Monday, October 29, 2012

Oh my wonder!

"Oh my Wonder!" New phrase, maybe it will be famous someday! :)

I sit here blown away. 1. That my daughter is being mentioned in two separate posts, on the SAME day! And 2. Because she is an artist. A real life, jaw dropping amazing artist! The little girl has been blessed with some talent! Keep in mind, she's 9 years old.

The past 4 weeks, Acilia has been staying after school each Monday partaking in a club. It's a fun little thing her school does. The month of September rolls around, a list of available clubs goes home, the kids choose their top three faves (Acilia was adamant she only was choosing one!) and then they rush to turn them in to the principal on the day they start accepting them. It's first come, first served. It's a fun little hustle and bustle and thankfully both times Acilia has participated, she gets into her first choice. This club takes place on Monday's after school through the month of October

This year it was "Everyone's an artist". Acilia informed me the first week they were painting a canvas, but after that, details were barren. Not for lack of trying on my part, but the fact was, Acilia wanted to surprise her old mom with the finished product and she was tight lipped as to what she was painting. The intensity grew each week and today was the big reveal! She came out with a box, inside was her treasure. She told me I couldn't see it..YET. I was a little perturbed because I was excited to see her hard work, but she was enjoying this little secret so much, I let her have it.

She showed the art to some friends and some parents and some teachers, while still keeping it under wraps to me. We arrived at the car, and I finally asked her to show me! She did and this is what I saw.

Amazing right?? I am blown away! Truly a work of art! 
And just for good measure, I am sharing with you some more pictures of Acilia's creations, she is mostly into drawing, but this canvas has clearly opened another path!

The heart of my daughter

I am not sure I can accurately articulate how I feel about my little big girl Acilia. She blows me away sometimes and it's a true blessing to behold. Acilia's natural personality, is that of a wise, insightful woman with a touch of innocence and spunk. Each day there is a new piece that she reveals about herself, that makes me fall deeper in awe of her. There are many qualities about your children, that once they finally embrace each one, your heart feels more full. Acilia embraced the essence of compassion and empathy yesterday when she made one simple request.

I had the joy of getting some alone time with Acilia. She decided she wanted to go out to run errands with me. She is not a fan of shopping and chooses to stay home any chance she gets, but when she's got a few dollars burning a hole in her pocket, she suddenly is my best shopping buddy! We were headed to the store, Acilia had $13 in her hand to spend on anything she wanted. As we drove, she asked if I could buy something for Miles. I informed her that he went to the store the day before (while Acilia was at her horse lessons) and was able to purchase what he wanted with his money. She was noticeably relieved. I told her how it was nice of her to think of him and asked what made her think of that? She replied that she thought about how she feels when Miles gets something when she doesn't, and it made her want to bring something home for him.

My sweet angel girl.

I adore this picture. It shows their bond as brother and sister.

The kiddos yesterday playing legos side by side. Don't mind the picture, I took it with my camera, but then took a picture of that with my phone so I could share it :)

