When and Where

I was just watching a webinar that my life coach, Karlee Fain, was doing.  It got me thinking.

At the end she said a quote my Albert Einstein.  To paraphrase the quote, it was saying that driven people believe that the universe is benevolent.

That got me to thinking about my life right now.  I’m starting a life coach business of my own right now.  I still haven’t gotten a client yet and I’m a little worried.  I would like to have my business thriving right now.

I also thought about another situation that happened in my life.

When I got out of RN school, I wanted to be a Labor and Delivery nurse.  For about 6 months, I only applied to Labor and Delivery nurse jobs.  In my dreams, at the time, I saw myself as a Med/Surg/Telemetry nurse.  When I gave in and started to apply for the med/surg and med/surg/telemetry jobs, I started to get interviews.  It took me a year and a half after graduating to get my first hospital job.  I knew that I was going to get a job as a med/surg/telemetry nurse, I just didn’t know where or when.  My job in that situation was to keep applying for jobs.  The Universe/God was going to determine when and where.

I can use that situation in my current situation.  I know that I’m meant to be some kind of teacher among so many other things.  My first client will come.  I just have to do the things that I need to do.

The Universe/God will take care of me and decide the when and where it will happen.

Until it happens, I’m going to try not to worry.  If my life has taught me anything, it is that I’m taken care of and guided.  Some how every thing works out.

I just needed to be reminded of that today.


I was recently looking for a before picture of myself to put on my website.  Just to show how far that I’ve come.

I couldn’t find one.

In my mind, I could picture exactly which picture I wanted for my before picture.  It was a picture of my nephew and I.  He was about 5 months old at the time.  I remember the picture because I didn’t look so great in it.  When I first saw the photo all I could see was that I had a double chin, my skin was oily, and I had acne.  My nephew looked great.  He was smiling and having fun.

I do remember after my dad showed me the picture, I tried to hide it.  I think I eventually tore the picture up and threw it away.  Now when I picture that picture in my mind, I see my nephew and I having fun.  I realize now that I was focusing on the wrong things.

I thought about that for a while. I used to tear up the pictures of myself that I didn’t like.  I did that because the pictures showed me that I wasn’t beautiful to myself.  When I was bigger, I didn’t think I was beautiful. I thought my face was pretty but not beautiful. No matter if someone else called me pretty or beautiful, I didn’t feel that way about myself.  I didn’t like having my photo taken because I didn’t like the photos.

I recently booked a private photographer in Sydney, Australia and I’m so excited.  It was a big step for me.  The recent hair loss turned my world upside down for a while.

I feel beautiful inside and out now.

I just yesterday told some nurses my age.  They were shocked that I am 36 years old.  One of them said that I looked like I was 30 years old.  I took that as a compliment.  I would like to think that I look young because I’m radiating my love for myself from the inside out.

Now I know that I’m beautiful to myself even if no one ever told me that I was pretty or beautiful.

Now I’m ready for my picture to be taken and to share my smile with myself and the world!!

Every Thing Happens for a Reason

My hair recently fell out and I didn’t know the cause.

So I went to the doctor.  He diagnosed me with alopecia areata.  He told me that no body knows the cause of alopecia areata and the treatments might not be effective.  He wanted me to start with some steroid injections into my scalp.  I was so nervous to try that because I’m scared of needles.  The thought of having to get 10 injections in my scalp scared me.  I ended up saying that I would have to think about it.

My gut was still telling me that it had some thing to do with my diet or some thing that I wasn’t getting.  I asked the doctor to have my blood drawn.  I’m so glad that I asked because of the results.

The blood work came back and I am low in iron and critically low in my vitamin D levels.  I was expecting the low iron levels because that runs in my family.  I wasn’t expecting the low vitamin D levels.

I did some research on low vitamin D levels.  I also looked at the foods that I was eating.  Most of the foods don’t have any vitamin D at all.  Vitamin D is gotten from the sun, fish, or fortified foods.  I found this article that was very interesting:


The article states that some of the symptoms of low vitamin D are fatigue, hair loss, and getting sick often.  The only symptom that I had was the hair loss.  I didn’t feel fatigue and I wasn’t getting sick often.  I was taking care of myself so my body had to get my attention some how and that is why I believe that my hair fell out.  My vitamin D level is a 9 and the normal is between 30-100.  The doctor told me that my low vitamin D may be the cause of my alopecia areata.  He told me to start taking supplements.

