"I am 26 years old and for the past seven years I have been mostly housebound/bedridden with a complex chronic illness known as myalgic encephalomyelitis, aka M.E./CFS
Before my illness I was a dancer, student, actor, and general performance junkie. I never kept still, and I thrived on movement of all kinds. Slowly, this was stripped away, and as the illness progressed, my life became more and more reduced. By the end of 2009 I was unable to walk even a few blocks. As someone who had relied on my physicality, being housebound was beyond foreign to me. The ways in which I had defined myself were no longer available, and along with the frustration, and confusion of the illness, I felt like I had lost myself. It took some time, and adjustments, but slowly I discovered a new me, and a new way of existing within the confines of my home. I began teaching myself and experimenting with composing music, poetry, drawing, and painting - all of which the “healthy” me never would have dreamed of trying.
Art has now become the way I express myself and my emotions. It gives me a sense of purpose, and allows me to communicate with the world from my bed. The truth is though, much of my time is spent in a state of ‘waiting’, and it’s through this silence and stillness that I have learned patience. Patience with an hour...with a day... with a year... and with myself. On my “better” days I love improvising and creating, and I live for the moments when my energy allows me to completely immerse myself in a project. It’s in these slivers of time that I am able to lose myself in almost the same bliss I once felt on stage."