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Allowed to be vulnerable

I've been seeing a therapist for quite some time now. She's not the first therapist I've seen, probably not the last either. My session yesterday left me really looking deeper; a place I thought I visit regularly, but not quite at this angle. She asked me to list some people I can be myself with. Full on vulnerable, the ugly cry type of vulnerable. I left her office thinking of the long list I would have. That's my homework, I need to bring a list of people in my life that I could open up about my deepest emotions. I joked about how that's why I see a therapist! So I can share myself with an objective person, that can't judge me. I've lived most all of my life being "proper". I grew up immersed in table etiquette and dressing our best and it's a way I am quite comfortable living. I don't go out without make up. I set my alarm each day, I get myself ready and I face the day. It hasn't necessarily been about buying the best most stylish clothes out there, but I enjoy looking "put together" and I left my appointment yesterday, questioning what that says about me. My therapist mentioned it's quite possible I have built walls up all around me, and that I show a different "face" to different people in my life. That is something I impulsively would whole heartily disagree with. I could justify it and say "I find comfort in having an orderly life". I like my life & home to be clean and organized, clutter in my life & home just doesn't work with me. It doesn't sit well. Going out without make up, I believe would make me feel unkempt. I can assure you though, my relationships are real. I am friends with many, I enjoy being an encouragement or a listening ear to anyone and everyone and if/when the time comes that I am the one that needs a little boost, I have people in my life who can listen to me, and lift me up when needed. I am still left unsettled though. A sense that who I am, has been rattled and I am eager to get to the root of it, because though at first glance, I would say my therapist was dead wrong on this particular subject, a part of me feels like she may be on to something. My husband and I do not get along. Does that sound horrible? Well, it's a truth. A real authentic truth. We have completely different ideas on pretty much everything and I feel a rebellion coming out of him each and every single time I go to him as me. In my marriage, I am not accepted for who I am and that is not only completely maddening and unfortunate, it's also a reality that will not change at this time. I have found in the past few years, I am lost within myself, being who I *think* I should be, and still dealing with the real feelings of who I *AM*. It's exhausting and to be honest, this is precisely why I started seeing a therapist in the first place. I want to feel calm and settled and content in my life. Wanting it and feeling it are quite different things. Over the years, I have built up walls and formed habits to fulfill my desire to be put together at all times. Brushing my feelings aside and telling myself to suck it up and move on. I tell myself that I am working to become who God wants me to be, yet on the other hand, I could have it all wrong. WHO I am, is who God wants me to be. I even went so far yesterday as to say that when my husband and I started having problems, I went on a journey of changing myself. I found myself trying to fit the mold I felt my husband needed and I was miserable doing it. I grew resentful that he couldn't just take me for who I am, and love me for ME. (In all fairness, I don't believe I do that for him either. I am so busy trying to keep our lives, our children, our home, PROPER, I lose sight of the fact that is MY preference, not at all his.)  In a light bulb moment, I realized I need to be true to myself so, recently I've started owning my opinions again and sharing that even if we don't agree, it doesn't mean either of us is wrong. It's just we are different. I'm coming back around to being ME again and that may or may not be good for my marriage. It feels selfish and it's a fine line to be true to myself, while still respecting and trying to fulfill my husband's needs.

So, even though I truly feel I am working to be a BETTER me, I am still ME. The way God intended me to be, all the good and all of the bad. It's about finding a delicate balance.

Thursday, October 25, 2012


My Vicar at church asked a question for an assignment he has to complete at the seminary.
It got me thinking, I am curious about your answer too!

So, feel free to either answer in the comments section or write a post about it on your own blog, please let me know if you blog about it though! I will stop by and read your thoughts :) :) :)

The question is:

"How does the Holy Spirit work in your life?"

My answer:
The Holy Spirit is simply put, my voice of reason. The Holy Spirit also fuels me, to choose good. I am motivated to seek the good in others, as well as to find ways to help others. The Holy Spirit is my ever knocking presence of the Lord!

What is your answer?

Stuffed potatoes

You can run wild with this idea! Find anything you like, but my #1 recommendation, make sure the potatoes are SOFT before stuffing them. Makes all the difference!!

LARGE potatoes
Thin sliced chicken breasts
cheese of your choice

Preheat oven to 375
Get one potato for each person that will be enjoying the meal with you.
Wash and place the potatoes on a plate. Microwave until they are cooked through. (since they are large, it can take a good 15-20 minutes to get them soft enough! I recommend microwaving for 10 min first, then 5 minute increments after that.
While the potatoes are in the micro, cook the chicken in a skillet with olive oil. Be sure to season the chicken or it will be pretty bland!
Once the chicken is cooked through, cut it into bit size slices.
Once the potatoes are cooked through, take them out and slice them open. Allow them to cool or you will burn your hands as you are trying to stuff them! Put foil around the outside of the potato to keep it from opening too much.

Once cool, mash the contents a bit and then take a spoonful out to make room for the stuffing. Add some butter and salt to the potato, then add the chicken, bacon, and cheese.

Put in the oven for about 10 minutes (watch the cheese to indicate whether it's done or not, melted cheese good, crispy cheese bad!).

A plate full of yummy for lunch!

I don't know what has gotten into me, I *never* took pictures of my food, until I wanted to talk about it can you not snap a picture of your food if you are going to talk about it? I am a visual person! I like to seeeeee what is being talked about :)

First half of the plate:
Leftover chicken, warmed in the skillet with olive oil, basil and salt. I added cauliflower for added flavor!

