Monday, December 8, 2008

My Latest Realization

I had a major realization over the last couple weeks. I've lived my life and aimed my career at trying to achieve the same level of financial comfort my parents enjoyed while I was growing up. In the back of my mind without ever fully realizing it, I'd always thought that success in my life would mean being able to afford all that my parents could afford and being able to provide my children with the same opportunities they provided me. For example, growing up we had a large house with large bedrooms, a pool, a treehouse, and a nice yard and garden. I was able to travel to Australia, Hawaii, and Italy before I was even in high school. But now I know all that is not necessary. The only thing necessary is love. My children will have fewer opportunities, smaller bedrooms, and no grassy yard, but they will have more love than they will know what to do with.

Soooo, anyone want to buy a house with 4 bedrooms, a pool, and a beautiful rose garden??? Haha. We think we may want to sell the house once the market is a little better.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008


I saw a sign the other day that said something like, "Thank God for dirty dishes. It means we had food to eat." Those weren't the exact words, but close.

I'm so glad I read this on a sign the other day, because it reminded me of how I take all the little things for granted. It reminded me of how easily I can complain about things like the dishes or laundry, when instead of being frustrated I could choose to be thankful.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


I can't believe it. Our garage door was left open on accident again last night, and our dogs stayed put AGAIN! If only we as humans had the same loyalty to one another and to God as our dogs have to us. It is amazing.

Sunday, November 16, 2008


Yes, folks, that is that category I fit into right now. Trying to Conceive. I've had an emotional month in that area. My nurse practitioner has assured me as best she can that I am not pregnant simply because of "chance", and that there is nothing actually wrong with me other than I need help ovulating and I need to take hormones so my body can support a pregnancy. I think I know of at least 10 present or former (i.e. high school and college) friends who are pregnant. It seems like every time I open up my facebook page, another friend has announced her pregnancy. December will bring us to 12 months of TTC. I don't have the assurance I thought I would have that we should pursue adoption. I wish I did, because now all I have are unknowns. Can I get pregnant? If so, how long will it take? So I am pretty sure God would like to teach me to be so thankful for all that I have in my life. I try every day.

I don't really buy into the "God wants me to be thankful for what I have before He will allow me to have a child" idea. I just don't think God works like that. I think that's a human way of rationalizing why we don't get what we want right away. And if that's how He works, that's fine. I'll find out in Heaven. But I'd much rather try to hear what God is teaching me without trying to figure out why things happen when they happen and why. I think being a child of God is much more about the "what" than the "why".

Sunday, October 19, 2008

TheNext Big Thing

I'm back to the feeling of missing something. I live my life just waiting for the next "big thing" to happen. Right now I have been living my life waiting to get pregnant and have a baby. There is no telling when/if that will happen. David and I are considering adoption but that would probably take a couple years. In the meantime I do not want to keep living my life just waiting for it to happen. I want to take hold of what I have in front of me now. I'm not sure what that looks or feels like. I don't want to be consumed by what I desire but by what I have. I want to find out why I have a sense of emptiness when I think about how I spend my time.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

My love/hate relationship

I have a love/hate relationship with change. On one hand, I love the excitement that comes with the unknown. That would probably explain why I decided to move 2000 miles away after graduating from college when I had the option of staying put or only moving 100 miles away. I enjoy thinking about the potential greatness that can come with change...new experiences and new people especially.

On the other hand, I hate the worry that comes with change. It puts me in a depressed mood.

Things are likely to change with David's job very soon. Which will mean inevitable major changes. I have come to enjoy his extremely flexible schedule, despite the many late nights he has. Last night I was worrying about who will take our dogs to the vet when his schedule won't allow him to take time off in the middle of the day? It's things like that which make me hate change.

He will probably have to deploy sometime in the near future, also. He wants to, as his duty calls, and for that I am excited for him. But what if I get pregnant and he's gone for the birth?? Eeek.

On a totally different note, this morning I woke up and found we had somehow left the garage door open all night. That alone kind of sucks but fortunately everything seems intact. What is truly amazing is that I went to the garage to feed the dogs and found both dogs right at the door to greet me. They normally have free access to the living room/kitchen, garage, and side yard with our doggie door. Last night they had free access to the world, yet they chose to stay home. Who knows what they may have explored through the night, but words can't describe how thankful I am that they didn't run off and get lost. WOW.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Good Grief

Who ever came up with that saying, "Good grief"? Well, whoever it was must have been pretty smart.

I don't remember having grieved much in my life. I grieved when my first serious relationship failed. When my father-in-law passed away I grieved for a time. It has been a while since I have grieved...until now. Since this is public I won't share on here exactly what I am grieving, but I can share what it's like. It's sad. Very, very sad. But it is also pushing me toward Christ in a way I haven't ever experienced. So because of that, I am blessed to be grieving. It's not the kind of blessing I'm jumping up and down for joy with, but the kind of blessing that will stay with me forever and have character-altering effects. So it's "good grief".

