Hello! I’m a Natasha Lipman, a chronic illness blogger from London. On this blog you’ll find my rants and rambles about navigating life as a ridiculously ambitious twenty-something, while trying to navigate a body I can’t really exist in.
I started blogging in 2013 as a way to manage my feelings about my health. At the time I was enduring the long process of new diagnoses, mountains of medicines and an unending parade of specialists, but was continuing to get more and more unwell. At the age of 24 I thought that my life was over and that I’d never be able to get out of bed again, let alone work. For some reason people seemed to like it, and here I still am!
I have suffered from Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome for as long as I can remember, and in 2013 I was diagnosed with Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome and Histamine Intolerance. In November 2015 I was also diagnosed with ME. The EDS is a connective tissue disorder that causes frequent dislocations, unrelenting chronic pain and fatigue, gastric issues and so much more. The PoTS essentially means that my autonomic nervous system can’t do its job and regulate my body, and the Histamine Intolerance led to me suddenly becoming sick when eating most foods or going near pretty much anything. I’ve also suffered from severe bouts of depression, although these are often either hormonal or reactive after I have a flare up. Which is totally understandable.
I have had the opportunity to work for some amazing companies and charities over the years. Just a few examples, I worked on the entrepreneurship team at Virgin Unite, I have been an international youth advocate, co-founded a project in Libya and even worked as a production manager for a photographer. My background is International Relations (I managed to get my undergraduate degree in two years, and unfortunately had to drop out of my MA twice because of health reasons).
I’m a collector of vaguely obnoxious do-gooder titles: I’m a Global Changemaker, and was one of the UK representatives at the African Youth Forum in Cape Town, a Rhize Emerging Catalyst, and winner of a trip to India to meet Richard Branson with the Virgin Media Pioneers (long before I started working for Virgin). I also do a bunch of freelance writing, marketing, consultancy and coaching. Click here if you’d like to work with me. I’m also in the process of setting up the first charity in the UK to support young people with chronic illnesses, Project Chronic, am the founder of the IPF, an international youth writing and journalism training platform which I am in the process of turning into a social enterprise, and am half way through a masters degree (from home) in law. Because, y’know, resting is boring. I also work for an awesome web design agency, Pumpkinseed.io, so if you need any web design or content done, we’re your people.
I really hope you enjoy my blog, and that it can provide some comfort to others who are going through similar things, and awareness to those who don’t! You can read a bit more about me in my FAQ section and you get in touch with me here.