Thank you, Jen, from Tripping Through Treacle for your nomination for a Liebster Award. As I have been blogging for such a short amount of time (4.5 months) I still feel like a complete novice, and for someone who I respect to nominate me for this, I am humbled. Jen has an originality, and freshness in her blog, and somehow maintains positive in spite of the impact of her MS. I have been honoured to be included with her on a podcast (Dizzycast) as a panellist discussing how our illnesses affect our lives. I appreciate her honesty when she writes, and talks, about Multiple Sclerosis.
What is the Liebster Award?
“Originating in Germany in 2011, the Liebster Award 2017 is an online award that is given to bloggers by other bloggers. Liebster translates to sweetest, kindest, nicest, dearest, beloved, lovely, kind, pleasant, valued, cute, endearing, and welcome. The Liebster Award recognizes new and upcoming bloggers that have the potential to grow and become successful influencers within the blogosphere.”
My nominees for the award are:
Sheryl from A Chronic Voice
Meg from Boots, Boobs and Hair
Caroline who writes the blog The Girl with MS
Emma at My EDS Journey
Nominees – feel free to answer the same questions that I have below. Absolutely no pressure to take part though! I just wanted to let you know how much I enjoy reading your blog. The instructions are at the end.
Does blogging replace or enhance keeping a journal?
Blogging is the public face of my journalling. In this sense, it is an enhancement of the personal and intimate thoughts that I write in my daily journal. This journal, that I write in at least 5 times a week, allows me to pluck the good and bad thoughts that storm around my head and place them on the page. It allows me to detach, and then critically looks at them objectively. This ability to see these thoughts in the third person makes me realise that they do not impact my life as much as my emotional self-thinks.
Once I have learned something, by journaling, I can then share what I have learned to my blog. By sharing I feel that I might be able to help other people who have the same problems that I have. We are a community, and by sharing, and helping each other we are stronger.
Do you think education, as it is today, does justice to life and learning?
The education system depends on memory. You memorise some facts, and when the test arrives you have to remember the facts and put them down on the page. This is somewhat helpful for people, but I think that we now have all these facts at our fingertips it isn’t as important to memorise them. What is far more important is to know how to find the facts or methods, and then use them in a manner that will be productive. It is learning how to critically think that is more important. This I believe is true learning, and it is a skill that can be adapted to many different tasks. The world is changing, and the skills that are important now, such as being adaptable, creativity and the ability to critically think, are much more important.
When do you find time to blog?
Readers of my blogs will know that I have something new on my blog weekly. Usually on a Friday or Saturday. As part of my work, I usually spend at least 6 – 8 hours driving a week. This time is usually spent either listening to podcasts (my favourites at the moment are ‘The Tim Ferriss Show’. ‘This American Life’ and the ‘TED Radio Hour’) or thinking about my next post. This is a solitary time for me, and it allows me to write my post in my head. So, when the time comes to write I just have to spill my thoughts onto the keyboard, hoping that the reader will understand.
What is the one post made by you that you like the most and why?
Recently I posted about a Bad Day that I was having. Everything was starting to just be too much. My walking was getting worse, the constant pain was overwhelming and to add to this negative cocktail the people that I work for were creating a situation that I felt like I had to work more, despite how I felt. My head was spinning with negativity, and I described how this felt. What I like most about this post is that I finished on a positive note. That despite the situation, I could overcome the adversity, and see what I was grateful for. My last line ‘the dark days make the bright days, brighter’ really symbolises what it is like to have a chronic illness, for me.
What is your favourite book or series?
Without a doubt, my all-time favourite book is The Lord of the Rings by JRR Tolkien. This is an epic adventure that symbolises that even the smallest, and most humble, are capable of saving the world. A fantastic book. I also love The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho, and Sapiens by Yuval Noah Harari.
Would you rather explore the deep ocean or outer space?
I believe that out in space there must be another planet that has life. It would be amazing to be able to meet with another civilisation to see what they do to understand their place in the Universe. Maybe they have answers to questions that we have, and we also might have answers to some of their questions. Also with the population of Earth growing so rapidly, we will not have enough space for everyone. We have no option but to colonise the nearest inhabitable planet. Think of the opportunities we would have to correct the mistakes that we are making on this planet.
How long would you survive a zombie apocalypse?
Maybe 1 minute. I cannot run, so I would be last in that race. I would hope to die in a glorious battle with some zombie, but the reality would probably be very swift. Maybe it would be better to infect me with the zombie contagion, and totally recover all my lost physical skills. I wonder if my headache would disappear. Hmm… maybe that is the cure.
T-Rex or dragon?
Dragon – I love the magical notion of the dragon. It can be a violent beast or a creature for good. It depends on the perspective of the writer. Anne McCaffrey has a wonderful series of books all about these amazing mythical creatures. I think I will have to start reading them again and return to my youth.
If you would be a character in someone’s book, who would you get to write it?
Have you ever visited a place just because you saw it in a book/series/animation/movie? What was that place?
No, this has never happened.
How has writing/blogging affected your life?
Writing has been very positive for me. I always felt comfortable with my thoughts, but when it was suggested that I start to keep a journal and write down my thought, I realised that I was keeping negative emotions inside. This whirlpool of negative thought didn’t find an escape, and as a result, had an impact on my mental health. I needed to get these ideas, schemes and vitriol out of my head, and on to paper. This act made me realise that what I thought was real, and unassailable, was, in fact, the fabled ropes of sand. Now in my life, I have a much greater respect for what is happening to other people, and their struggles, and the realisation that I was being my own worst enemy. I have become more positive, and grateful for all the good and positive things that I have in my life.
Blogging has been my way of sharing this, and I hope that someone can benefit from my experience. People like Jen, who nominated me for this award, have welcomed me into their community, and I am overwhelmed by the response that they have to what I have written. Now I am part of a positive chronic illness community, that help each other when our individual struggle causes us to lose sight of what is good in our lives. Chronic illness is difficult, blogging makes it easier.
Rules for nominees:
– Thank the blogger who nominated you and links back to their blog in your post.
– Upload the award to your blog. It can be done as a blog or on the sidebar.
– Answer the same questions I have above or share 10 facts about yourself.
– Nominate 5 blogs who you believe deserve to receive the award.
– Notify the nominated bloggers so that they can accept the award.