what did you do in your past life for a career?

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by Honora88, Jul 21, 2008.

  1. Honora88

    Honora88 Member

    I miss having a real career. What career were you in?

    I was reminicing about how busy I used to be.
  2. wordwarrior

    wordwarrior New Member


    I'm still in the rat race! I am currently a Deputy Tax Collector for a large Township, and I write. Had to give up the writing though in order to have enough energy for the real job. This has really been hard as I love to write.

    I figure I'll have to give up on work eventually. I have been in pain for as long as I can remember - Hands, neck, back, shoulders, and headaches are the worst part.

    I sought medical help after I left my abusive husband in 2000. Been to Chiropractors, Orthopediacs, Internists, Neurologists, and finally two months ago a well respected Rheumatologist. He finally diagnosed me with Fibromyalgia. I also have IBS, TMJ, had 1/2 my thyroid out last year (underactive/hashimoto's disease), massive migraines, bad sleeping problems, tired all the time, etc. Been tested for everything known to mankind. Basically, I'm a real mess.

    I am also an over achiever, 45 year old BA student at night (last two classes - algebra - yuck!), full time worker, mom, and remarried. I am in and out of court with my ex-abusive husband because he is not happy unless he is making my life a misery. So - I know I'll have to slow down probably sooner then I'd like.

    What did you use to do? Are you on disability now?


  3. CanBrit

    CanBrit Member

    My Dr. just wrote me off work on June 30th. I went back to school for computer programming in 1997 and had only been in a career I love since then.

    I really miss it and my pain is actually worse since I stopped. I think that mentally, work allowed me to not focus on the pain so much. I find that it's harder to do when you're not getting that mental stimulation.

    I don't know if this is going to be permanent or not. My work is not agreeable to allowing me to work from home and my Dr. said that it's the only way I can work.

    I feel like I'm doing less even though I have more time.

    It just sucks.

  4. Honora88

    Honora88 Member

    I used to be in pharma sales, monitored clinical trials, and I had an alternative healing practice.

    Now I get mad when someone at home doesn't wash the dishes. My focus is on nitty gritty things because I don't have a job to distract myself.
  5. caffey

    caffey New Member

    I was a home care nurse for 10 years and just starting to go on missions trips to 3rd world countries when I got sick 6 months after being in India.
  6. jmq

    jmq New Member

    was a workaholic forensic social worker/paralegal/supervisor in Criminal justice system for 30 yrs...then had to take LTD and early retirement due to dd. Now praying for SSDI to be approved. Hardly leave the house or do the smallest of tasks...

    dont like to think about my past life....makes me too sad.

  7. Janalynn

    Janalynn New Member

    I must say that I agree that for me when I go to work, very often I feel better (once I get there!). Working and focusing on something else does take my mind off of my pain.
    I wouldn't say that would be true if I had an 8-5 job. Right now I have a very flexible schedule, usually 3-4 days a week, anywhere from 3 - 6 hrs, depending on my work load.

    I've always had some kind of Office/Financial management job. I've trained in Customer Service, I placed Accounting personnel (all within the same company) I wore many hats - I loved that job, but commuted one hour each way to work for 6 years and couldn't see myself doing that forever so I made the leap into the mortgage industry almost 6 years ago now.

    Right now, besides my part time job, I also sell Designer Inspired purses - Home Parties. It has suddenly really taken off AND it's a lot of fun. I have other women working for me so I don't physically have to do much. I did put in my time though and it was hard on me.

    I've found that no matter what kind of "job" or "career" I've been involved with there are certain aspects of each position I've held that I've always loved. It's not even so much the job, but the feeling you get from it. If I can take those skills and put them to use even at home, I have a sense of accomplishment. I used to love doing (figuring) the quarterly sales tax, also balancing the company checkbook. It was the calculator LOL. To this day, I LOVE balancing my checkbook. Sadly, I haven't balanced it in months. I'm incredibly embarassed about that and disappointed in myself. That's an indication to me that something is wrong.
    I guess what I'm trying to say, is if you can do anything related to the feeling you used to get from your career and apply to 'something' in your everyday life, you may get some small satisfaction from it.

