This past August, I visited the Mayo Clinic to help deal with my Chronic Regional Pain Syndrome. This is a chronic injury I have struggled with for the past six years. The time I spent at the Mayo Clinic was the most impactful three weeks of my life. During my time at the Mayo Clinic, I went from a depressed introvert to a positive extrovert. Not only that but instead of dealing with an injury, I came out healthier than ever. I had never believed that this was even possible, but then again I didn’t believe much was possible at this time in my life. At the Mayo Clinic you could say I learned how to live again, no longer was I avoiding activities because I was scared of what could happen, instead, I was doing everything I could to make up for all the time I lost being bedridden by my condition.
While I was at the clinic, we were forced into doing social activities, which may sound odd but some of the attendants that were there with me hadn’t been social recently due to their condition. This enabled me to make two of my closest friends that I talk to every day. The first was Ellison who came from New Jersey and the second was Ruthie who came from Michigan. During our three weeks there, the three of us stuck together and did everything together. At the end of our time there, we were all completely healthy. Sadly within the past month, Ruthie has developed cancer in her leg, but because of the skills she learned at the Mayo Clinic she is doing well and making a recovery. Ellison, on the other hand, is fully functional and recently acquired her driver’s license.
The change I have gone through is indescribable, but the lessons I learned have been worth so much more. My biggest takeaway is to find someone in your life who will always be there for you and that you will always be there for. This place came to me at a time in my life when I needed it most. If you’re also struggling with any kind of health problem, remember you are still you and to stay positive even when it may seem impossible. If it wasn’t for the Mayo Clinic I don’t think I would be where I am today and I am forever grateful.
This article is dedicated to Ruthie Ann Pasek. May she have a quick and easy recovery.
Aaron Kirkpatrick is an Aleph from Northern Region East: DC and loves being a punter.
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