I have struggled a lot with regret looking back over the last couple of years. I have regretted ever using hormonal birth control when my husband and I got married (especially the Nuvaring). I have regretted ever losing a lot of weight before I got married (I got down to about 115 at 5'6"). I regretted not using a different form of birth control when I stopped hormonal birth control (I got pregnant immediately with no period in between; this is also when my pain started). I have really regretted ever going to physical therapy (which seemed to be the causative factor in my inability to sit and downhill physical condition). And the list continues.
But in reality there are thousands of people who use the Nuvaring and never develop chronic pelvic pain. There are millions of people who are thin and don't develop pudendal neuralgia. I know women who have gotten pregnant the first month off hormonal birth control and never gotten vulvodynia (besides had I not gotten pregnant immediately we wouldn't have our precious daughter who is definitely worth it!) And while PT could have contributed to my inability to sit and increasing pain it's unlikely that it soley caused my current pains. After all, I already had pelvic pain coming into therapy (albeit minor pain in comparsion), but my pelvic floor PT had helped hundreds of women with pelvic pain and was treating me with the common treatments used for my current pain of pudendal neuralgia.
So what caused my pelvic pain or more importantly why do I have do endure this pain? What is the purpose of my pain? I am reminded of a passage in John chapter 9 about the blind man that Jesus rubbed mud on his eyes and after washing his eyes he was healed. But there are three important verseas at the beginning of this chapter that often get overlooked.
"As he passed by, he saw a man blind from birth. And his disciples asked him, "Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?" Jesus answered, "It was not that this man sinned, or his parents, but that the works of God might be displayed in him." (John 9:1-3)
The disciples said, "Jesus, why is this mind blind and having to endure this life of suffering?" And Jesus says, "that the works of God might be displayed in him". This man's suffering had purpose! And God in His loving wisdom is directing the details of our lives for His glory. When the thoughts of regret come, I must remind myself that God's will will be and has been accomplished in my life and for now that will includes chronic pain.
"And what is [God's] will? That you and I be in the best position, the best place, the timeliest circumstance in which God can be glorified the most. For me, that place just happens to be a wheelchair. That happens to be my place of healing." Joni Eareckson Tada A Place of Healing
(Joni has been a quadriplegic for 40 years, suffered from chronic pain, and battled cancer. You can read more about her ministry here)