Thursday, January 3, 2013

THINGS I'M AFRAID TO TELL YOU ...


Good morning. :)  Here I am for the second day in a row!  I never thought it would be so hard to get back into the swing of things after a 2 week holiday break.

One of my goals for 2013 is to continue to share a little more personally on my blog.  I had this goal last year and tried to be more real and open on Simply Hue.  It's not always easy, especially since most of my blog visitors are here for a beauty break in the middle of a hectic day.  I want this to be a therapeutic and calming place on the web, but I also don't want to put across that my life is all chocolate and roses ... because it certainly isn't!

Ez Pudewa from Creature Comforts wrote a post recently called "Things I'm Afraid to Tell You".  In her post she shared some of her personal struggles and encouraged other bloggers to be authentic on their blogs.  I've decided to start the New Year off with a bang!  Today I'll share something about myself that only those closest to me know.  As 2013 unfolds, I'll do my best to continue to be open and share a little more about my life and "the things I'm afraid to tell you".  I hope you can take this challenge, too.  :)

So, here goes!!

I have two chronic health conditions (Multiple Sclerosis and Trigeminal Neuralgia) that cause me to be almost homebound.  I have severe fatigue, excruciating nerve pain, and various neurological symptoms that make it almost impossible to hold a job, attend social functions, or even to leave the house some weeks.  I spend at least 3-5 days out of every week resting on the couch and the other couple days of the week I have to really pace myself and choose my activities wisely so that I don't have a flare up of my symptoms.  This can be extremely isolating and at times I struggle with loneliness and depression.  I love life and am a huge people-person and to be so limited physically can be almost unbearable at times. I'm so thankful for my blog and my photography because they help me to stay connected to the world (and meet people like YOU) and to a certain extent, they fill the void that chronic illness brings.

See why this is difficult for me to share?  I like to be positive and uplifting and this is definitely not a subject that will send you away with a smile!  Oh, and if I'm being 100% real with you I should tell you that your comments to this post would mean a lot to me.  One of my fears in writing this is that no one will respond.  I don't know about you, but I've got that insecure side that will be less likely to open up if I don't hear from anyone after putting my heart out there.  Eeek!  How's that for honesty?

65 comments:

  1. Vicki,

    Thank you for sharing your story! I constantly struggle on how personal I want to make my blog - I come from a family of over-sharers that traumatized my fairly guarded self and so I think I lean on not sharing as much publicly - though I think I'll start opening up more on my blog. You inspired me ;) Thank you for being an active member of such a great artist community - I (and I'm sure everyone else!) appreciates the companionship.

    Take care <3

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    1. Hey Leah,

      Thank you ... your comment means more than you know. xo

      I know what you mean about having people in your life that "over share". It makes you really cautious about opening up because you don't want to be that kind of person yourself.

      I'm looking forward to getting to know you better through your blog! Do you have a link?

      xo
      Vicki

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  2. Oh my. If you were sitting next to me on the couch I would give you a huge hug right now. You share so much beauty and send out so many wonderful vibes from this blog, that it breaks my heart a little to read how alone you sometimes feel and how scared you are to share this with your readers.

    Ofcourse I don't really know you and, more importantly, you don't know me. But still I want to tell you I think you are wonderful and that I am thankful that you share yourself with us, in any way you chose.

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    1. Karin, what a beautiful comment ... it touched my heart and I can't thank you enough. I wish I did know you personally because you sound like such a caring and compassionate person. xo

      Have a wonderful New Year overflowing with beauty!!

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  3. Thanks for your honesty! It's so refreshing to hear that not everyone is perfect and it's the honesty that keeps me wanting to go back to those blogs that do open up and share. So, thank you! You're an encouragement to all of us!