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Am I Missing Something?

I have a friend who is a teacher, is involved in our small group of young married couples, and is part of an outreach group in South Tucson. When she talks about being part of her outreach group, it makes me feel like I am missing something in my life. I have the feeling that there is something I could (or should?) be doing with my time that I'm not right now.

Currently, my time is spent by working, attending my small group (assuming I'm not sick, as was the case this week), hanging out with friends from that small group, hanging out with work friends, spending time at home or out with my husband, and spending time alone either out (usually shopping, the library, or working out) or at home (usually playing with the dogs, watching tv, on the computer, or cleaning).

It's funny that I can, in a way, sum up my life in one paragraph! When I read it, it sounds full. But when I'm at home and piddling around the house or spending what I judge to be way too much time on the computer or in front of the tv, that's when I often feel that I'm missing something.

Despite this feeling, I am satisfied in general with how I spend my time. I wonder though, am I missing something? Or is this simply the longing for complete fulfillment that will only come in Heaven?

Tuesday, September 16, 2008


I have a friend from a mission trip I took in college who wrote this funny story on her myspace, and I have to share:

So, I am staying at my sisters', home of my darling nieces. My angelic niece, Aleah, came into the living room with a beautiful picture of a vase that she drew me. Wanting to expose her more to the Bible, I asked her to find a verse for me and put it on the bottom. What a great idea on my part!! I showed her where the Psalms were (can't go wrong with the Psalms), and she went back to her room to find the perfect verse to give to me.

A couple minutes later, she came back with this inspiring verse...

Arise, O Lord! Deliver me, O my God! Strike all my enemies on the jaw! Break the teeth of the wicked.

That's so...sweet.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

It's Not 1am!

I am blogging, and it isn't 1 am! Something is out of the ordinary, here. I am having difficulty sleeping though. But alas, I have taken a sleeping pill and I am blogging, which are my two insomnia remedies!

I haven't had any one light bulb moment recently, which is why I haven't written anything much lately. So I will just ramble about my life and family life in general.

Mom is currently with my half-sister in Vietnam helping her go through the process of adopting a baby.

My sister is soon to have her own baby in October, which is going to come fast. David and I will be visiting her in November when we go back East.

David and I hosted a party for my co-workers on Saturday, which turned out really well.

David is thinking about joining the Border Patrol after retirement in a couple of years instead of becoming a cop. I think that's kind of exciting.

Work is still going well. It is still stress free. There are a few relationships that are strained there because of cliques, but nothing that keeps me awake at night. It's just part of a work environment and part of being around other human beings. I have bonded with one girl in particular there which has been really fun and always a good feeling to gain another friend.

David and I took a trip to Sedona last weekend and had a really nice time. We stayed at a bed and breakfast which was a new experience for both of us. It was really nice, minus the gourmet breakfast! I'm just not into things like eggs benedict. A bowl of cereal or at the most scrambled eggs and bacon, and I'm good! So maybe at our next bed and breakfast we'll try to get a special order or we'll find one that serves something simple...although that is probably hard to find.

Our small group of young married couples has grown to a point where we have decided to break off into at least 2 smaller groups right now. It's heartbreaking for me on one hand because there will be five other girls that I would normally see on an almost weekly basis that I won't see nearly as often anymore. But on the other hand I'm very excited to be part of a new group and get to know two more couples better.

And finally, I ate too many cookies today. Time for a renewed sense of diet, health, and exercise.

Saturday, August 9, 2008


Sometimes I get into personality profiles, and sometimes I find the questions too confining. But it is midnight and even though I was super sleepy all day, I find myself unable to fall asleep. So, I thought for fun I would do the personality profile that Rachael mentioned on this website. Here are the results and my thoughts:

The Performer

You are a natural performer and happiest when you're entertaining others: Very true, I LOVE entertaining people at the house.

A great friend, you are generous, fun-loving and optimistic: I'd say I'm generous--I often pay for others when I go out or if someone is in need I like to give what I can to ease their burden. I'm not sure about fun-loving; I'm sure sometimes I am but other times I am more serious in friendships. I think I am optimistic for others because I don't want to be the one to bring them down, even if the down side of a situation may be very real and possible.

You love to laugh - and you like almost all people equally. I do love to laugh, but I can't say I like almost all people equally. I wish I liked all people equally and could appreciate more those I'm not so keen on. This is something I need to ponder.

You accept life as it is, and you do your best to make each day fantastic: I really don't know about this one...I'd have to ponder it more...maybe sometime other than midnight.

In love, you are a smooth talker and incorrigible flirt.
While you get into relationships easily, you don't tend to stick around when times get tough: Again, I don't know how to respond to either of these.

