Year in review- A Candid look back on 2016

COLOUR OF OCTOBER BLOG- Year in Review A Candid look back on 2016. The highs and lows of my year not only as a chronic pain sufferer but an artist.

This year has been a strange one! On one hand I would- without a doubt- call 2016 the hardest year of my life. But on the other hand, I would also call this year, the most exciting year of my life… 

This year started out, quite frankly- horribly. I spent the first quarter of the year in hospital. Wasn’t exactly how I planned to start my final year of schooling! I made the decision a few months in that it would be best if I split the workload of my final year of high school over 2 years. This was possible due to the flexibility I have doing my schooling online, (which is something to talk about in another blog post). This was a really hard decision to make. Although I wasn’t at my mainstream high school, I still always thought I would graduate at the same time as the people I grew up with in the 9 years I spent at school before I became unwell.

This hospital stay at the start of the year was accompanied by a worsening of my symptoms and I lost a lot of progress I had made. In 2015 I had made progress with my physical rehabilitation and by the end of that year I was able to walk small distances independently. I lost all this progress and was back in the wheelchair full time, needing to be assisted to walk even small distances due to the pain. This was massively disheartening for me and unfortunately, this year I haven’t been able to regain all that progress I made in previous years. 

And this year has ended, quite frankly- terribly. New symptoms have popped up and I’ve been having lots of tests which has left me feeling quite conflicted (I talk more about this in this post)

So the year had started and ended difficult but there has been some exciting things that have happened in between! I would love to share them with you all (and to remind myself, this year hasn’t been all bad!)

So here are a few things I feel proud about achieving this year:

  • I started taking commissions and have now completed 4 with a few more in the pipeline. My artwork now is on the other side of the world! 
  • I completed another year of schooling, albeit only 2 subjects, I finished my philosophy class with a VHA8 and my maths with a VHA4 (which will make absolutely no sense to you unless you are familiar with the Queensland education system- but let’s just say: it’s pretty alright!)
  • This is a big one- I finished creating, and launched my own website (Something that is crazy to even say!) completely on my own
  • I hit over 40k+ followers over my tumblr accounts! And have somehow managed to reach millions of people!!!???
  • Today I felt proud was launched and has had over 900 submissions from all over the world and over 3500 active followers! 
  • My youtube channel went public and I finally managed to work out how to properly record and edit my videos
  • I’ve been approached by companies for some exciting projects.
  • I have taught myself how to use Adobe- a time consuming process but probably one of the most valuable things I’ve ever done!
  • I’ve taught myself how to actually use my DSLR rather than just pressing the automatic shutter and hoping for the best.
  • I started talking about my chronic pain on social media

*Warning, fangirling ahead that you may not understand*

  • Some of my favourite youtubers have liked, commented and even retweeted (!!!!!) my art and even some of my “funny” “relatable” posts on tumblr (?????). I like to think I’m now best friends with Tyler Oakley 😉
  • I’ve met many incredible people and made some close friends in the most unexpected of places.
  • Just yesterday I got my Learner Driver licence!
  • And most importantly, I have come a long way with my art! 

So I’m not going to lie- 2017 scares the crap out of me but I have the list above to remind me that in the darkest of times, good things can happen- who would have thought?! Think I will wrap this up here, because, as I often am (being chronically ill!) I’m bloody tired! 

Farewell 2016,

-Liz