Blogging, course work and ME/CFS

When I first started this blog I had no life; I was working every hour god sent and a few more to boot until I really had no life because the ME/CFS took it away. I had a great deal to say and a great deal of time in which to say it – even though most of it was waffle and has since been consigned to the ether with a click of the delete key.

Yet now I have a life again I have even more to say; but because of the ME/CFS my time is too precious to spend blogging about it.

I miss being able to sit at the keyboard and carefully shape my posts out of the initial ‘stream of conscious’ draft; I especially miss the comment conversations I would have with the folk like you who took the time to stop by and connect with me.

These days twitter fills that void in part – but it is nowhere near as fulfilling a feeling. I think any of you who like to write as I do can relate to this, the feeling of ‘rightness’ you get when the last edit has been made and you know that your words are in the right place to express your meaning; how it almost ‘snaps free’ to become a living thing in its own right.

..But perhaps that’s merely my fey side talking; I have been told that on occasion I can be a little ‘weird’ (though mainly by my other half, he’s good like that.. )

My time these days is split fairly evenly between family life, coursework and whatever tasks the blended learning unit set me. It’s a fine balance I have to walk in order to manage all of this; but the difference between then and now is that even if I do too much and relapse (which has happened twice this last week alone) I still manage to carry on.

I know that a traditional 9-5 office job is beyond my capabilities; not through lack of skills or cognitive functioning, but because of the physical limitations this illness has placed upon me. But a ‘real’ job is no longer beyond my grasp.

I am seriously dancing inside with this knowledge – ME/CFS has not taken my life, it hasn’t denied me anything; it has merely given me a focus and a determination that propels me to greater heights than I’d ever before dared hope for. This time next year I will be a graduate – hopefully with a Bsc IT(web based systems) 1st (but another 2:1 will have to suffice if that plan falls through)

I know that I have several options before me; freelance web designer/ technical author or even as a part time lecturer should I make enough of an impression on the uni during my time there.

My work with the blended learning unit is a hopeful step in that direction;

  • I’ve given two lectures on wiki use and best practice for group work within the UH studynet environment
  • I’ve created several handouts to complement these lectures
  • I’ve received positive feedback about these sessions and a request from other departments for similar help

A simple thing perhaps, but one that is obviously needed as the facilities available to the students are widely underused. With e-learning gaining such a large profile within the academic community, these experiences can only stand me in good stead when the time comes to search for employment.