“If there’s a book you really want to read, but it hasn’t been written yet, then you must write it”
I am writing Sick Chick to Trail Blazer because it is needed. It is the manual for living well with illness. The how-to guide to a strong and sensational life. My husband, Linus, and I created this book as we lived and figured out how to cope and heal ourselves (I the one with illness and Linus the one caring for me). We went beyond all we knew. Moved mountains–uphill. Studied with the best in the field, found allies and made miracles out of mud. There are wonderful books available on illness (I know - I have read them). Nothing like Sick Chick to Trail Blazer existed until now. Most of the books are geared towards a specific illness, and don't show you how to live in full colour (with illness as your companion) whatever your health challenge.
Sick Chick is a British book so talks about living here and explains how to cope with the NHS. We need this in Britain. If you are a woman, newly diagnosed or at the end of your tether with trying to “get better". I wrote this for you. From the beginning; through problems, diagnosis, wellness, living and onwards, we wrote this guide as we needed it. Friends asked questions and I began writing down my answers and sharing them. We were told again and again that I shouldn't keep this to myself, that I need to share it with those unable to go to the lengths we have and study as we have. I am so excited to be able to bring sparkle and true living to the lives of those who are only surviving.
This is not a miracle-cure book; you won’t weep at the happy ending. I am still sick but I've learned how to be a Trail Blazer and keep living, and I'm here to teach you to do the same!
I got so fed up of always being ‘other’, of people staring at my wheelchair or coming up in the street and asking what is “wrong” with me, or what my prognosis is, or will I ever walk again. Or the fact that my life with multiple disabilities was the main talking point for many people.
Not everyone can see that I am LIVING with the health challenges. They are the foot notes, I am the adventure story.
It became a strain some days, when all I heard was ‘no cure, no cure’, having to work things out ourselves, being healing-freaks. So we flipped it, don’t be an outcast, be a Trail Blazer!
Is there room for you and your love of avocados, climbing, and Bill Bryson in this life any more? – We created our Healing Journey. We had to make our own manual on how to LIVE this way. So I wrote it down and ‘From Sick Chick to Trail Blazer: Reclaiming Your World’ came to be.
I never planned to do this. I wanted to live quietly retired in Wales, to read novels, rub up my Latin enough to read the classics, grow flowers, and you know, not die young.
I have written Sick Chick to Trail Blazer as a woman with chronic illness, with contributions from other women with chronic illness and it is written for women with chronic illness. It is written in consultation with other women with chronic illness and charities. I have been ill and I have been the carer, I have nearly died and nearly wished I had. I have lived my dreams, I took my final University exams from my bed. I am living my big dream now in writing this book. It is comprehensive without being exhaustive. It is the beginning of a growing movement.
What This Book is About.
“Healing may not be so much about getting better, as about letting go of everything that isn't you - all of the expectations, all of the beliefs - and becoming who you are.”
- Rachel Naomi Remen.
Sick Chick to Trail Blazer is an exercise in empowerment. It’s a draw-your-own-roadmap guide to freedom. It’s your ticket out of the morass of chronic suffering and life-splintering fear.
What happens when your life turns upside down with a diagnosis? How do you keep your identity and personality when subsumed in a new Alice-down-the-rabbit-hole world of hospitals and physiotherapists? Sick Chick to Trail Blazer is me, holding your hand, talking you through it all.
It addresses all the challenges and struggles you come up against when diagnosed with a chronic or serious illness, all the roadblocks which stop your life as you knew it. We find solutions where others see only problems. We turn those road-blocks into mounting blocks.
This is a guide to your Healing Journey because the truth is anyone can heal. You can heal as you are dying, and you can heal when there is no hope, no cure. Healing and recovery are not synonymous. Maybe we cannot recover, but that doesn’t mean we don’t need support, wellness, joy, hope and healing.
I am probably the healthiest chronically ill person you could meet because I've learned to live well with my illnesses and practice self care.
People treat their bodies worse than they treat their cars. They run them into the ground and then pitch up to the doctor's surgery looking for a pill to fix things. Sadly, miracles-in-handy-tablet-form have not been invented yet. Not even in orange flavour.
