Self Care & Me: Louise Budd

This month's guest blog post is from the wonderful Louise Budd of 'Tiny Acorn Mighty Oak'. Louise has been a massive supporter of Eva & Alma. Like me, Louise lives with health challenges and uses self care as her healthcare. Louise shares some of her insight and wisdom on how she runs a successful creative business whilst living with Rheumatoid Arthritis. She's a real inspiration with a positive mindset and a lot of love for others...

My story

After working as a project manager for eight years, I decided it was time to pursue my dream of becoming a primary school teacher. At aged 27, I went to university and gained my degree. I started teaching but soon realised something wasn’t right with my health. I was ill and exhausted most of the time and I could hardly move my painful, stiff, swollen hands. Over the next few years, after many blood tests, a new doctor sent me for x-rays, which showed I had an aggressive form of Rheumatoid Arthritis and that I already had quite severe damage to my joints.

The day after my diagnosis, after 3 months in bed, I handed in my resignation and made the decision to give myself the time and the space to try and heal my body naturally - without medication. I realised that for years I had been pushing my body too hard, not looking after myself properly or listening to what my body needed and I had to overhaul my life. I dramatically lowered my stress levels; started working for myself as a private tutor, which offered me flexibility; nourished my body and mind with healthy anti-inflammatory foods and holistic treatments; and embraced my craving for creativity through art.

A couple of years later, my x-rays showed that I had no further damage, my day to day pain and swelling was almost gone and, as long as I paced myself, I no longer suffered with the debilitating fatigue. I was by no means back to how I was before the condition but I had reached a new normal.

Starting my creative business

I realised that I had been given a second chance to create a life that I loved. I wanted balance, peace and a life where I could be creative. I’ve always been a big fan of holistic therapies, crystals, affirmations, arts and craft so I decided to combine my passions into a business, where hopefully I could help others going through a tough time. I decided upon the name – Tiny Acorn Mighty Oak - because I believe we have the strength of an oak tree within us and we can create great things with lots of little steps from a small starting point – the acorn.

Pacing myself whilst running my business