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    1. You're so welcome, Amy, and thank you for your encouraging comment that motivates me to continue being open and honest. :) xo

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  4. I can identify with the shock at how hard it is to get back into the swing of things after a two week holiday - having the same problems here ha ha!
    And I also completely identify with your comment about opening up and then not getting any feedback...ouch!
    And that was a brave statement for you to make btw :)

    I love your blog for it's beauty and inspiration but it means even more to get to know you in addition to looking at all of that beauty and inspiration. So I'm glad that you shared yourself in this post and maybe I'll get the nerve to do the same...

    I hope that 2013 brings you more good days than bad days:) Happy New Year Vicki!
    ♥ Phoebe

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    1. Aww, Phoebe ... you're a great friend. Thanks so much for commenting (phew, a little of my insecurity is gone!). I love your Tumblr and your photos are AMAZING!!

      Hugs,

      Vicki

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  5. Hi Vicky,
    I live in your area somewhere and always enjoy your most beautiful pictures and colors etc etc, but now that you've shared something so personal I actually like you and your blog even more so! :-) Now I can actually 'see' a person behind the blog, if you know what I mean...
    I volunteer at Little Bit ( a horse therapeutic riding center between Redmond and Woodinville)and meet women with MS: respect!
    Marjan

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    1. Seriously, Marjan? I just started volunteering at Little Bit, too! They allow me to call in when I feel well to see if they need help with anything. I started helping at a hippo class on Thursday mornings but haven't been able to be there for a few weeks. Loved it. :)

      Thanks so much for your kind words ... they mean a lot to me. Ok, I'll try to keep up the trend of being real and open. Thanks for the encouragement, Marjan. xo

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    2. Haha, that is too funny, what a coincidink! ;-) I work there Tuesday and Friday mornings also in Hippo's...

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    3. Really? Ok, we are going to have to meet! I'll try to swing by on a Tuesday or Friday when I'm feeling well. :)

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    4. That sounds great! I' usually there between 11 and 1 but let me know before hand (if possible) so I can confirm those times... Nice to meet you Vicki! :-)

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  6. my heart is touched by your honesty. i think we all imagine the lives of others are more magical than our own. I am a breast cancer survivor and struggled with health issues as well. you are brave and wonderful...I pray 2013 is one of your best years ever!!!

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    1. Thanks so much, Life in Focus. I'm sorry for what you've gone through. I appreciate you sharing that with me ... it reminds me that I'm not the "only one". You're so right about how we tend to think that other women lead these magical lives. The more I get to know people, the more I realize that's not true.


      Thanks again! Your kind words made me a little teary-eyed. xo

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  7. your open hearted honesty can only pave the way for wonderful things in 2013...new friends, shared burdens and a deeper sense of participating in life. Good For You!!!

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    1. Aww...thanks so much. Your encouragement makes me want to be open more often! xo

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  8. my heart is touched by your honesty. i think we all imagine the lives of others are more magical than our own. I am a breast cancer survivor and struggled with health issues as well. you are brave and wonderful...I pray 2013 is one of your best years ever!!!

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  9. I also read the post on Creature Comforts a while back and I have often thought of sharing a bit more on my blog, so good on you for going for it! So sad to hear that you are often house bound, maybe this is why you're such a fab photographer?! The need to record the beauty!

    I also suffer with depression and confidence issues which has held me back in pursuing my dream career in design, often leaving me feeling stuck...I think the thing to take from all these comments is that we are all struggling in our own way and if more people opened up like you did then I think there would be alot less pressure on ourselves to be 'perfect'. Rebecca x

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    1. Great thoughts, Rebecca ... I think you're right about the need to record beauty.

      I'm sorry you struggle from depression. It's noooo fun. I hope you do pursue your dreams. We can take even little steps towards them and at some point we'll get there. ;)

      I know I always appreciate it when people open up, but it's so much harder when it's me! lol.

      Big hugs,

      Vicki

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  10. Dear Vicky
    I still love your blog - maybe even a little bit more ; )
    Let me share a little secret with you: Sometimes I feel every blogger is a young beautiful woman, and therefore I'm afraid my readers will leave me, if they know my age - isn't it stupid? I hope it's stupid, 'cause it's the content on the blog that matters I hope....
    : )

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    1. Thank you, Snullemor! And it's not stupid at all ... I've had those very same thoughts. So many bloggers are younger and I don't want to appear uncool. It's a process to be our real selves, isn't it?