Second half of plate, a little mix I thought sounded good: Red pepper, garbanzos, mozz balls and cilantro. I added salt and Parmesan.


Tuesday, October 23, 2012


Our day begins with the choice of getting out of bed or staying in bed to hide from the world. The choices are just beginning for the day, milk or OJ for breakfast, gray or black clothes today, drive to work or ride the bus, and on and on and on.

It's the choice we make each day, each moment that guide how the rest of the day may go. You could choose to take a different route to work and you find that if you had visited the same old streets you do day in and day out, there was an accident at the precise time you would have been there. A choice you make could save your life. A choice you make could also add minutes to your commute. Reactions are mostly emotional response, and then the logic comes in. The choice.

I made a choice to drive into a car wash the other day. I was inside when I noticed the doors to get out were not functioning. One was propped open with a zip tie and the other was not moving out of my way as I was moving out. I had choices to make and I made them. My car suffered. The door that I slowly and gingerly pushed open with my bumper, scratched my new car from bumper to bumper on one side.
BUMPER TO BUMPER scratches like this 
 I was reminded all evening by my husband why my choices in the situation were the wrong ones and what he would have done differently. I was quick to inform him that I made the choices I needed to make at the moment to get me out of a situation and though they may not have been what *he* would have done, they were what I *did* and it was the past.

TobyMac puts it eloquently in the song Me Without You "I'd be packing my bags, when I need to stay, I'd be chasing every breeze that blows my way..."

Without God, my choices would be much different. It's not easy to make choices, but it's a guidance that I have from Christ's sacrifice. I have the choice to live in a way that is pleasing to God or to not. I walk each day making the choice to please God. I choose to do the right thing, and I also choose to walk away from things that I can see as toxic in my life. I have the choice to follow up conflict with making it right with resolution, even though that's the harder thing to do. It's much easier to complain about what I was put through and talk poorly about the person that I was in conflict with. The choice often times is between doing something the "easy" way or doing it the "right" way. This is something I am really grasping onto lately. Anyone that knew me growing up, knows I had my own hard headed way of doing things. I bent the rules to allow for all situations to work my way.  I had a lot of learning to do, but I've learned no matter what, even when following the rules, there's usually a way I would prefer to do something and it's not the way I was told to do it. I have a choice, follow the rules, or do it the way *I* want to do it. As I've learned the rights and wrongs of living life, I am faced with helping my kids to make choices too. Make the choice to clean up your mess or choose to sit in your bed for a time out and then clean up the mess for example. As much as it seems just cleaning the mess would be the choice option, sometimes it's not so clear to my kids! Choices are hard. They come with real consequences sometimes and you have to ask yourself "Is the choice I make, something I can live with?" If it is, it's an easy choice, but what happens when the answer is not so clear? The choice is tougher, sometimes the answer is hazy, you have two raw options or better, you have two good options. Always choose the right way. It's easier said than done, but I have truly learned, if you do what you are supposed to do, it's a lot easier to live with the aftermath. Choose with your head, allow logic to speak above emotions. There again easier said than done, for those of us (Us as in MYSELF 100% included!!) who are emotional and impulsive. Slow down, listen to God, He will guide you.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Trunk or Treat 2012

It comes and goes SOOOO fast, but it's a blast in the meantime!! This was our second year participating and boy was it fun!! I LOVE decorating in a theme and dressing to match! And I LOVE wearing country inspired clothes! I am dreaming of the day we live where cowboy hats are a must! I love love love western style! Oh, and I was absolutely THRILLED and HONORED to win the "Most kid friendly trunk award" !! What a sweet surprise!!

Welcome to the Visco Ranch!

Miles looking tough in his cowboy get up

Acilia and her cousin Ali ready to trunk or treat!

Acilia helped pass out candy for a little bit

Miles played some tunes!

I am not kidding when I say it took about 12 pictures to get this one! Anytime hubby is involved in a picture, you can bet there is trouble! HA! Sure, sure he looks all sweet and innocent in this one! Big fat troublemaker!!