At work, you do well in groups. You keep everyone laughing through difficult tasks.
You would make a good actor, designer, or counselor: I disagree with keeping everyone laughing through difficult tasks. I enjoy laughing in appropriate situations but when I have a task to do, I like to work hard to get it done if I'm on a deadline. If there's no deadline then I may be inclined to keep the situation light but I would generally help keep things light if others are doing the same. I'm not one to stand out at work; I try to do my job well most of the time. If others are laughing then I'll go along with it and have a great time, and try to create laughter myself. But if others are serious, I won't try to change their mood. I think I could be an ok actor. I think I'd make a terrible designer because I don't see myself as inherently creative. I think I would make a good counselor.

How you see yourself: Capable, fair, and efficient: Yes, Yes, and Yes. But that's pretty generic.

When other people don't get you, they see you as: Incompetent, stubborn, and silly: At work there is one girl in particular that I think sees me as incompetent, and I don't think she gets me. I have a few friends that might see me as stubborn, although I'd say they get me. I don't think that silly is quite accurate though. I think some who don't "get" me might see me as serious and others might see me as pretentious.

Monday, August 4, 2008

Having Friends

Never in my life have I had as many close friends as I do now. In gradeschool my parents actually bought a house in a new town when I was in fifth grade because I was getting picked on too much and didn't have many friends. I'm not completely sure why it was this way in gradeschool, but in general I don't think I was a very friendly child. I didn't learn much about being friendly until I went to college. In high school I had a few friends but only one that I thought really wanted to be with me or that really cared much about me. I just never seemed to fit in, and I still wasn't all that friendly of a person. In college I thought I had lots of acquaintances, but only a couple friends. I had very low self-esteem in college, so whether I had friends or not it never seemed like it. Also, in college I didn't date much and my friends did...so that left me as a third wheel often. Praise God for good counseling at the end of my senior year in college. Had I not been able to realize a few key truths, moving 2000 miles away from friends and family would likely have put me in a huge downward spiral. I met David 6 months after graduating from college, he took the place of the "friend" emptyness I had always felt.

But it wasn't until 2006 when David and I joined our small group of young married couples at church that I started to have more and closer friends. It certainly took several months to be able to feel close with them, but that's part of meeting new people and taking time to get to know them. Compared to some friendships my relationships with these girls may not be considered all that close, and I assume this is true only because I've heard a few girls in our group comment about how much they miss having the close friends they had back home, in college, growing up, etc. For me, not ever having had the type of friendships I have now makes me so appreciate what I have. I don't feel lonely anymore, like I did most of my life.

So, why? Well the whole self-esteem thing is a big factor I'm sure. One of the first things my counselor told me in college was that I would have more friends once I started enjoying who I was. Until I enjoyed who I was, I wouldn't feel comfortable around other people, and people in turn wouldn't feel comfortable around me. He was right. God has taught me lessons about love over the last several years that have made me mostly happy most of the time with who I am. So I can enjoy life with and around others.

Along with that, getting over fear of rejection has also made a difference in being able to be close with friends. I rarely asked others to do things with me until the last couple of years. I was afraid of either rejection or afraid that whatever I planned would not turn out to be fun and I would be responsible for someone else not having a good time. I think one reason God gave me David is to help me learn not to fear these things so much.

I'm always wondering when I meet people if they have many friends. If I think they don't, it makes me really really sad. I know what it's like, and it sucks!

For whatever reason it is 3am and I have not been able to sleep for the last hour and a half. But at least I am awake and thankful of something, rather than awake and angry at something!

Thursday, July 31, 2008

Walking = Good, Gossip = Bad

I've started walking after work with a couple of co-workers. Since I started this job I've gained 5 pounds, which I attribute to being less active at work than I was at my previous job. I also am on a regular schedule which means I eat more regular meals. Working nights I just was too tired to eat when I came home so I would usually only eat two small meals a day. I suppose the "goodies" drawer in my boss' desk isn't helping either. So walking has given me the opportunity not only to get more exercise but also to start building a relationship with two of my co-workers. It's been a lot of fun. The good part is I'm getting to know these ladies well, the bad part is gossip is a huge part of our conversation. I hate that it comes so easily to me.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

I have a great boss

One thing I have been blessed with in my life has been great bosses. My first boss was my Dad, and of course I thought he was a great boss. When I worked on base after college I also had a really great boss...he was fair, understanding, personable, willing to bend the rules when it made sense, and would put others before himself. Now I have another great boss. I was supposed to go to a class this weekend to get a certification for work and for a few reasons ended up choosing not to go. I was able to get the certification online instead and save myself a lot of headache and anxiety. I called my boss this morning to let her know, unsure how she would react. She was completely supportive and encouraging and was happy I was able to get it over with and out of the way for my weekend--even though I'd already taken off half of Thursday and all of Friday in anticipation of being in class for 12 hours over the weekend.

