Hello Stranger!

Hullo!

My WordPress updates tell me that I have neglected my blog for six months now. My stats also tell me that there are still folk dropping by from time to time, so I figured it would be rude not to also pop in and post a little update!

I’ve been lying low over recent months in an attempt to get myself back to full health. About a year ago I suffered from a spinal fluid leak that is unfortunately ongoing. I managed to rupture the membrane that surrounds my spinal cord and brain allowing the fluid that supports my brain to leak out, causing all sorts of weird and not so wonderful symptoms. This is considered a rare condition but CSF Leaks are frequently misdiagnosed and misunderstood in the medical and wider world, suggesting that they may not be as unusual as previously thought, and can be completely life changing and debilitating. The cause of a CSF Leak can be iatrogenic, traumatic (car accident etc), or spontaneous – thought to be due to weakened connective tissue due to another underlying condition. Mine however, is suspected to be due to general wear and tear on my spine causing bone spurs (or osteophytes) which may have been wearing this membrane thin during various activities and exercise. Think of stretching a carrier bag to the point that you can poke a finger through it! A charity has recently launched in the UK to spread awareness and fund raise – please drop by and have a look: http://www.csfleak.info/ There are also lots of ingenious ways that you can support the charity without even leaving your PC – whilst shopping online for example, via https://new.easyfundraising.org.uk. If you’re looking for a great cause to fundraise for, look no further : )

If you’d like to know more, here is an incredibly informative video too about CSL Leaks. It is long, but worth the watch!

Anyway, if you know me, you’ll know how active I was previously, packing every moment of life full, and you’ll also know that I’ve been giving my body a bit of a break to prevent making the leak worse. It’s impacted on my life in every way but I am still managing to do a great deal of the things that I love, and have replaced the more energetic pastimes with some new interests. I’m basically living life much more slowly and gently! A fellow ‘leaker’ has launched a fab Facebook page called ‘The Bee Happy Movement’ which documents the difficult journey through his own CSF Leak whilst maintaining an unrelenting positive approach to life. His page is full of inspirational and motivational quotes, reflections and good deeds – the intention is to make the world a better place and it is truly heartwarming.

Having said all that, I am still working, mediating disputes in SEN (Special Educational Needs) and I have visited a few schools with ‘Worm, Slug, Maggot and Leech‘ over recent months and am still creating the occasional ‘From Polly with Love’ artwork. And of course family life enriches every other corner of my life, keeps me constantly busy (and also on the verge of insanity!)

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Find my personalised artworks on my Facebook page: Polly M Walker

I’m often asked if I’ll write a second book. In the light of everything above, I had decided to pop any future plans on hold, but my creative juices are bubbling again and I’m currently working on pulling together some ideas for a second book. This time I hope to collaborate with a fabulous illustrator…watch this space and I’ll post an update when there are some developments to report! In the meantime, check out the Britain’s Next Bestseller website here – the site has been revamped and there are lots of exciting things afoot!

As my blog as taken such a back seat over recent months, I haven’t been teaming up with ‘But Why Mummy Why’ to produce a #littleloves post. Morgana from ‘But Why Mummy Why’ has also been developing her own blog to encompass all things lifestyle. She has re-launched it under the name ‘Coffee Work Sleep Repeat‘. There are lots of lovely things to read about over on her page!

I’ve also been following the blog of a good friend’s 21 year old daughter who is dipping her toe in the world of travel blogging whilst exploring the world with her photographer boyfriend. You can read up on her adventures here, where she has been including lots of helpful advice for travel on a budget and essential things to see and do, all underpinned by her clear passion for animals and nature and accompanied by the most wonderful photography which is sure to make your feet itch!

At the end of last year we discovered geocaching and we’re addicted. I’ve bored so many people about it that I’ll just post the link: https://www.geocaching.com Be warned, if you love the outdoors and you love finding treasure (or your children do) you will be hooked very quickly!

Here are a few other discoveries we’ve made recently that are worth sharing. Click on the captions below for links…

 

 

Anyway, hopefully I’ve crammed enough into this post to make up for my silence over the past few months. Thank you for dropping by and I promise that I won’t leave it so long this time!

Polly xx

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