Monday, 16 April 2012

Can I? Can't I? Taking risks and chancing rejection.

The last few days have been very challenging. Rheumatoid Arthritis flares are painful, tiring and depressing. Add to that the horrid weather and I feel ready to give up. Then once the pain and tiredness start to reduce I feel different and I have started to take an interest in things again.

Today's post brought the latest issue of my Christian magazine that I subscribe to. I am happy to admit I take a religious magazine and I find it covers all the areas that I have interest in. This month gives a menu to feed a family of four for just £3.25 and advice on using the skills you have to possibly start your own business or help those in need.

When I had to give up work following my third stroke I found I was struggling with concentration, co-ordination, memory and confidence. I thought long and hard about what I could do with my life post stroke but knew I would have to work at reclaiming at least part of what I once had. I never expected to be the person I was before and that has been proven to be true, I am me but a different me. I learnt to adapt to life with a wheelchair instead of legs and being reliant on other people but I wanted to be independent and find what I had inside me. I knew I liked to write and to research so I signed up to an online journalism course. I loved it! I carried on with the course even after I moved to France and was able to put a bit of a twist to the course with the French influence. As I worked my way through the course I felt I was gaining in confidence and I was concentrating better. I had to work really hard at it but I was getting so much out of it and when my diploma arrived I was ecstatic!

I wasn't sure what to do with what I had achieved but I carried on writing bits and pieces like stories for my grandchildren. Then I got the opportunity to write for an English newspaper in France and I did that for quite a while. The first time I saw my name in print was fantastic as I had come such a long way. Then I wrote for the internet and that was very interesting as I could write about different things. But when I was diagnosed, eventually, with rheumatoid arthritis not only did a lot of things that I had noticed such as the pain, swelling, tiredness and depression, fall into place but I found I couldn't write so regularly and eventually I had to stop. This has been hard to accept as I had fought back after my stroke and now I was being stopped from doing something I really enjoyed.

Now I wonder if the treatment I am receiving has got me to a point where I can start again? My ten year old granddaughter has commissioned a story which I have started and she is insisting on reading every chapter. I have a few stories for adults in my collection but am not sure about actually doing anything with them. My daughters tell me send them off to magazines but perhaps it is the fear of rejection that stops me. I am continually having ideas and scribbling and as they say I will never know if they just sit there.

I suppose we are all afraid of rejection at various points in our lives. From making friends, to applying for jobs we baulk at putting ourselves in the position where we are 'not what we are looking for.' But if we give up at the first hurdle we will never finish the race so I have promised myself I will submit my stories to magazines and if I am rejected I will pick myself up, dust myself off and try again.

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