    And you asked a simple question.... LOL!!!!! I'm awfully wordy tonight!
  8. cjcookie

    cjcookie New Member

    I miss it too but if I went back to work, I think I might pick another field. I thought of counseling or teaching. It feels like those things would be more rewarding. I got into the computer field because that is where the money was then and I was a single Mom.
  9. lynn3811

    lynn3811 New Member

    I was breeding wolf-hybrids at home full time. Sometimes 2 litters at once.Lots of babies. Was also a tropical fish breeder, and at parrot breeder. True, I was at home, but this all took lots of care. Can't do any of this now. Sold out all 2 yrs ago. Miss all the life around me.

  10. spmom

    spmom New Member

    Two years ago I had to leave my very stressful and dangerous position (yes, my life was threatened) as a therapist and child advocate for children in foster care. I'd been doing that work for over fifteen years. As hard as it was to stop, I knew there was no choice due to health hardship. I became a stay-at-home parent and my husband (who was the one at home) went back to work. I did miss the work, but now I am returning in a different capacity, part-time as a family specialist in education.
    The biggest loss was the sense of community I had at work and helping others. It was also hard to answer those questions like "So, what do you do?" "Well, today I made a homemade pinata for the neighborhood picnic" was not so impressive.
  11. mjbean

    mjbean New Member

    I was a cosmetologist that had a very successful business that I had in my home for over 20 years. I have retired from this 3 years ago this sept and have working in a beauty wholesale house since I could no longer do hair the chemicals bothered me terribly and could no longer stand with arms up around shoulder height and my legs and feet killed me. I spent more time at chiropractor than working I think. The day I fell asleep waiting for client and the client had to come into my house and wake me really made me realize that I had to quit,but how I miss the clients they were like family to me, and of course the money was great..
    I feel like we have all been robbed of our past lives and some days it seems like it was all a dream.
    It sure was great while it lasted...
    Lets remenice again sometime , Thanks for the memories MJ
  12. Iam1ShadyLady

    Iam1ShadyLady New Member

    I was in management, restaurant and then retail for 12 years, lost that to FM. Then I went to trucking school and was a truck driver for almost 3 years. Just lost that to FM. Actually the company I was working for had to shut down cause of fuel prices but I knew it was time to stop. The owner's mom has FM so she was really understanding when I had to take time off, I only made 17,000 last year and for a truck driver that's no money but it was something to do and I loved driving an 18 wheeler.

    It was awesome to have guys come up and pat me on the back and tell me that I could back better than most men they had seen. It was an accomplishment because I am a woman and had FM. Now I have no idea how I was doing it, finding all those places, following directions. There are times now I space out and forget where I am at when I am driving to town. I guess when you stop the DD really takes over. Now I cannot imagine going back to work.

    I hope in the future maybe with meds and herbs I'll get to become a ghostwriter. I love to write, even started a new book but hit a block after computer locked up and I lost 10 pages that I had written. Can't rewrite them like they were cause I can't remember. Sad. I know. But I hope to start back on it soon and maybe take some online classes to brush up on my journalism skills. We all have to dream don't we?

  13. Susan07

    Susan07 New Member

    My last job of over 15 years was in accounting, payroll and computer systems.

    I do miss working because it did take my mind off of me! But when I started getting too confused, couldn't keep up with my work and then started falling asleep at stop lites on the way home I had to give it up.

    Who would think you couldn't work a desk job!

    I have become a volunteer Stephen Minister with my church. It doesn't require much physically and it's a way to give back for all the blessings I've had in my life.

    Take care
  14. jami117

    jami117 New Member

    I was an academic librarian. I loved every part of it: getting to help people find information they needed and learning something new in the process; reading book reviews to decide what to purchase for my subject area of the collection to make it as useful as possible within an impossibly small budget; writing articles that addressed issues in delivering information, inspiring library users, teaching better research methods, then taking one of those articles to a conference at some wonderful city in the US or Europe. There I would hear all kinds of innovative ideas and meet terrific folks! I even miss just sitting in a big academic library - had a dream once that I was back there working and then I woke up and cried 'cause it wasn't real!! I try not to pine, but I miss my library life.

    The final blow from this dd was that this English major librarian is no longer able to concentrate long enough to read a book. My memory won't work from the top of the page to the bottom - hard to believe!!
    [This Message was Edited on 07/25/2008]
  15. Cinderbug

    Cinderbug New Member

    RN for 20 years, LPN for 12 years before that.

