May 1, 2003
I had crushing chest pain on Saturday, so I called the ambulance and went to the emergency room. They diagnosed me with pleurisy and pneumonia, put me on antibiotics, and sent me home. How I thank the Lord for the perfect peace He gave me during the hours I lay on the stretcher. “For me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.” Philippians 1:21 (KJV)
The job is going better, by God’s grace. I like teaching the students at the nursing home. The helpful staff makes a pleasant learning environment. I discovered that my new neighbor works as a nursing assistant there. Her first language is Portuguese and she only speaks minimal English. I’ll check some tapes out of the public library and try and learn a little Portuguese so I can talk more with her.
I am sick at home again with a fever of 101 degrees. This is the fourth time I have caught an infection since I started working at the school and the nursing home. I asked the Lord to make it clear if He wants me to work again as a Nurse Practitioner or keep teaching. I am required to work 2000 hours as a Nurse Practitioner over a five year period to keep my certification, or I can take the grueling board exam again.
“Teaching is not effective without a good example. You can easily discourage others by being impatient with them. The more forceful you are, the more you need to learn gentleness and kindness.” – Fenelon
The first clinical session has ended at the nursing home. At first, I hated working in the nursing home. But after I became better acquainted with the staff and the alert patients, I thoroughly enjoyed it. I watched in amazement as the students progressed from fear to confidence in giving quality patient care.
For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us.” Romans 8:18 (KJV)
Yesterday morning I asked the Lord to help me depend on Him alone and not a paycheck or a job, which He answered very quickly. An hour later, Mrs. D. called me into her office and told me that my position was eliminated because over half of the first module class failed. I asked her why she chose me? She said my student evaluations were not good, and that I was not a team player. She also announced that C. would be the new director. C. has a foul mouth, smokes, and cohabits with a man, so I know that it would have been difficult for me to work with her. I felt like a fish out of water in the teachers’ communal office because I did not swear or tell off-color jokes like the others.
I can’t sleep from this head cold and can’t stop my tears of exhaustion. But on the brighter side, because I was laid off, I can collect unemployment while I look for another job. I thank the Lord that I don’t have to get up at 4:45 a.m. to go to the nursing home or prepare lectures at night after teaching all day. Perhaps God will improve my immune system so I don’t keep catching all these viruses.
“Don’t let your work either excite you or depress you too much.” – Fenelon “When we sit under Christ’s shadow with great delight, everything else becomes so small, and loses its hold upon our hearts.” CAC “Nearly all God’s jewels are crystallized tears.”
“Weeping may endure for the night, but joy comes in the morning.” Psalm 30:5 (NKJV)
I had an interview at a children’s residential camp an hour from home today, but it wasn’t a good fit. The pay is too low and the camp is closed for three months in the winter. The atmosphere is so much different than Bible camp. God knows the way I should go.
Dear Lord, I ask You to give me a job where I can freely share the gospel, attend all the services at church, be within a 20-minute commute from home, and have a manager who is kind, fair, and supportive. I ask for a job that is not too stressful where I can use my Nurse Practitioner skills four days per week with good health and retirement benefits. Help me to wait quietly upon You. Thank You for this extra time to study Your Word and draw near to You. Thank You that You own everything and that nothing is too hard for You. Thank You for this measure of health. I love and adore You. Amen.
The Lord gave me a wonderful week of vacation with another lady from church at Yosemite National Park in California. The rock formations and waterfalls were breathtaking. This is one of the most beautiful places on earth that I have ever seen, but I know heaven will be even better!
Yesterday I had the most difficult interview of my life at the college where I received my Master’s degree in nursing. The position is for Director of Health Services which includes treating the residential college students in the clinic. Four women conducted the interview in the boardroom with me seated at the head of a long table. Unfortunately, every time I looked up, I saw my reflection in a gigantic mirror on the wall. They took turns asking me about 20 challenging clinical questions from their typed list. My brain kept freezing from the stress during the grueling 90-minute ordeal. After I left the room and closed the door, I heard them all burst into laughter. I walked down the long hallway feeling totally humiliated. This is definitely not the right job for me.
I had another interview today at a large inner city hospital 20 minutes from my home. Because my interview went so poorly yesterday, I spent several hours studying rehabilitation medicine last night to prepare for today’s meeting. I made a professional folder with my resume and business card to give Dr. S., the medical director of the ten-bed unit. Dr. S. was delayed in a family meeting, so I quietly observed the unit while waiting. It seemed like a calm, well-organized unit. The huge windows in the nurse’s station made it bright and cheerful.
Then Dr. S. took me on a tour of the unit while he explained how it functioned and what my role would be. He asked me a few easy questions about myself in the hallway. He seems like a genuinely compassionate person who is board certified in physical medicine. Most of the patients have had strokes, joint replacements, or organ transplants. In acute rehabilitation, each patient must be able to do a total of three hours of physical, occupational, and speech therapy daily. Some advantages of having rehab in the hospital as opposed to a nursing home is that a patient can be quickly transferred back to the intensive care unit if needed and all their specialty doctors can assess them daily.
Dr. S. has been looking for a NP for eighteen months, so God has been keeping this position open for me! If I am hired, Dr. S. would like me to work from 11 am to 5 pm except on Tuesdays when I would start at 8:30 a.m. so I could participate in weekly team meetings. On Tuesdays, I would leave at 2:30 p.m. Initially, I will be paid for 30 hours weekly with full-time benefits. If I want to increase to 40 hours per week, I can do research, inpatient consults, or see outpatients in his office, so there is room to grow professionally.
I will need to work every third weekend and come to see all ten patients on either Saturday or Sunday and write a progress note, but it only takes a maximum of 90 minutes. I will also need to make rounds on two holidays, but Dr. S. said I can have the first pick of which holidays I want to work. Next, I will need to meet the Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer, and Medical Director of the entire rehab network.
I spoke with my former classmate, Kim, who has been a NP on the transplant unit for the past year. She was excited for me and said the rehab unit has an excellent reputation. After they transfer their post-transplant patients to the rehab unit, she makes rounds on them. She told me about the hospital benefits and how she negotiated her salary, so I will see what the Lord does.
Job changes are never easy, but I thank God that He went before me in every situation. As I reflect on this part of my career when nothing was stable and each month was rocky with constant change, I can now see how the Lord was teaching me to lean totally on Him one day at a time. He always provided my every need and still does! I pray that you will know the joy of leaning on Him also, the only One who is the solid Rock and never changes.