Fish out of water

Can I just tell you, education can be like car shopping? Al and I spent an entire YEAR car shopping, we went to dealerships and test drove practically all the vehicles out there! We researched online, we found things we didn't like about each car we drove and though they were things I could have settled for, Al is particular when spending his money. We had a vehicle we liked, and none on the market compared to it! Al was quick to tell me that each and every time we test drove a car. Except for the things about my car that I could not live with, hence the need for car shopping! So, education, I have been on a path to nursing school for the past 4 years, and just like a light switch, my direction has changed. I will maintain the end goal is still the same, however, my path is unsettled and I am finding myself researching and testing all of my options and there are TOO Many!!!!! Same as car shopping, you want an SUV for instance, you have what feels like hundreds of choices! Education is very much the same, I have a list of "acceptable" programs I could choose but how do you choose the one that's best? I have been online allll morning looking at all of my options and there is no real direction. It's personalized. Personalized is a fabulous option, but everyone is so different, it's hard to find out what works for ME. I need clarity. A defined path that I can walk and I will be much more settled! I think I am a little hesitant because here I was on a path to nursing and then like the wind changes direction, there's me, feeling like I am starting at square one. Yes, many of the courses I took to pursue nursing will be useful for Lactation Specialist certification, so all was not lost. I guess I just needed to vent my overwhelmed state.

How do you work through your overwhelmed confusion?

For me, I get out paper and start feverishly taking notes and making lists! I print internet pages and I keep them all nestled away in a manila folder. It's sort of an organized chaos! But it works for me. When I am feeling OCD, I get out the highlighter and highlight the notes that apply to me in the pages I have read over and over and over and over! :)
So, here I am, surrounded by papers, and notes, trying to plot my direction.

I will say I am closer to a plan NOW than I was a few weeks ago, but I am still not 100% set on which path to take. I guess the good news is, there IS a path, it's just a matter of figuring out which one I want to commit to :) Decisions! Decisions!!

Friday, October 19, 2012


We are looking forward to trunk or treat tomorrow night! This is the second annual T-or-T for our church and we participated last year too! For those that don't know what trunk or treat is, cars fill the parking lot, they decorate their "trunk" and then the lot gets closed and the kids walk around collecting their candy! It's easy and FUN! 

Some pics from last year: 

Our theme was "games", I found a "Candyland" costume and Al was "Twister" and then we filled our trunk with board games we had and used a twister board as the backdrop. Pretty simple and it turned out really cute!! I also took a deck of cards and strung them across the top of the car!
Family pic. Kids were Little red riding hood and the big bad wolf"

So, to the point of my title "Crafty". This year, the kids are going to be cow(girl/boy) and Al and I will play along by decorating the car in a western theme and dressing Country. I am using Acilia's horses for most of the decor, and I made a trip to Hobby Lobby to browse and get some ideas. (Note on Hobby Lobby, my FAVORITE STORE!!!) I happened to find a 18x24 inch barn wood frame and then I purchased some paper that looked western, I purchased some stencils and then came home and got to work!! I am really happy with how it turned out!! I can't wait to decorate the car and see how it all comes together! Oh, best part, the frame was 50% off!! Did I mention I love that store?!?

Sunday, October 14, 2012

The path we are on, leads us to the path we want to go!

