A Change Of Direction

A recent health event has meant I’ve had to reconsider the direction of my life on all fronts.


I have a heart condition, which has suddenly deteriorated, and I’ve made the decision not to have surgery. It was diagnosed several years ago, and I have known that I would need to make a decision regarding surgery for a long time. Generally the condition gets worse gradually, and mine was following the usual path until last month. After a routine scan I was held back and the registrar asked to speak to me. I wasn’t expecting the news at this stage, so it has been a shock. Creating the space to speak with my nearest and dearest has been my priority.


My spiritual beliefs have been the bedrock of my decision to allow my life to follow its natural course. I feel a deep sense of peace with my decision.


What I want right now is to have the best possible quality of life for as long as possible. When I consider my future a few things are important to me. My friends and family, photography and study. I had planned to move on to studying for a degree in photography, but I no longer think that this is appropriate for my health and wellbeing, so I have decided to alter my direction.


Naturally I will still make photography and continue with personal projects, but I’ve decided to study for an Open Foundation in Creative Writing with the Open College of the Arts. I like to write, and I combine photography with my writing, especially when producing photo-essays. Converting to creative writing will minimise the stress, and it also means that during those times when I’m less able to be physically active, I will still be able to be meaningfully occupied.

Quality of life is the most important thing whilst I allow the cycle of life to play out. Daily I ask myself “What can I do today that will bring meaning to my life, and give me the opportunity to create value and culture?”


28 Replies to “A Change Of Direction”

  1. You’re facing this latest challenge with great courage and a strong sense of certainty comes through in what you’ve written. I want to wish you well in your search for meaning and fulfillment. I enjoyed the photos that you included in your post, particularly the rail tracks.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. You’re making me cry. I wish you the very best. β™₯️β™₯️β™₯οΈπŸ’žπŸ’žπŸ’•πŸ™πŸ™πŸ™

    Sent from Yahoo Mail for iPhone

    Liked by 3 people

  3. I’m sorry that the news hasn’t been good but am impressed by your philosophical and practical approach to creating the best life for yourself. I’m sure you’ll get on very well with the creative writing course. Good to hear as well that you’ll be continuing with OCA.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Dear Richard, I am thinking of you so much at the moment. What a hard decision you’ve had to make but with your beliefs, family & friends I am sure you will make the most of life on a daily basis. Take care & hopefully will meet up soon, Judy x

    Liked by 2 people

  5. I was so thrilled to see a link to your post in my mailbox. I’ve missed you and I look forward to seeing more writing and photography as you modify your vision. That being said, I’m so very sorry about your heart condition. I selfishly wish it wasn’t so, that you didn’t have to deal with this challenge, that you would always be here even though I remind myself every day that’s not how life works. I think you have been very brave, looking at things and deciding on a course that works for you and satisfies your soul. I’ll be thinking about you today.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I am pleased you have made a decision that you are at peace with. Knowing nothing of the path you are to take, I wish you peace, good health for as long as possible and good friends and family around you when you need them. With much love and admiration for you x

    Liked by 3 people

  7. The most important thing, I think, is that you are happy with your decision. And words with images is a great direction. Tbh completely honest, images alone never completely satisfy me (re. my own practice). Once I get into the swing of my final year, I will definitely be following the same word/image route.

    Liked by 2 people

  8. I was so sorry to read this Richard, you have had a tough time recently. It is good that you are content with your decision, it is only you that can make it. I do hope it all works out OK for you and that you enjoy your new change in direction, I am sure you will find it rewarding.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. You didn’t need to go to school for photography. It seems you’re already great at taking pics.

    I’m sorry to hear that your condition is getting worse. Who know what will happen next…

    Your attitude is definitely praise-worthy. You still want to better yourself while enjoying life. Creative writing is amazing on so many levels. I cannot recommend it enough.

    Wishing you lots of health.

    Liked by 3 people

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