Inner Voices

Navigating through Fibromyalgia

It is no secret I was diagnosed with fibromyalgia almost three years ago now. If you are not familiar with it, fibromyalgia is a widespread pain disease. It means that the nervous system is not sending/receiving pain signals properly and something that would be felt as «moderate» pain might probably be difficult to bear for someone with fibromyalgia.

To make it simple: my nervous system decided it would be fun to get fucked up

However, I know how lucky I have been in all the diagnosis process. Having friends suffering from it helped me to detect the signs. There were too many similarities between them and what I was going through (non-stop exhaustion like never before, and all my bones on fire were the two of the major factors) so I was able, after several months, to go to my doctor and tell her honestly «I am going through this and this and this (…), I think it may be fibromyalgia.» And I was right.

iPhone 801 - Copy

Suffering of a chronic disease, when it is something that you have not known for all your life but that kind of struck you and you know the chances of it going away are almost inexistant, is a game changer. Whatever the said disease or syndrom is.

How does Fibromyalgia is linked with my creativity ? you may ask. Well… when your body is in constant pain, it goes everywhere. I am discovering pain in a new light, as before fibromyalgia I was quite resilient to it and even after three years, I have a hard time just accepting that the way my body knows pain is now different. My hands have started to hurt badly, burning sensation, stabbing sensations in the wrists and fingers, it sometimes contracts and hurt like hell. This is when I am overjoyed to have practiced painting with my non-dominant hand. And I do practice using both my hands more equally, just in case one goes really bad eventually. Strangely, when I create, whether it is on a small 8x10” or on a bigger 30x30” one, I get to that place I guess when my body is just the shelter of my essence and I don’t feel any pain at all, until I stop. My shoulders and collar bones are not this big ball of fire anymore. I am in a flow…

I sketch more because I can do it on the couch when I have no other choice than move as little as possible.

There is so much I could say about how dealing with fibromyalgia is now part of what I create, every single time I paint, but I feel like I am more babbling than sharing so I will stop there.

And I will leave you with a bit of lyrics from the Rap God, Eminem. This song came out in my playlist while I was doing my morning walk. It is taken out of context but it just told me it needed to join this blogpost because they fit.

But you won't break me
You'll just make me stronger than I was
Before I met you, I'll bet you I'll be just fine without you
And if I stumble, I won't crumble
I'll get back up and uhhh
And I'mma still be humble when I scream, "Fuck you!"
Cause I'm stronger than I was.


Sharing the Love #6

Welcome in this new edition of «Share the love». If you are new to my blog, this is a weekly-ish series in which I share what I am currently loving. Because I believe in the power of sharing the love instead of spreading what pisses us off ;)


I love cooking but don’t always want to spend time hours in the kitchen, so I loved this list of healthy kitchen shortcuts.

He is my new artist crush, his artwork makes me travel in faraway imaginative places.

I am learning again how to create and use crystal grids. This kid is amazing.

Imagine Play Emerge ? Yes please ! Can’t wait for this new class to start this summer.

I am crazy but love a good challenge. I will do this in July, just needs to find vegetarian options for it. Anyone with me ?

Things you might have missed from me: I changed the blog design a bit, most days (newest {Art Journaling In Motion} video), The Universe knows,

You might be interested in checking out the previous Sharing the Love blogposts.


{Inspiration Wednesday}: music from India.Arie

I am probably 100% sure that I have told you already in the past year how much I love India.Arie.

I remember precisely when I discovered her and her music: I was probably in late middle school or in high school, watching the music videos on MTV (yes, it was that time when it still was about the music, not about teen moms or other crap things) and it was a special about all her videos.

