Image by The Library of Congress via Flickr
I know that many of us living with chronic illness aren't able to work right now. I also know that many "healthy" people just don't understand our inability to work because we "don't look sick." If you live with chronic illness, you know how hurtful belittling comments and attitudes of disbelief can be.
So let me set the record straight. I would rather be flipping burgers at MickeyD's, cleaning toilets or collecting garbage than stuck at home, day after day, with unrelenting chronic, severe pain and severe fatigue. Not being able to work translates into a huge loss of many things for me, including income, freedom, purpose, accomplishment and social interactions.
I think that most of us disabled by chronic illness feel the same way. We all wait for the day when medical science figures out how to successfully treat (and cure!) our illnesses so we can get back to living a normal life like everyone else does. A normal life were working is a big, important part.
Just because we can't work right now doesn't mean we don't sometimes think and dream about it. So this week, I want to hear about those thoughts and dreams when you answer this week's question in a comment here or over on the Oh My Aches and Pains! Facebook page.
Ready? Set? Go!
If your health didn't stand in the way, if money were no object and you didn't need to go back school to get more education or training, what job would you have?
My answer: I would run a non-profit organization that gives money to innovative research and social service programs that offer real solutions for people dealing with poverty, homelessness, substance abuse, physical and mental illness. I know that so much money is wasted on programs and services that don't really help and I wish I could help figure out what really does work.
(Thanks to my friend Julie who inspired me to ask all of you this question.)