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    2. Not stupid at all! I struggle with that age matter too... But you know what? Blogosphere is wide enough for all of us. It's true, there are a lot of young bloggers out there, but I'm so happy when I find someone of my age or even older. We can all learn from each other, no matter how old are we... That helps to stay young at heart, and that's what really matters.
      Have a wonderful start of the year!
      Alex.

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  11. Well I rarely comment because I subscribe to so many blogs that it would take a huge chunk of time to leave comments on all, but I wanted to leave you a comment today to say thank you for having the nerve to share this with your readers. I am a nurse so I totally get what you are saying about your conditions. Isn't it so strange how we see your work and your blog posts but because we are 'on line' we really have no idea what is going on with the person on the other side of the post. Have a wonderful 2013. I cannot remember whose blog I was on when I found yours but I enjoy it very much:)

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    1. Thank you, Cindy. :) I'm sure you can really understand where I'm coming from since you make a living helping people with various chronic illnesses. I appreciate the work you do! What would we do without great nurses?

      It means a lot that you left a comment. Thanks again!

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  12. thank you so much for this honest post. i know you don't think that someone could walk away from this post with a smile, but i have a feeling you left a smile on everyone's face who read this. allowing one self to be vulnerable tends to make us stronger and more accepting of each other. you have and continue to inspire people. i hope you see yourself as beautiful and worth taking pictures of too, because YOU are.

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  13. oh man, i tried to comment already, but it seems my comment didn't send for some reason.
    i know you think your post was not a topic that could bring a smile to someone's face, but know that you did for me and I am sure for most people that read the post.
    when we allow are selves to be vulnerable we tend to learn and accept each other better.
    you have and do inspire people. you said you like taking pictures of beautiful things, I hope you are a subject of your own lens as well. you are beautiful inside and out.

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    1. Aww...thank you, Daydreamme. What a kind compliment. :) I really appreciate your encouraging words. Have a beautiful day! xo

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  14. Thank you for sharing - you are very brave - if I lived near you, I would come over for a chat and a lovely cup of tea! Your blog is totally inspiring, keep inspiring me! xxx

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    1. Thank you, Candy Pop! Wish you did leave near by ... I would take you up on that offer. :)

      Thanks for your very kind words. xo

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  15. Vicki. Thanks for sharing so openly and honestly...it tugged at my heart strings ! Knowing what the diseases are like I always wondered how you could keep up such a beautiful blog. It will remain a place of calm and beauty and now compassion. You may never know how far reaching your honesty has reached and how much it will help others in this journey called life. I think you are great your raining umbrella class did wonders for me. Take good care xo

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    1. Hi there, Bev. How sweet of you to drop by and leave such an encouraging comment. Your words mean a lot to me.

      So glad you enjoyed Raining Umbrellas. I really miss all of you! Let's keep in touch. :))

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  16. Dearest Vicki you accomplish so much with what you have to deal with. I have very similar symptoms, the doctors don't know what caused my disability, but I must say you have inspired me and touched me deeply with the work you do accomplish. I wish you all the best, I love your work and and nothing should make people dislike you... I admire you!

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    1. Wow, thank you, Blue Lily. So sorry you don't feel well either. :( If you ever need to talk to someone who truly gets it, feel free to e-mail me. matissecolor@gmail.com

      Thanks again! (((HUGS)))

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  17. Love it more. Your blog inspires me. Each blog I follow, there is a person behind it -- not a company -- and with that I do expect reading about difficult times. Maybe one day, I share my troubles too.I hope your online revelation is a weight off of you.

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  18. Vicki, I bought one of your prints for a friend who was dealing with a prolonged and frightening illness last year, and somehow it meant even more that it came from you who knows what that means. I am so glad that blogging affords you a connection to the world even when you're housebound, and you are to be commended for all that you do achieve! Keep up the good work and take good care of yourself.

