The calm before the storm

I recently found an old memory card and on it I found lots of photos from the weeks before I was hospitalised, before my first seizure and before the days of severe illness. I can't remember if I hid the memory card on purpose or not because for a long time I struggled to look at photos of that time because I was devastated that I was never going to be the girl that I saw in the photos again. It made me so angry and upset to look at what my life once was, and to see what my life had become which at that point was incredibly tough. A lot of the photos on the memory card were of me with friends enjoying myself and having lots of fun. I can look back at those photos now and I feel happy. I'm grateful for the memories and fun times. I wish there could have been more but I'm still grateful and I can laugh and remember lots of the funny things that we all did. We were all so carefree.

I also found on the memory card some photos of a lake my boyfriend Alex and I visited days before my life turned upside down. Days before they started taking tests on my spinal cord and attaching me to machines. I remember how ill I felt that day but even though I was in so much pain, even though I could hardly move, and even though I felt the worst I had ever felt up until that moment, I was still in total awe of the beauty of the lake. I remember for hours swallows were flying over our heads in a perfect V formation as they returned back home after migrating down South for the Winter. I remember how I refused to go home early because I wanted to stay and watch the sunset, and I am so glad we did because it was breathtaking. The sky was lit with all different colours and it was so calm and peaceful. It really was the calm before the storm. 


57 comments

  1. your sunset photos never fail to amaze me. seriously! so beautiful.
    I am also glad you can now look through all the past photos. It must have been so difficult but it's good you can now see the positives <3

    xo
    www.thisisfrancescarose.com

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    1. I do love a good sunset!
      Thank you Francesca, now that I have had time to adapt and accept what is it's much easier to look back with a smile rather than feeling angry or upset :)

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  2. Such an inspiring blog post <3

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    1. Thank you, I'm so pleased it inspired you :)

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  3. How old are you again? You have such a wise soul. Your words have made me well up

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    1. I'm 22. I've been told before that I'm an old soul, I take that as a huge compliment!
      Here... take a tissue <3

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  4. Beautiful pictures, in which I can see your beautiful soul!!

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    1. Thank you, what a lovely thing to say!

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  5. Can relate so much Hayley, took me a long time to feel ok about the "old me" without breaking down. Still find it tough but memories are good to have. Beautiful pictures too xx

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    1. I still find it tough too but I find it much easier now than what I used to.

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  6. Gorgeous photos and a beautiful write up too xx

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  7. Such gorgeous photos and such a positive mind :) although ME teaches us to be grateful for the little things, it sounds like you already were, which must make those memories all the more special :) x x

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    1. Thank you Emma. Yes I suppose I was, but now I'm even more grateful :)

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  8. Looking back at the old us can be hard, but I'm glad you are able to now and remember the happier days. The sunset photos are stunning

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    1. It can be very upsetting, but I've got some wonderful memories so I'm very appreciative of those!

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  9. Love these photos and your blog! Glad that I've stumple upon it!

    www.roxysun.com

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  10. So beautiful. I guess looking back is bittersweet

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    1. I couldn't have put it better myself

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  11. I feel so emotional after reading that :'(

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    1. Aww, you're not the only one! It seems this post is bringing up a lot of emotions for some people, over on twitter I seem to have made a few people weep! Hugs!

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  12. Hayley, this is so beautiful - the scene, the story, the girl behind it <3 It is such a difficult thing to look back knowing that you might never feel that kind of normal again, but there's something really magical about being able to smile through it X

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    1. Thank you so much Rachel, that's such a lovely comment! <3

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  13. Beautifully written and beautiful photos. The sky looks stunning!

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    1. Thank you! It was so stunning, such a beautiful evening

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  14. I always feel such attachment to your posts Hayley-Eszti. I got little tears this time reading this. Gorgeous photos too. Lots of love xxxxxx

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    1. Aww thank you Bee! You're so sweet xx

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  15. the pictures are so stunning!!

    x Maria
    New outfit post up on my blog
    featuring MY NEW HIGH RISE SHORTS

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  16. Must have been so hard, I can't imagine what it was like but your outlook is amazing. You're so strong!

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    1. It was difficult but I have accepted it now which makes it easier :)

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  17. Beautiful pictures! I hope everything gets better for you :)

    http://ramyun-pie.blogspot.com

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  18. wow those photos are so magical!!! the colors are breathtaking! i'm glad you've come to be at peace with your current situation now. *hugs*

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    1. Thank you Hazel! I love it when the sky is lit with all different colours! Hugs back!

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  19. Your wisdom has gotten you, H.E., here today to share this most moving experience.
    What an enlightened human being you have become since 'your stormy days'.
    Happy you have found these photos....simply beautiful!

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    1. Thank you so much for that comment Jim, it means a lot to hear that from you!

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  20. This post nearly had me in tears, I'm so sorry that you felt that way :( I was quite lucky I suppose, the anniversary of getting M.E. is the anniversary of mine and Michaels so even as I was coping with having this illness I had a new love for me to focus on :)
    spoonie hugs <3

    Memichaelandme.blogspot.co.uk

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    1. Aww not you as well! This post seems to have been quite the tearjerker! Having such a nice and positive anniversary to distract from your ME anniversary must help you a lot when that day comes around xxx

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  21. I can't imagine what feelings you must have experienced seeing these images all before your life got turned around. Thinking of you!
    xo TJ

    http://www.hislittlelady.com

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  22. These photos are so stunning, it looks really really beautiful! Looking back with positive memories is so lovely, lots of hugs :) Xx

    A Blonde Moment

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    1. Thanks lovely! It really is isn't it :)

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  23. Beautiful photos Hayley. You have a beautiful and wise soul, I'm so glad I have found you online! I always look forward to reading your posts.

    Lennae xxx

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  24. There are many comments here about your beautiful "old soul" and about how difficult it must have been. I began to write this comment, thinking all I could do was "ditto" those words. Just to let you know, Haley, that I, too, am awed by that wise old soul in you, but it is the young, carefree girl, alive and inwardly strong, that I want to celebrate too.

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    1. Your comments always make me smile Carol, thank you!

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  25. I feel your pain Hayley, it's strange how these things affect us. I don't think you ever really come to accept having a chronic illness, you will always yearn for the days before it and the way things used to be. I still burst into tears whenever I hear a certain song becuase it holds such a powerful memory from when I was really happy before I became ill and it shakes me to the core each time I hear it. Although, I am better now and I should hopefully never end up as ill as I did before I was diagnosed, my heart goes out to you because you suffer with it every day. Stay strong and try and enjoy the little moments of every day, and keep hold of your memories they will always be who you are not just who you were.

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    1. I agree with everything you have said Michelle. Thank you so much for your lovely comment <3

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  26. This post was incredibly insightful into your situation and I'll admit to feeling very emotional for you. These photos are truly wonderful and I sincerely hope that you have many more moments in life where you feel as mesmerized with a view or anything at all in such a way again :)

    http://findmethoseheels.blogspot.co.uk/

    x

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