I feel for you Thoreau, and can completely relate to the career aspirations thing. I was about
half-way through my master's degree when I started getting really sick - I was 29 when I graduated.
I thought to myself, being in debt with half a degree is not worth it, so I just pushed myself to finish. And I am glad I did.
As all my friends at school went on to get jobs, I could barely work more than 10-15 hours per week. So I had to take jobs that were lower than my skill/training level, and only on-call positions or contract positions. It was demoralizing, but at least I was able to work in the field that was my passion.
Medications finally kicked in and I could work 3/4 time. I found a 1/2 time position with benefits and took it, and a year later, I was able to bump up to 30 hours per week.
I ended staying with that company for over a decade, because it would be nearly impossible to find a 3/4-time job in my field with benefits. The company also provided me with disability accommodations over the years which allowed me to keep working as my disease progressed. I was very fortunate in that regard (but I also did a ton of research on disability accommodations and was very well-informed before I even approached my company, so that helped a lot too).
So I ended up working for 18 years after getting my MA, and then last year, had to finally throw in the towel.
It was hard to watch my co-workers progress in their careers and move on to higher salaries and promotions while I stayed stuck, but ultimately, it was better than being out on disability, because my career was a true passion for me.
I took a lot ego blows over the years and it hurt, but now I am glad I pushed myself, and am happy I had a chance to work in a field I loved, even if it was not the ideal for me. I definitely wanted to go much further and higher in my career than I was ultimately able to. My health is the only thing that held me back.
Anyway, I hope you will be able to figure out ways to work toward your career goals in spite of your health - its an arduous process.... but worth it, I think.
One good resource for ideas about
accommodations is https://askjan.org/ - they have a lot of info on their site, and a free 1-800 where you can call and speak to someone confidentially about
your job situation and they will provide good input.
Post Edited (Candy_Apple) : 5/6/2016 7:10:14 PM (GMT-6)