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    1. Thanks so much, Annetta. It makes me happy to know that your friend was encouraged by one of my photos. Hope she's doing much better by now. :)

      Have a wonderful 2012 and thanks again for your kind comment!

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  19. it is great to come to your blog & have that brightness from a hectic day (your photos are so cheerful!) but opening up to the more difficult parts of life definitely doesn't detract from that. thank you for sharing. i am glad you have found such a community on the internet to engage with on those days you must stay home, and we all benefit from seeing your updates. happy new year and best wishes :)

    also, i appreciate catching a glimpse of how others manage the many aspects of their personal lives AND their businesses, jobs, blogs, etc. i'm happy more people on blogs have decided to share.

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    1. Thanks, Angela! Your comment motivates me to continue being "real". So happy to know that other people can benefit from what I write. :) Hope to see you here again soon. xo

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  20. you go girl, so proud of you for sharing!! Even though I do not have an illness that keeps me at home I care for my son Kyle who is autistic and has seizures, those are the big two as there is more to his disabilities so I am also housebound for the most part. I have a caregiver for him on Tuesdays and Fridays for a total of 12 hours a week. If I can wrangle his brother to watch him for a couple hours so I can grocery shop or have a date with King Tut I consider it to be a good week. I get how depressing it can be, lonely and disappointing when you have to miss others events in life. I wish I could make this easier for you, but I think you have taken that big first step in letting those you know and love onto your secret, it is surprising how friends step up when you need them the most. I do not have much money but I am forever rich in friendships and that has been very apparent since the death of the kids dad as he was my backup for Kyle. Big hug to you Vicki, keep strong, and thanks for sharing your art as well as a piece of yourself today...Kim

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    1. Thanks so much for sharing about your son and the challenges you face, kkc. You sound like a wonderful Mom and I can just imagine how trying many of your days must be. You sound like a very strong person and I admire YOU.

      I'm so very sorry to hear about your husband. I can't even imagine. Feel free to send me an e-mail if you ever need a listening ear, ok? matissecolor@gmail.com

      Thanks again for your heartfelt and encouraging comment, kkc. xo

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  21. you go girl, so proud of you for sharing!! Even though I do not have an illness that keeps me at home I care for my son Kyle who is autistic and has seizures, those are the big two as there is more to his disabilities so I am also housebound for the most part. I have a caregiver for him on Tuesdays and Fridays for a total of 12 hours a week. If I can wrangle his brother to watch him for a couple hours so I can grocery shop or have a date with King Tut I consider it to be a good week. I get how depressing it can be, lonely and disappointing when you have to miss others events in life. I wish I could make this easier for you, but I think you have taken that big first step in letting those you know and love onto your secret, it is surprising how friends step up when you need them the most. I do not have much money but I am forever rich in friendships and that has been very apparent since the death of the kids dad as he was my backup for Kyle. Big hug to you Vicki, keep strong, and thanks for sharing your art as well as a piece of yourself today...Kim

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  22. thanks so much for sharing an important part of who you are with us today...hugs, Kim

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  23. hugs and prayers for you always Vicki xoxo

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    1. Thank you sweet Beverly. That means a lot. :-)

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  24. I've told you many times... you're a great inspiration for many of us, personally and professionally.
    Thank you again for sharing so much beauty and honesty!
    Alex.

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    1. Hi Alex!

      You are such an encourager ... thanks so much for another lovely comment. I appreciate you. xoxo

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  25. Happy New Year to you Vikki :) Thanks for your inspiration and for sharing on this blog. Raining Umbrellas course was so great. It helped me in lots of ways. Like someone shared in one of the comments, you will probably never know how far reaching your honesty and sharing of your struggles will reach out to others, and be a help. Take Care, Arctica

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    1. Hi dear Arctica, happy New Year to you, too!

