The lady in lavender scrubs

Truth be told, I’ve never divulged the details of the day I decided to pursue a nursing career to a single soul. Not a colleague,  not my mother, not even my husband and father of my child have ever heard this story. I always have, and still do adamantly believe that those who are rightfully in nursing are answering a divine calling. Perhaps it is not always immediately recognized as such.
     It must have been December. I was wrapping up my first semester at a four year school for which I had miraculously obtained enough scholarship money to pay tuition. I was groggily trudging across campus to my 8 o’clock, which I’m sure was a basic class chosen by some “advisor” who no doubt couldn’t remember the face of the country girl with no declared major and no direction.   It was cold and I would have liked nothing more than to stay in my cocoon on the top bunk in the tiny dormroom. I’m sure I looked like a walking pile of dirty laundry crunching my way across the frozen lawn, contemplating nothing but my desire to return to bed. Eventually,  I must have gotten tired of staring at my feet (which isn’t a very safe walking habit) so I looked forward. This moment is one burned into my memory. She was a fair bit ahead of me, headed in the opposite direction. She had smooth,  caramel skin and her black hair was pulled back neatly. She had a stethoscope draped around her neck and wore lovely lavender scrubs. The sun casted the warmest orange glow behind her as it began its work of burning off the mist and frost. The lady didn’t appear much older than my eighteen year old self, but there was something different about her face,  a wisdom, it seemed. I don’t know where she was headed, but she definitely knew, she looked so determined. She never so much as glanced my way.
     By the next day, I was no longer an “undeclared major.” I had taken the first step on a journey that would ultimately define me in many ways. Yes, essentially I saw a lady and thought “She’s got it together, I think I’ll go for that.” I don’t know why such a mundane passing of strangers has such an otherworldly effect on my existence. Furthermore, I don’t know why someone in lavender scrubs was doing on campus at 0730. Student nurses wear burgundy and white. Perhaps she had worked a night shift and was furthering her education by day… although her scrubs were rather neat and fresh. Perhaps she worked at the Student Health Clinic, although I’ve never seen them wear scrubs. You can speculate for yourself who or what she was and what her business was that day, I have my own theories.



6 responses to “The lady in lavender scrubs

  1. I love your story Kori! I’m surprised we haven’t swapped the “Why Nursing?” Story before. Like you, I was lead to this place unknowingly. I was called here.
    I was standing in line at Subway, hot and sweaty from working in the cleaners. A girl working there was one I had marched with at Henderson (where I dropped out.) I asked her what she was up to. “I’m going to LPN school in Malvern. You should look into it.” So I did. I struggled (for me) through my first semester, still really not knowing what nursing was. It was like learning German. I made a C in Geriatrics. (now my specialty) My second semester we started clinicals. The first clinical site was Twin Rivers. There was magic in the air. I was exhilarated by feeding, bathing, CARING for the precious people that lived there. I found a piece of my heart there. I excelled through the remainder of school, I knew this was my calling and learning became thrilling again. My career started with small talk at a Subway restaurant. Eleven years of blood, sweat, and tears later, I am the Director of Nursing at Twin Rivers.


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