The best way to figure out what you don't want in life is by living in it...This post is not in any way meant to make me sound ungrateful for what I have. Believe me, I am happy with the blessings I have in my life and there are many, even on my bad days, I can see through to the wonderful things that are designed for me to take peace and comfort. God is good like that. This house we live in. It's our first house. Everytime we think about selling, I find things that are endearing about it, things that we will most likely never have again in future homes. Then, there are the things I prefer not to have in future homes. Things like boxed off rooms. I've talked about my prayer for an open floor plan in our next house. I've also talked about wanting an eat in kitchen. Something we sacrificed in this house for an island in the middle of the kitchen. Infact, the island has seating, but only room for 2 chairs. When you do the math, 2 chairs for 4 people, not good odds for everyone having a seat to eat. Each night at dinnertime, we separate to eat. It's a horrendous habit. I look forward to the next house having room for a table for us all to sit down together, without the TV, to have that family bonding time that is said to be so important at dinner time.
the island with two chairs.
Seating is critical, not just for our family, but for having company over. I was never big on the idea of entertaining. Now, that we have a house that doesn't fit company very comfortably, I realize that is something I won't sacrifice in the next house. This is the point you might be thinking "Karrie, atleast you have a house, quit your complaining". Believe me when I say, I am aware of the fact that this house is a blessing. We've been able to make the mortgage payments even through tough financial times when Al was on dialysis, and even though paying the bills has been a stress on Al's heart and mind (he's the soul provider) this family has a place we can call home that certainly suits our needs. Living here has taught me what would work for our family and what we can pray for next time. Miles sleeps in a sort of "half room" if you will. I am pretty convinced it was an addition at some point, the walls are not insulated and there is a non-orignal feel to it. It doesn't even have a closet, but there is ample storage on each side (behind the walls, but it's not finished, so we just use it for storage)...Miles' room is a perfect "play room" but it's not ideal for a bedroom. True story. Don't judge me.
Don't let the looks of it fool you, I've worked hard to make it cute, but it's freezing in the winter and hot in the summer. And all of the kid's clothes are jammed into Acilia's closet...
 However, on the other side, I am quite pleased with our master bedroom which if I didn't know better, I would swear it was once two separate rooms! It is huge and it has two closets. Not standard for a home at the beginning of the 19th century.
Check out more pictures of our bedroom here, It really is a great room!
The bathroom downstairs used to be a huge pantry, I am sure of it. But it makes a great sized bathroom.
It's big, this picture doesn't do it justice, it used to have a full sized tub in it, before we ripped it out.
 The house is practical. I am trying to learn to live practical. But my desires get in the way. Perhaps it's something I need to work on. Perhaps what will be good enough is the compromise between practical and desirable. As I sit here on this rainy Sunday afternoon, we just got home from my cousin's house who had their daughter baptized today. It was so nice to celebrate at their house,  instead of going to a restaurant like a lot of parties are held.
Acilia holding the guest of honor

It allowed me to see what it's like to entertain a big group of people, and I liked it. I look forward to doing that at our house someday. It excited me to think of having people in my home, to allow them to make themselves at home and to serve them. A real challenge, but a joyful one would be to host Thanksgiving someday. All trial and error, but I have some wonderful people around me to teach me and to learn from their example. 

If you aren't already thinking it, I will put it out there. Yesterday, I posted about how living in the past makes you depressed and living in the future makes you anxious. And yes, thinking about our future home most certainly is failing to be here and focusing on what we do have vs. what we hope to have in the future. It is true I am feeling a little down today, the rainy weather gets me, I need the sun! But all of that aside, it was so nice to be with family today, celebrating a special little girl becoming a part of God's family. It was great to be surrounded by family and it always puts a smile on my face to think about our future home. Our hope and prayer is that the next house is a permanent home. Where we can really plant our roots and make it a home. Because even though we've lived in this house for 8 years, it's never felt like home. That's the honest truth. I crave a home. A place where I feel we are comfortable and enjoy being there.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

One of these doesn't belong...




I can only speak for myself when I use these words, it's different for everyone I would imagine. Depressed. Yes, I feel depressed at times, longer bouts of depression capture me during the winter. I loathe winter. The last few years I've spent some soul time trying to find some things I like about winter and for the most part, it carries me through that dreaded season, but really, I deep down don't like it. Anxiety. Oh yes have I been there!! It's a big part of who I am. Dealing with anxiety my entire life (well, from 1st grade on, but when you are in your 30's, looking back to first grade feeeeels like a life time!) Yes, I've had axiety.

Peace. Well, that's a simple seeming word. It's something we are drawn to want to feel. Inner peace, peaceful life, peaceful surroundings, a zen like state. Yes, I could almost meditate over that word. I envision running water filled streams, walking through a prairie, with the sun warming my body. I hear laughter and bliss and have a sense of well being deep inside of me. Nature is peace for me. I can get to a peaceful place when I am in nature (as long as myself or my kids aren't getting dirty that is! HA!!) I can explore God's creation and I can truly feel a sense of peace.

