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I was wondering what our jobs were before POTS. I was a teacher in the South Bronx. I had quit my job just 5 weeks before I got POTS and I often said in those weeks before that I was "running on adrenaline fumes". Needless to say I was stressed tot he max. I notice a lot of nurses in the pots forums as well. Did many people have a stressful job/life situation before POTS? thx!

718mom

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I worked as a pension consultant for most of my career. Then in 2003 I went to graduate school and obtained my license as a counselor. I worked as a licensed clinical counselor from May of 2006 when I graduated until September 2010 when I was hit by this dreadful disorder and am now unable to work. Most days I can't get up off the sofa. This has been catastrophic for me because so much time, energy and money went into preparing for my new career which I loved.

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I got a degree in nursing back in the '90s, but only worked a year. Toward the end of that first year I began having what I called panic attacks almost on a daily basis. So, I quit work. I then spent years volunteering at my kids' school. Then, being involved in my kids' cub scouts and softball teams. So, after quitting nursing, I didn't work, but was very busy with other things. I would like to add that I lived my whole adult life up until POTS at 45 with a blood pressure of 90/60. I had NO lightheadedness, but did seem to have a higher pulse(around 100). I could still do anything I wanted, though. The pressure worked for me.

I now look back and see my "panic attacks" were most likely low blood sugar, as I couldn't eat on a schedule while working, and NEVER tested my blood sugar. I never knew a diabetic, so never recognized the symptoms of low glucose in myself. My old GP just told me I was having panic attacks, so I believed him for MANY years(like 18 years!). When I bought a glucose meter a couple of years ago, I tested my blood sugar when I had panicky symptoms, and my glucose was in the 50s! So, I many wasted years of thinking I was just a panicky person...I wish they would make it a medical standard that when people are going to get diagnosed with out-of-the-blue anxiety or panic, especially with no precipitating factors, that they would spend a week testing their glucose levels off/on.

When POTS hit me 5 years ago, I believe I had 6 months warning that something was off. I got goosebumps during the summer. I noticed that I tended to fidget if I had to stand in a grocery store line. Just little things. But, the coping mechanism worked until one day I had blood drawn for labs, and I literally started my first day of POTS. It left me lightheaded when I stood up and I have never been the same. The labs were not drawn because I was ill, they were checking my routine thyroid levels.

I now spend most of my time at home, as I can't drive. I can't be up more than about the length of a shower, so I don't get much done at all as far as the house goes. My husband and I have a business, so I do all the stuff that requires computer work. There are days I can't even do that, as I can't "think".

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After going back to school at the age of 38 to get my master's degree in anthropology/archaeology, I worked as the archaeologist for the Hualapai tribe in northern AZ, along the Colorado River. We had archaeological sites along the south side of the Grand Canyon, so we got to helicopter into the canyon to check on the sites, or do river trips to check on them. I hiked in the heat for hours a day, until I became sick with dilated cardiomyopathy/bradycardia/congestive heart failure.

I then moved to Tucson where my boyfriend lived and was an archaeologist for Pima County (Tucson), which was mostly a desk job. After only a year in my "dream job" I had to leave for good due to my new diagnosis of POTS/OI, etc, etc. I miss my work so much! I haven't worked for about 4 years now.

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Also, forgot to mention that symptoms appeared after many stressful events in my life involving my grown daughters. Of course the job as a clinical counselor was stressful too. You hear a lot of sad stories but I don't think I took it home with me.

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My first round of disabling symptoms hit in 1997 while I was in my last year of college studying behavioral science. I was so bad I couldn't even read the text books to study for final exams. It felt like I was brain blind? - I couldn't focus my eyes, the words had no meaning... I couldn't get the info into my head. My mother had to read to me. Somehow made it through that, then went onto a Masters program in Criminal Justice. I have no clue how I did it - I was SO sick. After that, I got a job as a private investigator with an Atlanta company that had an office in NY. After two years, I just couldn't do it anymore. I got seriously ill on a business trip in Miami, contemplated suicide while alone in that hotel room -sorry, it's the truth. I had been so ill for so many years - I just felt like I couldn't take it anymore. I came back and told my boss I needed a leave of absence and never made it back to work. The following year I married a man I met in college and he has taken care of things financially ever since. I hate that my education has been wasted and feel so frustrated that I cannot contribute financially.

