Growing up I had a vision of what I wanted my life to be like. I wanted to be a first grade teacher, marry someone who resembled Fred Savage (my childhood crush) and have many children. Chronic pain changed most of the plans I had set. I went to Monmouth University for two years with my major in education. I was on my way to being a teacher and was doing well in school but chronic pain was becoming more and more difficult to control. After my first (of two) visits to the Mayo Clinic Pain Rehab Center I totally changed what I wanted to do for a living. After getting through the program and doing well I changed my major to social work because I wanted to help people who were in pain. I think in the years I was a social worker I touched a lot of lives and hopefully made a difference for my patients and their families.
I thought my dreams of being a wife (not to Fred Savage…didn’t work out) and mother would forever be destroyed because of chronic pain but those dreams did come true. And I have to say as much as I will always love the Wonder Years and Fred Savage, my husband is pretty awesome.
If it wasn’t for chronic pain I would never have had the empathy and compassion I do and would not have the gratitude I do today for the little things in life.
Do I wish I did not have chronic pain a lot of the times: YES! I despise it! But it has given me many gifts and it is what it is (don’t you hate when people use that phrase lol) But it is true. I can’t change it but I can still be happy and make alterations in my life plans. I did not become a teacher, I have a lot of student loan debt because of changing majors and schools but I have so much knowledge, empathy, and understanding of chronic pain.
My biggest dream did come true, I have the greatest daughter in the world and I cannot wait to have more children.
Has chronic pain altered most of my life plans : absolutely but has it destroyed me : absolutely not.