I am so relieved. I was experiencing very high anxiety levels last night, and didn't fall asleep until 4am. The ladies in our small group talked about emotional roller coasters on Wednesday night. I don't desire to avoid emotional roller coasters because they can teach me valuable lessons. Although I would rather not have stressed out about the situation last night, doing so allowed me to feel great freedom this morning after talking to my boss.

Saturday, July 5, 2008

Women and Hobbies

So this discussion came about because a friend of ours in our small group of young married couples stated he didn't think any of the wives in our group had hobbies. Of course we all got defensive! When asked what he classifes as a hobby, he stated something along the lines of, "Something you enjoy spending time doing." My husband added that it had to be something that you wouldn't be disappointed if no one showed up to do it with you. So I asked if playing with the dogs would be classified as a hobby, and the reply was no. If I were to think of something that I enjoy spending time doing every day that I can do alone, it would be playing with the dogs. Rachael asked if hanging out with friends could be considered a hobby, and reply again was no. One girl in our group enjoys ballroom dancing, and so that was classified as a hobby, even though she doesn't do it anymore because it is too expensive.

So I wonder, why don't we have any "hobbies"? If we are all defensive about the fact that we were accused of not having a hobby, why don't we have any?

I don't have one particular answer to this question. I think that the wives in our group favor spending time hanging out and talking with one another over doing a hobby. So in our free time, we'd much rather plan a get together than pursue a hobby. I also wonder if it has anything to do with priorities. Are our priorities more about keeping our homes clean, running errands, and working rather than pursuing a hobby that is just for us? I don't know, what do you think?

Thursday, July 3, 2008


I was tagged, so here it is.

What were you doing 10 years ago?
1 Enjoying my last summer at home before college

What is on your to-do list today?
A lot of things to get ready for the 4th, none of which I did.

What are some snacks you enjoy?
1 Ice cream
2 Chex Mix
3 Fruit

What would you do if you were a billionaire?
Give a lot of money away. Move my parents to Tucson.

Your bad habits?
1 Not picking up after myself
2 Drinking soda before bed
3 Eating junk food
4 Not cooking dinner

5 Jobs you've had?
1 Waitress
2 Bartender
3 Housekeeper
4 Lodging Manager
5 Nurse

What is currently playing on your iPod?
Nothing, TV is on.

What are the last 5 books you've read or have been reading?
1 Every Woman's Marriage
2 Bits and pieces of the Bible
3 The Prince
4 The Priest
5 Taking Charge of Your Fertility

I'll tag Leatrice, and she can re-post in the reply again.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Sometimes He calms the storms

I love the words to the song by Scott Krippayne, “Sometimes He Calms the Storm.” The line of the song that is so riveting is, Sometimes He calms the storm, and other times He calms His child...

The pity party is over for me right now, and I feel as though God has calmed my storm, which I think is usually a little easier. It's much easier when God calms my storm rather than calms me. Because I am stubborn and difficult to change, I'm thankful God has calmed my storm and given me grace to have peace.

Sunday, June 8, 2008

Pity Party

I remember after graduating from college (the first time) and coming out of depression, I learned how often in my life I had pity parties for myself without realizing it. Today I threw myself another pity party. The difference now is I can recognize that I'm having a pity party for myself, but doggone it, I just want to stay at the party. Leaving the party right now means having to walk by faith and have hope, and right now faith and hope take so much effort that I'd rather just stay at the party. It just seems much easier for right now.

Friday, May 30, 2008

If I was a college student...

...it would make a lot more sense why I am wide awake at 1:30 am.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

The job, the dogs, and sleep

Ok, the job...LOVE IT! It is stress-free! It really is. It can get busy sometimes, but the busyness does not equal stress. It's great! The hours are good, the people I'm working with are easy to get along with, and did I mention, it's stress-free??? I doubt I'll be able to advance pay-wise nearly as well as if I was working in the hospital, but for now I'm satisfied. Apparently the employees haven't had any increases since they started a little over a year ago. That's a little discouraging, but who knows what the future holds.

The dogs...MUCH improved. We started shock collar training on Monday, and it's going very well. It's not used as punishment like I thought, it's an attention-getter when giving a command. And the dogs are already behaving better without the collar, too.

Sleep...why am I so sleepy all the time? I went to the gym yesterday after work and I'm hoping, without much hope, that exercise will help. I've tried using exercise in the past to help with sleep...actually to help me sleep better at night, but without success. So I'm not so optimistic that it will help me be more awake. The good news is I slept like a baby last night without any taking any medication. That rarely happens. But I was super sleepy on the way to work this morning, and sleepy now and I'm supposed to go to YM tonight. I wish I wanted to go, but I just want to sleep! But I should go.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Aha! Moments

Been feeling introverted lately. Crowds exhaust me. But by myself or just one or two others and life is good. I think this is my opportunity to spend more time with the Lord and build a closer relationship. It's been a while since I've felt much desire to be alone with Him so I'm grateful. And when I say a while, I mean a while. I've been feeling bad that I was always the "tired one" at group stuff lately, but now it's making more sense. It wasn't just my night schedule.

