Ruminations of a frustrated maker (originally published 12 April 2019)

I am a maker, or at least, that’s how I described myself this time last year.  I had just finished a stint at the Quidi Vidi Village Plantation and was ready to take the plunge and build my home based business back on Bell Island. And things were moving along nicely.

Then one morning last August as I was getting ready to attend a local craft market, one of my coronary arteries suddenly dissected and became blocked. I ended up at the local emergency room and was subsequently transferred to the city where I underwent two surgical procedures in two days.

My recovery since then has been painfully slow.  I had initially expected to be back working by Christmas/early New Year.  Instead I ended up hospitalized over Christmas due to a serious fluid buildup in my chest cavity. 

January was chock-full of diagnostic procedures and appointments. My cardiologist wanted to refer me to the Ottawa Cardiac Team for assessment for a possible heart transplant.  During those tests, it was discovered that I have not one, but two pulmonary embolisms which likely accounted for some of my ongoing breathing difficulties.  

Thankfully these are being treated and February heralded improvements in my ability to function day-to-day. I can now do small household chores and carry on a conversation without panting. The referral to Ottawa has been put on hold at least until the treatment for the embolisms has run its course and a clearer picture of my heart functioning can be had.

It is now April and while I’ve gone out to my studio a few times, mainly to gather information for tax time, I have not made a thing since last summer.  It’s like it was someone else’s life now.  From time to time, I watch skill-building videos, thumb through my trade magazines and Instagram and Facebook feeds, but I feel like a spectator now rather than a participant.

I am fortunate that I have some savings and a partner who is still earning, so the proverbial wolf is not yet at my door.  I am grateful to still be alive, I have wonderful family support and most days I feel optimistic. But today, I can’t see the road ahead and it bothers me greatly.  

Maybe because I feel spring approaching, and for the first time in my life, I’m not making plans for what comes next.  When you no longer know what your body will allow you to do, planning starts to feel like a waste of time.  I’m not sure what to do next, but the days are starting to blur together now and that’s never a good sign.  

I just had a new type of scan (new to me) that will give a clear indication of my heart's current abilities. A lot will be riding on what this shows.  

The results can't come in fast enough.  


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