So, I volunteered to do a workshop at the Southern Maine Pagan Pride day, and threw out a bunch of topics, and one of the ones they leapt on was about being Pagan and living with chronic illness.
But because my experience of same is typical in some ways and very atypical in others, I definitely want to crowdsource my planning. What would you be interested in hearing in this kind of workshop? (I suspect the majority of the people there will be solitary practitioners, and one of the larger
issues in the state is that it can be a long way to go do anything not in your immediate area.)
I don’t expect to quote anyone directly: it is possible I may end up saying “As I was planning this, someone mentioned X” in passing. (If that’s a problem, please let me know so I can avoid it.) I default to not talking about stuff in individual conversation unless I know that someone has discussed that bit openly on the public ‘net in the past.
Things I’m already planning to talk about (but would love more comment about)
– Energy work and how both illness and medication can affect how it feels for us, what’s easy or hard for us, etc.
– Small daily or occasional practices that we can set up when we feel better, but remind us when we feel worse (I plan to definitely talk about painting my toenails, playlists, and wearing specific jewelry, but I’d love lots of other examples.)
– Ways to stay connected with other Pagans that do not require substantial exertion or driving (my current issue, in part.)
– Dealing with some aspects of group interaction/practice (I don’t intend to go hugely into this one, but more a “Here’s stuff to bring up early” and “here’s ways to frame it” and “here’s ways to deal with stuff like food restrictions in ritual in a way that’s likely to not cause too much fuss”)
(Probably with a brief sidebar on “small groups are not going to automatically do every accessible thing ever all the time: some of them just cost too much money and time if no one actually needs them. However, if you do need them, here’s stuff that might be readily possible, and things that event planners/etc. can consider doing/you can consider asking for.)
– A more philosophical bit about living to the edges of your space, even if you have changing edges to your space, and about not artificially restricting yourself, at the same time you need to moderate so you don’t do stupid things to your body you didn’t mean to.
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