I love "Aha!" moments.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Got It!

I was offered the job this morning and I accepted! I start the 19th of May. Woo hoo!!!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

On a More Serious Note

So I had my interview yesterday and I thought it went really well. She said to call her tomorrow if I hadn't heard from her yet. I'm a little bummed I didn't get a call today but we'll see how it goes tomorrow. I will keep you posted...literally.

I Know You're Curious

Well, Rachael tagged me about my purse contents. First of all, I'll have to change this to "pocketbook" contents. Because I have to keep my Southern loyalties--we carry pocketbooks, not purses.

Anyways, I know everyone is DYING to know what is in there.


Mini clipboard







Saline vial

Saline inhalation solution

Alcohol wipes

2 pudding cups


McDonalds Barbeque sauce


Saline syringe

Icebreakers Raspberry sours



If you didn't already figure it out, I am using my work bag as my pocketbook right now. So half the contents came from emptying my pockets out at work at the end of my last shift.

Now you can all breathe a sigh of relief because you know what is in my pocketbook.

So now I'll tag Leatrice because she's the only one I can think of who will actually do this.

Monday, April 28, 2008

It's a No-Go

I didn't get the job.

I have an interview at a dialysis center on Wednesday. Not quite the same as mother/baby, but the benefit is the hours/days. It's M-F, 7-3:30.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Interview Update

I went to the interview today and it was great! But, she is interviewing another candidate on Monday. Then the manager goes on vacation. So she said I should know by the week after next and if I don't hear by the 28th then to call. So I have no idea if I'll get the job--I think the interview went well but the other candidate could have more experience. So I'm not getting my hopes up because I know this could go either way, but at least the interview went well!

Thursday, April 10, 2008


YAY! I have an interview next Friday at TMC for a position in mother/baby. I'm SO excited! So please pray for me :)

Sunday, April 6, 2008

My New Plan

1. Not make any committments between the hours of 9:30am and 5:30pm. My 9:30am is like everyone else's 9:30pm.
2. Go see my parents for a VACATION.
3. Do something girly for myself once a week.

Saturday, April 5, 2008


I'm getting tired of pressure coming from all sides. I need to take a hard look at my responsibilities and make some more decisions (oh, my favorite). I was told by a good friend of mine a couple weeks ago that she can't count on me to do what I say I'm going to do because I often back out or cancel. Today I backed out of an important obligation because, of all things, I was tired. I let other people down, I let my husband down, and I let myself down.

Working nights is hard. I like it, but it doesn't make the rest of my life very easy. Working full time gives us a comfort zone financially, but again, it puts a huge strain on the rest of my life because of the hours and the stress. I am weak; and I should just admit that I know I am weak and make fewer obligations and make sacrifices where they need to be made.

Balance is so hard.

"The Air Force is crazy..."

David and I were talking with a certain acquaintance on Thursday and he had some interesting points of view about the military. He said flat out, as I wrote in the title, that the Air Force is crazy. And working for the Air Force, you either buy into this craziness, learn to recognize the craziness and find balance, or throw your hands up and become lazy and uncaring. The hardest of those three, of course, is to find balance.

So why is the Air Force crazy? I'm thankful that I worked at least as a civilian for the Air Force for about 4 years, so at least I know some of what my husband faces every day. First of all, the military is a factory whose end product is war. The slogan, "Fly, fight, and win" sums it up pretty well. I don't really want to go into the politics of producing war, partly because I don't want to sound "anti-war" and partly because the idea of the war as a product is hard to wrap my mind around.

Secondly, the Air Force is crazy because of its unrelenting drive for near perfection in every aspect of its "factory". This I remember from experience and I can also sense it from the stories David tells. Another slogan that hints at this craziness is, "Integrity first, service before self, excellence in all we do." I don't mind the integrity first part, but the other two can make one go off the deep end if not careful.

Finally, craziness is as craziness does. Some people become brainwashed into the military ideals. If there weren't people that signed on to this craziness, I don't know that the military could do what it does and protect our country in the manner it is able to now. So it's a bit of a catch-22.

For a long time I have been in love with the military. I'm sure a lot of that has to do with my own perfectionist tendencies; the military seemed to go right along with my personality. My love affair is dying, though. Perfectionism eventually leads to disappointment and dissatisfaction. In the military it can suck the life out of the men and women as they strive and strive and are pushed to strive some more and keep producing, like a machine. Problem is, a machine will eventually break down, just like us. Perfectionism in my own life does the same thing.

Don't get me wrong--I'm so thankful for the job security David has enjoyed, endless opportunities, and of course the long list of benefits we enjoy being part of the military. I'm proud of my husband for his dedication and service. That will never die.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Career Question

So Leatrice asked me what ever happened to my thoughts about becoming a nurse practitioner? Well going along with my blog on decision-making, I realized that nurse practitioners do what they do in order to have more "autonomy". I don't want more autonomy, because making decisions is not my forte. And I'd have to make major decisions all day long about the health and course of treatment of my patients. That burden would be too much for me. I much prefer implementing the orders rather than creating them.

