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Tough decisions today. The Community Nurse and I submitted my application for off-island Assisted-Living Accommodation; something I once believed wouldn’t be a consideration until much later in life.

Trying to manage with severe health issues for the last three years has been really hard. I’ve been mostly housebound, and spend a large amount of that time bed-bound. Starting Home-care recently made a big difference, but since January, I’ve been having a substantial increase in seizures.

It was just partial episodes to begin with; starting back in 2015, and I didn’t even know they were proper seizures until January this year, but now I am having partial, complex partial and full episodes, with a significant increase in severity, and frequency. It’s been really challenging to manage those alone, especially with no family close by. Home-care has really helped, but it’s not enough.

Galiano is literally paradise on earth, and eminently suited to Small Living, and the Tiny House lifestyle, except if you have chronic, life-changing, health issues. Then the lack of infrastructures, and amount of effort you are physically spending just to have firewood for warmth, or water to bathe, or drink; or emptying the composting toilet and you realize that your so called healthy, ecological, lifestyle is actually exacerbating the health issues, and making you sicker. Then, no matter how much your heart is breaking, or how loudly your soul shouts, “NO!”, you have to make changes….

This island has become one of my greatest Loves! The community here supported me from the moment I stepped foot on this sacred ground (I defy you to argue with me on that one!), with an astonishing amount of love, generosity and compassion. It has really meant EVERYTHING to have that support, and feel that generosity, and compassion of spirit. I have not always shown my appreciation as much as I should or in the right ways, mostly due to being too sick, and overwhelmed to follow up with everyone in the way I’d have wanted. I’m sorry for that, and for anyone who felt their support wasn’t appreciated. It was, and is.

My choices for where to go in Assisted Living include: Salt Spring Island, Victoria area, and Chemainus on the one side, and Steveston, Richmond, South Vancouver, and West Vancouver for the other.

As for the Tiny House? I’m not sure! My deepest hope is to be able to keep my home here, and return for holidays and retreats; as my health allows. However, I’m also open to selling to the right person, or a co-ownership set up; which would allow me to return and remain connected to my home, friends, and community, here on Galiano.

It will be a few months before I get somewhere off island, maybe longer, so in the meantime, I will still be in my little home, savouring every last moment and detail of being here. Hoping to see all my island friends in person to say ‘Thank You’ before I go.

With gratitude to the Creator, and Nahanni, for bringing me here, and to this entire community for the laughs, the Love, and the lessons!

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