For over forty years, I practiced a career I did not choose but did it for the sake of my parents and siblings. Then I got married and kept doing it to support my family, especially under such circumstances where I became, unexpectedly, a single parent of three young children. Years passed and I thought my life was enough, only to realize that my true dream had never died.
Eighteen years ago, I ‘dropped everything' I was doing and made a decision to follow my heart. I resigned from my position as Director of Nursing in a 250-bed residential facility for addicted and HIV positive clients. I took a night job in order to pursue my studies in performing arts and writing. Pursuing studies in music and vocal performance was one of the brightest highlights of my life, despite the sleep deprivation I had to endure. In the last eighteen years, I’ve juggled two careers, switching day and night to cover both fields of work. Recently, I published my first book and am now ready to publish my second. I have performed solo concerts in cities worldwide whenever opportunity presented itself. Yet I still do not feel I’ve given it my all.
I needed to go through phases of fear, self-doubt, sacrifice, self-criticism, insecurity, and uncertainty -- none of which triumphed over my hungry soul. Courage persevered. Some call it leap of faith but I call it being faithful to my truest self.
With bittersweet emotions I am saying goodbye to my first career which has helped me live throughout many trials and successes. It was in this career that I found my niche in two unique fields of specialty, Psychiatric and Addictions nursing. This was where I discovered my strongest talent in human interactions while taking care of the mentally ill in his darkest moments. It was as if God thought my blessings were not enough so He sent many angels in the person of my bosses and colleagues who offered me a miracle job where physical distance was not an obstacle. In the last seven years, I’ve traveled all over the world without having to miss a day of work. I feel empowered making an income while sharing an unsettling lifestyle with my husband as a 'trailing spouse.'
Fifty-two years have been a lifetime of waiting. Having learned the virtue of patience, I embraced the life I was given. Through all its struggles, tragedy, and disappointments, I’m able to see beauty. I find love. Today I’m finally welcoming my new life as a full time artist -- poet, singer, stage performer, and writer. In order to feel fully alive, I have to keep pursuing my calling. Dreams don’t die on their own... we kill them.