It's funny though. Last night I worked and I had two patients "go south" on me for a little while. In other words, they weren't doing very well and things were touchy as to whether they would stabilize or become critical and have to transfer to the ICU. One stabilized, fortunately, and the other was still in limbo as I was getting off shift. It was a very stressful shift for me, but it wasn't so terrible that I was longing to leave this job for L&D. I was happy doing what I was doing. As always it was good to get through the night knowing I had done the best I could to care for my patients. Times like these make it seem like the career change to L&D might be more hassle than it's worth since I'm mostly satisfied right now. BUT, I still think I'd be settling to stay. And it's risky to take that leap but unless red flags appear, I'm going to stick with my decision.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Making Decisions

Ask my parents and they will tell you that I am terrible at making decisions. My closest friends would probably say the same thing. When it comes to making decisions with my friends about what to do and where to go, I shy away because if what I choose turns out not to be fun, I'll feel it was my fault. And deep down inside I'll be afraid of what others will think about me as a result.

When it comes to making decisions about my life...relationships, career, family, finances...I'm afraid to make a decision and it turn out to be disastrous. I'm afraid of being miserable. Four years ago I made a decision about a job that turned out to be a huge flop...I was miserable and the job wasn't suited to me at all. In the end it was that decision that gave me the guts to change careers, so even though I was miserable and regretted my decision, it turned out to be one of the best things that could have happened to me. Now I am a nurse because of that "wrong" decision. And being a nurse is the third most "right" decision I've made (1st being choosing Christ and 2nd being David). Still, being miserable IS miserable, and the fear of it remains in me.

But now every night that I am not at work I lay in bed while David is asleep, and I think about what to do with my career. I'd say I'm 75% content with my job at the moment. I like taking care of my patients, the benefits are great, and I like the people I work with. The 25% that is not content is related to the field of nursing I am in. When I am not at work I keep thinking about what it would be like to work in labor and delivery. I love babies, and helping to deliver babies during my L&D clinical when I was in school was the most amazing experience I think I've ever had.

Making this career change would mean I'd have to move to a different hospital, have fewer benefits (no other hospital can compare to the benefits offered by the VA), and start all over in many ways. So, do I give up my benefits, the comfort of knowing what I'm doing, and enjoying the people I work with? Or is my level of contentment more on a weighted scale--even though I have three things I'm happy with and one that I'm not, is that one thing really worth more than all the other three put together?

I think so.

So, I'm making my decision. I'm going to apply to work in labor and delivery this summer, with hopes of starting in August. I will be free from financial commitments to the VA at that point, so it makes logical sense to wait until then, though the waiting will be hard.

I will probably be fearful for the next 4 months that I am making the wrong decision. All I can do is remind myself of the avenues that God opened as a result of my "wrong" decisions in the past. Reminding myself of that will probably not relieve me from much of my anxiety. But God's provision is truth. And truth is the only thing that is certain. Therefore, God's provision is certain.

Sunday, March 23, 2008


Well, my good friend Rachael recently posted her amazing birthday surprises given to her by her husband, so now I feel guilty for not having bragged about the surprises my husband gave me for our anniversary. I owe it to him to brag about him!

Two weekends ago he planned our anniversary. We trade years and last year I planned it, so this year it was his turn. He got off work early on Friday, came home, and had me pack my bags for the night. So we did, and then we went to Chick-Fil-A for lunch...our favorite fast food. Next, he drove to River Road and I was wondering if he was taking us to the Westin La Paloma...but he drove right by it. So I thought maybe he was taking the long way to the Interstate or something. However, a block later, he flipped a U-turn and drove right back to the Westin! Trying to throw me off track...it worked:) So we checked in to our hotel, which was very nice and reminded me of our honeymoon suite in Honolulu 4 years ago. We napped for a short while (love naps!) and then he said it was time to go. To where, I didn't know for sure, although I guessed he was probably taking me for a massage. I was right...we both had a massage at the Red Door Spa...which was VERY nice. Then, to my surprise, afterwards we hung out at the spa and he ordered a couple glasses of Sangria from room service to be brought to the spa so we could sip them as we sat with our feet in the hot tub. I expected the massage, because, well, David is just that good. But he went above and beyond with the Sangria and hot tub plan!

We came back to the room and took showers and got ready for dinner, which I expected. We went to Janos and had a nice dinner. He had a rose brought to the table, which I pretty well expected too. I don't expect these things in a "deserving" way, but I am not all that surprised by them because that's just how David does things in general.

