I sat in the hairdressers in Washington DC sipping prosecco and being beautified before a charity event at the National Harbour for the Hyperemesis Education and Research Foundation. I’m writing the speech I’ll be making at it regarding the international collaboration between their charity and our UK equivalent. I’ll be discussing the progress of our work and the bright future for the sufferers of the condition we support around the world.
And I know I have to go home…
The world will still be here in a few years for further exploration but the movement I’m a part of is on the brink. It’s teetering on the edge of success. The world for women with a little known condition called hyperemesis gravidarum (HG) is about to change. And I have to be there, in the UK. I need to keep the momentum up and not let go of the hard work we have put in so far for the last three years.
In September the book I’ve co-written will be published. I want to promote it. In September also there is an ceremony for an award I’ve been short listed for. I want to attend it. In October there’ll be a conference for our volunteers. I want to present it. Early next year new national guidelines are coming out for the conditions treatment. I want to lead a media campaign about it.
Juggling the commitments I have to the HG world whilst on the road has been hard, but I’m not willing to let go of them. I love them too much.
Admittedly, coming away was partly to do with getting some distance and having a break. Balancing the work and play divide, not being able to work 24/7 and be on call night and day. But who was I kidding eh? I love all that! Plus since coming away there have been more exciting developments, new trustees, completion of the book, award nominations, which this time last year I never even dreamed of!
Being here with Ann Marie from the HER Foundation has confirmed for me that I need to go back, I need to push forward, take that step over the edge and set the Hyperemesis Improvement Movement into free fall.
But rest assured, it’s far from the end of our adventures. We are now on the road to Yellowstone and then Montana and Canada. We have yet to see grizzlies and wolves…
And as we soared the Friday nights heights of Washington’s Capital Wheel at the National Harbour, watching one of the most incredible sunsets we’ve witness, we felt excited for the next step. Our return to the UK will see a lot of changes in our lives, we have plans for lakes and woodlands and campsites, for hot tubs and porches and campervans and adventures around Europe and beyond. Plans for tracking courses and canoe expeditions and wildlife experiences with the kids. The next step is in sight and the adventure continues, but a little closer to the place we still, lovingly, call home.
I expect, as much as it was a massive decision to travel, it was equally as big to decide to head home. I have watched your adventures with a lot of admiration and a hint of envy :o)
However, the work and dedication you put into HG is awe inspiring and I really look forward to hearing about your success in bringing more awareness to this worthwhile cause in the future.
Thanks Laura, it was a tough decision but equally it’s such an exciting time in the HG world that I’m looking forward to being more able to work productively and get stuck back in 🙂
Hi Caitlin, I’m so pleased to hear of the PSS growth and that you guys most certainly are on the brink of success! I hope to keep on supporting you and raising awareness of HG with Visit from the Stork too. This is certainly a life changing post and decision! xx
Thanks so much 🙂 looking forward to maybe working with you again on articles when I’m back. X
Thanks Caitlin, we would love that, our stats went through the roof when you posted, and we had lots of comments thanking us for sharing your post. After my friend’s current experiences (she has just been admitted to hospital again, 27 weeks) I realise even more how important this is. A phone call/Skype is needed when you get back, but enjoy Canada!! X
I have to say (very selfishly on my behalf) that I am so relieved you are coming back in the autumn! As you say, so much has happened, is happening, and is going to happen and we need you here with us. We have a truly amazing team of volunteers and a great board of trustees, but we miss you!! You know I have SO many plans, but I can’t hope to achieve half of them without you to bounce ideas off and help in building up the structures for taking things to the next level – and vice versa, of course! And the book… oh the book! I am so relieved it is finally written and we have a reprieve, but seriously… come September it’s going to be intense and you really do need to be here for that! Not to mention the award ceremony 🙂
All that said, I am also really, really glad that you took the time to get away on your big adventure. You needed it! I know firsthand how utterly draining it is to be on hand, 24/7, never able to fully shut off because you KNOW how much the work you’re doing means to so many women because you KNOW what it would have meant to you. And after 2+ years of working at full speed (some of that whilst being pregnant – you nutter!) you needed that break. You haven’t stepped away completely, but you’d have never taken a step back at all if you hadn’t taken yourself away. You deserved that… and your family deserved it too! Our families are affected by all we do too, because they are our biggest supporters. So, yeah, I am hugely grateful that you got to take some time to simply spend some time together as a family and follow your passions and find yourself a bit closer to that work/life balance. You’ve been missed, but in the best way possible!
Enjoy every single moment of the rest of your trip and we’ll see you in the autumn… I may have to plan a trip down your way once you’re back and settled for a proper catch up and to create a plan of action for everything xx
Thanks Amanda… I can’t wait to get stuck in although it’s nice to know the next couple of months tend to be quiet anyway so I can enjoy the rest of the trip. It’s going to be an exciting autumn! X
What an interesting read! As a professional and a mum I often graple with the fine balancing act – add my travel interest to it and it becomes even more complex. I’m off to explore the rest of your blog as I think I’m going to connect to your words 🙂
Thanks Leah, I hope you enjoy it. It’s a real struggle balancing it and it’s been really hard on the road fitting in not just work but blogging too while three kids are needing mum for help with drinks, toilet, questions, food, getting dressed and everything thing else. At home I fit work into child free hours but there aren’t any while travelling. Which is great but makes work really tricky!
awesome. Hoping some NVP /HGers will be involved in the best beginnings stakeholder group. Maybe we can finally meet when you get back. And for adventures, I know some great places, some great people for you to meet, some adventurers for you to catch up with – i had very itchy feet before Hopey, and feel the itch beginning again … well over 3 years since the HG broke me.
Will be great to meet up one day Emma, I’d love to meet Anaya too, I didn’t manage to before we left. X