind.
So please. See my disability. See how I’m still desperately trying every day to live around it. But most of all, see me. See us.

 1,594 total views

Posted on Leave a comment

Chronically Funny

Caylee Shea, Raising Awareness of Chronic Illness

Chronically Funny
A Parody about Living with Chronic Illness
Hope you enjoy!
If you do, please like and share to help spread awareness!

 1,392 total views,  2 views today

Posted on Leave a comment

Ignorance is the Disability!

Raising awareness of living with an Chronic Illness

Spreading awareness for the chronically ill. This video demonstrates a few of my symptoms and situations I’ve endured, as well as other chronically ill people in their day to day fight.
Highlighting how ignorance plays such a large role in the daily lives of the chronically ill. And how chronically ill people are often treated and the aftermath and toll it takes on their lives.
Through awareness and simple acts of kindness, you can positively impact the life of a chronically ill person.

 1,256 total views

Posted on Leave a comment

My Heavy Load – Living with an Invisible Illness

Not every disability is visible

Hi everyone! My names Jennie and I’m a 29 year old mum with several chronic and debilitating conditions. I’d like to share with you what life is like for those unnoticed disabled. People like me who struggle on a daily basis, but look fine on the surface. Hopefully through blogs like mine, and others, we can spread awareness and gain a little understanding.

So, I’m disabled. You wouldn’t think it to look at me, but I am. It’s a cruel joke that one of my conditions actually genetically predisposes me to look young and healthy, whilst internally I have the body of a seventy eight year old. (That’s a direct quote from a doctor.) Sometimes it’s nice to look normal. To slap on a smile and pretend to be just like everyone else. But mostly it’s hard, and exhausting. So very exhausting.

Imagine spending every day carrying a tonne of bricks on your back. They’re heavy. They grind you down. Your body creaks and aches from the weight of them. You never get to remove your load, not even to sleep, so even lying down the sharp edges jab into your already battered body. Sleep is impossible. Surely someone will help you? Nobody would let you struggle through life that way?? The problem is, your bricks are invisible. None but you can see them. So how can people help? They see you shuffling and stumbling from the weight, to them you’re just another young drunk. On busses and trains they hog seats, not knowing you’re ready to crumple. Your exhaustion, they say, can be cured with a little rest and some good sleep, a better mental attitude. As for your bricks? Well, surely they can’t exist. If people can’t see them, they can’t be there.

People soon stop attempting sympathy. Friends don’t call anymore. Whispers start about how all you seem to think about is the burden your bricks have on your life. Soon, your bricks have taken everything from you.

This is life with an invisible illness. Please, I implore you, if you know anyone with an invisible illness, help them carry their load. It means everything just to have a hand to hold on this hard journey.

 531 total views,  1 views today