Sunday, May 26, 2013

Blissful Chaos: Take Two

This last trip to New England held a special purpose. Much like my other trips, it contained visits with friends over dinner, drives up and down the coast, and adventures in the awesome city of Boston. But, this time around, I came with a mission.

You see, this trip would be leading up to an anniversary. A few of them, actually. Remember the Gray Family? If not, click here to refresh your memory. After a year filled with good days and bad days, smiles and tears, anger and sadness, this family was coming upon the anniversary of sweet baby Ethan's passing. For only four days Ethan blessed this earth. In that short time, he touched many lives, mine included. I actually never had the pleasure of meeting baby Ethan, but I don't feel as though I needed to in order to understand what a special child he was and will continue to be. I know him by watching his siblings play with each other, or seeing his parents interact with each other. I see him every time I see this family in action. He permeates every action of their day to day lives.

Annie, the amazingly strong woman that she is, decided to commemorate his life in a way and participate in the March of Dimes walk in Boston. I was astounded by her ability to channel her grief into something positive, as she has done since Ethan's passing. I knew I had to be a part of this day to not only support this incredible family, but to show my respect to Ethan. I made arrangements to arrive in New England a few days prior to the walk. Annie requested I take family pictures the day before the walk in one of the family's favorite places in Boston, the Boston Garden. Honored, I of course accepted.

Much like the last photo shoot I did with the Gray family, it was "blissful chaos." Tears were shed, tantrums (small ones) were had, and beautiful moments were captured.

(the stuffed cow, one of the gifts he received after he was born, was included to recognize Ethan)

I've said it before and I will say it again: I am incredibly blessed to know this family and to be, in some small way, a part of their amazing story.
To ready Annie's blog, click here:

Wednesday, May 22, 2013


I've been holding my breath for six months.

Six months since I returned from my last assignment in New Hampshire. Six months of waiting for my back to heal. Six months of little progress.

I'm tired of holding my breath, so I'm going to exhale. I have little control over whether my back decides to heal and allow me to return to the work I love. So, I'm taking the reins in areas of my life that I can drive. I've decided to take a part-time position here in La Crosse and return to graduate school in the fall. I don't know when or if I will be where I was before my injury, but I'm moving forward and making the best of what I do have.

This ends my adventure of travel nursing, hopefully just for the time being. It has been a hard decision, one that took many months to come to, but I feel at peace knowing I have a plan. The job I have accepted is telephone triage and the manager assures me it will provide me with not only expanded nursing knowledge, but many good stories as well! Graduate school should take me a little over two years to complete, after which I will be a clinical nurse specialist in oncology.

I may continue to post here occasionally, when the mood should strike. In the meantime, I have photos to post from my most recent trip to New England as well as photos from my session with the Gray family at the Boston Commons. So stay tuned!