NEVER mind Netflix and jigsaw puzzles - one woman from Somerset has used the three national lockdowns over the last year to write and publish the inspiring story of how she overcame traumatic change in her life.

A busy mum of four, counsellor and finance manager, Josephine Mariposa - who lives in the Somerset West and Taunton district - had her life changed forever by a mystery illness.

She was in hospital for two years, undiagnosed and unable to move.

Having fought for her life, and after countless tests, Josephine was eventually diagnosed with a rare condition of the spine and brain - neurosarcoid.

It would have been so easy to be overwhelmed by this, but she decided that she wanted to return home and not live the rest of her life in care.

Moreover, she began the process of retraining her brain, regaining limited movement and adjusting to a new way of life in a wheelchair.

She then decided to share her story, Anything is Possible, to help others who might be going through trauma, whether physical or mental.

Josephine never could have dreamed that her book would be published when she began dictating her thoughts into a voice recorder, as Covid-19 caused the world to lock down.

The UK's first national lockdown saw the book come together at her kitchen table; in the second she secured a book deal with a US publisher; and in the third she saw the book published worldwide.

Josephine said: "In hospital, to cope with all the tests, my motto was always 'expect the unexpected', so when I came home and made a friend online who encouraged me to tell my story, I thought 'why not?'

"It was definitely unexpected to get it published, but it just shows anything really is possible if you never give up."

In her book, Josephine describes the moment when she decided in her own mind she wanted to live and, since then, she hasn't looked back.

"I could never have expected my life to take the turn it did.

"Before my own trauma, I lived life at 100 miles an hour, but lying in hospital for all that time, thinking about my family, made me realise I wanted to live whatever the future held for me.

"I didn’t know what life would look like, as at that point I was sleeping for more than 20 hours a day, and I still have very limited energy.

"But I knew I had to think differently and shift my perception of what life would be, and I also wanted to help people going through similar experiences - or struggling with any aspect of life."