I’m glad that I said no to the steroid injections.  It may have worked but that would have just been treating the symptom and not the root cause of the problem.  The root cause is the low iron and low vitamin D levels.

Through this whole situation I have learned that every thing happens for a reason.

Because my hair fell out, I went to the doctor to see what was going on.  I got my blood work done.  Then I did some research and found the cause.  It also taught me that self care and self love are important.

Self care and self love starts with the food that you put into your mouth every day.  The food effects your mood and energy level.

I remember my life coach, Karlee Fain, gave me an action step to do about a year ago.  She just wanted me to be aware of how I felt after eating.  I was to do this for 2 weeks.

I noticed that after I ate my doughnuts, cakes and fast foods, I would feel very tired.  I would also feel sad.  After I ate vegetables, smoothies, and healthy food, I would feel energized and happy.  After that exercise, I decided I wanted to feel energized and happy.  I still eat some junk food but not anything like I was doing.  Now when I’m feeling sad, I recognize that it is because I ate some junk food.  I am trying to get rid of junk food completely from my diet.

I want to challenge people to do the same exercise that I did.  Just start to be aware of how you feel after you eat food.  You might start to notice a pattern.

If you want to connect with me, visit my other website, http://www.joyfulnurse.com.

Hair Loss

I recently found a huge bald spot on my scalp.  I have no idea when it started but I know it couldn’t have happened overnight.  I was shocked when my hair dresser found it.

What did I do?

I did something that I have told my patients not to do.  I googled my symptoms and scared myself.  Also I joined some Facebook support groups for hair loss.  I let my fear take over.  I did all of this before I even left the hairdresser that day.

The reason I tell my patients not to google their symptoms is because it will have them scared and nervous.  You don’t even have all the information yet.  Go to the doctor first and then you can get to the bottom of the symptoms.  It might turn out that you don’t have the disease that you thought you had from googling your symptoms.

I have a doctor’s appointment soon and I will hopefully get all the information then and be able to find out what is going on.

To get myself back to being myself, I had to do some things.  I called my life coach and had a talk.  I had to get myself out of the Facebook groups.  Those groups were only making me more scared and nervous.  I had to change my thoughts on the situation.

How did I change my thoughts?

Every time that I had a negative thought, I counter acted it with a positive thought.  When I would think that I was going bald, I would then think that I’m grateful that I can cover it up right now.   I even had a talk with my hair follicles and sent them some positive energy.  My gut is telling me that it may be an allergic reaction or my diet.  I don’t know what it is right now.  I won’t know until I get more information, so right now I’m trying not to let it take over my life.

One of the reasons that I had to leave the Facebook support groups is because they were making me feel scared and depressed.  I was allowing those posts to scare me.  There were only a few positive posts on there and some of the comments on those posts were so mean.  Now that I’m out of those groups I can go on Facebook and not be scared or nervous.

One of the reasons that I’m sharing this is to share my story.  I already know that it has helped one person.  Its helped me.  When I first found out about the bald spot, I was ashamed, scared, and nervous.  Now I know that I’m going through this for a reason.  I don’t know the reason but I do know that God/Universe always helps me.  I am guided.  This situation will only make me a stronger person.

I’ve also learned that I can be going through some things and still be happy and joyful.  My emotions don’t have to be tied to what I’m going through in my life.

Now when I’m feeling sad about my situation, I just step up my self care.  For example, I went whale watching yesterday.  I saw a humpback whale and some dolphins.  I even saw some baby dolphins.  When I got home I looked up the meaning of dolphins.  “Most of us as adults take our responsibilities very seriously and end up focusing on our work and families.  Therefore, dolphin meaning is letting you know that you have to take time out and play.  After all, laughter, joy, movement, and engaging your mind on fun is the best way to relieve stress and regroup.” – Spirit Animal Totem.


That is the exact message that I needed right now.  Going whale watching makes me feel very happy.  The crew of the boat like me and they even started giving me a discount because I come so much.  I even won the photo contest and won 2 free VIP tickets.  Nature is a part of my tribe and it helps me with my stress levels.  Going whale watching every week is just a part of my self care.

