This Holiday Season Give the Gift of a Chuckle from Titan Amy's Art Shop

December 1, 2017 12:00am
This Christmas shop at Titan Amy’s online Art Shop for a gift sure to raise smiles for your loved ones as well as funds and awareness of Central Sensitivity Syndromes.

Looking for a humorous Xmas gift and a way to make a positive difference in Women’s health?

Then look no further than Titan Amy’s Art Shop for all - tees, hoodies and tanks for all ages, baby onesies, phone cases, mugs, notebooks and journals, tote bags and more, all designed by Amy Titani (aka Titan Amy), a Vancouver writer and artist who has three central sensitivity syndromes.

Titan Amy's Art Shop products raise spirits and awareness of Central Sensitivity Syndromes such as Myalgic Encephalomyelitis and Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, Multiple Chemical Sensitivities, Fibromyalgia, and other chronic pain syndromes. With every Canadian purchase 50% of profits will contribute to BC Women’s Chronic Complex Diseases Program.

 

About BC Women’s Hospital Complex Chronic Diseases Program

The BC Women’s Hospital Complex Chronic Diseases Program is a provincial referral centre that aims to provide comprehensive and evidence-based care to adults with complex chronic diseases, including Myalgic Encephalomyelitis/Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (ME/CFS), Fibromyalgia and Alternatively Diagnosed Chronic Lyme Syndrome. The Program participates in clinical care, education/knowledge transfer and quality improvement/research.

Amy’s Story

I've had Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (also called ME/CFS, and Systemic Exertion Intolerance Disease), Irritable Larynx Syndrome, and Multiple Chemical Sensitivities (MCS) since a workplace incident in 2012. My employer laid me off, and I landed in a battle for compensation (still ongoing). I’ve lost my home, savings, and an active life rich with travel, people, and athletic pursuits. I also lost my ability to breathe in many public places.

My story is not so unique. These conditions, called Central Sensitivity Syndromes (CSS), often wreak havoc on the lives of those who have them, causing social, financial, biological and/or psychological chaos. People with ME/CFS or Fibromyalgia (another CSS) can become isolated due to debilitation from chronic pain and/or a decrease in cognitive function. Many with MCS find it impossible to function in public places. To make matters worse, it's common for doctors, friends, and even family to have trouble understanding these conditions, and they may blame the patients, saying “it is all in your head,” or "just get over it." Many with these conditions lose their jobs and can no longer participate in athletic or social activities—there is a lot of loss, a lot of isolation, and often, a loss of hope. Many feel increasingly invisible as time goes on.

Severely debilitated by these chronic and, as yet, incurable diseases, I began creating artwork and dark yet humorous phrases to inspire hope and humor in myself. This has evolved into a personal crusade to raise the spirits of those affected by these conditions, to raise awareness, and to raise money for a cure. First, I wrote "Central Sensitization and Sensitivity Syndromes: A Handbook for Coping" (McFarland Books 2017), to support those affected by CSS and educate medical providers. For more info about the book, me, or these conditions, please visit my site, http://TitanAmy.com.

 

Next, I opened Titan Amy’s Art Shop. My creations are intended to offer beauty, hope, pride, and/or humor to people with these conditions, to educate the public, and to fund research, treatment facilities, and advocacy groups. I want to transform those of us with ME/CFS, Fibromyalgia, MCS, and other Central Sensitivity Syndromes, to make the invisible VISIBLE. I want to provide the people affected by these conditions a means to make a unique collective visual statement that will help us be seen. The more we are seen, the more we are heard. The more we are heard, the more likely we are to receive adequate disability support, insurance coverage, and medical services, the more likely we are to feel a part of a community rather than alone, and the more likely we are to find a cure.

**A note about the Dark Humor Collection: Living with ME/CFS for years has cultivated my taste for dark humor. The designs in this collection bring me levity when I really need it. This type of humor is not for everyone who has ME/CFS, Fibromyalgia, or other chronic pain syndromes, but for those of you who are so inclined, I hope these phone cases, mugs, t-shirts and sweatshirts bring you a daily chuckle and remind you that you aren't alone.