When launching a new website, the question comes to mind – where do I start?! After tossing around a few ideas, I figured the best place to start really is at the beginning and to use this first post as an opportunity to share with you what you can expect from this site. So read on as I’m interviewed about Health Warriors and what you can look forward to in the days ahead…
Question: What is the purpose of Health Warriors?
Demelza: Health Warriors was borne out of having experienced health conditions myself and wanting to provide a place where those suffering in this particular way can come together to encourage and support one another whether that be by providing helpful tips, useful information, fun stories, inspiration on how to deal with things, etc. Living with a chronic illness or disability can be a lonely and discouraging experience and even those who are closest to us can’t always understand what it is we really go through. My hope is that this site will provide the encouragement and support we need as health warriors to persevere and make the most of our lives despite limitations as well as help those who are close to us and who care for us to understand a little more of our specific challenges.
Question: Why the name Health Warriors?
Demelza: I think it’s a great description of who we are! We are dealing with various different health problems but we’re fighting it in various ways – we fight the temptation to give up, to lose hope, to let others discourage us with their unthoughtful words and ways. We fight to keep doing what we can still do, to find new ways of doing things, to stay positive and cheerful even when our bodies are crying and breaking. The term warrior communicates someone who is brave, strong, courageous, ready for battle, ready to fight for what they believe in and to fight against that which is trying to destroy them. So I think this is a positive term that sums up what we do each day.
Question: What should I expect from Health Warriors and who is it for?
Demelza: It’s my hope that you’ll find encouragement, support, community, hope, tips, laughter, ideas, and many other things that are relevant to those of us dealing with illnesses and disabilities – whether as a sufferer or someone who cares about someone who is suffering.
Question: Where else can I find Health Warriors?
Demelza: You can find us in various places. Please join our group on Facebook to engage more with other members of our community. We’re on Pinterest and have several boards relevant to health conditions and disabilities for you to browse and find ‘pinspiration’. You can also find us on YouTube and Twitter. You may occasionally see us on Instagram and Snapchat too. Links to the current social media platforms are always located at the top-right of this page.
Question: Who contributes to the Health Warriors site?
Demelza: It is my hope that this will be a community site where we can all add value in some way to one another’s lives. For most of us, that may be joining the Facebook group to share in community conversation as well as sharing content via various social networks to enable others to benefit from the content as well. Others may have specific content they would like to share and are able to write it for us. You can find more information on writing for us on the ‘Write For Us’ page. I don’t want all the content to come from me because 1. You don’t benefit from the variety of help, insight and gifting that others can offer and 2. It would be too much for me to keep up on my own because of my own health issues! So, if you enjoy writing and have content you feel is valuable to share, then check out the ‘Write For Us’ page and bless us with your gifts!
Question: Who is Demelza?
Demelza: haha – good question. I could give myself labels such as daughter, sister (I’m one of 5 girls!), and wife. I could tell you that I have a bachelors degree in film and video production with photography as a ‘minor’. I could say that my work over the years has consisted of video production for missionaries; designing printed materials and websites; taking promotional, wedding, and portrait photography as well as things like working in an English Tea Rooms based in South Carolina (my parents’ business). I could tell you that my interests include film, art, design, music, dance, reading, and travel. I could share some trivia like having flown a private airplane, swum with dolphins, driven virtually the entire East Coast of the USA (most of it by myself) as well as visited almost every European country (a lot of it driving a British car on the ‘wrong’ side of the road). I could tell you about some of my entrepreneurial ventures such as teaching fitness classes and dance, starting a safari company with my brother-in-law in Tanzania as well as a couple of other businesses I’m currently working on from home now (more about those another time). I could tell you my ‘health story’ and the frustration and discouragement I faced from losing my ability to do things, as well as being undiagnosed for years, and the relief it is to be getting answers (currently diagnosed with POTS which is likely due to an underlying condition that has yet to be officially confirmed). I could share with you my passion for the God of the Bible, biblical discipleship, counselling, and teaching. Ultimately, I could share many things that give you an idea of what makes up who I am today, but it really boils down to one thing – I’m a child of God. That’s who I am – and this is a great truth in light of chronic health problems that prohibit doing many of the things that I could once do or struggle to do now. God loves me for who I ‘am’, not for what I ‘do’ or what I’ve accomplished. This is true of you as well if you’ve accepted Christ as your Saviour.
Question: Have you done something like this before?
Demelza: Not really. I mean, I’ve designed and formatted websites before but I’ve not launched a community-based website or a site of the scale that this could end up being if all goes well. As far as YouTube goes, all I’ve done up till now is post videos I’ve made as and when – I’ve not set up a channel with the idea of regular posts before. As things stand right now with this being the first post, I’m not even entirely sure how well the site is going to function as it starts getting used – I’m hoping that there won’t be any major problems and things will go smoothly but who knows! There will be a learning curve as things get going but I’m sure you’ll all be understanding and patient with me, right? ;o)
Question: How can you do something like this when you’re unwell?
Demelza: Well, as mentioned above, I’m hoping this won’t be all on my shoulders but will be a community effort. The reality is that I’ve learned that things don’t happen in my timing! This site is being launched 2 months later than I had originally hoped. I’ve set things up so that I have a little ‘buffer’ to work with for those days when I don’t feel well. As for the YouTube videos, it’s my intention to film as much as I can at one time when I feel well enough to do so. While the videos will be scheduled on a regular basis to coincide with the publishing of articles, they will be produced in advance, hopefully allowing for those days when I can’t do much. When living with a chronic illness or disability, rather than give up thinking you can’t do things anymore, you have to get a bit more creative and be flexible. This will look different for each person depending on what they’re facing. For me, 6 months ago I would not have been able to do this. Having been on a ‘management’ protocol for the last 6 months, my health has improved to the extent that I could launch this site and feel well enough on certain days to have the energy to produce videos for YouTube (although I can ‘pay ‘ for that exertion later!). It’s my hope that I’ll continue to improve but I’ll be looking for ways to keep things going whether I’m well or not. Maybe this is where some of you may come in? :o)
I hope this gives you a little idea of what to look forward to in the coming days and weeks. Please subscribe below to receive email updates for future articles that can be sent directly to your inbox so that you don’t miss out on the great content this community will be sharing with each other. Don’t forget to join our Facebook group and subscribe to the YouTube channel for additional support and encouragement. Links to all social media platforms currently being used are located at the top-right of this page. I look forward to connecting with you via this site and the various social media platforms in the days ahead. Have a great day![/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]