Living in a Broken Body
Grand Canyon University
September 12, 2010
There are many things in life in which one can learn about and think they understand and yet, when the time comes and they experience it they realize how mistaken they were. Living with a chronic health condition is one of these things that must be experienced to achieve understanding. In nursing pre-requisites for upper division students learn that those living with chronic conditions usually feel hopeless and quiet often fall into a depression. When I learned this I was confident that I would not let a chronic health condition affect my emotions in such a way. However, I have recently experienced how easy it is to be swept into despair when physically unwell. As I am waiting for my medication to be regulated, I am slowly losing more and more control of my body, of what I can and cannot do. I have gone from a strong, determined, confident, intelligent young women with a great deal of drive to someone who has trouble doing the things she loves to do and lives in fear of never getting better. Though my pride is hurt, I will not give up or give in to this despair that I feel. I know that even though I feel alone at times, there are indeed many people that love me that are going through this with me.I feel like a different person. Someone I do not like. I feel alone and I have lost hope when things are at their worst. One of my greatest strengths is and has always been my ability to empathize with people. I am trying to see this unfortunate circumstance beyond my control as a learning opportunity. When I am at last able to be a nurse, when I am to care for another, I will be able to empathize with someone who is chronically sick. I will truly be able to empathize with someone who is trapped in a broken body. When I am caring for those individuals I hope that they will find comfort in my ability to understand their pain, despair and fears. I hope that through my empathy I will be able to do my job better and will be able to improve my patient’s quality of life, even if through a shared pain.
Personal Reflections Self-Assessment Questions
I would describe myself physically as . . .
Weak for now...I hope. I’m not used to being sick and unable to do things. I hope that I can be regulated. I hope that I can get better.
I would describe my personality as . . .
Proud, loving, determined, driven, dependent, sensitive.
Inquisitive, innocent, caring, scatterbrained,
Others would describe me as . . .
Smart, confident, happy, standoffish, nice, quiet.
When I think about how I am, I am most proud of . . .
My ability to empathize and love people.
I was most ashamed of . . .
I get angriest when . . .
I can’t do something right or I can’t do something simple that I really want to do.
When I am nervous, I usually . . .
Am quiet and in the background. I use that time to watch how people interact with other people.
Feel trapped. It is usually in social situations and I don’t really like being around people, especially crowds or noise.
Characteristics of other people that impress me most include . . .
Talent, knowledge, wisdom, kindness, being able to do a lot and not get worn out.
If I were to use one word to describe my family (as a whole) it would be . . .
The best thing about growing up in my family was . . .
The love and happiness. Very little fights.
In my family, talking about a problem was . . .
Goals I want to achieve with this course are . . .
An “A.” Knowledge. Confidence.
Goals I want to achieve in my life time are . . .
Marriage, move, family, talent, wisdom, joy, peace, health.