That's when it hits me. Each feeling, each and every single moment in this life is fleeting. Depression (for me) passes. Anxiety fades. Peace comes and then abruptly goes to chaos. Sometimes all of those can be addressed in one day, one hour, one minute. We are not promised anything in life, this life is a journey, each journey is different.

Last week when I read this, it got me.

"If you are depressed you are living in the past. If you are anxious you are living in the future. If you are at peace you are living in the present"

 It sparked me to address where I want my happiness to be, I've been praying for peace all year. Not because I feel like I don't have peace in my life, but because I want that to be my center. I want peace to stay with me as my constant. God has been whispering to me to live in the moment. To hold on to that throughout the day. To stop what I am doing to spend time with my kids, to stop what I am doing to have a moment with my husband, to embrace the here and the now. Chores are a daily task, I am pouring myself into bed at night with a spotless house, only to have a new day come and start the chores all over again. My zen is when all of my work is done. I must take a moment to realize that is not where peace is found. Peace is found in my relationships. That is something worth embracing.

For me, that simple quote about peace is a loaded deal. I find myself projecting to the future. I have done this my whole life. It's a bad bad habit. Looking forward to being an adult as a child, I literally wished away all of my school years. Especially high school. I counted down to graduation day literally from my freshman year. I was depressed at the end of each year because the friends I had made were seniors and they were "moving on" as I was "stuck" in school. Once I graduated I looked forward to getting married and having kids. I wished away my "free spirited" years where I could find out who I was and what I had to offer in life, in a marriage and as a mom. Now I have my marriage and my kids and I am back in school, I find myself looking forward to when I graduate with a degree and when we move to a new house and when my kids start at a new school and when they are in high school. It's a never ending pattern with me. I am aware of it, but nothing makes it more clear that I need to slow down on those thoughts than reading the quote about peace. It convicts me. It reminds me to take *this* day. *This* hour. *This* minute. *This* second. Just hold it and feel it and appreciate it.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Organ donation

An experience that made you who you are today.

If you have been a reader of my blog for a while, you may know that I gave a kidney to my husband on December 3rd, 2009. It was only a little over a year ago, and I would like to think that who I am today is more cumulative of many years, but if I had to choose one experience over the course of my life, it's my donation. Going through seeing my husband on dialysis, near the brink of death, and then having what he needed in my body and being able to give it to him, and see him come back to life, I just can't think of anything that could top that.

I will now use this as my platform for kidney donation.
There are countless people on waiting lists for organs.
At the very least, consider being an organ donor after you leave this Earth.
Life can and does live on, through the kindness of organ donors!!
Organ donation can and DOES occur in living donors as well, and that is all around the best option for the recipients!!!
I am here to say, that having a kidney taken out of my body did nothing to the way I feel.
I am the SAME Karrie as I was before donation.
Nothing changed. Literally!
There are countless resources out there for those interested in being a donor, or atleast learning more about it.
Please consider it. It might be something you are meant to do!

I was never going to get a tattoo. But I have these scars, and I could either hide them, or embrace them. So I designed this tattoo to work around my scars and allow them to share my message :)

I had that tattoo done in April 2010 (it was roughly 5 months after surgery) you can still see the two laporascopic scars up near the top of the tatoo, and the exit site scar under the words "Be a Donor"

This is my tattoo now, nearly 3 years after the surgery, as you can see, the scars are almost completely invisible! Infact, when I went for my two year post op check up, the NP had a bit of trouble locating the exact spot of the scars!! AMAZING!!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

School snacks

I don't know what it is, but when a classroom party comes up where we are asked to bring a treat, I get great joy out of planning the "perfect" snack! One that is healthy, easy to make, creative AND fun!

Each time, I get that little anxiety feeling while I am searching, thinking one of these times I won't be able to find something that will satisfy my need to be unique!

With all of the creative peeps out there in the Internet world, I think it's safe to rest assured that will never happen! Ideas are abundant!!

Halloween is on it's way, today I got an email from the class mom about the party that is in the works. I did a quick search and when I found the prized snack, I eagerly volunteered to be "Snack lady"

I am soooo excited to share these with Acilia's class!

For the healthy aspect:
seriously!? Does it get any cuter than this?? Single serve mandarin orange cups with Jack O' Lantern faces drawn on!! SO STINKIN' CUTE!! And too easy!