I’m learning a great lesson.  I am happy and joyful and still going through a not so pleasant thing right now.  I’m allowing myself to feel both of those things at once.  I won’t be ashamed of my body or my hair.  I am beautiful, I have a beautiful smile, and I have a beautiful spirit.  I have a purpose and I love myself.



Every time that I go hiking, I get a message from God/Universe.

It’s been over a month since I last went hiking.  I was getting a little frustrated with myself because I was having to take more breaks than usual.

I thought about the story of the tortoise and the hare.  The hare could have won the race because it was faster than the tortoise, it was cocky and then it fell asleep.  The tortoise won because it didn’t give up, even though it was slow.

After thinking about that, I wasn’t so hard on myself for taking more breaks.  I still made it to the top of the mountain.

Another lesson I learned was just to enjoy the moment.

Most of my friends are married, have kids, and have homes.  I’m still trying to find the place that I want to call home.  Hawaii is number 1 right now.  I’m still not done being a travel nurse yet.  I haven’t met my future husband yet.

Sometimes I compare my life to theirs and I feel like I’m behind some how.  I want to be married and have a home.  Then I start to worry about why it hasn’t happened for me yet, have I missed an opportunity in the past, or will it ever happen for me.  Then I realize that:

It’s just not my time right now for that.

All those things will happen when God/Universe decides it is time.  Every thing comes to me when the time is right.

For example, it took me about 2 years to get a killer whale tattoo design.  I had been looking but not finding anything.  Finally when I took a vacation to Washington, I found a design from a t-shirt.  The design came to me when I was ready for it and at the right time.

I’m going to stop comparing my life to any one else’s life.  I’m right on time in my life.  Every thing will come when it is meant to come and at the right time.  I’m doing very well right now by my own standards.

Being able to think and reflect is one of the reasons that I love hiking.

From now on, I’m going to try to just enjoy the moment and stop worrying about the future and when things are going to happen in my life.

Looking at my past shows me that every thing will come when it’s time.

I bought this turtle about 2 years ago when I went to New York.

Looking at this turtle reminds me to not take things for granted and to enjoy the moment.  Just like the tortoise and the hare, going at my own pace is the best.  I don’t have to be the fastest, prettiest, or smartest.  I just have to be the best me that I can be.


I recently got a new tattoo.  I didn’t expect to learn a life lesson while getting it but I did.

I had been looking for an orca tattoo for about 2 years.  I couldn’t find one that I liked.  I searched orca pictures and other people’s tattoos.  So I just stop looking.  I still wanted one.

When I went up to the San Juan Islands to whale watch last month, I had some time on my hands before the sea plane got back to the island.  I had just seen some killer whales on the whale watch tour.  I decided to go shopping.  In a little shop near the harbor, I came across a shirt.  I loved the design of the killer whale and it had, wild soul, written above the killer whale.  I immediately knew that that was the design that I had been looking for.  I knew that that was my tattoo.  I bought the shirt and then started to look for a tattoo shop that I wanted to have it done at.  There were so many tattoo shops in LA.  I didn’t know which one to choose.

I had wanted to get my tattoo done in Hawaii when I was in Hawaii two years ago.  I had liked the designs that I saw the tattoo artists doing in Hawaii.  I didn’t have a design that I liked at the time.  After my trip to the San Juan Islands, I was planning a trip to Maui.  I decided to get a tattoo in Maui.  I started to do some research on the tattoo shops on Maui.  I found one that I liked and booked an appointment.  I sent the tattoo artist a picture of the shirt that I had bought.

On my last full day in Maui, I went to the tattoo shop.  I was nervous but excited too.

When I got to the shop the artist said that he wanted to change the tattoo.  It would have the basic design that I sent him but with a few changes.  He wanted to switch the direction of the killer whale.  I agreed to that.  He also wanted to put some Polynesian style into it.  He wanted to put a turtle and a stingray inside of the killer whale.  I was so shocked that he would choose the turtle because turtles have a special meaning to me from my past life.  I agreed to the changes because he was making my tattoo idea even better.  He had said that he didn’t want me to have a tattoo design that anybody else had.  I looked up the meaning of turtles and stingrays while he finished the design.  These are the websites that I used:



The thing that stood out to me on the stingray website was the quote, “Have faith in your abilities and follow your inner guidance.”  That is something that I struggle with.