When we came back to the room, I was kind of expecting that was the end of the surprises...a massage, wine by the hot tub, a nice dinner, and a rose at the table. But there was a plate of chocolates sitting in our room! I know that may seem small in comparison to a massage or fancy dinner, but to me, they were the highlight of the night! I LOVE chocolate, and David had already done enough to make the weekend great...he didn't have to order the chocolates. But he did and it was fantastic. I was pleased as punch.

One more thing! The next morning we woke up and I was looking forward to relaxing in bed...a nice, comfy, fluffy bed. There was a knock at the door and I figured it was just housekeeping seeing if we were still there. David answered the door, and in came breakfast! I was floored. Breakfast in bed to me is so romantic. And he ordered me waffles! I think I mentioned maybe once how much I like waffles.

Thanks David! Don't worry, I already have plans for next year in the works!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Life is So Precious

I was meant to be a nurse. Words to describe it: Stressful, fulfilling, depressing, hectic, never-ending, sweet.

People live and people die under my watch. When someone dies, it's like life stops for a minute, and I see a man in front of me who lived a whole life, the ups and the downs. One day that man will be my Dad, my husband, or maybe a son. And I will be the family member coming in to see the lifeless body lying on the bed, limp and gray. No longer will I be able to speak with him, spend time with him, or show him love. In front of me will be just a body, soon to be put in a body bag and wheeled down to the morgue.

Caring for the sick and the dying makes me think a lot more often about the relationships I have and what I focus my attention on. Because life on earth is not eternal; time here is limited. I can't really grasp what Heaven will be like, but I know what earth is. I think right now of the minutes passing by as I am lying here writing. Every minute seems like a minute closer to death right now. I'm learning what it means to focus on the joys of life rather than on all the things I have to complain about.

Life is so precious.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Laura Story

Her music is amazing! She wrote the worship song, "Indescribable" and has an awesome new album coming out. Check out her bio and music at http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=173086511

Wednesday, March 12, 2008


Balance. That word makes me cringe. Whenever I have some sort of moral dilemma, the thought that pops into my head is, "It's all about finding balance." Usually, I'm torn between the black and the white. One has certain pros/cons, the other has different pros/cons.

Hmm, I think I'm stuck in one of those moments where I know exactly what I'm trying to say but can't come up with the right words for it to make sense to anyone else.

Anyways, back to my thought. Here is the situation--I had a patient on my most recent shift who had been giving the staff a hard time and was being rude and demanding. When I came on shift I volunteered to take him because I knew it was either take him or take a man who was dying. I chose the angry man over the dying man, mainly because I'm terrified to have a patient die while under my care (a different issue, maybe I will write on it in a future blog). So I went into the angry man's room right away because I'd heard he likes to have things on time and consistent every day. I went in with the intention of doing my best to be pleasant, give the impression that I was there to make him comfortable through the night, and get my butt out of there as fast as I could to avoid getting stuck in there with his one-after-another demands when I had other patients with more urgent problems. When I went into the room and he was surprisingly pleasant. However, at his first request for me to help him take his shirt off, I told him quickly that I would have the aide come in and help him. He asked me why I couldn't help him and I told him quickly, "I'm just slammed right now," (which was completely true, I got on shift and had to start running a million miles an hour to make up for what day shift had missed because they had been short-staffed). He didn't comment, and let me go on my way after I gave him his medications. I didn't think much more about it until this morning on my drive home from work.

I replayed those moments in his room in my head, which then caused my moral dilemma. Should I have done exactly what I did to minimize confrontation and give myself more time to be with other patients who had slightly more urgent matters? Or should I have stayed in his room and helped him with whatever he needed? I can think of a few reasons why staying in there could have been the better thing to do...perhaps he was lonely and his demands were really a cry for attention, perhaps what he needed was really only to help him with his shirt, and by me putting him off he could have felt like he didn't matter to me, or perhaps any extra encounter with a smiling face is what he needed for encouragement and motivation to be a nicer person.

Now, this was only one encounter, and really there were only two choices. Either stay and risk getting stuck or not stay and risk compromising the nurse-patient trust relationship. So, I made a choice, and I decided to escape any possible confrontation and tend to more urgent matters.

But what about next time? If I always make a similar choice, then my pattern would be avoidance of the "difficult" patient. If I always were to make the opposite choice, then my pattern would be inefficiency in getting all the other patients what they need in a timely manner. I don't want to become either of those, so what do I do? I have to find balance. I'm finally coming back to the point of this matter...that most everything in this world requires some sort of balance because there is little that is always black or always white. It may be white in one situation but not in another.

So I start to long for Heaven when I think about how much I need balance in my life in order to make decisions and prioritize my time, efforts, and energy. Because in Heaven, it will be black and white all the time. (Well, I guess I'd rather think of it as being white all the time!) I won't have these moral dilemmas of wondering if I made the right choice here, said the wrong thing there, should have made a different decision etc etc.

Maybe I think it's odd that we have to work so hard on this earth for balance when balance won't even need to exist in Heaven. But I suppose balance is what is required when the world isn't perfect, and when there is sin in the world. Kind of a consequence of sin, I would say.

