I admit it….I have a bit of an identity crisis. I am not exactly sure who I am, or where my heart lies.
I was raised in the jungles of South America. Spanish was my first language and my mother took me out of 2nd grade in Peru (much to my dismay) to homeschool us in English. I remember learning English. It was awful.
Seriously…..who came up with “through”? And “cough”? And “echo”? In spanish things are actually pronounced the way they are spelled.
But my mother wanted to make sure we could all speak English properly, and that included my adopted siblings.
I come from an unconventional family (a story I will re-tell at some point). I have one biological sister, and 3 adopted siblings (1 from Mexico, 2 from Peru). This is our family…
Family picture taken in Guyana (South America) in 1996
Our big family now (picture taken in Manaus, Brazil)
My parents are missionaries so we moved around a lot. I’ve lived in Mexico, Peru, Bolivia, Trinidad & Tobago, Venezuela and Guyana. My favourite memories were when we lived in Guyana with my cousins. Our life was a composition of simple living; bare feet, dugout canoes, hand washed clothes, mango trees, the occasional snake on our doorstep and the ever-present bats in the outhouse. And our major obsession – The River.
Then my whole life changed when my parents sent me back to the States to finish high school and go to College. I struggled through years of culture shock as I tried to integrate into the American culture.
I mean, who was “Nsync?”
On retrospect, my behaviour was awkward and perceivably weird. I would climb trees and sit and watch my peers socialise and flirt. I desperately wanted to go back to the jungle and hang out with the old gang of barefoot indian boys. We would spend hours jumping into the river from overhanging trees. Those carefree days were over. When my parents sent me back to America, my father made it very clear that I was too “developed” to be hanging out with those boys all the time. Maybe he had a point, but I didn’t want to grow up.
When I finally accepted my fate, I went to college and became a nurse (following in the footsteps of my parents and both my grandmothers). I have always loved babies and children and I knew that was my calling in nursing.
At an Orphanage in Bolivia, 2006
In 2008, I moved to Australia to marry the man of my dreams.
Then I had the incredible opportunity of joining the Pediatric ICU team, and I also decided to go back to school to become a midwife.
I now work as a paediatric ICU nurse, a flight/retrieval nurse and a midwife.
My jobs are both rewarding and extremely challenging. I see babies every day. Beautiful, chubby, healthy babies but also gravely sick babies. Between my two jobs I experience moments of supreme euphoria and extreme sadness. Deep, unbearable, indescribable sadness. This world is not fair.
My pain and grief seem so trivial sometimes compared to what I see at work, but I am still allowing myself to grieve and accept the difficulty of the road ahead.
I am sharing my journey because I know I am not alone. And I want you to know that you are not alone either!
Let’s find health, peace, beauty, fertility and happiness together.