It is interesting how our lives take course. From the time of birth through our adolescent days and on to our adulthood. I can simply give you the chronological aspect of my life but that would give it no justice. I could take you down the journey of where things changed my life for the better even if the cause was negative. Instead I want to give you a snapshot of who I am and what I am about. The milestones of my life and how my journey continues to be full of surprises.
My Education Journey
Here is a snap shot of my journey of knowledge. I did attend multiple community colleges to take different types of classes, such as, foreign languages, law courses and business classes.
After graduating high school in 1992, I attended Western Washington University for about a year and a half. I was struggling to figure out what I was going to do with my life. I wasn’t sure what to major in and my mother kept telling me to major in business adminsitration. At the time, it wasn’t my thing so I ended up selecting science since I didn’t like it in high school. I figured it would be nice challenge since it was the one subject that I questioned. In the end, I graduated from CSU, Chico with a major in Biology and a minor in chemistry. Now I am taking my mother’s advise. I made the plunge to go back to school and work towards obtaining a master in business administration. Funny how things change and thing you just don’t ever forget.
My Work & Volunteer Experience
My work and volunteer experience has definitely provided a foundation for me as I move forward in my career. I started out in high school as a senior rep for Christopher’s photography for our senior photos. In addition worked at Drug Emporium. College work experience was even more interesting. In Bellingham WA, I worked at Drug Emporium and was a dishwasher for Western Washington University. In my spare time, I would volunteer for the Evergreen AIDS Foundation. During my transition to move to Chico, CA, I had worked at BurgerMaster in Redmond WA to save money to start a new beginning in Chico.
When I moved to Chico CA, I worked at a shoe store in the mall along wtih Sunglass Hut and the library for California State University, Chico. I continued to find time to volunteer. In Chico, I volunteered for Interim Healthcare.
My Journey Began with a Hurdle at Birth
It has been interesting course. My experience have made me grown into an unique individual so I have been told. Not to get to deep and personal, I would have to say there have been many life challenging experiences that made me stronger as an individual. Growing up in a strict household, dealt with different levels of abuse and isolation, I managed to push through and always be a person of determination and survivor.
I was born with an unknown health condition that at the time my mother was told I would grow out of it. Later, it turned out to be jeopardizing the quality of my life. There was a team of doctors back in 2001 who were determined to give me back my life. Dr. Katie Shapiro, Mark Tsuchiyose and Dr. Julius Zsigmond.
From a blood transfusion to weekly iron transfusions; a series of tests, x-rays and endless nights of pain. It was finally decided to go into surgery to figure out what was wrong. All the tests and x-rays were inconclusive – technically I was a healthy young lady. Come October 23, 2002 – my life changed forever. I just had a miscarriage about three months prior and it was time to have surgery to see if they could identify this unique condition. In the end, the doctor removed two feet of my large intestine. A miracle because ever since then, I have been pain free and had three more awesome kids. I appreciate everything I have. My four children, my health and luxury of looking forward to the future.
Pass on the Torch
July 1995 – Gabrielle was born. She is what I would like to call my college baby. She was my partner in crime and reminded me that we both wanted more in life – she just didn’t know. I would have to say she was my rock. I was only 20 years old when I had her and still felt like I was a baby. I had no family in Chico; it was just me and her dad. I would have to say she was my miracle baby. Despite all the health issues I had and the challenging of dealing with the fact that her father’s side of the family did not agree with me having her – it gave me more will power to prove people wrong. I will graduate college with a despite what people throw at me and Gab. Her father and I went our separate ways but we made it. My little fighter helped me through the daily pains due to my health… she even made me little charms to help me get through the pain.. that’s my lil mama!
September 2003 – Jazmyne brought a new spunk to our life. Now married with a stable career at Genentech; settled in San Mateo and raising an eight year old daugther – life couldn’t be better. I knew once this little mama was born she was going to be a firecracker because she is a fellow virgo. Oh, this girl definitely keeps me on my toes but I love her openness and empathy.
December 2004 – Jaylen.… oh my, a boy. I had no idea how this was going to turnout. A boy in the mix. Who would have thought that this little man would end up turning into the most sensitive little man obsessed with sports. I remember when he was two years old.. he would sleep with his basketball.
April 23, 2007 – Gavin has arrived. Wow another boy and now we are nice and balanced. No one knew that we were going to get an extremely opinionated artistic little man. Oh, the things this little guy says but you can’t help but giggle. Majority of the time he is right and he will definitely call you out on something that HE feels is unacceptable.
The Speed Bumps
Every now and then we hit speed bumps in our life but we figure a way to get over them and move on. They do slow us down but they don’t stop us from reaching our goals.
Some of my speed bumps were:
- Leaving my family and friends in Washington when I moved to California
- Being pregnant in college with no family support
- Moving on from a breakup
- Graduating from college and moving to a different city to start over again (the unknown of establishing myself both career and financially)
- Start of a career
- Losing two of my dearest friends
- Buying a home and raising a family
- Being a military wife and coping with the uncertainty
- The adjustment of being a single mother with four children on a single income
- Changing jobs
- Being able to trust again
- Going back to school to obtain a Master of Science in Systems Management (MSSM)
I have to admit it has been a great and interesting journey. Someone told me I should write a book on my life.. well I just might do that. I wouldn’t change the paths I have chosen. It has made me who I am and able to help others. How else are you able to help people unless you have experienced or been exposed to things that people normally don’t endure. People tell me their life stories. I don’t know why but maybe they know I don’t judge and I am there to listen… who knows but all that matter is that I am able to be there for others – where I can be their safe haven.
Just when the caterpillar thought the world was ending, he turned into a butterfly. ~Proverb