Thursday, February 5, 2009

Birthdays and Birthrights

So, a year ago today, I stepped into the classroom for my first day of CNA class. I've learned a whole lot in the last year and I still have a whole, whole lot left to learn. There's more to this than picking out permed hair and wiping bottoms.

Today is also my mom's birthday. She would have been 61.

Mom was an LPN. I remember seeing her in her white nursing uniform. I don't remember if she still had to wear a nurses cap back then. I can't imagine having to run around and keep a hat on my head. Most days I'm glad to have my hair left when shift is over.

I used to have a picture of my Grandma, who was an RN, when she graduated from Loyola University in Chicago. Like most things I used to have, it's been lost over the years. My sister is "the keeper". For me, it's a good day when I can find my ass with both hands.

Birthright is defined as any right, privilege, or possession to which a person is entitled by birth, such as an estate descendible by law to an heir, or civil liberty under a free constitution; especially the rights or inheritance of the first born. I don't know that you can say that being in nursing is my birthright, but it seems like that's where I belong. Even on a bad day, something always makes me smile. The joy I get when someone is comforted by my actions is worth everything to me. The paychecks I receive are important, but not as important as going home knowing someone feels better because I was there that day.

Our lives are bigger gifts than they appear to be. Not just to ourselves, but to everyone around us. Even the lives that are cut short or seem to have no good purpose are gifts. It's hard sometimes to remember that, but the truth is the truth regardless of how strange it sounds.


allie d said...

Congrats on your 1 year! You have given me hope that one day I'll be able to change my career and actually do something that brings me joy and hapiness.

Rachael said...

I love reading your blog, Its practically all i've been doing the past two days! I take my CNA test next friday and can't wait to start working, especially after reading your blog. I know its not reality for everyone but the way you talk about being a CNA is exactly how I see it. It can be discouraging seeing how other CNAs treat the job, its good to here about someone who loves the job, which I'm pretty certain I will.

K. Tree said...

Hi Rachael,

Unfortunately, I'm only online one day a week now, that's why it took some time for me to publish your comment.

It's a great job. You really will learn something new every day. And you'll build great arm muscles, not something you can get from a desk job. :)