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Tuesday, January 4, 2011

I'm going back to work.

Last Spring....

No wait.

The summer of 2009, when I was pregnant with Grace.....

No wait.

I guess I don't remember exactly when......but maybe after Parker turned a year old.....I was just starting my second (of 4) semester of nursing school......and I started talking to Geoff about wanting another baby.

He did, too, but not sure when....and blablabla...seeing how I was still in school.....and who would watch the baby (and Parker, too)...and blablabla.

As you know....about 8 months later (after much prayer and deliberating)....we found out we were having another. Which- in my mind...worked out as I had planned. I would be (and I was)...8 months pregnant when I graduated school.

Then...I'd have her a month later (which I did)....and I would forego starting my career as a nurse that January (as my peers did).....and start work in June. That would have given me almost 5 months home with her.

Although I was more than thrilled to be taking some time off after nursing school....there was a part of me that wanted to see 'what job I would get.' I had several friends from school that went on to be NNICU nurses at a particular hospital......and in the back of my mind......I kind of felt like this is where He was leading the neonatal ICU....and possibly at this hospital. But who knew? SO much could happen between then and when I actually started applying.

So I took my boards last March......became a registered nurse......and I started applying for jobs.

I applied for 5 different jobs to be exact. I think I applied for a few medical-surgical nursing positions, as well as, a labor and delivery position, and one NNICU position, but none were at the hospital where I kind of thought I wanted to end up....there were no more openings at that hospital. But I didn't think a thing of it.

Now let me say a few things about that.

#1- My heart was the furthest thing from wanting to leave Grace to go back to work.
#2- I did, however, want to do God's will......and if He did want me to start work that June....then that's what I wanted to do. So I prayed that He would show me His will.....not my own.....and that if His will was to return to please change my heart. (I don't ask for much, do I?)
#3- I did not want to go back to work.

As it turned out.....not one single person wrote or called me for an interview. Not one.

Deep down......I was relieved. After all....I was not ready to start working. And at least I had done my part by applying.....I couldn't make those people call me back.

But be honest..... it was somewhat of a blow to the ego. I was rejected. Nobody wanted me.

Had I ruined my chances at becoming a nurse because I took 5 months off after graduation, instead of starting my career upon graduation? Would I ever be able to become a nurse? And if so....would I be doing what I wanted to be doing?

So- at that time....we made the decision for me stay home for Grace's first year....and I would start applying in the Fall (because that is when jobs are posted) for a position that opens in January 2011.

I went along with this plan because a) it bought me more time at home, and b) maybe we could think of another way for me to still not have to go back to work (I'm sneaky like that..hehe).

Anyway- the Fall came.

My attitude about going back to work was worse than ever....because I knew that the time was approaching for me to go back to work....for real this time. And I didn't want to.

I began praying harder than I have prayed about anything else that I can remember recently. And I did not pray that God would make me not have to work. I prayed again....that He would lead me to do His will....and that he would change my heart from bitterness to a peace about going back to work and leaving my children. It was a true struggle.....because from the depths of my heart....and quite possibly, for the first time in my life.....I had never so fervently tried to seek His will above my own. thing after another began to be revealed to me.

I began randomly looking at the hospital websites for job postings (I was still very bitter at this point, but I did it nonetheless). It was a bit odd to me....and maybe I just missed something.....but most of the hospitals that I had applied to in the area the past Spring....did not have any positions open....or if they did (and some did)....I did not apply for them. I cannot tell you an exact reason why....except....that it just didn't feel right.

Then....on October 12th.....I went back and checked the hospital's website where I had originally thought I wanted to work. I noticed that there were over 10 Nurse Residency positions open. I thought, "Yikes! I hope it isn't too late to apply!"

I started with the first link....clicked on it. A message immediately popped up saying, "This job is no longer available." or something to that extent.

I went to the next one. Same message.

And again.

And again.

Until I got to the very last one (which I believe was the 10th one)....I clicked on the link. The page opened.....and was an opening for a Nurse Residency position for the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NNICU)!!!! It was the only nurse residency position opened at that time.

My heart started racing. I started sweating. And then I immediately started trying to get all of my stuff together...cover letter, resume, filling out their online application, etc.

Application in.

Now to wait.

Two weeks pass by. I honestly haven't thought much of it. I really thought that I was just not going to get a call for an interview...just like I did not get a call last Spring. Started thinking that maybe God had other plans for me, after all.

On Friday, October 22....the phone rings around 9:30 or so. Parker and I had just gone into our room to wake Geoff up....and we were sitting on the bed talking to him. So Parker runs into the living room to get the phone.

This is what I hear, "Hello?"

"My mommy is in the other room talking to my daddy."

She finally gets into the room.....all of the while....I'm thinking it's Kristin because no one else really calls me at that time?

