When I was growing up my Grandfather (I called him “Papa”) was sick. He had lots of health problems. One day when I was 12 or 13 my mom called the whole family into the living room, sat us down and told us, "Your papa is very sick; he isn’t going to make it." So we asked her what we were going to do. She told us that she was going down to Florida, and then my Dad would bring us down the coming weekend. So when the weekend came we drove to Florida. What I didn't know is he wasn't home; he was in a hospice. When I got there I saw all the amazing nurses helping all the very sick people. I figured out that nurses get to see one of the best gifts of God! The two greatest gifts God gives us are life and death; and the day my Papa died was the day I saw what God wanted me to be when I was older, what I was meant to do—be a nurse and help people!
When I turned 17, I knew I wanted to become a volunteer at Holy Cross Hospital. I put in an application; but it’s a huge hospital, so I was praying really hard that I would get the job! One day I got the call of my dreams. They said yes, they would love to have me come in and talk about where I would like to be placed in the hospital. The next week I went in. I wasn't sure where I was going to end up; all that I knew was I just wanted to be there to help out as much as I could. I talked to the volunteer director, and she thought I would be just right for Pre-Op. I told her I would try it! I wasn't sure about it at first; I didn't know if I wanted to work in surgery, because I thought it might be too hard. I was afraid that a lot of people would die, and I didn't know if I would be ok with that. I tried it, and I loved it! I loved everything about it; people told me they loved seeing my smiling face. I learned it makes everything better if you are happy and smile; it can make even the worst day better.