A year ago yesterday, I left Nashville after quitting my job as a teacher due to my health. Sometimes, it’s hard to think about where my life was a year ago; I had just dislocated my knee for the 7th or 8th time, my arthritis and fibro were out of control, I could barely walk, my anxiety was running rampant, and I had just quit a job that I loved with the understanding that I may never be able to return to teaching. I remember talking to my sister one night shortly after I returned and her asking me if I was glad that I had moved back. “No,” I said. “I don’t want to be here. It was the right thing to do for my health, but I don’t want to be here.”
Like I said then, it was definitely the right thing to do. The past year hasn’t been easy by any means, but I have come a long way. A lot has happened, and it hasn’t always been a success, but no one can say that I haven’t accomplished anything over the past year. So here is everything that I’ve accomplished since I moved to Boston.
1. Decided to apply to grad school and to study English literature instead of education.
2. Recovered from knee dislocation
3. Saw multiple knee surgeons to figure out what’s going on with my knee
4. Found out what was up with my knee – cartilage damage and plica syndrome – and scheduled surgery
5. Started blogging seriously, as in my posts started being better quality and I gained more traction in monetizing this blog.
6. Took the GRE literature test as well as the GRE
7. Applied to grad school
8. Was accepted to 2 of the 4 graduate programs I applied to, and I received scholarships to both of the schools that I was accepted to.
9. Had my surgery pushed back 4 months because of my infusion
10. Had surgery, followed by my infusion 2 weeks later
12. Reduced my anxiety significantly. Over the past year, I have had 4 anxiety attacks compared to the 1-4 I was having every single week.
13. Got a part-time job
14. Graduated from the physical therapy I was in after surgery
15. Advocated for arthritis patients at the Arthritis Foundation Advocacy Summit
16. Became a Cure Arthritis Ambassador for the Arthritis National Research Foundation
The past year has been filled with lots of ups and downs, but I definitely accomplished more than I thought I would a year ago. But that’s life, isn’t it? It’s so easy for us to focus on the bad things that have happened to us instead of the great things we have done. And what’s more, I didn’t achieve these thing in spite of quitting my previous job; if I hadn’t quit, most of these things would have never happened.