Never in my wildest dreams or musings about my life did I ever expect to spend the majority of my 6th decade in Africa. I have become passionate about this work, teaching in nursing schools in developing countries; Malawi, Swaziland, and now Kenya. How did I get here….?
In 2014 a friend sent me a link to the Mercy Ship segment on 60 Minutes. I immediately dove onto their website and signed up. It was divine timing in my life, calling to me on a deep spiritual level, an immediate and visceral reaction. My children were in college, my job as a hospital nurse had become uninteresting, and I no longer had the responsibility of caring for and maintaining horses. Additionally, I had visited and observed my oldest daughter serve as a Peace Corps volunteer and knew intuitively that I wanted to use my nursing skills for an assignment longer than 3-4 weeks.
Upon completing my Mercy Ships tour as PACU nurse, I returned to the US eager to find other organizations that would lead me to longer term service. I applied and was accepted by Peace Corps in a collaborative program with SEED GLobal Health, Global Health Service Partnership (GHSP). I served as a GHSP volunteer nurse educator in Malawi from July 2015-July 2016 and again in Swaziland from September 2017-November 2017.
Living and teaching in Africa has changed my life. Shedding all the layers of shoulds, have tos, expectations, and family/cultural expectations acquired both genetically and for decades, I was able to experience true freedom and joy. Though a work in progress, I strive to continue to explore and connect with other cultures and evaluate who I want to be through a cleaner, broader lens.
Stationed in Mutomo, S Kitui Kenya, I will be teaching at a new nursing school at Mutomo Mission Hospital from March-October 2018. Thank you for your support and for your interest in my blog!