Back Progress, Fair

I’m being asked regularly how I am, ‘How are you, really?’  And I answer truthfully, ‘It’s coming’, because it is.  My back is coming on well.  Movement is returning gradually, and the more I keep myself moving the better it gets.  It seems to object when I decide to lie down and rest during the day, but at night it recognises the need for rest, and lets me be.

My breathing technique is improving and when my body reacts with the odd spasm or pain when moving a certain way I remember to breathe, and respond positively, rather than clamping up and thinking, ‘Here it goes again!’ Each little step forward is a triumph, and even though it doesn’t look like much to observers, it is huge for me.

I have been thoroughly enjoying my swimming pool.  It is the most relaxing place to be, especially at sunset.  I wonder if I would really be using it this much if I did not have a muscular issue.  It does help that the weather has been so hot that the pool is warm and inviting.  I am hopeful I will still have this enthusiasm for swimming when it comes to the ‘winter’ months and the water temperature decreases dramatically!

I took my little godson to the school fair last Saturday.  I resolved before I went that I would let him do whatever he wanted and not control his afternoon.  He chose to go on no rides or jumping tents, but got lots of lucky dips, bought some old grubby toys, and played the few games over and over again – tic, tac, toe, throwing the ball through the holes, fishing for bottle caps … And he did well.

Bless all the volunteers and teachers who worked so hard in the intense heat to make it a huge success.   When nothing more could fit inside my 5 year old charge’s  backpack, and the weight was starting to tire him, he said, ‘Let’s go, Aunty Debbie, it is hot and my backpack is full’.  Perfect wisdom from a precious 5 year old!

Remember to Breathe

I have learned to breathe! Breathing that works for me and gets me through the pain. Yay!!

Yes!  There has been improvement in my back pain.  I was told by my beloved Pilates instructor to ‘practice breathing so that it becomes second nature’.   But why do I need to be so aware of my breathing when it is meant to be the most natural thing in the world?

When we are busy, stressed, in pain, concentrating on a particular important thing other than breathing, we tend to tense up and subconsciously choose many different ways of breathing that are not always good for us.  For me, when I am in pain, or trying to avoid pain, which has been the case this last month or so, the last thing I am thinking about is to breathe, and breathe ‘properly’.  It just happens, right? At least it’s something you don’t have to focus on, worry about, with everything else going on! Except it is …

For me, when I tense up I stop breathing, even hold my breath, and that is when things go haywire internally, when the work starts, to get by in the next moments, protecting that painful sensation and doing my utmost to make it stop.  What I was doing, before I was enlightened, was the opposite of what I should have been doing.  To breathe.  Every day activities can cause a tensing up, for no particular reason, like speaking on the phone, and breathing through them is helpful.

I now am aware, so much more, about my breathing, and I have discovered that I do have to practice at it.  Breathing in deeply for a few seconds and out for a few seconds, so that the air reaches more parts of my body that count, and I am not just breathing to survive.

I remember an exercise in relaxation when I was about 10, lying down in the school hall, and the teacher coming round and lifting our arms  and we were supposed to let them drop naturally.  I was one of the ones who rigidly dropped my arm, concentrating, over-thinking, rather than just abandoning it to gravity.  And I remember watching as many of the others let their arms go and how their joints did their own thing, folding easily one way or the other as they fell without any fear with a flop to the floor.  And I thought, maybe I can be like that one day.  One day is now.









God read my blog

He must have read yesterday’s blog and wants me to know that he is listening.

After a bad night’s sleep I went to Pilates in the morning and did a lot of stretching and practiced my breathing technique.  Something as simple as proper breathing can make a huge difference.  The tense way I have been moving around as self protection from pain can have the opposite intended effect.  I am now trying to be more ‘daring’ with my every day movements, and using the breathing .

Thank you, dear Father, for giving me the encouragement I need to keep going more positively, and for the ease I am feeling in my joints.  And thank you for reading my blog!




Two Contrasting Pains – One Prayer Answered


I am in pain.  I have had lower left back pain for the last 4 weeks or so, and it has been gradually getting worse.  I cannot explain how it started. It was not a fall or an accident of any kind.  It could have been triggered by pulling a suitcase down from a high cupboard, but who knows?  It does not hurt when I am walking around.  It hurts when I get out of bed, getting in and out of the car, and is worse when I have been inactive.  Easy motions like bending down to tie shoe laces or drying the bottom half of my body after a shower is a long, drawn out task. Spasms come and go.  What have I done about it?  Physiotherapy, heat therapy, exercises in and out of the pool, Pilates, massage and most recent Osteopathy.  So far no ongoing relief.  Next step is acupuncture. My best friend describes it as ‘Dry Rot’.  I continue to pray for everything to get back to normal, for the pain to go.

I am in pain. My waters have not broken but the pain is intense. I am in hospital being induced at 9 months 2 weeks, and although I was told that second labours are supposed to be easier, it is NOT looking that way. The pain comes often, and the breathing is my only source of comfort. A minute seems like much longer. My husband is standing by anxiously, helplessly, with each contraction getting stronger.  When the doctor comes to break my waters, even worse pain, if that is possible. Stomach and back pain at its best. Yet there is a light at the end of a tunnel. I will have my baby soon. It will all be worth it, and I will forget this pain.  And yes, my prayer for a beautiful, healthy baby was answered.


#Write 31 days series





I am a Barbadian national, without an accent, married 26 years to a fantastic funny British guy, and I have an amazing son and daughter, 2 cats and 2 dogs.  I have been a secretary when shorthand and typewriting were the norm, a hotelier when telexes, faxes and phone calls were the main form of communication, a house manager, and I’m  a homemaker and a writer.  I write many notes (and hardly ever go back and read them!), letters, poems and I like to journal.  I love chocolate, family and swimming.  I came to know Jesus personally in a dramatic encounter when I was suffering from Post Natal Depression, and I have a deep compassion for people who struggle with any form of depression.

I have talked about this for so long, to write about testimonies of answered prayers, and put it into book form.  As a mom of grown children, I have been involved in many school prayer groups over the years, as well as my own church prayer group, and a beautiful ‘dolphin pod’ of women.  So many prayers have gone up, and I’d like to share the outcome of some of mine.  I pray that you will find what you read to be encouraging and helpful in your own journey, as I do when I hear testimonies about what God has done in situations, many seemingly hopeless, and how he comes through far above what is expected or hoped.

This is the introduction for my #write 31 days series where I will be writing for 31 days in October on the topic Testimonies Answered Prayers




No more Pain!

The time has come to bare all.  No more smiling and pretending all is well.  Pain, especially back pain, is pain, and I want to begin logging it, the things I will be trying, exercise and the little things that frustrate me, things like mastering buckling shoes, getting off of a massage table … and the relief that I will have over the next 31 days.  Because relief will be found.  Or I will go mad!  And, unfortunately, many people have aches and pains so I should be in good company! Whether you will want to read about my pain is another matter, but let’s see.

I was going to write on a different series for this, my second #write 31 day challenge, but then I determined why not write on something that is occupying so much of me right now. The more I thought about it the more I resolved that this was it, take the bull by the horns, and get it out.  What do I have to lose?

So for the next 31 days in October I will be joining thousands of others in this challenge to write every day on my blog.  If you choose to follow my blog and you don’t see me one day, don’t panic, I may be having a bad back day, or that will be my excuse!  Thank you for reading!