      So glad you enjoyed Raining Umbrellas. We had such a great group of women and I miss all of you.

      Thanks for leaving such a kind comment and making me feel like it's o.k. to be real. Hugs!!

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  26. Happy New Year to you Vikki :) Thanks for sharing with us. I really believe that in sharing the struggles we go through, it can be a help to others in many ways. Raining Umbrellas was a super course..you did a great job! Take good care, Arctica

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  27. my friend,
    you have always been such an inspiration to me.
    thank you for sharing this. you warm my heart.
    xo

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    1. Christina, hi!! I miss you! Thanks so much for stopping by and for your sweet comment ... it means a lot. Hope you're doing well and that we see more of each other in 2013. xoxo

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  28. Sending you lords of love as I am sure it wasn't easy to share all this here. Sp sorry to hear that oh have to deal with so much pain in your life. Your blog and your photography are s beautiful and you'd never guess from your work how hard your life must be. Love your positivity xxx

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    1. You're a sweetheart, Photo Puddle. Thanks so much for kind comments. xo

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  29. Wow, I'm so touched and encouraged by each of your comments!! Thanks so much for taking the time to write ... what a wonderful group of women you are!

    Big hugs and tons of appreciation,

    Vicki

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  30. Hi Vicki. I really like your approach to your blog. We have spoken a few times on LWTN. I will say something that you do not hear very often. I completely understand everything you are going thru. I have MS and TN as well. There are very few of us out there. Just know that giving yourself and the rest of us a place to help each other is a blessing greater than you know. We tend to be home bodies and do not want to expose our family and friends to the worst of our condition. Being able to talk and be honest with others is sometimes what we may need to make it through that day. We are there for each other.

    Gary

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  31. Hi Vicky.
    I started reading you some time ago, always enjoying what you write. I remember reading about your feelings, so sincere, so deep, and I loved it. I feel closer to you when you share about you.
    And I love the way you accompany what you write with your amazing evocative inspiring images.
    So I will continue reading you and enjoying everything you share.
    Hope you feel better.
    lots of love
    Ana

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  32. Dear Vicki,

    I'm a little slow in catching up on blog reading but I'm glad to have read yours. I'm overwhelmed by your courage. Thank you for your desire to serve others with your blog! It has been a blessing for me to get to know a little about you these last few weeks. Thank you for the beauty that I see in your art. May God give you strength and purpose through hardship.

    Take care,

    Kris

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  33. I still like you!!!!!!!!!!

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  34. Vicki just want to say I miss your blog. Sorry for been away for awhile from this beautiful space. And thank you for sharing and be honest. I will keep you in my prayer :0. You are truly one of my online friend that I treasure.

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  35. VIcki,

    Thank you so much for your brave authenticity! You are so inspiring in many, many ways! So glad I found you here through Christina Greve! I wish you all the best and will be visiting you and your blog much more!! : )

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  36. Happy New Year Vicki. Thank you for sharing - you are so brave and inspiring!

    I look forward to reading your blog again this year (I will try to leave more comments!).

    x Nikki

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  37. Okay, you can swat me right now if you like but... have you by any chance read The pH Miracle by Dr. Robert O. Young? I can't help but ask just in case his words and his perspective on health and reversing disease, all disease, might be helpful for you. You are a beautiful woman with a beautiful generous soul and creativity that inspires so many that I was saddened to realize that you are not well on many of days. My passion happens to be sharing what I know that works for me with regards to health so forgive me for the free advice that you didn't solicit. Hugs to you and thank you for sharing so openly. PS. I found you thru your work with Gatherings, sooo lovely:)

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  38. Dear Vicky, you are amazing! and beautiful! and very courageous, not only to talk about your fears but in everyday life. I take all this as an inspiration. and like you even more.

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  39. Oh Vicky!! You sound pretty wonderful to me. Hope 2013 brings health & healing. I will pray for you.

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Thanks so much for your comments. Your thoughts, opinions, and ideas are important to me!

~ Vicki