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About Me

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Hi! My name is Alex and I am an up-and-coming UK travel and lifestyle blogger writing about my adventures and managing life with multiple chronic illnesses.

I initially started my blog after watching videos of Claire Wineland’s speeches. She inspired me and reminded me that my life was more than my disabilities.
I have been ill my entire life, and my health will continue to decline. Among other things, I have fibromyalgia, gastroparesis, myalgic encephalomyelitis, depression, and anxiety. These limit my everyday life and I am still learning how to cope with them and still achieve my goals.
My first blog at https://persistingpain.blogspot.com is where I write about learning to manage my illnesses and about how I try and live as normal a life as possible despite my disabilities.
I also started a blog at https://alexalfresco.blogspot.com where I document my travel experiences. I have always loved travel and would like to share my passion with others.
I have one final blog at https://pro…

Slimming World: Weeks 5-14

Although I have been following the Slimming World diet for 18 weeks now, I have unfortunately not managed to post an update since the first month due to a series of personal issues (and some holidays, of course – it is summer). During this time, I have stuck to the diet on and off, with some weeks going better than others. I have faced a number of issues during this time – some diet related, some not – which unfortunately means that I am currently slightly heavier than when I first started in May.
When I first started the diet, it took my body time to adjust. As I mentioned in my previous blog post, Metamorphosis, I have always had weight issues due to a medical condition called gastroparesis. My gastroparesis also means that my body cannot handle certain foods, most of which are what is recommended for most diets. However, after a few weeks my body began to lose weight very gradually. This was interrupted by my multiple travels (check my travel blog, Alex Alfresco) and so here we are.

Slimming World: Weeks 1-4

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So I’ve just completed my first month on the Slimming World diet, which has been great fun although difficult as I love desserts! I’ve found some amazing low syn or even syn free recipes though which I’m planning on posting in the coming weeks, but this post is more of an introduction.
Between my fast metabolism and my stomach condition (gastroparesis), I spend the first 18 years of my life underweight and struggling to gain and body mass. Then my medication changed and I started gaining weight FAST. Currently I am three stone heavier than I’d like to be. Maybe that’s not as much as some other people would like to lose – I am a fairly average body size and don’t look very overweight – but to me that is a big change. I can’t stop the tablets that are making me put on weight so I am trying to lose it healthily, which is why I turned to the Slimming World diet. Slimming World is more of a lifestyle change than a diet. It’s all about managing food, having the right food most of the time…

What a Pet Means to Someone With Chronic Illness

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There’s a few things that most people with chronic illness learn after some time being ill – you will lose friends, maybe all of them; you will spend a lot of time stuck in the house; and you will get extremely lonely there. Staring at the same four walls of your bedroom or living room, no matter how many TV shows you have to binge-watch, will quickly become incredibly boring.
A lot of my old hobbies have become unmanageable due to my health, and so I have tried everything – painting, bead-art, movies, TV, books (when I have the energy), blogging, games, embroidery, crafts, and so many other things. But even an introvert like me needs human company.
I don’t have much family that I see – my mum, cousin, and boyfriend that I live with and the my dad and sisters who I see as much as possible. And I’ve lost most of my friends as a lot of teenagers – and people in general – don’t understand and, therefore, don’t have the patience for chronic illness. They would invite me out and after so man…

What 'Five Feet Apart' Means to Me as a Chronically Ill Teen

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**MINOR SPOILERS AHEAD**
As some of you might know, a big part of why I started a blog was because of how much Claire Wineland inspired me. Claire was a young woman who got dealt a rubbish hand in life but still won. She lived her life despite having cystic fibrosis and although she died last year aged 21, she achieved so much. She inspired thousands, reminding lots of us with chronic illness that we aren’t alone, and she even set up her own charity to help others living with chronic illness.
When I found out that Claire was a consultant on a movie about chronic illness and long term hospital stays as a teen, I couldn’t wait to see it. I was so sure that she wouldn’t let the right messages be lost and, although she unfortunately died before the movie’s release, her influence is clear throughout the entire movie. The protagonist, Stella, was heavily influenced by Claire and everything from her appearance to her attitude towards her illness shows this. Watching the movie reminded me of…

Chronic Illness Survival Kit

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Having a chronic illness isn’t easy, but it helps to keep with you a few things that can make it at least a little more manageable. Below are 8 things that I take out with me wherever I go that can make things a little easier:
1. Instant Hand Warmers My pain can flare up at any moment, and so it is good to have small, simple ways to ease it a little. Heat helps, but I cannot take a hot water bottle everywhere with me. Instead, I carry about some of the clickable instant hand warmers that people normally use during the winter. These are easy to carry around and activate when I need them. To reset them, I simply boil them when I get home. BONUS: use them just after you have boiled them and then activate them later on to get two uses out of them each time! Make sure not to burn yourself though.
2. Spare Tablets So often I forget to take my tablets, and so I have a little strip of each of my tablets kept in a purse when I can easily take around with me. This means that if I forget to take …

Dear Jameela Jamil

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Dear Jameela Jamil,
I sit here in tears as I write this. I know you probably won’t answer, but you are one of my biggest inspirations and I thought that if anyone could offer words of advice it would be you. Every time I see one of your tweets advocating body positivity or feminism or disability rights I like it and retweet and I think “I wish I could inspire people like she does”. I love what you are doing with iweigh. I love your acting but, even more so, I love your outlook on the world and your ability to inspire others.
I am 19 years old. All of my life I have struggled with illnesses and disabilities that have left my body in a not-so-perfect condition. Don’t get me wrong, I am still grateful for all that I have – all of my limbs, a healthy weight, etc. I have struggled with body image for a decade already, but I thought that I had come to terms with my body. I even wrote a blog post at https://persistingpain.blogspot.com/2019/01/metamorphosis.html about my body positivity and …