A lot has happened since June 2010 when I officially, finally gained those two long-coveted letters after my name: RN. Much of what has happened has really shaped the person I've become, and, on looking back over all of it, I realize how much of my identity has been tied to my career choice.
After passing my boards, I spent one last summer at camp...as a nurse. Then, I went to Africa for a few months...as a nurse. Then I came home and began my job search...as a nurse. I finally found a job and started working...as a nurse. A number of months later I moved to SC to be closer to my then boyfriend. The move required that I start a new job...as a nurse. A few months later I switched hospitals and began my current job, you guessed it, as a nurse. Five years of being a nurse. It may not seem like very much, but a lot of hours and energy have been given to my career. I'm proud of those 5 years, small though it may seem. I've worked hard and learned a lot, and my prayer is that I've used the time well and made life just a little better for my patients.
And now the time has come for me to move on. I'm hanging up my nurse hat for a while and exchanging it for a new one: momma. My sweet Baby A is a month old as of yesterday, and life is looking a little different these days. I was warned, of course. Anyone who has ever announced a pregnancy knows the warning I'm meaning. Some say it with joy and excitement; others say it ominously; they all say it, though: "Your life will never be the same." And it won't be, not exactly. But it's good. When I see that sweet face light up with a gummy smile, and I watch my tiny girl grow and learn new things daily I know that life is even richer with her in it.
There are other hats that I will be trying out, too, in this season during which my nursing career is on hold. I'm being certified as a post-partum doula, and I'm planning to write more (I'm looking at you, Little Blog!). I'll give more details on both of those in the coming days, though; they both deserve a post of their own. Nevertheless, none of these should be my identity. They are a part of who I am, but they are not--and they cannot become-- who I am.
These are thoughts I've been pondering the last weeks. I don't have it all figured out; I probably never will, but I'll keep you posted.
For now, though, I have a sweet little baby who is already, impossibly, 1/12th of the way through her baby year, and I don't want to miss a second of her.