Oct ’13 update – part 2!

Posted on October 31st, 2013 at 5:49 PM / No comments

So… here’s part 2 of my October update.  Just forgot to mention in part 1 that I ended up being invited back to the Keswick convention for a day in week two, to sing with none other than Stuart Townend!  It was fun!

The other sort of major life changing stuff that has been going on is in terms of health and work really.

I left my job as ‘Minister of Music’ at St Nicholas Church, Corfe Mullen, and actually – today was my last day!  I have worked there since September 2012, and over the past year and 2 months it has become increasingly clear that I should not be there.  It wouldn’t be right for me to go into all the details, but I will say that some things have been a very real and deep struggle – which is thankfully now over.

In terms of the people, and music making – I will be very sad to leave.  The congregation are such warm and genuinely loving people, who have been very encouraging of the work I’ve been involved with there.  I’m grateful for that.  The vocal ensembles I’ve set up will hopefully continue as they started and continue to grow in musicianship and love of singing.  I will miss the people I’ve worked with dearly and will take the friendship with me.  I have only good wishes for all the continued music making at St Nic’s, and for all the wonderful people who go there.

It will be strange getting up on Sunday morning and not going to St Nic’s, I bet the car tries to take us there anyway!

It’s exciting though to think we’ll get to visit a few new churches in Bournemouth and Poole and find our spiritual home here.

A few people have wondered if we would be going back ‘home’.  At the moment, there are no plans to move back.  We are settled here (although I’m slightly unsettled in work!), Phil loves Dorset and his new job, and I really like it here as well – plus moving here has opened a lot more opportunities for me.

Anyone who knows me well knows I’ve always suffered to some degree with ill health.   I’ve suffered under a diagnosis of M.E/CFS for many years.  Sometimes it’s bearable and I get on with things and anyone looking on wouldn’t have a clue as to how wiped/exhausted and ‘foggy’ I feel.  Other times I feel so bad and ill I can’t get out of bed for weeks at a time.  Thankfully, it doesn’t get that severe too often.

There are many other quirky health problems which require the supervision of various hospital consultants.  When we moved to Dorset just over a year ago, I obviously had to be referred to ‘southern’ consultants in ‘southern’ hospitals.  New eyes upon me led to new ideas about my various ‘issues’ (medically speaking …. cheeky!).  I have been backwards and forwards to hospital for tests and appointments more times in this past year than I have in the past 5 years in Sunderland.

They have discovered that the possibility is that I don’t have M.E/CFS at all.  I DO have a condition called AGHD (Adult Growth Hormone Deficiency) and guess what – the symptoms are practically identical to M.E/CFS and also account for a few other things too.  I am now on treatment and hopefully within a month or two I’ll be feeling normal – which is exciting as I have no memory of what that feels like!

Part of me is angry and upset that my ‘Northern’ consultants didn’t look into this, especially as I had GHD as a child.  I have lost substantial quality of life, and the ability to work a ‘normal’ ‘full time’ job for all my 20’s and half of my 30’s.  This really bothers me …. BUT …. now I hope and pray that the future will be different.  If this treatment makes the difference I hope it will – then I have the chance of a future I’d never been able to picture before.  It’s thrilling and liberating (and a little scary too!).

There are other things related to health where God is totally tearing apart what we thought we knew …. It’s confusing and scary but ultimately – it’s good.  Please keep us in your prayers!

In terms of the next steps, I will be taking on more private tuition in Bournemouth.  I’m directing 1 choir already and am starting up 2 new ones from scratch in the next few weeks.  I’m also hoping to do more gigging now that my time is less restricted – it’s all good and exciting.

Please keep us in your prayers as God leads us on.

Thanks for reading!



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