The thing that stood out to me on the turtle website was the quote, “Pay attention to details in your current project and take your time with it.  Don’t be tempted to skip steps or take short cuts.”  This is another thing that I struggle with.

When the design for the tattoo was done, he showed it to me and I said I loved it.  He had completely changed the killer whale.  He then asked me if I wanted some color on the words of the tattoo.  I told him that I hadn’t considered it.  I asked him what colors did he recommend.  He told me turquoise so that way it would go with the whole killer whale in the ocean theme.  I told him lets do it.  He was the tattoo artist so I trusted him.  I was a little worried because I didn’t know how the finished tattoo was going to look.

After he finished the killer whale, he comes up with another idea.  He wanted to have the words slanted and he wanted to change the colors.  He wanted to do three different colors.  He even told me sorry that he was throwing so many ideas at me.  I told him that he didn’t have to apologize.  He was making a unique tattoo for me.  For some reason I trusted him.  I agreed to the new changes and I’m so glad that I did.  The tattoo came out even better than I could have imagined.  I had envisioned a simple black tattoo just like the design of the shirt.

The lesson that I learned from this experience is to trust in God/Universe.  Sometimes what I envision for my life isn’t as beautiful as God’s plan.  Trust in the plan and my intuition.  God/Universe has always taken care of me.

I had seen myself in my dreams as a travel nurse, but I never saw all the adventures that I was going to have.

At times, it was very uncomfortable getting the tattoo.  Getting the letters was more painful than the killer whale.  I meditated and did some breathing exercises to keep my mind off the pain.

If I had just said no to the tattoo artist’s vision then I would have a simple tattoo that looked just like the shirt’s design.  There was nothing wrong with the original design but it doesn’t compare to the tattoo that I ended up getting.

Another lesson that I learned is everything comes when its the right time.  God/Universe will send what you need at the right time that you need it and not a minute sooner or a minute later.

I was getting frustrated at times when I couldn’t find a design that I liked for the tattoo.  For a while I just gave up looking for a tattoo design.  When the time was right, the design came to me.  I wasn’t even looking for a design when I saw the shirt.

If I had not chosen to take the sea plane to the island, then I wouldn’t have been able to go shopping after the whale watching tour.  I would have had to get on the ferry back to Seattle after the whale watching tour.  With the sea plane option, I had 3 hours after the whale watching tour to spend on the island until the sea plane got back.  That gave me the chance to see the shirt with the design on it.

Following is the picture of the original shirt design and then the tattoo.


I got a reminder this week.

My life coach was telling me that she used a part of my story in her workshop.  She told me that she told the group of women about the times that I would go to the grocery store and buy the doughnuts and buy fruits and vegetables too.  I would end up throwing all the fruits and vegetables away because I didn’t eat them.  Sometimes I would put the fruits and vegetables in the garbage right away and sometimes I would put them in the refrigerator to be thrown away later.

I bought them because I didn’t want anyone to think that I was just buying doughnuts, cakes, and lunchables to eat for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.  I remember a cashier stating that she didn’t understand why I was buying doughnuts when I had all the other healthy foods.  I felt like I had to say something.  I lied to her and said that the doughnuts were for work.

I would only buy 2 boxes of doughnuts at a time.  That means that I would have to go to the grocery story about 2 or 3 times a week.  Those 2 boxes usually lasted about a day or two.  I would have at least 3 grocery stores that I would go to.  I kept a mental note of the grocery store that I last went to so that way I wouldn’t be going to the same grocery store more than once a week.  Sometimes I would forget and have to drive past that particular grocery store and drive to another one that was close by because I had already been to that one that week.  I didn’t want to be judged by any one for buying so many doughnuts and cakes.

Thinking back on that time, it makes me feel exhausted to think of some of the things that I put myself through.

When self check out came around, that became my best friend.  Doing self check out meant that the cashier couldn’t comment on me buying so many doughnuts.  I also didn’t have to buy so many fruits and vegetables.  I did feel bad for throwing those things away.  I could have fed so many people with the food that I threw away.

Now when I go to the grocery store, I only buy what I’m going to eat.  If I happen to want some muffins or cookies then I get them.  I don’t feel any shame or judgment any more.  I know that I am taking care of myself.  I don’t deny myself my cravings.

