“You Will Never Work Another Day In Your Life”

This statement has two very different and very impactful meanings for me.

First, I was told 30 years ago that because of my physical and mental health concerns I would never be able to work another day in my life. In a way, I proved them wrong because I worked as a nanny for some great boys, helped my husband with his web-hosting and design company, went to culinary school, worked at various church camps, made and decorated cakes and am now writing a blog. It may not be conventional work, but ain’t too shabby either.

Second, someone told me “If you love what you are doing, you will never work another day in your life”! Now that is an entirely different outlook than the first one.

The kicker is they were told to me by the same person (one of my counselors), on separate occasions. No, he hadn’t forgotten he mentioned the first one. The second was when I was contemplating going to culinary school, with no guarantee that my health would allow me to get through school, let alone working afterward.

How could he possibly give me such encouraging words when he told me when he first became my doctor that bipolar, clinical depression, OCD, and physical health issues that I would NEVER work again? Well, I became more confident with every challenge put in front of me. I worked very hard at beating the labels that were put on me, beating the odds of breaking through the barriers of mental illness.

Culinary school was no walk in the park, and as was my habit thanks to bipolar, I didn’t make it any easier on myself. At 46 I was the oldest in the class and some of the younger students resented me because it was like they were in school with their mother. I was diagnosed with osteoarthritis while attending and that also challenged me. I was the slowest at cutting veggies, got rattled when things went into crunch mode. I took more days off than were allowed, but paid the price by losing marks just for not being there. In the end, I passed by 5%. If I had not had 14 days off and had completed the one assignment that I missed out on, I would have had one of the highest marks in the class.

However, it taught me more than how to cook, how to memorize seven different custard recipes for an exam, how to cut a chicken into eight even pieces. I learned much about myself – what my passions were (and weren’t). I honestly thought that cooking/baking/decorating were going to be that job where you never work another day in your life.

But they weren’t.

What I loved as a child, lost out on through mental and physical illness, was told I could never make money at is something I should have remembered. I wanted to be a writer from very early on in my life. It is my passion. It is where I feel confident and alive. At the moment, I am not making money off of it, but it doesn’t matter because I feel so good while I am writing.

So, I never will “work” another day in my life, and I couldn’t be happier!



13 Replies to ““You Will Never Work Another Day In Your Life””

  1. Lydia. This post is super empowering. Never let other peoples limits become your limits. You have proven again and again the more you challenge yourself ,the more you will succeed. Carry on writing. I don’t need to tell you -you already are doing it xxxx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Daisy! Yes, I am doing it and this post pretty much wrote itself. I think my best work does that. I haven’t been around your blog (or anyone else’s for that matter for awhile so I am glad you stopped in here. I will be sure to check in on yours.


  2. Those who told you that you couldn’t have worked another year in your life were stupid and narrow minded. They didn’t take into account your determination and willingness to succeed. When you look at the world of disabled people you find people that have achieved great things even more that perfectly healthy people. A disability, and I know it because I have one, can give one an urge to make it or succeed in what one likes or is passionate about even more than perfectly able people can do. In spite of my disability I can do many things, I’m an illustrator, musician, writer, teacher of three styles of Tai chi and even a cook, in fact I’m considered the most eclectic cook in the world. you can see me in my website to which this blog of mine is just an extension http://controversialcook.com/ I’m also a cookery writer and illustrator able to create novels and even musicals or poetries out of recipes like this one https://www.amazon.co.uk/LIONESS-PASTRY-COOK-African-Dream-ebook/dp/B00E1IIXMY All this I achieved in spite of my disability and most probably because of my disability. Anyway as an example though I can play four instruments I never thought that I could play the piano that I really wanted to, because I’ve little control of my left hand that also very weak. It was due to an accident soon after birth when I fell from a height and became paralysed. The paralysis healed but not my left hand. Then about three months ago I saw in youtube some marvellous one handed pianists, they were so good that they sounded as if they had three hands let alone two. After having seen them I decided to have a go at the piano and within two months after having sorted out all the problems of my left hand I could play it very well. I really admire your courage and determination. Anyway the important thing when doing things that one like is not to make money or the external success that one can achieve but the dedication and passion that one has that has a healing effect on the mind and body and gives one’s life a meaning and a purpose. Good luck with your cooking and writing. They are both great activities. I know because I do them to. By the way one of the most famous chefs in the UK has only one hand, this is him in Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michael_Caines So much for disabilities Haha 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for this response. I have always been a “dive into the deep end of the pool before you know how to swim” kind of person. In fact I apparently did that at three years old, LOL! A lifeguard got me, and I was fighting to get free and stay in the water! The reason I was told the first time I wouldn’t work again was because we could not get my bipolar under control and work seemed to really elevate my mania. It led to a serious accident which fractured my back and started my road to chronic pain, which further complicated matters. They told me I had a 50/50 chance of not walking and I just said “no, I will not accept that”. I was still in ICU when I took my first (heavily assisted) steps.

      I really admire what you have done in your life. You are a wonderful example of what I like to call, “differently abled”. That is how I see myself. I may not be able to tie my own shoelaces, but I have some pretty mean knife skills LOL!!

      I will certainly check out your links and the one for Michael Caines. Thank you so much.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Hey Lydia
    You’ve been through a lot.. great to know that you have been carrying on despite being in pain..

    Psst.. I found you on Janice’s blog party, I was the second one to comment… just after you..
    I write here: http://www.xosam.com – mainly pregnancy/parenting related topics

    Hope to remain in touch …

    Liked by 1 person

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