I saw her clip for her famous song «Video» which, let me tell you, is amazing (let listen and watch, you'll see). And then there was this song titled «Brown Skin» that wow-ed me for several reasons…

There is something about the Light this woman shines everywhere she goes. Something that talked to my Soul as soon as I saw her, on the screen of my TV, as a teen. Something saying «I am dark skin, I am who I am, I can «love myself unconditionally» anyway. And as I am was struggling to understand who I am, being from a Brown father and a White mother, but raised by her only in a White family, it was actually difficult to find my place…
There is something about the energy she shares. Strength. Gentleness. Confidence (but not to the point where is it becoming intimidating).

I love this song, and this video, of her duo with Akon. Because we need to be honest: us with Afro hair (but also you) are very much defined by it. And I am even planning a blogpost about it (ahah). Let me tell you, this song is fun but powerful.

Last year, she released a new album. After four years of silence. In this, she shares about her personal growth. She shares her Truth(s). And the result is a beautiful and inspiring set of songs.

Most of them always spark something when I listen to them while painting. A verse, an image, my own Truth(s).

As I was navigating through a very difficult creative rut last year, not seeing any light at the end of my tunnel, I heard «Break the Shell». I was in the midst of learning from Pixie Campbell in her class, Visual Quest. And this is what was born:


It may tell nothing to you, but everytime I do look at it *and it is hung in our bedroom), I am reminded of this: be true to you, get out of this shell so you can shine your light, never give up.

She said shadows make you whole
A life without pain is a wolf in sheep's clothes
Cause if you listen to the lessons that it holds
You'll find the gold
Child it's time to break the shell
Life's gonna hurt but it's meant to be felt
You cannot touch the sky from inside yourself
You cannot fly until you break the shell

Lately, I was creating along my darling Mindy Lacefield (yes, I do take my iPad with me in the Studio, and play workshops videos to create along ;)). And I was playing my India.Arie playlist because I felt the push to do so. And this Nixie appeared, with this beautiful message:


And because I feel like this is the best way to conclude how music can instantly lift us up, «Just do you»:

I heard a voice that told me I'm essential
How all my fears are limiting my potential
Said it's time to step into the light and
Use every bit of the power I have inside
So what'chu waiting on
Who You waiting for
If You don't take a chance You'll never know what's in store
Just Do You (Somebody's got to be a star)
Just Do You (Somebody's got to raise the bar)
Just Do You (Somebody's got to change the game)
Just Do You (Today)
Every mountain needs someone to climb it
Every ocean needs someone to dive in
Every dream needs someone to wish it
Every adventure needs someone to live it

(but please, the all song is… you’ll see for yourself, listen to it all).

Right now, what is the singer you listen to and that inspires you the most ? please, do share in the comments :)


Some days, I just feel overwhelmed

My heart is pounding.
I feel like I can't really breathe.
I am scared.
Scared of being a fraud.
Scared of being a total failure.
Scared of not being a *real* artist because I don't exhibit/don't get published/don't sell much and so on.
Scared of not being seen for who I am.
Scared of being seen for exactly who I am.
Scared of being on the wrong path.

What to do now ?


Right now. In my world.

Right now… *wrote on the May 28th afternoon*

Hearing Mamounette talking to herself while knitting me a sweater.

Obsessing over finding sambal green beans and roti canai recipes to recreate what we ate at Banana Leaf restaurant past Sunday. First time trying malaysian cuisine.

Feeling exhausted and in intense pain as insomnia is striking again and I could get only 3 hours of sleep two nights ago and feeling it in my entire body, and mind.

Going to honor the New Moon tonight, with my new Sabbatical Sisters.

Creating this very special project I have been working on this year, was on hold for too long.

Hoping that what they say is true, that parenting does get better with time, that Love does always win.

Looking forward to our first fruits and veggies from our garden. Strawberries are looking good already, tomato flowers are blooming.

Trusting that the Universe is doing what’s best. every.single.time.

Listening to Oprah talk about surrender.

Praying that I will find my way around the fibromyalgia flare-ups that are making their way more and more frequently and last longer than ever before.

Waiting impatiently to be in a month from now to have my consultation with my future tattoo artist. I have this feeling it will be an important one.

And remember..:


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