Being Honest With Myself

by - 00:59

Inevitably in life there come periods of change and self reflection, circumstances beyond our control or indeed within it, can at times give cause to take a step back and re-evaluate what we are doing.

I think this is a healthy thing and far from being fickle or self indulgent it's a necessary task to ensure personal well-being and a balanced contented life. 

I was unsure as to whether to write this post, unsure as to whether it may be seen as unprofessional or seeking sympathy, however many people have told me in the past that they love my honesty, that they enjoy the fact I post about my life, how I involve my kids in my business, how I inject a bit of reality and not just create a fake glossy image. They see me as a person and that's what they love, they are buying into me not just the pretty flowers. So I figured what the heck, and here goes...!

It is well known that not maintaining balance in life affects not only our personal health but also our ability to work productively, communicate effectively, to enjoy or maintain our friendships and personal relationships, to give ourselves willingly and feel at peace. The happiness and well-being of the people that are close to us is affected as they are either concerned for us, picking up the slack at home or at work or taking the brunt of our emotions and frustrations. And with illness inflicted by lack of balance your friendships suffer as you are either working or too exhausted from working to have the energy to be social. 

I am very lucky that I have a heightened sense of personal awareness, I know now when I am reaching the stage I need to step back. I have been managing a number of health issues over the years one of which I was officially diagnosed with last year; Fibromyalgia. It has had a huge impact on my life and the time has come that I need to acknowledge it and make some tough choices to create more balance in my life.

I was in two minds as to whether to make my diagnosis as public as I am now, although it's not something I have felt the need to hide particularly from those that know me. I have debated it for a while, I worried until now that it may affect my business as people may not trust in my ability to get the job done or indeed whether it would be seen as looking for sympathy. 
I feel I have worked so hard to build my business, I have made some wonderful contacts and relationships through my work and I am frightened of losing it all. I now seem to have a reputation, clients come to me by word of mouth, I meet people in the most random of places who say "Oh wow it's you, I follow you on social media and think you are amazing at what you do" 
My goodness! How wonderful, flattering, and crazy that little old me working alone in the back of beyond feeling so much anxiety about whether I have meet the brief and if my couples will like what I have done for them has some kind of positive notoriety! To let go of what I have worked so hard for and thought I wanted all along feels like a huge wrench. 
I know now however that I have reached the point where I can't fight it any more, I have learned to manage my illness (just about) however managing it limits me in so many ways. I am a do-er an achiever and a dreamer, I always have been, so to have my body let me down so badly has been a massive thing to come to terms with. 
I have pushed on with growing my business despite the symptoms, in denial, every wedding I have done knocks me out for weeks afterwards. I approach each one with mixed emotions, absolutely loving what I do but equally dreading it, knowing I will find it so physically and mentally draining because of my condition that I will feel ill during the creation of it and for many days or even weeks after. I have hidden behind my children saying I can only do a limited number as I have them and whilst that is partly true, goodness knows any working mother can tell you the juggling act is unbelievably hard with one child let alone 4! And I genuinely do want to slow down and work less to enjoy them and be a 'better' mum, but the reality was also me not wanting to admit or make public that I can only do so much as my body lets me down. 

It has taken me many months to finally come to terms with the fact that I am unlikely to ever be able to have the business I would like without finding a business partner or at least someone extremely reliable to work alongside me. Even though I can manage my illness I know it will always be there, I will never get better, always having to manage it and knowing the stress of a wedding will always knock me back to some extent depending on how 'well' I am at the time. 
I have been stuck in a place where I want to push my business and fulfill my dreams, I am getting more enquiries than I know what to do with now for venues and weddings that I could only have dreamed of previously. Venue managers/owners and other wedding professionals are noticing my work and want to work with me, I'm being featured on blogs and in magazines too which is all painfully ironic as that's what I have been working towards for the last 2 years yet now I am frightened to take on work as I have no reliable help and don't feel able to continue alone any longer with my body being so weak and doing what it does to me. Crazy right!??

So what to do? 
I have to be honest with myself, I can't continue in this state of denial, I know I can't continue as I am, I also know that maybe once my kids are at school and I have more time during the day it may be easier for me to run my business but I'll never be able to make it as big as I hoped, and what do I do in the meantime? How can I keep it ticking over and stop people loosing interest in me if I do nothing for a couple of years until they start school and then want to pick it up again? Do I continue with it at all now or do something else? So many questions that I need to reflect on and to which I currently have no answers. 
All I do know is that right now I need to slow down a lot. And I need to stop myself feeling as though I have failed and that others will see it as just a folly that I have now lost interest in...Why do I worry so much what others think!!

I will of course honor all of my existing bookings and am excited about the ideas my brides have for their weddings, I can't wait to create them and I always love seeing the finished result and the smile it brings to them, it makes it all feel worth it, but am in two minds about taking any more. 
I have said I am almost fully booked on my website because I am, not because I have loads of weddings but because I now feel I have enough for me right now, it's so hard to know what to do when I get enquiries, I want to say yes but my body is saying no! 

I have decided whilst I allow this period of reflection to run it's course and wait for the answer to come that I need to still feel I am working towards and achieving something, my mind is too active to be doing nothing! Therefore I have decided to fulfill a lifelong ambition to learn photography, and have my Uni graduation day, so I have enrolled on a BA (Hons) Photography degree. I know it will be demanding but I will have more control over managing it if I become unwell, I can't ask someone to change their wedding day but I can decide when I study! So from now on this blog will become more of a visual blog, I have updated the blogs 'about' page and I'll be posing lots of images of flowers and gardens as well as my floral designs when I create them, and will enjoy sharing my developing photography skills as I do...

If anyone has any words of wisdom for me feel free to get in touch! 

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