And next up, for the touch of candy fun! Another easy! Pretzels with melted Hershey's hugs with candy corn topping! LOVE!!

Can't wait until Halloween!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Answer to prayers!

Do you have any idea how many times I have wished that the stomach flu did not exist? It is it he source of my anxiety. I am usually so anxious through flu season that I can't even eat. It's serious.
Today a friend of mine posted on Facebook that her child has it, another friend posted this:
Stop the Stomach flu in it's tracks
You better believe I am running to the store to get some grape juice to keep in the house!!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Ponder this

I was driving in to class today, and was struck with a beautiful reflection. God speaks to mein the perfect moments always, and for that very reason, I feel it on my heart to share with others. So, here is my reflection: 

We live in a "what's in it for me" society..... it's easy to get caught up in 
that mentality.... until you stop and ponder.... Jesus died for me, how can I live for him?

Change of plans

As you may or may not know, I am applying to the RN program next year. This has been my goal for the past 4 years. 4 years looks a tad funny because it's an ASSOCIATES degree, but when you are a full time mom and have to work your class schedule around the schedule of your busy children. It means a slower track. I've been on the slow track to nursing school for the past 4 years, and I am only half way. Miles was born in 2008, I started my first college class that summer. He was 4 months old. My goal was to become a nurse. I wanted to help deliver babies. That was apparent to me when I experienced my birth with Miles and the nurses there, I envied them! As my school journey has progressed, I found out to work at the local hospital, an associates degree is not quite good enough anymore. They now want a bachelors degree. As I calculate in my head, I am thinking, get as many gen eds as I can out of the way before starting the RN program. Complete the RN program in 2 years and add another 15 months to my school journey for a fast track to bachelors. I will graduate in roughly the amount of years it takes to be a DOCTOR. Then, to add to the plan, I decided I wasn't going to just stop at being a Labor and Delivery nurse. I want to be a Lactation Consultant. So, I will get my degree, God willing, get a job in a hospital where I can start working on the 1,000 (not a typo, ONE THOUSAND) hours of mother baby nursing support so I can sit for the lactation exam. I should be about the age of retirement by then.

Fabulous right?
Then, a few weeks ago, I went in to speak with the nursing program counselor. The requirements to apply have changed once again. I need a math class before I apply now. In the past, you needed math for the degree, but not to apply to the program. Which means, I needed to take a placement test, pray I pass with enough points to not need a prerequisite to take the required math course.

I tend to take hurdles in stride, but when the barriers are blinding, it's time to sit back and think about what God is trying to tell me. I am becoming increasingly uncomfortable with the thought of having people's lives in the palm of my hand, I mean, what if I give a deadly dose of medication? Could I live with myself? I am a great support person. I love to encourage others and I envisioned sitting with my patients as they fill me on in their life's woes. Then it occurred to me, I won't have time for that! I will probably have a heavy patient load and I will have time to get in and get out while keeping a pleasant smile on my face and move to the next patient.

If my ultimate goal wasn't to be a Lactation Consultant, I wouldn't consider this change in direction, but considering my end goal is not going to change, I am going to allow a change in plans!

Last week I was on the Lactation exam website, there are a few paths to choose from. Guess what? Only one of those paths includes being a nurse. There are other options and options that I could easily see working for me! I spent a few days mulling over what a change in direction means, and then I went to visit a counselor to figure out if I could still get a bachelors degree, but in a more general sense. Turns out I have two options, associates in science and associates in arts. Both are transferable to a university so I can achieve the bachelors. I asked what I needed to ask, and have decided to pursue the associates in arts, because it will become an Bachelors in the arts of Psychology when I graduate. I chose Psychology over Science because my logic believes women need a support person that will understand what their body is going through. To relate and empathize with the emotions of being a new mom and the trials and tribulations of breastfeeding. Of course psychology courses will help me with that. I did nurse my own two kids. So I can definitely relate to what they are going through, but this degree will take me where I need to be and I can walk away feeling I truly have taken the right path for me.

Perhaps I have explained this in far more depth than necessary, but to be honest, it helps me to write it out so I can see in black and white that this is the right choice. I am thrilled to say it sure sounds and feels right!