I am a recent graduate of mechanical engineering/process technology and working on masters in occupational safety and health. My dilema is that in 2004 I injured my back at work and have dealt with it ever since, it did not stop me from doing good in school. I have spent countless hundreds of hours reasearching spine, spine disorders, participating in spine forums. It has become a passion as well as a neccessity for me and has led to proper diagnosis in several parts of my spine treatment life that I was able to conversate and bring up points about the symptoms I was having. I have been treated by several NP in spine centers and I always seem to blow their mind with my knowledge of spine and they ask why I dont go into something like they are in.
I grad. and began work again and its ok, but this year I was looking at some spine clinic and there was a NP who works at a spine clinic, is involved in diagnosing, reasearch on spine, trials etc. That is what I need to be doing, I feel I bring a wealth of info since I lived with spine problems and been to some of the best spine surgeons in US.
I want to become an NP and work to specialize in spine and work in spine care/diagnosis, I think I would be fulfilled for rest of my life helping others battle this terrible condition. But with that said I really dont desire a career in any part of nursing other than this part, I love kids, and people. I feel I would be good at it but its not my passion or where I feel I could do most good.
So I guess what I am asking is would it be reasonable for a 33 yr old man with spine problems ( in shape though) to return to school with goal of being a NP and going into spine treatment centers. Preferrably there are several places across US that I would like to work due to prestigious spine doctors there ( after gaining exp). I guess life with spine issues and working for money does not seem worth much , but if I could turn this 10 yr struggle into something worthwhile for others and myself I just feel it would be justification for losing so much from the spinal issues over the years is that it was leading me to this,I kind of feel a calling but just dont know if I am being unrealistic in my pursuit.