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Challenged by Life Lessons

Re-Perception

As an RN based mostly in critical care and emergency I was involved in life and death situations on a regular basis. I learned early on from my colleagues that, like a duck, the rapid paddling must be kept out of sight. I once had a new nurse remark, “Mariah, I’ve never seen you anxious.” My reply was swift, “If you see me nervous, you better be really nervous and running for the crash cart.” For this reason, my intuition became extremely keen, sensing when things were not going well far before the demise of a patient. Interestingly, this skill overflowed into my personal life as well.

Always the Pollyanna, I tend to give everyone the benefit of the doubt, sometimes to my detriment.

It happens. When it does, sadly, we often beat ourselves up for it. I’m no exception. Giving the wrong person the benefit of the doubt made me a victim in my own nursing career. Several years ago I was faced with one of the biggest life lessons I’d ever faced. Without providing details here, I had a nurse manager steal narcotics, blame me for the missing drugs, then call me into her office and tell me the director of nursing wanted to fire me. If I covered for her, she would stick up for me. She was using, suffice it to say, tragically this highly credentialed professional is no longer a registered nurse.

At the time, I was terrified. I was afraid my employer, a large institution, was going to believe her well-crafted fabrication of reality. Fortunately, she became trapped in the grand web of lies she had woven to maintain her habit. Yet, I spent several sleepless nights unable to resolve how I allowed this to happen. My intuition let me down. How could I have fallen asleep at the proverbial wheel? I certainly didn’t own my value in those precarious hours during my perceived soon-to-be firing.

It wasn’t until many months later that I began to Re-Perceive the event. I knew I had a choice, I could continue to drag the baggage with me, or I could choose to reframe it. Glean the best, let go of the rest. Lean in and learn. Growing forward, use the lessons as stepping-stones to building a more resilient path.

We must remember, though it’s easy to let someone else take away our power by reacting in a negative way, it’s best to sit back and observe everything with logic.

Our power is always in the now. Stand firm in your power. Don’t let others master your emotions. Everything in life is a choice, choose to remain in control of your emotions. Be secure in who you are. Remembering to Own Your Value. Claiming your self-worth is essential to standing firm amidst the winds of change.

Mariah Edgington
Mariah Edgington is a career RN with much experience in emergency medicine and critical care. A Pollyanna at heart, she believes in leaving the campsite better than she found it. The importance of helping others in this world. Being optimistic, positive, kind, and respectful to one other. And spreading happiness and joy wherever she can. She’s passionate about the importance of having Advance Directives (aka Living Will or Medical POA) early in adulthood, and she works tirelessly to help people understand what those things are, and how to obtain them. Mariah posts frequently on LinkedIn on how to be a supportive, kind, compassionate person, and how to Own Your Value. Her vision is to help create a kinder, gentler, more equitable & peaceful world.

1 COMMENT

  1. Great essay, Mariah!
    When I think of how I got from “there to here”, there are always stories like these that are in the middle.
    They give us an opportunity to reflect, lean in and learn. We usually come out the other side a little different than when we started.
    I am grateful for all my LIFE LESSONS, that got me where I am today. #lifelessons.

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