Why Good Doctors Are Essential in My Life With Cerebral Palsy and Chronic Pain

I was always afraid of going to the doctor as a kid. Doctors’ offices are sterile-smelling places that are associated with shots and being unwell. Who would want to go there? Not me, or so I thought.

Jump about 32 years into the future, and I actually look forward to my appointments. As someone with cerebral palsy who struggles with knee tendonitis, hip osteoarthritis, hip dysplasia, and chronic back pain, a visit to the doctor means an opportunity to update them on my life, express my discomfort, and obtain the medicines I need. Furthermore, it is an opportunity to go somewhere where although I am not completely and fully understood, I am empathized with. I cannot expect my doctors to completely understand where I am coming from because they do not have my same issues. However, they are knowledgeable enough to try to understand in a limited way.

I will be honest and say I never imagined I would be so dependent on doctors at a relatively young age, but I do have a medical and neurological condition, so medical attention is required. For some reason for so many years, I was naïve and assumed that doctors were for old people and the frail. I had some struggles when I was first introduced to Medicaid because of lackluster doctors who were clearly in the business for the paycheck. When I was younger and in my teens, my muscles and joints were in better shape, too, thankfully so I did not have to visit the doctor as frequently as I do now. This thankfully meant I did not have to put up with the money-hungry vibe I felt with my first couple of doctors.

However, when my pain issues began surfacing, I made the decision to begin my new doctor search, and I am so grateful I did. Living with chronic pain conditions can weigh on your mind like lead. It takes a special person to handle your issues and attempt to put themselves in your place. My doctors know my conditions won’t go away, but they make sure they can provide for me with medications and appropriate treatment methods. It is hard and frustrating to know your body and temple is falling apart. However, good and specially trained doctors can help make that journey more comfortable and easy. I am so grateful for doctors who look after the well-being and life of their patients.

Getty photo by Bowden Images.

Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.

Related to Cerebral Palsy

Woman sitting alone and depressed in window light.

What Anxiety Teaches Me About Life With Cerebral Palsy

I was always anxious as a child. The early surgical interventions and frequent visits to physiotherapists and orthopedic surgeons so common for a child with cerebral palsy ensured that. I remember what it felt like to be that anxious child: the knot in the pit of the stomach, constantly needing the toilet and being uncomfortably [...]

What I Wish Doctors Would Tell Parents About Cerebral Palsy

It seems like the majority of doctors do not have anything positive to say about cerebral palsy when they share a new diagnosis with parents or other loved ones. As I think about this, my mind is just spinning and twirling, wondering: Why in the heck don’t doctors tell parents about the bright side of [...]
Feet in Converse shoes.

How These Shoes Helped Me Accept My Cerebral Palsy

Unwinding in my living room as I write this piece, I am feeling wistful. Being a woman in her late 20s, I can safely say, “I’m not a kid anymore!” I have a job, I own a house, I drive a car, and I love an adorable furbaby. As I gaze around my home, I [...]
Silhouette of a woman singing with a microphone.

The Teacher Who Changed My Life as a Performer With Cerebral Palsy

I’ve always loved to sing and perform. But because of the way my particular form of cerebral palsy affects my body, I had been told in my adult life that it was going to get a lot harder than it had been when I was young. So in December 2014, I came to the conclusion [...]