Today is a tough day. I am lying on the sofa dreading the next time I need to get up due to the excruciating pain that radiates up my legs from my over active inflammation process of my joints. So rather than sitting and wallowing in self pity I thought I would focus on my future and in 2 months today I am starting back at university but this time to become a paramedic which is something I want to do more than anything.
To anyone who has gone through or is going through any form of study with a chronic illness I salute you. I am not looking forward to the days where my body just doesn’t want to work but I am not going to let that stop me. Fingers crossed my new treatment will have kicked in by then so those days will be limited but it is inevitable that there will be days where I want to scream out at the world that life isn’t fair but unfortunately it is one of those things I cannot change.
From having studied in the past this post goes out to all of those people who do struggle on a daily basis but do not let that get in the way of them making a career for themselves. I am already worrying about whether I will have to use crutches or my wheelchair at times to go to lectures and what people will think. The lingering thought that people will judge me masks everything I do and I am still terrified of people reacting negatively. In the past I have experienced people who don’t understand. That is fine and I can’t expect people to but the hardest part is when people aren’t willing to try to accept.
University brings with it a range of new challenges. I will be thrown into an environment with people I don’t know. There will be people from a range of backgrounds and it is like being a kid on their first day at school. Who will sit where and who will you end up being friends with. University is one of those places where you can make friends for life and this is such an exciting thought. You are thrown together in what could be 3 of the most challenging years of your life.
I have just been accepted for Disabled Students Allowance and I have already been questioned how someone with a disability can become a paramedic. My answer is that having a disability will allow me to be a better paramedic.
Having had a stroke and having a chronic illness is the reason I am going to university and pursuing my passion of becoming a paramedic. Oh, yeah: did I forget to mention that? My name is Lauren Bradfield. I am a 25-year-old university student and yes I happen to have a disability. However tough it is, there is no way I would trade my circumstances for anything. My disability has given me a unique view about life, how to treat others, and most importantly, how to be there for others.
I have a long road ahead of me, but it will be no more difficult than anything I have already gone through. I cannot wait to continue to work with a wide range of people who need my help. The reason why I have disliked my own experiences with ambulance crews is because at the time, I felt disconnected. Every single one of the paramedics and nurses and doctors I have seen throughout my lifetime were all incredibly knowledgeable, but I so desperately wanted someone to really get what I was going through. I wanted someone like me.
I hope I am making my family proud through my career choice and how I choose to view disability despite my tough and down days. But most importantly, I am making myself proud with my outlook on life. If one of my future patients and their families have faith and belief in me, then all of the studying will 100 percent be worth it. If one of my future patients feels like they are not so alone when it feels like the world is working against them, then I know I did my job right.
Thank you again for reading and please follow my facebook page strikingbackatstroke