Difficult Crossroads

Two years ago, I came to a difficult crossroads. I lost my job, my health, and my home, all in a matter of months.

After 17 years of employment, management restructuring resulted in cost-cutting to the retail store I managed. I was let go. That weekend, my family tried to lift my spirits by including me on a ski trip. It was the first and last time I would ever ski.

On a run down a beginner hill, I flipped and shattered my left tibia and fibula. I was hospitalized. Although the doctors hoped for a six-week recovery, I required seven surgeries and had to remain non-weight bearing, sitting or lying down, for several months.

I had no income and three young sons to support. Before long, I was unable to pay my mortgage. I feared my children and I would become homeless. I felt overwhelmed and devastated. But my three children’s lives depend on my success. Despite the circumstances, I couldn’t give up.

During my darkest moments, I felt as if I had no supports.

I found myself reflecting on moments when I felt most supported. Oddly, it was while I was in the hospital immediately after the accident. The nurses I encountered not only fulfilled my healthcare needs, but they also addressed my mental health needs. They told me I would be okay. That things would get better. They talked with me about my family and hobbies. We had genuine interactions that helped me feel cared for and supported. I honestly don’t think I would be where I am currently, if it wasn’t for those nurses. Their words later served as my mantra during low moments.

Motivated by my need to protect and support my children, I reached out to several local service organizations. Later, I decided to return to school to become a nurse. I started back to school on crutches, after seven surgeries, and a knee replacement. Today, I am a student in a local nursing program.

Growing up as a Latina American living in poverty, I have seen how these communities have experienced poor healthcare which often resulted in poorer health. I see the need for skilled nurses and believe that I can make a difference. Long-term, I hope to serve people in vulnerable communities.

Someday, I hope to be like the nurses who helped me. I want people to feel supported when they may be at their lowest. I want to provide excellent healthcare to those who need it most. I want to honor everyone who has encouraged and supported me.

One Comment Add yours

  1. David Jackson says:

    I am so glad you are on the road back to health with a solid plan for your family’s future. You’re a strong person and you’re getting your control back. Some things we can control and some we can’t and it looks as if you’ve taken life by the reigns and are now steering your course as much as one can. Now you can become one of the compassionate nurses you needed during your recovery. Someday you’ll encounter patients who need the same compassion you did, and you’ll always remember during those moments why you became a nurse. Nurses are a major part of the reason I recovered so quickly from my transplant surgeries and other health scares. We need our doctors but it’s the nurses, and the technicians as well, who say the things we need to hear which help us find the courage to fight our way back to health. They also take the time to explain things we need to understand. I’m proud of your accomplishment. Best of luck in school!

    Liked by 1 person

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