I have been living with chronic pain for 30+ years. It all started when I injured my back in 1987 and had to go through back surgery for a fusion. The first three fusions failed and I ended up having five total fusions.
In 2006 I was in a serious auto accident which left me with 2 damaged cervical discs, a bruised skull and a severe concussion from the impact my head received.
Beginning in 2013, after a fall dislodged my L4 vertebra, I eventually sought out alternative treatments for my pain and have found several which have helped. Although, I continue to live with chronic pain, I am able to function better than medically explainable.
Early on after my second fusion failed in 1993, I loss all support and closed in. The repeated surgeries and increasing pain left me feeling isolated and I knew my family and friends couldn't understand. With no support system I retreated into myself and ended up with depression, anxiety, Complex PTSD, and suicidal thoughts. I had a hard time keeping a job and finally had to stop working in 2008, needing to admit my pain was too unbearable and my concentration was quite damaged.
Somehow through it all I kept having the repeated thought in my head "that this is not the way my life should be". I started to think "I'm here for a reason. I must have experienced all these things for a reason". Hope was the one thing that kept me going, even though there were many times I hung on by a bare thread. In 2016 I came up with the idea of Hope Instilled to give people the resources and support I was unable to find or receive. I am now able to talk about all my traumas and surgeries and explain the gift each one is. This allows me to do the work I do today. I am now finding ways to touch people's lives around the world.
Awards and Affiliations
American Pain Society
International Association for the Study of Pain
The Wellness Fair
Wisconsin Veterans Chamber of Commerce
World Institute of Pain