Following the car crash in 2005, my motivation to be able to return to my career, saw me return while still having tomattend rehab sessions sometimes five afternoon a week. I was loving a life consistently exhausted. My teaching was the sunlight in my day. I enjoyed the challenge of teaching Gifted Students and all,that my career entailed but would collapse nightly in pain and spent weekends recovering to be ready to start my week again the following Monday. Something had to give and at the rate I was going it was going to be my body and my emotional well-being. Unfortunately I had not learnt, even following my diagnosed Chronic Fatigue, to cease operating at 120% at all times. I was having to increase strong medication in order to maintain my pace of life until finally the decision was made for me. I could not medically continue to work the long hours that were required at the private College, the place of my employment that I really enjoyed. I resigned with much sadness.
I eventually began teaching in schools where the hours were not as long and where I was not required to work into the early hours of the morning. My pay reflected these changes however and so I had to work at a Coaching College during school holidays in order to regain financial progress so,that I could afford my mounting medical bills. To cut a long story short I continued teaching and I was happier that life was beginning to settle into a more manageable routine.
Just as I was getting back on my feet I was to be diagnosed with the severely painful condition called Pudendal Neuralgia. Nerve blocks, trials of spinal cord stimulators and surgery to release the entrapped nerve and the complications this caused were all unsuccessful. In my past I had always fought hard to get my body back to a manageable state, but with this diagnosis, my body was defeated. For the first time in my life, no matter how hard I tried or no matter how positive my demeanor, this time my efforts were just not enough and the entire situation was out of my control.
My life as an educator and university academic had abruptly come to an end. My social life had also been significantly impacted as I found it difficult to RSVP to events as my conditional is quite unpredictable and flare ups were so severe, and could occur very rapidly, that keeping predetermined engagements became almost impossible. Understandably I had also developed severe depression. I had lost all that I coverted dearly. The question that now remained was that which was personal in nature. Who am I if I am no longer a teacher, a student, a social little butterfly and living life to its fullest???? I had lost all that defined me as a person. This has brought me to my current situation in life, working out what my future destination would be within the confines of my illness. It is a process that I am still working through, with professional help. I am learning to cease focusing on these inevitable changes as negative and slowly working towards making a “bucket list” of ideas that may assist me during this time of transition. I sincerely believe this may prove to be my biggest challenge yet. Perhaps my next post will be an informal bucket list where I can openly receive your thoughts and opinions on how to fill my time between periods of rest and medical appointments. As stated by my daughter, “it’s time to stop and smell the roses”.