LIFE IS ABOUT TAKING RISKS

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Taking risks prevents you from always wondering “what if”. It leads you to new beginnings, more experience, gained knowledge, and a sense of worthiness. Life is short and yes you may fail, but who cares. What is most important is what you will gain from taking chances and the person it creates you to be.

Have you ever been told that you should do something, yet think they were crazy? Such as, a blind date, write a book, or even go back to school at 35 years old with two toddlers at home? How about the thought of adding a new chapter in this book called ‘Life’. And then, you begin to notice the wheels in your crazy wired brain begin to turn so fast that you feel like you have a million and one things going on? Well, that is ME!

I grew up on our family farm, surrounded by the beauty and most amazing smell of cotton. This little town is called Dumas, Arkansas (otherwise known as DUM-ASS from the jokesters). Our home set on a hill, known as Ayecock Hill, which is also my maiden name (and yes, if you can only imagine the jokes that went with that one as well). I drove ‘up the hill’ to the University of Arkansas and learned to yell “WOO PIG SOOIE”.

But that wasn’t enough. This little country girl took a big risk and jetted off to the city lights of Los Angeles, California. I had always wanted to move to the city and by taking this chance, I would not have to wonder “what if” when I was older. It led me to learning who I was, to gaining confidence, and beginning the start of my nursing career. I worked in Pediatrics Intensive Care at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where I had the best family ever. I was able to tour the country with celebs, enjoy the beautiful weather 24/7, and always get asked if I was from London or Australia. No clue how one cannot understand a deep, southern accent like mine.

Back to Arkansas

While I loved the sunny beaches and city lights, the time came to taking a bigger chance in life and that was moving home. I moved back to Arkansas to become an Organ Procurement Coordinator for ARORA. I was able to honor ones wishes through organ donation. This was an emotional journey, yet full of JOY, honor, and so many rewards.

I remember after working a 24 hour shift, I could not wait to go sit by the pool.

Little did I know I would be visiting with a friend and proposed with a blind date. This stranger reached out on Facebook to ask me out a couple of times. I initially declined because I had no intention of a blind date. This would be a big risk and while it may lead to something, the chances were more in favor of disappointment. Plus, have you ever heard of ‘stranger danger’.

But dude could not take no for an answer and asked me a third and final time. I agreed to meeting this stranger at lunch, and then be on my way to a float trip with friends. What an easy way to escape if the date went sour! Our lunch lasted 2.5 hours. I learned that he was 5’8.5” and I was not to forget the ‘1/2’, and afterwards. I found myself calling my mom to say I think I met my husband. Her answer was, “HUH?!”. We were engaged 7 months later.

Taking beautiful risks in education

With marriage and two kids later, Bill encouraged me listen to what everyone had been telling me to do and that’s go back to get my Masters in Nursing. This would be a big chance and something I had thought about for several years, but feared failure and regret of leaving my current job. It took me 3 years to pull the trigger. I had two toddlers at home and told myself I was crazy. But I took a chance and went back learning how to study online and use some weird thing called ‘the dashboard’

And GUESS WHAT? One of the BEST decisions I ever made! I now work as an APRN in an Arkansas based clinic, known as ARCare, where we take care of ‘the least, the last, and the lost‘. In other words, I see and help everyone whether you are rich or poor, insured or not. What if I hadn’t gone back to school, where would I be? I have no idea but I’m thankful I don’t have to live with that wonder.

Now you may be wondering where does the ‘write a book’ come to play? Well, first, I ain’t writing no book (if you can imagine my country accent saying this), but I also think I’m crazy even writing this. I was once told by high school English teachers, Ms. Murphy and Mr. Greenup, that I should find a career in writing. I just thought they had lost their mind. But then began to hear this more and more by college professors, psychic readers, and several co-workers.

In looking back, I begin to remember all the times I would stay up late writing stories with my best friend, Michelle, then wake up my papa to read them to…..or all of the times that people asked with help in writing papers, and I found it easier to write the whole thing myself. Lucky ‘A’ for them!

And so, here I am taking a chance on something that I know little about. Am I crazy? YES. Do I have time for another project while running a practice, homework, practices, ball games, and what time is left hanging with my friends? And let’s not forget about working in healthcare during COVID! NO. NO. NO!

Oh, and I failed to mention the craziness of owning liquor stores, rental property, and a farm. Our life is NUTS! But what I do have is a lot of thoughts I wonder as a mom, experiences to share from the good and the bad, advice from a medical stand point, and a joy of sharing the fun, crazy, yelling, dancing, and having a BERRY good time we have in LIFE.

We live in a world of so many ‘what-if’s’ and fears of holding us back from what ‘may be’s’, so why not start on a road that does not have my footsteps on it yet. My goal is to help us all to learn to live in the moment, to love more, and learn to share memories.

I hope that you enjoy this journey with me, but do know that this is not just my adventure. I hope to hear YOURS as well….the struggles, the happiness, the challenges, and all of the great ideas you have to share. So please feel free to share your experiences, thoughts, questions, concerns. This is a NEW OPEN book in my life and I hope that this book never ends!

Cheers!


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