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Sunday, November 13, 2011

Memories of the Nursing Days

Tonight, Matt is listing my books from nursing school on half.com.

It's been three and a half years since graduation and I'm fully aware of the rate of textbook changes and revisions, so it is probably a wasted effort. But we're trying anyway.

As I sat in the living room and removed textbooks, study materials, old binders and notebooks from the purple tub they've lived in since the summer of 2008, I felt a wave of conflicting emotions roll over me.

For those of you who don't know, I have a bachelors degree in nursing. I went to the College of St. Scholastica for four years and graduated as Laura Radniecki, BSN, before moving to Hawaii with Matt and then beginning on my photography journey. If you've read the story of how I went from a Nurse to a Photographer, you know some of this already. I didn't feel like I was going down the right career path as a nurse, and prayed like crazy for guidance. Three years later, I'm thrilled every day that I get to work as a photographer.

I wholeheartedly believe that I am meant to be working as a photographer at this point in my life. I adore meeting new families and capturing them as they are, at a specific moment in time; freezing that moment for eternity. I feel blessed each and every time that I pick up my camera and head out to photograph another person. I believe God had this planned for me and when I asked for guidance, He opened doors to bring me here. I am grateful and thankful every single day.

While I know all of that to be the absolute truth, I can't help but admit that tonight – I grieved a little bit as I opened that tub of books and remnants of my nursing school career. Leafing through the notebooks filled with my scrawling notes, arrows, diagrams and acronyms. Picking up the binder and finding the study guides for my anatomy labs – one of my most favorite parts of college. Looking through the textbooks that I read in the study lounge in the commons area of my apartment senior year, while my roommate, also a nursing major, read the same book at the table next to me. I couldn't help but feel part of my heart wrapped in nostalgic sadness.

I don't regret anything. I don't regret getting a nursing degree, or going to St. Scholastica, or studying like crazy to graduate with a gpa that I like to taunt Matt with. I don't regret any of it, because I fully believe it was exactly where I was supposed to be at that point in my life. I met so many great people and I had so much fun. My mind and heart are full of memories from those years up at CSS, and those memories will follow me for my entire life.

So while I don't regret anything, and I know I'm exactly where I am supposed to be, and doing precisely what I am meant to be doing right now, I am granting myself the right to feel a little sadness tonight. As we list my books in hopes that some will sell, I think back on all the classes I took, the tests I studied for, the papers I wrote. I think of the friends I made, the teachers I had, and the dreams I dreamt. I think of all the awesome memories of nursing school, and of all the times that I stretched myself and my brain beyond what I thought I could accomplish. A part of me is sad that it is over. A part of my grieves because my life doesn't have any part of nursing in it anymore, except in my memories and in the friends that I carry with me. A small part of me feels like I am less intelligent as I was then; that I have lost some of my intelligence now that studying, textbooks and classes are no longer a part of my life.

Tonight, I'm letting myself feel the nostalgia for a time in my life that was wonderful, but is long passed. I am different than I was then, and I am on a career path vastly different than I thought I would be on. I am living in a different city, and with different long term goals as then. I don't wish I was still there, and I don't wish I was working as a nurse. But I sure am thankful that I went to CSS for nursing school and that I will always have that diploma with Laura Radniecki, BSN proudly written on it.

For all of it, I am grateful.

1 comment:

  1. Like I told you in that letter Laura, God had a plan for you with photography. Nursing was just a path that brought me into your life at CSS. Just like the marine corps brought us together as well. He works in mysterious ways but it all makes sense in the end. Love you deary!- Anna Peterson


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