    Don't like being sick and homebound but I would be lying if I said I missed it.

  16. lrning2cope

    lrning2cope New Member

    that I had in the past , was the manager of the volunteers at a Nature Center. I also took care of all our animals , taught classes , did nature crafts with the children , took people on hikes . I loved that job. That part of me is still here , but trapped in a body that doesn't want to let me move around like that anymore.

  17. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

    I am the mother of 13 children, 3 born to me and my husband and 10 of whom were adopted. Eight of our children have special needs. I was the Oregon representative for The North American Council for 15 years before I was forced to retire due to ME. I counseled and represented specialized adoptive families at the fair hearing level advocating for services and subsidies. I also traveled extensively doing trainings and speaking on children's issues--especially services for children with disabilities. I served as President and VP of numerous children's agencies. I trained parents in Special Education advocacy. I managed a huge and active household, was head designer for our construction company, and helped manage our ranch and numerous rental properties. I also did Toy Poodle/Chihuahua rescue of elder or special needs dogs. In other words, I was a busy lady. I lived a big life.

    Now, I lie in bed and talk my children through their days and challenges. I've resigned all outside work. I still have seven dogs, most of which are disabled and they make me feel as if I'm giving back a little.

    I miss my old life terribly but it is gone. It wasn't easy (or pretty) but I've had to wrap my mind around change. I had no choice so I decided to be as gracious as possible. My new life is different and full of its own unique pleasures--like grandbabies, sitting in the sun, snuggling with a silly little dog, sharing a glass of wine with my loving husband.

  18. lrning2cope

    lrning2cope New Member

    You are an inspiration. What a wonderful attitude that you have about your life ;both then and now. I have a friend with 12 children . Four are hers biologically and 8 are special needs. I look at her and how calm she is with these kids and I know that she is doing just what she was meant to do.

    The world needs more people like you and my friend . There are many special children who just want to be loved ( and special animals too)

  19. Missizzy

    Missizzy New Member

    Those are kind words. I should have mentioned that the drama didn't stop when I got sick. Even though I'm stuck in bed, I feel very involved (and needed) by a very large group of kids and young adults. There are perks to the big family experience--one is NEVER bored!!

    Just today and yesterday, I successfully dealt with the police, the juvenile justice system, a caseworker, two adult children in crisis, a probation officer, our vet, and helped research the best books for helping a distraught Momma (our daughter) deal with a defiant 6 year old. With a laptop and a phone, I can still get quite a bit accomplished. It's all about pacing and doing things differently.

    And by the way jami117, I wanted to be a research librarian!! I was all set with a scholarship when I decided to marry my high school sweetheart instead. That was 36 years ago. I still love libraries and have raised a group of library goers. Going to a library or a book store are about the only two outings I can still accomplish. I get to go about once a month and it seems to work as they are quiet, everything is "straight" (I have severe vertigo), and they are usually very wheelchair accessible. Do you still get to visit, I hope? I know just what you mean by the dreams. They are sad reminders. But we do have the memories.

    Aren't we a varied and interesting bunch?


  20. munch1958

    munch1958 Member

    This is a good idea for a topic as it's a nice trip down memory lane. I'm feeling bored and "useless" because I'm haven't "type-A'd" much in the past few days.

    It's good to look back and see how much I've done over the years.... people met, lessons learned, skills added etc.

    My past jobs have been:

    Bartender while working thru college;
    Office Support for organization that sponsors Special Olympics;
    Mainframe computer programmer;
    Computer buyer;
    Purchasing agent at 500 bed hospital and;
    Director of purchasing same hospital.

    Then I moved 75 miles SW and "retired" until my DH decided to buy a bar after his offical retirement. Then I became a Bar owner/manager for 3 years until fatigue and muscle pain forced me to quit.

    Interesting Volunteer positions:

    Support group facilitator, VP of membership and President of Chicago Chapter of the Endometriosis Association;
    President and Support Group Facilitator of Illinois Lyme Disease Network;
    Historian and VP of Fundraising and VP of Membership for EDP -- college honor society.

    I enjoy fundraising for worthy causes. Over the past weekend, we had our annual poker run & benefit. We had about 200 people attend and raised $2,200 for our charity which provides services for the handicapped. In the 7 years we've owned the bar, we've raised about $26K for local charities.