I know, He always provides (we have ample food, shelter, clothing, baby friendly transportation, etc.) but wouldn’t you know it, I forget from time to time. Usually it’s in stressful situations when my emotions are taking over. Like when we were involved in the short sale that would never end, or when I found out we were expecting #2 when Evie was only 8 months old and we were still living in my parent’s basement. But you know the situations you can look back on and say, ” I cannot believe all of that fell into place. God seriously provided some mountain moveage there.”? Those are the situations I need to recall when the going gets tough. So, future me, here’s a reminder in writing.
How I moved to California after college.
(Warning, this is a bit lengthy.)
My good friend Anna and I start to seriously consider finding jobs somewhere other than back home after college (home being OH for her, VA for me). We talk to another friend who suggests moving to her home state of California, and even suggests a hospital we could apply to. Sounds like a done deal, we think. After a few emails we separately speak to HR representatives at two different hospitals and set up interviews for that June.
First off, I cannot even believe these reps gave us the time of day. College students beaucoup states away, who hadn’t even graduated or taken their nursing licensure exam? Crazy. And secondly, college student = poor. I’m not even sure where I’d thought I’d scare up the $ for a plane ticket out west.
I go on a Medical Missions trip to Jamaica over spring break. On the way back the airline offers free ticket vouchers to any passengers who give up their seats on our flight. Say no more, I come forth to the counter to give up my seat (along with 3 other classmates). California interviews here I come!
Still having barely any $ to my name, I fly out west for interviews. Did I mention I was covered in poison ivy? Literally a few days before I fly out I contract the horrid rash (seriously? it’s more like a plague!) while retrieving a frisbee in the backyard. It spread to my hands, arms, neck, and face. You don’t know mortification until you have to apologize at a job interview for your leper-like appearance.
My amazing friend found us a place to stay at, coincidentally, a former FUS nursing grad’s apartment. We rented a car, made it to our interviews, and somehow both landed job offers at two hospitals.
That summer ended up being the hardest I can remember. Between studying, working for a temp agency, and moving plans, I was an emotional wreck.
I take the NCLEX and it shuts off after the minimum 75 questions. No.Way, I think. I just FAILED. I FAILED! I exit the testing area and one of the staff looks very (negatively) surprised as she asks, “You’re done?”. I go home and have a long cry. I think my life is over.
A few days later my (then future) SIL calls me to tell me I passed! She checked the VA nursing website and saw a license # next to my name. Somehow I passed that blasted test. I’m sure many prayers were offered on my behalf!
My parents graciously offered to pay for my one-way ticket out to CA, and that first Sunday in September they drop me off at the airport. I say good-bye, lug my two over-stuffed suitcases into the airport, and wing my way west.
Anna, who had done all the leg-work finding us an apartment, picks me up at John Wayne airport in her packed car she recently purchased, and off we drive to sign our lease. I literally have $200 to my name after paying rent (don’t let my dad see this but- thank the Lord for credit cards!). We’re given a gift card for free pizza after we sign our lives away. As we’re unpacking, we hear a loud crash in our backyard, and the power goes out. No joke. We go out to see what happened, and find some kid had veered his car off the street and run into the power box. Great time to get that free pizza!
Of course neither of us has a flashlight, and we don’t know where any stores are except the 7-11 down the road. We head over there and purchase what they have to offer in the way of lighting- some Glade candles.
That Monday (Labor Day):
We head to the beach, which helps stave off feelings of, What are we doing?
I only have a nursing license to work in Virginia- not California. The easiest way I can find to obtain one is to drive 7 hrs. to the state capital (lots of complicated requirements involved). So Anna and I rent a car, drive on up to Sacramento, and stay the night with some family friends of hers who happen to live right near Sacramento.
The next day I set out to obtain my license. I figure out how to meet all the requirements except…I need a picture of myself (???). I freak out for a tiny second and then remember I happen to have a handful of photos in my overnight bag! Phew. Crisis averted and license obtained. We make the trek back to Laguna Niguel listening to the same 2 CDs on repeat.
We were certified in Red Cross CPR each year of nursing school. Which is perfect because I need the certification for my new job, except I need American Heart Association certification. Back before the move I did a little Googling to try and find a CPR class. I made some calls and happened to find a lady not far from my place in California. She even happened to be Catholic which was neat. So on Thursday I was able to obtain AHA CPR certification, and that Friday Anna and I started orientation for our first nursing jobs. Whew.
Sometimes I get overwhelmed thinking of every little thing that had to fall into place. It didn’t happen all at once, but each provision was enough for me to know I was where God wanted me to be. I know all of the above could not have happened without God’s hand, and I am so thankful for His faithfulness!
“Trust the past to the mercy of God, the present to His Love and the future to His Providence. ” – St. Augustine