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I was working as an RN in the recovery room. I'd been doing this type of work for 7 years. I LOVED my job! I got mono in 6/06 and went back to work after a month, then was in a bad car accident in 9/06 and had my first tachy episode at work in 10/06. The car accident caused a lot of soft tissue damage in my left hip which didn't get diagnosed til the spring of 2007. I worked until 5/07 and had my first hip surgery in 6/07, and another one 1/08. I had to lay down most of the time because of the severe hip pain so I probably never really knew how wacky my pulse and BP were at the time. After over 100 PT visits, my hip finally improved in late 2008 but by then the POTS was much worse and was keeping me from working. I went to Mayo in 1/09, got diagnosed, and have been working on improving my symptoms since then.

All of this was stressful, but I also got married in 2007 to my caring, supportive husband and I have tons of other family/friend support. Mayo said the mono virus triggered my POTS and I should recover. I'm still waiting for the recovery part :P . So I guess I'm saying that a lot of stressful events happened to me, but I feel that I had the resources to handle them in a positive manner. I wonder if I would have gotten POTS eventually anyway.

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I believe I have had POTS all my life but it was just very mild.

Over the years I would have periods of tachycardia and lightheadness which would come and go. I had a few faints also which I couldn't be bothered to get investigated I was too busy.

In 2002 I noticed that I had become very heat intolerant but most of the time felt freezing cold. Then in 2007 after a really bad migraine I developed Ptosis and full blown POTS. Weird combo.

All this time I was working in retail nearly twenty years in total, nothing remotely connected to my degree in history! I loved my job it was my life.In my last position before I left I ran a team of 130 people and we had sales of over a million pounds sterling a week. It was a very stressful job which became more stressful when I was struggling to do my job due to being unwell and having no support from my colleagues or senior managers. I was bullied relentlessly for 12 months until I collapsed in 2008 and I haven't worked since.

I actually miss working dreadfully and its taken me a long time to accept that I can't. I feel guilty and find myself thinking if I wasn't so lazy and pushed myself I would be able to do it. I know in my heart this is a complete lie. But I feel like I contribute nothing to the world. Its a hard feeling to shake.

Rach

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I teach and research in a university setting. I've been lucky, as my symptoms didn't really hit till 2006, after I'd been in my job for 8 years. I have had bad spells where I couldn't work, but thankfully, have improved with meds, rehab, neck brace for cranial-cervical instability. There are always many tasks to accomplish, but I have a lot of flexibility about when I accomplish them. Teaching is actually the most physically difficult part, and I often do it seated. I can grade papers and read in a recliner. I don't teach large lectures. Also as I have a unversity population, I don't have to worry as much about discipline. I have flares around my period, esp. late in the day, and it can be a struggle.

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I am a business owner in the finance world-- getting people homes and helping them with their refinances for the past 15 years. At one point I had 35 employees....it WAS beyond stressful. Worked from 7am to midnight alot of days. For me, I take a lot of pride and really care about other people's/customers situations. I put myself in their shoes and try to be very careful about explaining everything and getting people into the best product for them. When something goes wrong with my customers and/or employees, I take it personally and do my best to fix it.

Now I am lucky to have a small shop with only 4 employees and I work from Home mostly. I Thank the Dear Lord above for these circumstances since the onset of my illness. If it had been a few years earlier, I would have lost everything.

But I definately think STRESS played a big role in my nervous system!!!

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It is so weird to me how I quit my job, my salary (double what i make now!), my benefits, my tenure... Now there is a hiring freeze in city of New York AND I am sick :(

Feel like I have the worst luck in the whole world. Had to quit my job though, it was so stressful and the atmosphere was so toxic.

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