I’m also not afraid to tell my story now.  I’m finding that my story can inspire other people.  If I can change my life then so can any one else.

I went from staying home most of the time to traveling the US, jumping out of airplanes, and doing so many things by myself.  I never in a million years imagined that my life could be so good.  Its good that I got a reminder of where I started.  It showed me how far I’m come from that woman that I was just 3 years ago.


Bad Reviews

Someone recently commented on a recent post of mine that got me thinking about bad reviews.

I had just posted that I took the train from LA to Seattle.  I had a great experience.  Someone posted that she loved the train until she had a bad experience with an verbally and physically abusive train conductor.  While I don’t negate her experience, I wondered what happened.

I’ve noticed that when people leave a bad review, they rarely tell how they really handled the situation.

When I was taking the train last month, a situation happened.  I was in business class and the seats at the back of the train were unoccupied.  I was sitting in the middle of the train car.  No one was sitting beside me.  The train made a stop and a women got on the train.  She went to the unoccupied seats in the back.  A woman that worked on the train told her that she couldn’t seat there because those seats were reserved for the crew members.  The seats weren’t marked.  The woman wanted a window seat and moved the belongings of another person that had gone to the bathroom who was sitting in the seats behind me.  When the woman got back to her seat from the bathroom, she told the woman that she wanted her seat back because she originally had her belongings in the seat first.  The woman told her that there were no assigned seats on the train, with an attitude.  The train conductor came by and asked what was going on.  The woman that had moved the belongings of the other woman got very loud.  The conductor didn’t raise his voice and neither did the other woman whose belongings had been moved.   The woman whose belongings had been moved just moved to another seat but she didn’t have a window seat anymore.

When every thing had calmed down, the woman behind me started calling some one on her cell phone and having a loud conversation.  I tried to tune her out but she was so loud.  She was telling the other person that she was going to complain and get her money refunded.  She told the person on the phone how the conductor had been very rude to her.  She called another person and told the same story.

Not one time during those conversations did she tell those people that she had moved someone else’s belongings and that she was the only one to raise her voice and get loud.

My opinion of the situation was that the woman who moved the belongings was the one being rude and loud.  I do agree that the crew members should have had a sign up to block off the seats in the back.  Two wrongs don’t make a right. Just because those seats weren’t marked doesn’t mean that she had to move someone else’s belongings.  The next time that I took the train there was a sign placed on those seats marking them for crew member use only.

I liked the fact that the train conductor and the woman whose belongings had been moved didn’t get loud and rude with the woman.

Just because someone is mean or rude, doesn’t mean that you have to treat them like they are treating you. 

Now when I see bad reviews of a restaurant, hotel, or anything else, I take that bad review with a grain of salt.  That bad review was that person’s experience.  That doesn’t mean that I am going to have a bad experience.  Even if I do have a bad experience, I keep it to myself.  I don’t want my experience to influence some one else from not doing something.  The one time that I did leave a bad review, that negative energy came back to me really quickly.

The two times that I took the train, I had a great experience.  I loved the views and the crew members were nice to me.  Following are my most favorite pictures from my train rides.


Depressed in Maui

I recently had a conversation that solidified my decision not to take an assignment in Maui, Hawaii.

I’ve been wanting a travel assignment in Maui ever since I learned of travel nursing almost 13 years ago.  A position in Maui doesn’t open up very often.

About 2 months ago, a position opened up and I wanted to take it.  The problem with the position was it was a rotation shift.  Which means that one week, I would work day shift and the next week, I would work night shift.  I like working day shift.  I’ve worked a few night shifts in my work as a nurse.  Every time that I worked night shift, I had a hard time sleeping afterwards.  I would only sleep for about 2 hours and not be able to get to sleep until night time.

I was excited and nervous to take this position.  More nervous because I didn’t want to work night shift.  Switching up my sleeping habits every week wasn’t appealing at all.

I talked with my life coach and she helped me to make a decision.  I’m at my best when I get good sleep, eat right, and exercise.  I wouldn’t be at my best having to change my sleeping habits every week.  So I decided not to apply to the position in Maui.

