I’ve come to the painful realization that I’m not going to be able to go back to work anytime soon. The ketogenic diet helps me lose weight and feel better, but it’s not a panacea for chronic migraine; and Aimovig and Ajovy just didn’t work for me. Back to the hard work of being content with my life without a career.
And that’s not easy for me. I grew up believing that I was going to work outside the home. Not because I had to, but because I had a calling. I was going to be a physician. And, after 12 years of post-high school education, I was, indeed, a family physician. I worked for ten years as a family physician doing the full range of medicine from delivering babies to taking care of older people in nursing homes. I loved it. I was also a wife and mom. Yes, it was a full life, but Patrick and I worked hard to make family life and medicine both happy.
The first few years after I had to leave medicine, I was still pretty busy because I was doing the homeschooling on my good days. I missed medicine, but I loved all the time with my children. And there was so much for all of us to learn! We read good books and the kids did projects!
But as the kids became more independent, I had to deal with the loss of my career. My counselor and I have circled back around this topic several times. I miss what I used to do. I miss my contact with people. I miss the intellectual stimulation (although I am trying to keep up with lots of reading on many different topics). I miss the fast pace of a busy clinic. I don’t miss the middle of the night calls, though!! LOL!
Last year, I made some goals with the hope that the change in diet and the new medications might be the key to finally get the chronic migraine under control and get me back to work. But, it was not to be. So, here I am, blogging again about what to do with my life without a career in medicine.
I’m not so lost anymore. I have knitting projects, books to read, and things to write about. I’ve been proactive about getting together with friends regularly. I want to be busy, but the couple of migraines every week slow me down significantly.
But, where is my heart? Am I content? Can I say with Paul that I have learned the secret to be content in any circumstance? (Phil. 4:11-13) Not yet. But, every day, I get a little closer. I’m learning to pray and meditate daily which slows me down and says, “Take some time for yourself and for God. You’re not in a hurry.” I study the Scriptures and learn that the ancient texts have plenty to say to us in the 21st century if we will stop and listen.
Am I content? I’m more content than I was five years ago, but not where I should be. So, making progress. Every day that I can go to bed with unfolded laundry and not feel guilty is a step in the right direction. Knowing that I did what I could within my limitations today and accepting that is an improvement. Someday, I’ll have true contentment. When I’m in heaven. Until then, I’m always learning and gradually improving.
How about you? How do you learn to be content?