In this book I empower you to take responsibility for your own health. No more blindly trusting doctors. That’s not fair. They are physicians, and they can help you heal, but ask yourself, who does the real healing? Your body. The doctor sets the bone but the bone knits itself together, the doctor prescribes steroids but your body responds to them to reduce inflammation. After all, the doctor is only trained in disease and in healing. He does not have a doctorate in you. You are a brilliant, wonderful, flawed individual and you may not respond to disease in the standard way.
New research is continually showing that diet and lifestyle play a massive and previously seriously underestimated part in diseased prevention and management. You can turn genes on and off through changing the way you eat. You can help your body heal.
More and more people are turning to complementary therapies as they discover the limits of conventional (allopathic) treatment. The years of miracle pills and magic serums are over. The National Health Service is cash strapped, resource poor and being cut further all the time. You can no longer afford to leave it all to doctors.
We live in a society which elevates and celebrates perceived normalcy, youth and health. Yet levels of disability are steadily increasing.
There are over 10 million people living with illnesses and disabilities in Britain right now. And this number is growing. Autoimmune-illness and cancer rates are rising daily.
Due to strides in medical care, people are now living when previously they would have died. This is, of course, wonderful, but it presents a whole new set of problems. How do you live after you almost died? How do you find love and happiness when you have a colostomy, a scar, a mastectomy, an illness which needs management, so many medications you need a separate bag to carry them in, or an invisible illness which could flare up at any time?
This is my passion and what I am living every day, born of my struggles, suffering and unquenched hope. This is my service to the world and why I fought to stay alive through pain beyond pain. Through sickness and agony which took me out of my body but I came back again. I am the best person for the job of writing Sick Chick to Trail Blazer as it is the story of my life and living. My story is the thread weaving through the book, the proof and the progress.
I care about people, I want to help other women living with chronic illness. I believe they are an untapped force of potential. I believe in these progressive times there should be no need for us to live in such suffering, I believe the information and tools are out there for us to live well, I believe I have collected them here and I want to share this with those hoping and praying for it.
Endorsements and Support For The Book.
"Grace Quantock is a brilliant new voice in the world of wellness. Keep your eye on this trailblazer--her life-changing work is driven by a magnetic healing energy and an endless compassion for all beings."
- Kris Carr, New York Times best selling author
"I met Grace for the first time last year, and was impressed by her positive and enthusiastic attitude to life. She sent me her manuscript to look over and my respect for her and appreciation for what she stands for increased even more.Grace has not been handed an easy lot in life, but she is using the challenges she encounters as inspiration to create a better world, not just for herself and people like her, but for everyone. Her book I'm sure is valuable reading to all those dealing with chronic illness, but more than that, it is a lesson to all of us that shining, sparkling and trail-blazing, is always an option, it's just up to us to make that choice and take the steps into the magic."
- Kate Magic, the most experienced raw food promoter in Europe today. She has over two decades of experience of raw eating, and is raising her three sons on the raw diet. She is the author of four raw lifestyle books, and tours internationally giving talks and workshops on raw foods.
“Grace Quantock is a wellness provocateur, writer, teacher – and a total inspiration. Her book Sick Chick to Trail Blazer: Reclaiming Your World, is a how-to guide to a strong and sensational life with chronic illness. Learn how to cope when the doctors say no cure, shift to action and empowerment and live well, in full colour now. Just visiting her site makes you feel stronger!”
- Jennifer Louden 900,000 Bestselling author of The Women’s Comfort Books published in 9 languages
How Can I Get The Book?
I am currently seeking a publisher and working hard to get my book to you as soon as possible!
In the mean time, check out my eBook Pitch Perfect: What's Wrong With You on how to cope with the difficult questions that arise when we are living with illness or disability.
I also facilitate the monthly Trail Blazers' Conferences which you can learn all about here, and keep up to date with by signing up to our free Trail Blazing Times newsletter. You can also join our Sick Chick to Trail Blazers' Facebook page here and growing Trail Blazers' Community.
I am represented by Charlie Brotherstone at AM Heath, London. If you are interested in acquiring the publishing rights to From Sick Chick to Trail Blazer:Reclaiming Your World please get in touch.
Contact details here.