In 2013 my body completely broke, and to be honest it didn’t break at the best of times because I was 5 months pregnant with Hayley, our first and currently only child. Let me give you the picture of broken. At 4 months pregnant I was still very physically active on the farm, in fact probably a bit too active! But I was a farmer’s daughter, we are built of tough stuff and I was only pregnant after all it wasn’t an illness. 

These words of my ignorance ring loudly in my ears now because had I have just slowed down and actually listened to my body, what happened in the following months may have still happened but maybe not as badly. In October 2013 I was out weighing the lambs with my dad, when I caught hold of a lamb which had a sore nose. Something I had done probably 1000 times before. This time though it was different, because when I caught hold of this lamb between my knee’s I felt something a bit weird going on in my left thigh. 

Of course, though I just carried on, it didn’t feel comfortable, but it was ok “probably just a pulled muscle” I thought. Little did I know that little twinge I felt would rapidly get worse, and within a month I would be going to a physio to get given crutches and be told that basically I would have to be very careful. The midwife diagnosed me with SPD symphysis pubis dysfunction or PGP pelvic girdle pain. I was advised to wear a belt, which made me feel so sick I nearly fainted. So that wasn’t happening, in the end I had to put up with the fact that for the next 4 months I would have to be purely a baby making machine and do nothing else. Well I could cook the tea for the family, and do the online food shop, everything else had to stop because if I over did it the pain would be unbearable.  So, I spent my days playing candy crush and watching Murder She Wrote all afternoon. 

So far removed from what I had been doing just weeks before, but it was ok because at the end I would get a bouncing beautiful baby and I will be back to normal. I laugh at my ignorance as I write this. I have never gotten back to what I deemed as “normal” back then in fact I’ve changed my whole life. 

Skip forward a year and it was Christmas 2014, Hayley’s first, which should have been the best. However, I had come to realise that my reliance on co-codamol and ibuprofen, had gotten a bit crazy and my body was screaming at me to stop taking them. This time I listened, and I was forced to go cold turkey over Christmas of all times. What was worse as I wasn’t taking the pain relief, I discovered that not one part of the pain had gone away from my pelvis, back, legs, shoulders. (Because when you mess up a pelvis, you mess up a whole body). 

I was miserable, I was crying, I wasn’t sleeping and to top it off I had a mouthful of ulcers, this was how I knew I had to come off the pain relief. By this time, it wasn’t just my physical body taking a beating, my mental and emotional health had gone to pot as well. I was a train wreck of a person. I had lost all of my confidence, which I see happen a lot in first time mums for some reason. I was literally at the bottom of myself, look up thinking this is going to be it for the rest of my life. I am not going to be able to be the mother I have dreamed of being, one that can play on the floor, run about (a little bit because I am no runner anyway). I honestly thought I was never going to walk again unaided. Looking back now it is hard to believe that I’ve just written this, and it actually happened.

Something awesome happened…

Thankfully for me in September 2014, I had signed up to become an ambassador for a skincare company called Tropic. This is by far the one thing that helped me through those really dark times, because when I couldn’t sleep at night. I would work on growing my business, I would read up on everything, phone people during the day whilst Hayley napped. I literally built a very successful business, out of an incredibly dark time and I am so glad I did. It is my earnings with Tropic that has enabled me, to afford all the private treatment I have needed on my body. You can read my Tropic journey here . Tropic was for me the best anti-depressant I could have had, I wasn’t just another person among hundreds of others, I actually felt I was in a family and mattered. 

It is through my journey with Tropic and giving myself 5 minutes, a day doing a skin care routine, that I have been on one of the hardest, wildest, most amazing rides of my life. I have been on a journey of discovering just whole Leanne Barriball really is, and just how much she is capable of. I don’t look back and wish things were different, I look back and I am thankful that everything that did happen happened, because if it hadn’t. I hand on heart know I definitely wouldn’t be living the life I do now.

So be encouraged, if you are at rock bottom at this moment, or very close or clawing your way up and keep losing your footing. Hold in there keep believing for better, and keep reading my posts, because maybe just maybe my story will help you in your hour of need. If it can happen for me, I believe with all my heart it can happen for you.

If you see no light at the end of your tunnel, find a friend who can shine a torch.

Be blessed