How being chronically ill taught me to really live in the moment 

I actually decided what I wanted this blog post to be about on Wednesday afternoon.

I was in the garden hanging up the clothes and I was really enjoying the sunshine.

It was a really nice day but I had spent much of it in the office, so this was the first time I could really enjoy it.

I just kept thinking how nice it was to be there and to have the energy to be doing the housework.

And that’s when it really hit me how much my attitude has changed through my illness and recovery.

Before I became chronically ill, in that same moment, chances are I would just have been thinking about the million things I needed to get done after hanging up the clothes. 

I might also have been going over and over in my head what a busy day it had been, how tired I was or just replaying something I said or did that I wished I had said or done differently. 

I definitely wouldn’t have appreciated the sunshine and my energy in the same way.

Part of this has come from conscious decisions I’ve made along the way – some small decisions, some bigger ones – but all which add up to make it easier to appreciate such little, but important, things.

I’ve learned to slow down.

And more than anything I’ve learned to just be in each moment and enjoy it without thinking about yesterday, tomorrow or next year.

So this week I thought I would leave you with some photos I took in Bournemouth because for me they really capture this idea of really living in the moment.

To put you in the picture, most of these photos were taken during my first run in Bournemouth, the day after I arrived and the morning before the DNRS seminar started.

I was running for 1.5 hours in preparation for the half marathon I plan to run in a couple of weeks.

But as the sun was rising, the scene was so beautiful that I kept stopping to take photos.

I kept promising myself that each photo would be the last and that then I would get on with my run.

But I just couldn’t do it.

So I ran a bit. 

Stopped to take a photo or two. 

Ran a bit more.

Stopped to take another photo.

And laughed at myself.

I laughed at myself for being so amazed by the beauty of the sun and the sea that I just had to stop to take another photo.

And I also laughed a little at my old self.

The person who wouldn’t have allowed herself to stop.

Who would have wanted the 1.5 hour run to be so “perfect” that she would hardly even have noticed the beauty of the sun and the sea.

Or maybe noticed it briefly but definitely not stopped to take a photo (or 20).

And so in a strange way I’m grateful for having been chronically ill.

Because it really taught me how to slow down – or even stop – and be in the moment and enjoy the beauty around me.

And today I invite you to join me in putting thoughts about yesterday or tomorrow aside and just really live in this moment.

It’s amazing how just that shift in you can really change things.

I wish you all a very happy Easter and lots of beauty, love and happiness x x x