What’s in a Name?

“Finding Life’s Silver Sun” is definitely an intriguing name. I’d been trying to come up with a name for this blog for what felt like eons, so I enlisted my friend Holly to help me. I wanted a place to talk about my experience with chronic illness, a place I could share information, because suffering from chronic illness can make you feel like you are alone in the world; I wanted to remind people they are not alone, they aren’t crazy, and they haven’t lost who they were before the illness took over. However, I also did not want to talk strictly about the illnesses. Every day is a challenge, but I wanted to show people that you don’t have to stop living because of a diagnosis. My blog needed to be a place I could talk about the normal everyday things as well as the chronic illness stuff, so the name couldn’t be too limiting.

not alone

Nature has always been a big part of my life. My parents would take my sister and me on hikes and picnics when we were small children, and we had season passes to both the San Diego Wild Animal Park and Zoo. When I got older, I joined the Girl Scout hiking club, and then the backpacking club when I was old enough. I also participated in two outdoors-heavy Destinations (they are Girl Scout trips that you apply for individually, get interviewed, and then join a group of Scouts from around the country to have a crazy adventure of some kind): canoeing for seven days in the Boundary Waters between Minnesota and Canada, and backpacking through the Ruby Mountains in Nevada. The canoe trip was absolutely fantastic, and I got to see so many things I’d never seen before (completely dark nights with a bajillion stars, the aurora borealis, loons, moose, etc), and did things I didn’t know I could do (carry a 60 pound canoe on my shoulders over a muddy/rocky trail to get to the next lake). I’d always loved how the moon lit everything at night, even when I was in the middle of the city; but that canoe trip really changed the way I saw the moon. Not only did the moon make it possible to see at night, but it made the lakes sparkle and dance with light in a magical way. That trip really shaped who I would grow up into, adding emphasis to my love for nature.

After my POTS diagnosis, I have been feeling a particularly strong pull towards nature. My spirituality has always had a natural component, and I’ve been able to find peace in nature more now than ever. Because of this, I knew that I really wanted to somehow include nature in my blog.

I wanted my title to be unique, which meant a lot of Google searches. It seemed that moonlight was a popular word choice, so I wanted to set it apart. After a lot of brainstorming with Holly (many of the names, surprisingly, were already taken), we landed on this name. The silver sun is actually the moon, since it provides light like the sun, but not the same yellow harsh light, and appears silver in color. We also stumbled across the play on the common phrase “finding the silver lining,” after deciding on silver sun, which is appropriate because I try to make the best of my life with the chronic illness. Being diagnosed with a chronic illness seems to put a darkness over your life that just wasn’t there before, especially when you’re still relatively young. In nature, the darkness is, however, lit by moonlight (and starlight). The name of my blog, and what it stands for, makes me conjure up the image of wandering through a dense, dark forest, looking for some light to help you find your way out. When the trees start to thin, and the light from the moon can be seen filtering through them, it gives you hope that you could be close to the edge of the forest, or at least near a lit clearing, and you will soon get some relief from the darkness.

Moonlit Forest

The tie to the phrase “silver lining” and imagery of being lost in the forest seemed very fitting for the things I wanted to talk about in my blog. I’ll be talking about the darkness, sure, but I will also be talking about the silver lining in my life, and I hope to be able to offer a small clearing for the chronically ill to relax in.

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