I never thought I would wake up one day unwell, and never get better. A constant forecast for tomorrow as cloudy with an inevitable thunderstorm at some point in the day. This is the life of someone with a chronic and incurable illness. Welcome to the world of Gastroparesis.
Deriving from two Latin base words, gastro for stomach and paresis for paralysis, the literal definition of this ailment is “paralysis of the stomach”. That glorious cake you want for your birthday? No go. That moorish Christmas lunch you desperately want to be a part of? Try again. How about going out for dinner and drinks with friends, like everyone else on the planet seems to do? Sorry, you can’t go. This is life with a gastric disability.
When the most basic human instinct to eat and be satiated and nourished is ripped from you... only then do you realise how valuable ones health is. It robs you of social normality, emotional balance and physical well-being... is catapults you into a depression darker than jet and more obscure than onyx. But what having an incurable illness has also done... is lit a topaz burning and amber hued fire of inner strength, determination and creativity that I didn’t even know I had.
Everyday I wake knowing what routines must remain, and like a warrior off to battle I pull on my mental armour to tackle the demons. My weapon of choice?... art and creativity. I urge anyone and everyone to find something creative to implement into their life to channel their pains and woes. Whether you decide to start a project where you photograph everything and anything that comes in your favourite colour around you, or to do a doodle a day to drain the pain away. Perhaps cutting up magazines instead of cutting up your heartstrings, or sketching a face to leave pain without a trace.
Art has the power to heal by means of distraction, and by allowing us to escape into a wonderland that even Alice would envy.
Like Alice: I may never know why a raven is like a writing desk, and my life may well be a mad hatters tea party, with a poor deck of cards dealt by a lucrative Cheshire Cat... but I’m spite of it all, much like Alice, I dare to “believe as many as six impossible things before breakfast...” and to recognise that there is “no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then."
Pain and illness changes you, for better and for worse. But with art as ones shield, maybe we can finally change that weather forecast from grey skies, to sunny spells.
The Keverian Foundation was established on the premise of educating and inspiring others suffering the same chronic and incurable illnesses to not give up. To keep researching and exploring new techniques and remedies to better ones life, and to educate those around them of the conditions in order to remove stigma and improve communal understanding. Society has taught us since the beginning of time that ill health is some kind of “taboo”, not to be spoken of or shed with light. This needs to change. With your contributions, engagement and interest, allow The Keverian Foundation to bring to the forefront the need for enhanced research, funding and re-evaluation of the medical criterium required to start bettering the mental and medical health industries that so many of us rely on, but fail to be cared by. Together, we can make an impact.
What to expect from The Keverian Foundation...
💛 Infographics that are fully downloadable, usable and printable educating the reader on the many mental and chronic medical conditions that we focus on as an organisation
💛 Social distance friendly events that bring people together to educate on topics of mental and chronic physical/physiological health concerns
💛 Music releases in the form of digital downloads, EPs and albums that are designed to motivate and inspire; recorded by our founder Bucci Chola
💛 Artwork such as portraits, collage, calligraphy and more - all to be bought and shared to raise money, inspire and motivate
💛 Podcasts, life talks and YouTube videos that answer questions in the form of Q&A, interviews with suffered and medical professionals, and more to bring us closer together as a social community
💛 Regular fundraisers and events that will benefit sufferers of XYZ conditions by donating to relevant organisations, medical research groups associated with mental and chronic physical health conditions