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Limited Only by Imagination by Deb Dunn

ART SAVES ... two small words, a tiny powerful phrase, close to my heart and one I know to be true.

A serious automobile accident drastically changed my life overnight. Multiple injuries including herniated discs in my neck and permanent nerve damage led to a chronic pain condition. Working on crafts I once adored (knitting, crocheting, painting, sewing, multi-media collage) as well as gardening - which I was passionate about, were just too difficult. My days instead of creating were filled with physio therapy sessions. In a desperate effort to reduce pain, I gave each one up. Just looking at my bookshelves filled with crafting and floral design books proved to be too painful, and I made the difficult decision to have them boxed up and donated to local charities. I felt, at that time, like those bookcases ... emptied.

And then, a few years later, I spotted a book on scrapbooking while out. I made a mental note of the author's name and googled it once home. This in turn directed me to her blog, something totally foreign to me at the time. One blog led to another and seeing photos and reading about the crafts I once enjoyed sparked an interest in me once again. Very slowly, I began introducing crafts back into my life, thinking up creative (and at times, hilarious) ways to sit comfortably and remembering to PACE myself. That became the hardest part, pacing myself. Once I started it felt like I was playing catch up. I also began my own blog shortly afterwards to share in this wonderful, creative, on-line community. This was 2006 and I have been blogging ever since!

The positive impact creating once again spilled over into every other part of my life. There is a very therapeutic element to creating art and working with different textures, colours and dimensions. It helps with flexibility, loosens tight muscles and helps focus your mind on the here and now. Crafting serves as an incredible coping strategy giving the mind something positive to think about. There is such a sense of accomplishment working on and seeing a finished project. In Art, your only limitation is imagination.

Chronic pain drains energy, but an enforced slower pace can send forth a creative power surge. On those days when the physical act of creating isn't possible, I use this as a quiet reflective time and keep a journal to jot down ideas and thoughts of what I want to create. Some of my best ideas have happened from these "down times" and it keeps me from feeling that I have wasted yet another day due to pain.

It's sad to remember and write about "those days" but I am proud of my own personal creative journey, and grateful looking back, at just how far I have come.

ART SAVES ... it really does!

Learn more about Deb Dunn at


Deb is a loving and caring soul, and a dear blog friend. I'm so delighted to read her Art Saves story!
Thank you!

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