A few weeks ago, I was having a talk with another travel nurse.  She was telling me that she had taken a position in Maui.  It was a rotating shift.  She was used to working day shift.  She took the position because she wanted to go to Maui.  She told me that she had a very hard time adjusting to working day shift one week and night shift the next week.  She wasn’t able to go and do the things that she wanted to do.  She wasn’t able to get enough sleep.  She said that she became depressed.  She said that she couldn’t believe that she was in Maui but she was depressed.  She stated that she would no longer take any rotating travel assignments.

After that conversation, I learned a lesson.

Sometimes you have to say no to some thing that you want in order to not hurt yourself.

If I had taken that travel assignment, I would have been hurting myself.  Yes the assignment would have only been 13 weeks but would I have enjoyed myself if I was miserable from lack of sleep.

Now I’m choosing to wait for an assignment that works for me.  I’m going to wait for a day shift assignment that will allow me not to mess with my sleeping habits, eating habits, and exercise habits.  It was a hard decision to make at the time because I really wanted to go to Maui.  The right travel assignment will come when the time is right.

Leisure Time

I recently had a conversation with some one that got me thinking.

This woman was trying to convince me that going back to school would be the right thing to do.  She told me that she went to school full time, had 4 kids, and a boyfriend.  She said that she did have to give up her leisure time.  She told me that if she did school then I could get through school as well.  I applaud her for doing all that while going to school.

Without her knowing it, she actually validated my decision not to go to school right now.

The thing that she said that got me thinking was that she had to give up her leisure time.

I looked up the meaning of leisure.  Dictionary.com says that leisure is defined as, “freedom from the demands of work or duty, when one can rest and enjoy hobbies or sports”.  Reading that definition, it seems to me that leisure time is more important than some people think.

As a nurse, my days away from work are just as important as the days that I work.  When I’m at work, I take care of my patients.  When I’m not at work, I’m taking care of me.

In the conversation, she told me that going to school I may just have to give up going to the movies once a week.  I thought to myself, what if going to the movies once a week makes a person feel good and relaxed.  If someone told me that I had to give up whale watching once a week to go to school.  I would say no to going to school.

Whale watching relaxes me.  I get excited to see whales and dolphins.  I do that once a week because I love it.  Being around water helps me to meditate and feel relaxed.  Whale watching is one of my ways of practicing self care.  Some people call it leisure time but it can be interchangeable with self care time.

I recently took a trip up to Monterey Bay and saw killer whales.  I just wanted to see killer whales in the wild.  I had so much fun.  I even extended my trip to see them.  I took a week off in between my current travel assignment.  I went up to Monterey Bay by train on Wednesday.  I went whale watching on Thursday and Friday.  I saw a lot of humpback whales.  On Friday, I decided to extend my trip.  I really wanted to see some killer whales.  On Saturday, I saw a lot of killer whales.

Another thing that she said that made me think was, “people make time for what they want to make time for.”

I agree a little bit with her statement.  People do make time for the things that they want to but life does happen.

For example, a couple of years ago, when I was working in retail at Goody’s.  I remember this mom came in with her son.  The son was about 6 or 7 years old.  The mother got a call and she let out a little scream.  She then yells into the phone, “What hospital is he at?”.  She grabs the little boy by the arm and runs to her car.  I could only think that her life just changed that day.  Some one that she loves is in the hospital and it didn’t look like she had planned that.  She came into Goody’s to shop and she ended up not buying anything that day.

I make plans and sometimes I don’t follow through with them.  I recently wanted to go to a waffle and beer festival in LA.  I made plans but on the day of the festival, I didn’t feel like going.  That day I just felt like relaxing at home and that is what I did.  I love waffles and pancakes.  I was looking forward to the different kinds of waffles that they were going to be selling.  The day before I had had a very hard day at work and I just wanted to relax because I was emotionally and physically tired from work.  The next day I did go whale watching to relax myself.

To me leisure time is important.  Leisure time can be interchangeable with self care time.  Leisure time is when you can enjoy your hobbies like fishing, boating, going to sporting events, whale watching, knitting, reading, going to a spa, getting your nails done, or what ever a person enjoys doing.

My leisure time or self care time makes me a more productive person at work.  It makes me feel better.  I make time for self care every week.  Some times I even say no to working extra shifts at work because I need my leisure time.

When I do choose to go to school, I will make time for my self care habits as well.