But on this was someone else. I was mortified! It was the nurse recruiter from the hospital calling to set up an interview for the following 3 days!

So I accepted. Went to the interview. Felt horrible about it, of course.

Received a call the next day offering me the position.

I think tears came to my eyes after receiving this phone call. I felt so moved at that moment that this was God's will. That He had showed me the way I was to go.

He was faithful.

I had flashbacks in my head to almost 5 years ago when I was teaching elementary school and 3 weeks away from getting married.....and I literally woke up one morning and said....."I'm going to be a nurse."

It's a true story....I promise. If you would have told me 5.5 years ago that I was going to be a nurse....I would have called you crazy. Seriously. And here I am.

I flashbacked to my days in nursing school when I just wanted to quit....but for whatever reason....plunged forward. I do know that without the grace of God...I would have never completed nursing school and done as well as I did. Just wouldn't have happened.

So despite the fact that I believe with all of my heart that I am right where I am supposed to be in life right now....I know that this is going to be a huge, and often times, a difficult change.

Now.......I am with my kids all hours of the day. Next week.....I will be with them 1 to 2 hours a day. That's kind of hard to swallow. And brings tears to my eyes to write or say it. won't always be this's the beginning, and I initially have 4 months of intense training (which will be varying hours). So....God willing.....I will make it through this residency and be on my regular schedule of 3 (THREE) days a week!

It also really, really, really helps that my sister has offered to help with childcare. Honestly- if this were not the case I am not sure I would have the peace that I have (although I wish I could say that I would!)

Kristin- really....thank you from the bottom of my heart.

So the past few weeks (mostly this week due to the holidays) have been all about trying to get the house in order....cleaned....organized......and planned. To say that I feel like I am merely running around in circles would be an understatement. But finally today...I feel like maybe I am making a little bit of progress. I just want to leave for work to a clean and organized house. I can do it, I can do it (this is my self-motivation going on here...sorry it is leaping from my brain to this post to bore you further).

I even ordered these Easy Lunchboxes so I can make Parker cute lunches.

I've seen them on a few blogs and immediately wanted to do it for Parker. It's like....if I can't be there with her to do special things....then I want to do the something special for her to have when I am at work. I am really excited about this and hope my excitement doesn't fizzle out....but most importantly- I hope she loves it. She knows I am going to work....but I really do not think she knows. And poor Grace....she has no idea.

It will definitely be an adjustment....but we'll will go on....and this will all become our new normal.


The Fenter Funny Farm said...

Marla....I have always said that NICU nurses are angels in scrubs....our kiddos, twins that are now 16, spent 25+days in NICU at Baylor and those nurses kept me from losing my mind! I am sure you will do fabulous, and congrats....

Jessica said...

Congratulations! I admire you for taking this leap and more importantly for putting your faith in God that this is the path He chose for you/y'all. I'll pray that He provides strength during the toughest times at work and your weakest moments from being away from those sweet girls. Hope you have a great first week! Happy New Year :)

Milstead said...

I'm excited for you. I know everything will work out. Congrats and I'll be thinking of all of you!

Snider Family said...

Wow, I felt my emotions were right there with you, you have such a wonderful way with words. I will be thinking about you as you start your new transition. It's normal to feel different ways, different days. But you are such a wonderful person and will be an even better nurse, they will be so lucky to have you. Congrats again!

Emily said...

And we can't wait to have you at the NNICU!!! So excited we'll be working together! :)

Kristin said...

I am sad that you are going back to work... I guess it's selfish.. but I like that we can go and do and eat dinner together most nights or even lunch sometimes. I am just glad I get to keep the girls so that I can still see them on a daily basis as usual!!

So proud of you, you will be a GREAT nurse!!!

oliviadog said...

I was born very premature to a young mother, who failed to bond with me :( ... I was in the hospital for several months struggling to survive.

In fact, back in the 70's - it was a miracle that I did. Maybe that is why my mother never came to visit me - she didn't expect me to live and didn't want to suffer. Clearly kangaroo care hadn't come into the western mentality yet.

Anyway, the point in sharing all of that, is my dad told me that there was one particular nurse who "took a shine to me" and held me all the time. Knowing what we do about the healing properties of touch, I believe (sincerely) that that nurse saved my life.

You have the opportunity to mother many, many more in addition to your darling daughters.

On a side note, I live in France (don't really speak French that well yet) so can't work. I hope that I can when Sabine gets older (like you, just a few days a week) because I do think it is important for our daughters to see mommy as more than just mommy - but as a whole person with a life as a role model.

Congrats my blogging friend ... keep your posts coming!

Anonymous said...


Kat said...

Oh Marla I have tears in my eyes from reading this! Congrats on the job! It certainly sounds like it's totally meant to be. Like you said, your girls will be fine and adjust and you will too :-)


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