Monday, 28 February 2011

Off to Europe... Take Two!

Well, I'm off to Europe in the morning... touch wood. Hopefully there will be no dramas or plane grounding incidents this time around.
I'll be back on the 27th of March and will be modelling again after that, so drop me a line in the meantime if you'd like to book something. I may not respond to emails immediately but I will definitely get back to you.
I leave you with this Hepburn inspired photo from a very recent shoot with Richard Lund. We came up with a novel way of hiding my scars... wearing clothes!

Image by and copyright of Richard Lund.

Thursday, 24 February 2011

Love and Hope

Well, first of all I would just like to say an enormous thank you for the many messages, texts, emails, phone calls and comments I have received wishing me a swift recovery. I can't tell you how much I appreciate the kindness I have been shown - often by strangers. If anything good has come out of this episode, I think I have made some new friends as a result, and become closer to some previous contacts, and for that, I am truly grateful.

I am much better now. Not yet 100%, but it takes time to recover from surgery. My bruises are still visible, but fading. I have had most of my stitches out (a couple of stubborn ones were too tight to remove, but they are theoretically dissolvable). I am much more mobile than I was, but still not quite ready to run a marathon! It has been challenging being off my feet, both physically and emotionally, but I am well on the road to recovery.
It looks like I may be able to resume my European tour, and will probably fly out again on the 1st of March. As yet, I'm just awaiting confirmation on this, but since my blood tests are now all normal, there is no reason to believe I will not be fit enough to pick up where I left off. I've missed half the tour, but at least I can still do half of it! And after all, I am still alive, so I really can't complain!

I felt so much better today that I wanted to do something creative. It was also the first day of the year with nice weather, and it felt decidedly 'springy' today. With that in mind, I decided to use the warmth and the light, and the fact I was feeling much better to produce a few photos to get back into the swing of things, and prove that I'm still alive! It was the first time in over two weeks that I have styled my hair or worn makeup, so it helped to make me feel like a human being again. With the use of a few subtle props to hide my (not too noticeable) scars, I set about producing something light and airy with Dave Ayerst Davies.

These flowers were purchased a few days after Valentine's Day, which I didn't get to celebrate this year. I know the symbolism of red roses (who doesn't?) but I'm not too sure about the yellow ones. (If you know, please don't correct me.) Because to me these flowers symbolise 'love and hope,' and that seemed an appropriate summary of what I wanted these images to represent.

I won't claim these are my best images yet, but considering that two weeks ago today I was undergoing emergency surgery, I'm fairly pleased to be in a position to create them.

Happy belated Valentine's Day! And may the rest of your year be filled with love and hope. Thank you for sending both in my direction over the past weeks.


Images by and copyright of Dave Ayerst Davies.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Drastic Change in Plans

If you read my last blog entry, you'll know that I should be touring Europe right now. Unfortunately, I am not...

I made it as far as the plane to Germany, and merrily got on board to begin another adventure. As the plane took off, I passed out (onto the person sitting next to me, who thought I had just fallen asleep!). When we eventually reached altitude, I left my seat... and collapsed in the aisle of the aeroplane. At this point, the pilot was alerted, and the plane was re-routed.

I begged them not to re-route, because I was so sure that I would be fine! (I have never been ill in my life!) However, apparently if someone passes out on a plane, it is standard procedure to divert (for future reference - should you ever find yourself lying face up in the aisle of a plane, you can expect to be diverted). The plane landed in Stansted (I never even made it out of the UK!) and I was taken to hospital by ambulance.

It turned out, I had massive internal bleeding in my abdomen, and I had keyhole surgery to patch up the problem and stop the bleeding the following day. I had lost so much blood that I also had to have a blood transfusion. I was in hospital for 3 nights and 4 days, before finally being allowed home.

I am much better now, but I still have a lot of bruising (spectacular bruises, actually!) and am not as mobile as I would like (although I have been able to walk the dogs the last few days). It is the first time in my life I've ever been struck down with illness I couldn't just ignore. I am the kind of person who just grins and bears it, and gets on with things, pretending that everything is OK. On this occasion, I really can't pretend.

I'm fortunate that I was able to have keyhole surgery, which will leave minimal scarring (if any), so there is no reason it should affect my modelling career. I don't honestly know when I will be back on my feet and able to make plans. I should have been in Europe, starting a new singing job, but as yet don't know if I will be able to return to complete the tour. Show-business is a very unforgiving industry, and I have no idea if I will be replaced, or even if I will recover sufficiently to do the job in time. If I don't go to Europe, then I hope I will look and feel well enough to resume modelling soon.

This has been a very difficult time, and has had more of an emotional impact (as well as a physical one) than I could have predicted. I have been very ill, but will recover... I've held myself together all week, but I confess I am struggling to look on the bright side this weekend.

Anyway, I wanted to be honest about my lack of updates. I don't feel I can sweep this misfortune under the carpet and pretend it hasn't happened, as I usually do. So now you know. I should have some photos from recent shoots (before I became ill) that I will share when I receive them back. I'm sure it won't be too long before I'm feeling well enough to be creative again, too.

These are some snaps of my bruising/stitches post surgery. I'm sorry, they're probably the last thing you want to be exposed to, and perhaps I have a rather odd way of dealing with things! However, they do show the reality of what I've been through, and documenting that has helped me cope with it. They also show how minimal the actual wounds from keyhole surgery are! Modern medicine is a wonder, really. (It's actually quite difficult to capture the bruising. In reality, I'm afraid it's worse than it looks in the photos.)
The top left image is intended to show how easy it is to hide the damage... both physically and mentally.