U.S. Pain Foundation Ambassador Summit

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

After the pageant in Florida, I had one day at my house to pack before I headed to Maine, Dallas, and Chicago! This post is going to focus on my trip to Maine! I was invited to attend the U.S. Pain Foundation's Ambassador Summit. The summit is all about meeting new people as well as learning how to become a better ambassador. We stayed on the University of New England campus in Biddeford, Maine and it was beautiful! 

I was able to meet so many fellow caregivers and pain warriors. I believe a key part of the conference was showing that there is power in numbers. People do not understand how broad of a topic chronic pain is. It affects every task someone with chronic pain does everyday. If you have not read the spoon theory, I highly recommend that you do. It gives an inside look into how chronic pain affects a person. The U.S. Pain Foundation is launching a People with Pain Matter Campaign. Our goal is to have people share stories. The more you share, the more others know. If we all continue to post, and speak out, our voices will be heard. 

‪Dr. Ed Bilsky and Senator Hill were both key speakers at the event. Dr. Ed Bilsky serves as the Vice President for Research and Scholarship; Professor of Pharmacology, Founding Director of the Center for Excellence in the Neurosciences,  and Co-Director of the Center of Biomedical Research Excellence for the Study of Pain and Sensory Function. He is a key player in the pain community, providing research and information as well as speaking out for pain patients worldwide.  Senator Hill has also spoken and advocated for pain patients through her role in the government. It was an honor to meet both of them and hear them speak so passionately about our cause. 

Many other members of the pain community spoke. Some sharing personal stories like how to be a good caregiver or others giving crash courses on bills that apply to the community, and how to speak to government officials. I learned so much valuable information during the summit that I cannot wait to share and advocate for. Even though we were very busy, we squeezed in a few Dancing Through the Pain moves while overlooking the water. Overall, I am excited for what this next year will bring!

"Success is not measured by what you accomplish but by the opposition you have encountered and the courage with which you have maintained the struggle against overwhelming odds." -Orison Swett Marden 

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