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Today is a hard day.  I guess I was taken a little by surprise when I walked in the door to the lab today.  I was absolutely flooded with emotion, and to be perfectly honest, I really didn’t expect it.  Over the last six and a half years working in the lab has very gradually changed for me.  It started as exciting, my first “real” job.  I was so grateful to be hired right out of school, and in fact, my position was secure even before my internship with a related hospital was finished.  But through the course of too many events to count, including my own personal revelations, this job became work.  It was work to go out the door and drive here.  It was work to do the piles and piles of continuing ed, it was a nightmare to renew my certifications, and I grew tired.

I guess is some ways I’ve been leaving the lab for about two and a half years now.  That was when I was in the deep bottom of my postpartum depression, reached my golden birthday and re-evaluate my life.  I saw two perfect little piece of myself and my husband who relied on me, my husband who shows me everyday how much he loves and values me, and a job that just didn’t seem to fit anymore.  The more I looked over where I was headed, or for that matter not headed, I felt a strong and indescribable pull to investigate nursing, and ultimately Midwifery.  It was as if someone was whispering in my ear,” this is what I have created you to do, this is your true calling, this is your purpose.”  Believe me or don’t; that is your opinion to hold.  I am simply relaying my journey to you.

My search in the end led me to apply to the U of M and I really didn’t think I stood a chance.  I had a Dr. behind me, urging me along.  I had my husband beside me who gave me support, and one teacher who assured me I was a shoe in.  Opening my email in the spring to find my acceptance letter was a shock and one of the happiest days I can remember behind my wedding and the birth of my kids.  It was also the beginning of my end at this job.

I had planned to stay at the hospital until graduation, but that is obviously not what is happening here.  I realized over the summer that I need a reduction of hours if I was going to succeed in school.  I have no room for failure in this pursuit, and I know myself well enough now to understand my limitations.  So I informed my supervisor I wanted to drop to a casual position.  This means that I fill in scheduling holes and choose my schedule, plus one holiday a year.  I was informed that I could not do this without submitting a letter resigning my current hours, so I wrote one the same day.  Then a few days later as I opened my work email on my weekend shift I opened an email stating that management was choosing to accept my full resignation instead of offering me a casual position.  My life since then has changed rapidly.  However, the biggest change is in realizing that this is really and truly the best option for me even if I didn’t choose it for myself.  We don’t know yet how we are going to get by.  I don’t qualify for unemployment pay or much other assistance.  I am looking into WIC to fill in food, and will try to restart my Tupperware sales.  I don’t know, but somehow it will all work out.

I didn’t know I’d be so sad to leave when I walked in the door this morning, but I’ve been fighting back tears for the better part of my shift.  I may have grown discontent here, but that doesn’t change the fact that I’ve had the pleasure of working with some fantastic people here.  Some have come and gone, and others are just starting while still more were here before me and will remain for quite some time.  They come from all over the world and different family situations.  They have taught me all kinds of lessons from dealing with grief to repairing countless numbers of analyzers.  I think like a scientist and no amount of additional education will ever fully change that about me. 

And so I move ever forward with the present as difficult as it’s ever been, but the future rosy and bright.  Good things are happening to me, and I’d be a fool not to see it.  One co-worker I’ve always been fond of said goodbye to me with a beautiful blessing this morning.  I hope to carry it with me for a long time.  So I say to you all, follow your heart, live boldly, and love completely.  If you let him, God will enter in and change you in ways you never knew possible.  I hope that you feel as blessed as I do on this day.

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