‘My name is Pippa, and I’m a chronically ill writer and blogger at Life Of Pippa. I’m originally from Sheffield, but moved to York for university and have been here ever since! I’ve had ME/CFS since I was a teenager, but was only diagnosed in 2014, following a relapse at the age of nineteen. My experiences led me to founding my social enterprise, Spoonie Survival Kits, and last year we released our very own charity book, Dear Chronic Illness…’
To give you a taster:
‘ “Dear M.E,
If this letter was part of an inspirational movie, I’m sure I would be saying a heartfelt thank you. Dramatic music would play whilst I’d gush about how becoming ill changed my life for the better and helped me discover more about myself as a person, whilst I waltzed off into the sunset with a handsome prince and some kind of small fortune due to a dramatic plot twist.
Unfortunately, this is not an inspirational movie. Instead of waltzing off into the sunset, I manoeuvre an unreliable wheelchair along a questionably uneven pavement. Instead of finding a handsome prince, I concentrate on finding the most qualified medical professionals to manage my condition… with bonus points if they happen to be attractive, of course. And my plot twist isn’t a small fortune: it’s not knowing if, when or how I will ever get better.”
– Pippa Stacey. Dear Chronic Illness (Kindle Locations 171-173). Wallace Publishing. Kindle Edition.
Dear Chronic Illness features a collection of short letters collaboratively written by young people, addressed to their conditions. It was important to us that the letters avoided being your typical sob stories or fuel for misguided ‘inspiration’, and instead they provide a light-hearted and humorous commentary on each of the writers’ various experiences, whilst also aiming to give insight into the challenges of navigating life whilst living with chronic ill-health.
The letters are addressed to a range of long-term conditions: from POTS to endometriosis, from brain tumours to Severe M.E, and it means the world to us that this book features 16 of our favourite people, who have so kindly volunteered their time and energy by contributing their stories. You can meet the contributors and find out more about them by visiting this post on the Spoonie Survival Kits website, or by checking out our recent Twitter thread.
And the best bit of all? All of our share of royalties from the book are to be donated to Spoonie Survival Kits, meaning that each book sale will directly equate to funding the enterprise and continuing our development. Hopefully, this will enable us to raise even more money for charity, and create even more accessible opportunities for fellow chronically ill and disabled people.
Dear Chronic Illness is a short read comprising of 62 pages (therefore hopefully less daunting to those of you with cognitive issues/brain-fog), and is available in both eBook and paperback* format on Amazon, and also on Barnes and Noble. Tuck yourself up in bed with a cuppa, and enjoy. And if you find yourself fancying writing a letter to your own chronic illness, I’d love to read it! ‘