A post from the inimitable Pip Hare made me realise that, overall I’m doing extraordinary well. There, I said it, however difficult I find it. I find it so easy to be critical and discouraged, especially when I’m in the middle of at project and forget the end goal. Pip’s long campaign is preparation for the 2024 Vendeé. Mine is more mundane: getting my rehabilitation optimised and embedding recovery, and in that context I can be very pleased with progress.
Remembering that the long campaign isn’t the current refit or sailing challenge I’m facing. Sailing round the UK and Ireland to support the Andrew Cassell Foundation is an important part of the process. It’s not the process. Equally neither are the daily struggles of refitting and working up Trilleen. They are part of the long road home to wholeness in mind and body.
You can help the Andrew Cassell Foundation.
Sponsor Ian to sail round the UK and Ireland with Sailing Trilleen.
I’m increasingly convinced that sailing could be one of the best rehabilitation environments possible. The combination of variable cognitive and physical challenges, combined with the social community building that goes on around all well functioning teams and sports clubs is incredibly valuable. I would love to see the work the Andrew Cassell Foundation extend so that more disabled people can achieve maximal independence as a sailors and reap the benefits in personal growth and well being. Anyone want to partner with the Foundation in designing a clinical trial to formally test the effect?
In refocusing on the long campaign I can see that I am doing extraordinary well. Sailing helped me out of my shell for the first time in many years. Being back on the water – with the all the privations, cold and blisters that it brings honours my mind and body’s need for connection with the wild, and refitting Trilleen might have been designed by a combined physiotherapy and occupational therapy team as the ideal re-ablement activity given my circumstances.
Trilleen is back out to her summer berthing mid river in Cowes. It’s temporary because shortly she will be lifted to have her standing rigging rebuilt and to fit self steering. Those are the last big jobs to make her match fit for the campaign to sail round the UK and Ireland. Then I’m going to be sailing Trilleen, sailing Sonars, and more sailing Trilleen until Cowes Week. Sounds ideal to me.
Catch up with what Ian and Sailing Trilleen are up to on YouTube
I try really hard to publish a video snack once a fortnight to keep all my lovely supporters up to date on where I am, how I am and how the project is going. At the moment it would be enormously helpful if more people could subscribe and, or, like videos. It helps the channel grow – which is another way of you helping to raise money for the Andrew Cassell Foundation which gets more disabled people sailing sooner.
An ocean rehabilitation journey: living with spinal injury and mental health issues on the water with a Vancouver 27 who needs her own rehab too