I will never be able to escape this quest for balance in life on earth. And so I long for the one place where I can escape this...Heaven. How sweet it will be.

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Flashing Red Lights

You know what it means when the red light is flashing, right? Stop, look both ways, then proceed with caution if the coast is clear.

I had a sudden awareness that the red light is flashing for me. That is a good thing, I think. In the past I usually just have my green-light-only glasses on so I get an idea and I jump on it and go for it (kind of like this run-on sentence--right Katie :) I go for what I "feel" in my heart is appealing. No stopping and sometimes panic sets in as I approach the intersection hoping everything will come together so that I can make it safely through.

Anyways, the red light is flashing because I have been thinking about going back to school to become a nurse practitioner. With my green-only goggles on, I would keep pursuing this because it sounds like a job more suited to me, they have online programs, and the sooner I get in the sooner my career can head in the direction I want. There is nothing inherently wrong with all of these thoughts. But what happens next is I start thinking and planning all day long about how this will happen, when I need to do this or that, how will school fit in with work and family...etc.etc.etc. So my mind will go a million miles an hour for the next two or three years while the process continues. BUT, somehow I am not wearing those goggles today.

So I saw the flashing red light. And that is comforting. It's not rush rush through the intersection. It is approach slowly, be alert, decide when/which way to go, and the proceed. No panic required.

Thank you, God, for opening my eyes to the world of flashing red lights.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Saving the World

Today I am thankful. I spoke with a lady today who summed up life so well. I am contented with most of the things in my life. I am contented with my husband, even when I look at him and wonder what planet he came from, I still would rather have no other alien-husband than him. My dogs are rambunctious and chew up the walls and the furniture, but when I look at them I am reminded that I would rather have no other dogs than them. My job is so difficult and stressful, yet I am thankful that I get to do the job I do most days of the week. My car is almost 15 years old, but I wouldn't have any other car. I have just the car I want. I look in the mirror and maybe my hair doesn't look that great today, but overall am pleased with what I see. My house may not be finished all completely the way I want it, and sometimes I feel discontented with it, but other times I think about how huge this house is and how wonderful it is to have so much space and the ability to have lots of people over.

I remember times of feeling discontented with most of life, rather than contented. Then I wonder, how did I get to this point that I can look at all these things and feel so at peace? And when did this peace come? I wish I had the magical answer, because then perhaps I could save the world. Only by the Grace of God do I have this peace.

Ahh, Grace, the freely given, unmerited favor and love of God.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Not All Lessons Are Hard Lessons

Leatrice would be so proud of me right now, because I am sitting in the room she calls, "The Room [I] never use." I call it the living room. And I even started a fire on my own (well ok it wasn't that difficult, since it is gas, but until today I've been afraid I'd set the house on fire. So I overcame my fear tonight and started it all by myself).

My latest and greatest pondering deals with contentment. I think about all the "stuff" I have...a beautiful home, a well-paying job, two loving puppies, a pantry full of food (most of which doesn't even get eaten), lots of clothes, my own car to which I have access 24/7...etc. etc. Above those things, I have a husband and many friends that are near and dear to my heart. I am so incredibly blessed it is beyond comprehension. What would it be like to live in a place where these "blessings" are unheard of? A co-worker on my unit is from India, and I am fascinated by her stories of life in her country. She says life in America is easy. In India the work is physically demanding. The wife works all day long to clean and cook, and the husband is usually out doing heavy labor-type work. However, she says that in India, there is much more respect within the family. The children rarely talk back because they are taught by all family members not to do so. There is greater support among the family members, and the entire extended family is truly seen as a unit. When she spoke about her family in India, she made comments like, "We have house in India," when she referred to where her cousin lives. To the family, the house is not sole property of her cousin; it is the entire family's house, even if the cousin is the one who "owns" the house.

I am intrigued by this attitude. All of my "blessings" are mine, right? No! My blessing is your blessing. And I want to learn that all the "stuff" in my life doesn't just belong to me. I have no inherent right to all these things. I could be content with so much less. I like knowing that I don't need more and more for my life to work out just right. I can look back just a year ago when we were renting and I remember feeling that void of not owning a house. And just a few months ago I can remember feeling the void of not yet having children. Or the first 6 months of my job when I hated it and wondered how on earth I could ever survive in such a stressful environment. I suppose it took me getting all these things to realize that I don't really need them. All I need to be content is to have faith that God cares deeply for me and that he will provide all that I need. He cares for me, just the me that He created and that exists. Even my personality, which God created uniquely for me, is irrelevant in His love for me. So his love depends on nothing of who I am other than that I simply am His child.

Now take all these things away and how would I feel or react? I don't know. But thank God for the grace He gives to teach me these lessons, even if He is so gracious to hand them to me on a silver platter.

Not all lessons are hard lessons.