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L-W-O Community

For those living with Primary, Secondary & Paediatric Lymphoedema Online & in the Community

Roller Coaster Highs and Lows

Author: Gaynor Leech, Founder of L-W-O


This month I have had to say NO

more often than I would like,

 it hasn't been all bad,

I just need to make sure I remember to take a break.


What a strange month August has been, it's been a roller coaster of highs and lows spending time housekeeping both at home and on L-W-O.  August is a month I usually look forward to with mine and hubby’s birthdays plus our wedding anniversary all within 10 days of one another.  This is the time when we have our annual barbecue with family and friends.  A few years ago, we would entertain about 50 but with the passing of time sadly many of our friends are no longer with us so this year there was 21 of us.  The atrocious weather in early August stayed dry although it did get chilly thankfully everyone had a good time.  Being with family and friends is so important what also makes this special is when your grandchildren ring up and say, "Is it OK Nan to bring a friend?" Then at the end of the day those friends come and give you hug and say they had a great time. 


I found the time to blitz and reorganise all our finances, knocking a massive £98.00 per month off our monthly household bills for the next 12 months, simply by changing suppliers and looking for better deals so well worth the effort.  This mundane often frustrating task I do every year, but this year was very successful.  In addition, I saved another £487.00 just by shopping around for goods that we needed.  This gave me a big boost.


Unfortunately, one of the projects I had planned which was to interview some of our professional supporters has been put on hold because my health took a serious tumble with a nasty water infection and a brief spell in hospital with a back problem.  My osteoarthritis/spondylitis has worsened so mobility has not been good. Taking stronger painkillers than I would like meant I ended up sleeping a lot more and while in hospital I was given high doses of painkillers that for 48 hours I was totally in LA LA land.  All this has impacted on my immune system and therefore it’s been a struggle to keep my swelling under control.  Health wise a terrible month.


In August I make a point of slowing down and having some me time usually because it is a slow month on social media.  However, my granddaughter came on board to help blitz our social media, teaching me new skills giving new life to our Pinterest page and showing me how to make more of our Instagram page.  Pinterest is very visual, so it is a lovely way to share all the posters I have created over the last six years for quick and easy reference. 


Instagram is where the younger members of the lymphoedema community access and this is a great resource and a place to chat.  The Instagram account had an average of two or three viewings a day but from the 26th August – 1st September we reached 463 people and we added eight new followers. 


Social Media is very much about how you use it, to make the most to raise awareness.  While I think L-W-O has had a lot of luck, understanding how it works, is making a difference.  When I started this journey six years ago, I had very few computer skills, very poor social media skills but, I love the fact I am still learning.  From time to time Grandchildren have helped but having my Granddaughter Paris on board has made a huge difference.  Apart from her IT skills she is so much faster than I am.

I am looking forward to our next social media project which we have plans for during September and October.

Finally, on the 29th of August with family on board as volunteers we attended the Macmillan Health and Well-being Event at The Holiday Inn Express, Nuneaton.  Brilliant event for networking and made some very useful connections, however it is talking to people like you and me who live with lymphoedema that makes these events special.


Finding a balance is hard but essential 

here are a few of my tips


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