May 6, 2013

Pay It Backward. Pay It Forward.

Happy Nurse's Week!
Happy Teacher's Appreciation Week!

On Anna's blog last week, she listed the theme she was going to have for each day of Nurses' Week this week. Today's theme is Pay It Backward. Pay It Forward.

I was initially going to just do a little tribute to the two nursing professors that got me through nursing school, but when I found out it was also Teacher's Appreciation Week this week, I knew that I had to pay tribute to a few of my grade school and high school teacher's that helped me get to nursing school in the first place! We'll start with grade school & work our way up.

6th grade

6th grade was a really, really tough year. And this lady got me through it. It was her first year out of college and her first year teaching. She is hands down, one of the best teachers I have ever had. More than that, I consider her a friend. She even invited her class to her wedding reception a year or two later. I have kept in touch with her ever since 6th grade. She is one of the most gracious, sweet, and genuine people I have known. I am so lucky to know her.

7th grade

I was lucky to have two teachers back-to-back that were amazing. This lady had been teaching for 30 years or something crazy before I had her as my 7th grade homeroom & Junior High English teacher. She always made me feel good about myself & English was one of my favorite classes in school because of her passion for it. She came to mine & my siblings high school graduation parties and, again, I have kept in touch with her ever since 7th grade. Again, one of the most gracious, kind, and genuine people I have ever known. She's retired now, which is a shame, because I wish she could teach my kids one day!

High School


This man was my Freshman & Senior English/Literature teacher. He's such a cool guy. I remember he had posters of The Beatles and different bands in his room. And, in one of his weekly lessons, he had us listen to a song (The Beatles or other bands. He was a huge Beatles fan!) & provided us with the lyrics. We would then discuss the meaning or write about it. He also had a huge passion for English, which fueled my love of his classes. He also wrote my letter of recommendation when I was applying to Luther. I credit him with getting in. He moved up to the Twin Cities right after we graduated. I think he's still teaching at a high school up there, but we've lost touch over the years.


I didn't get a picture with this guy at my high school graduation, so this one's from my brother's. He was my Junior year Health teacher & my Senior year CPR/First Aid teacher. He's such a fun guy & his classes were always my favorite. He also came to my high school graduation party. And I recall this conversation we had vividly: he asked if I was still going to do nursing. I told him I was switching to Elementary Education. He asked why. I told him I like working with kids. He then told me, "You know, you can still work with kids as a nurse." I didn't know what else to say. I deserve an "I told you so". Should have listened to him!

Luther College

The lady on the far right was my last semester Med/Surg professor and clinical instructor and my Pharm professor. This woman is amazing, is such a good nurse, friend, and teacher, and has the best stories. She's originally from Decorah and graduated from Luther, but has worked in Boulder, CO at a community hospital &, as a paralegal working with medical cases and in Madison, WI as a transplant surgery nurse. Her stories are funny, heart-breaking, and inspirational. She's the one I went to on my last day on the Luther campus & talked/cried to about leaving. She always pushed me to do my best & never failed to tell me when she was proud of me. And she loves coffee just as much as me! Love this woman to death!

This lady was my Pediatrics professor and clinical instructor. She also was my academic adviser all throughout nursing school. She's such a personable woman & I never hesitated in asking her questions or expressing my concerns. She always reassured me and had confidence I could do it, which is something you need in nursing school. She has written numerous letters of recommendations and references for jobs, residencies, and other such things. She even told me at pinning that she loved writing them for me because I made it so easy, as I was such a good student and person. She supports me in my goal of eventually working in Pediatrics or the NICU & is always giving me advice about how to get there.


Now that I've covered the Pay It Backward part. I'd love to Pay It Forward: if there's any nursing students out there who read this blog, please let me know if there's anything I can do for you: be it wanting my opinion on something, having a question on a paper or a subject you're having trouble with, needing to vent. Anything. I know how important support during this tough time is & how much it helps. You can e-mail me, leave a comment on here or my Facebook, tell me on Twitter, Instagram.

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