There’s a host of reasons why we should make gratitude a daily practice — research has shown that being thankful has a whole host of health benefits, from improved immune systems, to feelings of connectedness and general wellbeing.
I want to create a growing page of gratitude thanking all those people on my path, especially the people who were strangers, but have helped or inspired me along the way. There will have been so many in my life so I will keep adding and they will be in no particular order...
I need to thank my family first as they have been there for me always. Especially my sister who took care of me during one of the most difficult periods of my life when I was recovering from my major surgery. She and her husband (and my lovely nephews) have also helped me out on many occasions for instance when I had to be admitted back to hospital and needed to move house. Thank you guys - love you!
Sadly my father passed away earlier this year and he is very much missed by us all. His spirit lives on through all of us though and he touches our souls every day.
Thank you to Marie-Laure Désiré, co-owner of the PYC, who in 2010 gave me my first glimpse of yoga. I was a broken person when I met her and she helped me recover where all doctors and medicine had failed. A dramatic impact on my body and mind and little did I know that it was also the start of something bigger... she was the one who planted the seed that has blossomed into my love for yoga.
Though I stopped practicing for a few years, I did return to yoga and started practicing more often. Which in turn led me to enrol in the PYC teacher training program, led by Erin Prichard, who is a teacher at heart. Her passion for yoga and her wonderful ability as a teacher gave me a strong basis to become a teacher myself.
Mona Lisa Godfrey is one of my favourite teachers at the PYC and I was lucky that she had time to teach me private classes ahead of my teacher training. I have learned so much from her not only about the Asana, but about philosophy, breathing, meditation and so much more. She is a beautiful creative and spiritual person, who continues to inspire me every time she teaches. Thank you Mona, for you have added a depth to my yoga practice, which is continuing to grow. You have also played a big part in helping me find the confidence to teach. Namasté.
Jacqueline Welie and I became best friends in our teens and even though our lives have unfolded in very different ways, we are kindred spirits. We live in different countries, but whenever we catch up, it is like nothing has changed and we'll be engrossed in discussing all aspects of life. We now also discuss yoga, as she discovered yoga long before I did and has been teaching yoga for many years.
She is a strong, creative, beautiful soul who has grace and deep spirit and I admire her deeply. Dear Jacqie perhaps one day we will be teaching yoga together... how wonderful would that be?!
When I moved to London in 1997, I met Malou - a fellow Dutchie. It became a friendship that is still going strong and she has been supported me through some difficult times. Through Malou I got to know a -still growing- network of Dutchies;
Back in 2004 Mascha and I became close friends and shared a flat together in Notting Hill for a few years. We had a fabulous time before she moved away to Ireland.
It is an international group of friends including Sarah (from Oz) and Lisa. Many more people to mention, most still in London, some returned overseas.... but all of these girls have been a great support over the years.
Love you all. x
Nurse Jackie Wells
Whom I've only met a handful of times, but who made a dramatic impact during my recovery from surgery last year. The first time I had a temporary stoma, back in 2009, I suffered badly; I lost a lot of weight, had a lot of infections and wasn't coping well at all. So when I woke up after, what I believed to be routine, surgery last year with another stoma, I was distraught. All the bad memories from my previous experience kept flooding back and I was preparing myself for another difficult time. Nurse Jackie Wells at the Charing Cross Hospital however was determined to make this experience different. She stuck by me and came up with a solution that worked and it was so much easier this time. Dear Jackie, thank you so much for all your help - you are a wonderful Nurse!! x
IBD Unit Guys Hospital
Every 8 weeks I need to go to the infusion unit at Guys Hospital to manage my Crohn's disease. To Hennie and Marlene and all the other nurses I want to say a big thank you as you are always helpful, kind, patient, considerate, give good advise and have great biscuits..!
Thank you all so much, you do an awesome job!