I am very excited! Sea change has been accepted by Nottingham City Council for exhibition in a Green Flag winning park!

This is my first municipal showing; I had to learn some computer stuff at top speed (ahem…wing it?) to get around the council postmaster (email portal) refusing work in open document format; the health and safety format is very different to what I learnt 25 years ago on Supervisors training for Gateshead M.B.Council and again to what we learnt at South Notts on the City & Guilds in 2009/2010…I had to buy a rollator simply to get around the site, I had to grow my patience waiting for my escort and installation team member to get back from Scotland and to her diary to be able to confirm arrangements…it’s been a steep learning curve and well worth it 😉

To be able to show something I have made in 10-30 minute segments, over more than a year, in a place where hundreds of people will see it, much more than in a gallery, because it is between a school, a sensory garden, a community centre, an outdoor bowling green, on a historic walk that links The Meadows where the crocuses (a local crop) were grown, now a large housing estate, and the main railway station and city centre….this is an amazing feeling!

Of course there is a lot to be done, so posting may be a bit intermittent with a strong focus on art and exhibitions for a month…the art class changed its end of course date so I will be hanging work there in the morning and at the park in the afternoon of May 10th!

How am I managing my fibromyalgia? Well, the rollator is getting used every time I go out and I am learning the art of sitting down BEFORE I am tired 😉 I have a little sit every 100yards/metres and a long sit every 5 minutes. The buses here are very good, so often that sit is on the bus. I am extremely lucky in that 2 friends with H & S training have volunteered to hang sea change for free (they will get happy vegan boxes of approved foods goodies and cookies 😉 ) another friend is going to film it (choc n nut cookies for him!)  When yet another friend has finished her finals she can  take my posters and flyers to the student colourcopy shop  and various peeps are being given a handful to put up and a bundle to hand out. Cherise signed me up to facebook nearly 3 weeks ago, so I am able to use social media to promote an exhibition for the first time…Now Eleanor has finished being a film star she can show me how to get my facebook settings right for promotion! All this helps me lie back and relax, avoid overdoing it or fretting, and therefore avoid burnout.


Because of the art class at Contemporary, there is a new way of  thinking round things, and as I often slice through time wasting in class (there is something so freeing about turning 45 or getting fibro, I just tell excited clusters of peeps to shut up and listen to the tutor, who is waiting politely for them to realise it is their own time that is draining away) I may not be the most popular, but I am useful!!! And mostly appreciated 😉

At home I am using more convenience foods, part of the budget I allow for showing is for more  expensive fruit juice and pre-prepared meals, and getting things picked up by friends who can’t help “directly” with the shows…counting spoons means it all counts to me, as I explained to PoetrySue who drives from Skegby to see me and then takes me to a supermarket and then on Thursday tried to help me make my printer work before saying, no, it really IS dud cartridges!! Less stress is less adrenalin, less cortisol, less lactic acid muscle pain, less fibro fog, less neurological pain, less exhaustion… it ALL counts 😉

I feel the way Andy (my late husband) helped me get out into the world and make more friends in spite of my agoraphobia, and the way I focussed on maintaining that after his sudden death, and my own daoist approach of finding the next thing to be delighted by has played a large part in what I am now harvesting. I have tried to be a “merry widow” and a matter-of-fact disabled person and a process artist with an invitational and possibilitarian approach, and that way of being has made it easy to help others and be helped…and accepting chronic fatigue and high pain levels as part of the deal, without wasting energy on wishing it away, has kept me positive. Working with what I am fit for/ A fit for (ie suited to by skill and attitude)  and finding ways for the other things to get done without draining me is the daily question, and how to make it fun, is the icing on the cake 😉