How terrifying the humble stair can be…

When you live with chronic breathlessness there are lots of difficulties. Climbing the stairs can make you feel scared. Hedges can seem to tower above you and be overwhelming. You may feel on the sidelines, watching others doing things you wish you could do. Maybe you feel you might collapse if you can’t find somewhere to rest. Things many of us take for granted are so hard for breathless people. It takes a lot of inner strength to overcome these difficulties.

Here are some of the comments people have made in response the images in this blogpost:

The hedge image portrays an all-encompassing, overbearing feeling. It makes me realise the difficulties someone with breathlessness has to face every day. What would be a normal job extends to a challenge far beyond the abilities and strength of the person struggling with the shears.

It’s as if the hedge is towering over you and no matter how hard you try you just can’t tackle it.

Little things I don’t even think about are daunting for people with breathlessness.

It is clear that the woman wants to reach the top of the stairs, however the only way to get there is by overcoming a large obstacle enclosed by claustrophobic walls.

You can also see her lonely shadow cast across the staircase indicating that there is no one there to help her, not even a bannister, therefore she must complete this challenge on her own.

Breathlessness can make you feel all alone.

It can be very difficult to do many of your usual activities when you experience breathlessness. Listen to this recording of people talking about how breathlessness affects their lives.

The exhibition has made me feel sad because I know my mum has suffered with breathlessness for a number of years. I have always thought of practical solutions rather than considering emotional feelings. Thank you for making me see the effect it has on people.

I’ve learnt how people suffer from the symptom and how it is not obvious to the eye and how it’s not really talked about enough.

How do these images and the sound recording make you feel? Please do leave a comment below to share your thoughts.

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