I always took the hard stance that people don’t change. People will always be who they have shown you to be. Nothing more and nothing less. I thought, sure they might go out on a limb and stretch past their expectations once in a while but like a rubber band they will always snap right back into place after a while. Showing the same patterns of behavior, thinking, and so on.

But change is really the only constant. So why wouldn’t that apply for people too?

Maybe it was because I always saw myself as being stuck in my ways. Ask anyone close to me and they will tell you I am a creature of habit. Habit is safe. Habit has been tried before and could be bet on again. The anxious side of me loved habit for that reason. I’m talking same orders at every restaurant, never trying anything new, putting down what was different or other.

They were all defenses. Walls I put up around my mind and heart. Safeguards I have been actively tearing down. And it didn’t click until I was talking with my best friend.

“You’ve changed, but in the best of ways” “You’re flourishing”

Can I just tell you, there is no better compliment to have grace your eardrums? My God, what a beautiful place to arrive in. And a beautiful place to continue to rise.

That’s when I got to thinking… if Kelsey from five years ago met Kelsey now, I don’t think she would recognize her. (I mean right off the bat I’ve gotten better with arching these brows so there’s that.) Fundamentally, yes, I am still myself. Emotionally, physically, mentally, philosophically, I can’t say the same.

I went from someone who worked out continuously to moving my body in ways I enjoyed. Doing yoga, going for walks, swimming. I went from consuming animals to fueling myself with more plant-based goodness than I ever even knew about. (That in and of itself changed so much about me). I have so much more reverence for life itself. Realizing that time is really our most valuable currency. And forgiveness feels like this pick axe chipping away at the stone that once tried solidifying around my heart.

I was once such a hurt person. Let down by what felt like so many. But the universe had shown me I either A) was not meant to have those people serving active roles in my life or that B) I needed to learn people are not perfect and I cannot hold them to that standard.

The biggest change of all has been my goal and purpose for my life. Our twenties are such a great time for that. I started out thinking I wanted to be a school counselor. I was going to school for Psychology. Then by some twist of fate I decided I wanted to get my EMT so I could volunteer at the firehouse in my free time.

Isn’t it funny how one thing can change your entire course, or maybe be a catalyst for it?

This opened the door to a whole world I hadn’t dreamt I could handle, let alone enjoy. The semester afterwards I was transferring schools to get my prerequisites done and get myself into a Nursing program. (Talk about a switch up!) I worked as a sitter in the hospital while I went to school and put myself through a CNA course. Once that was over I started working as a tech in the very same hospital part time and continuing school in the other time I had. Oh and still dabbling into the EMT role too. (I like to get as much use out of my time, clearly).

In the midst of this, I found essential oils. Another catalyst toward the direction I feel God’s steadfast hand guiding me into. Using holistic methods, seeing food as preventative medicine, and utilizing natural modes of healing.

At first all of these interests were blurry and seperate. Eventually, I thought, leading to one far away end goal. Now I see myself weaving the two worlds together. As the time passes, it’s all becoming crystal clear.

One day I kept asking myself what it was I wanted so I first started with the things I already knew.

  • I love uplifting people and cheering them on.

  • I love using oils and natural remedies

  • I love taking care of my body and using products that are safe and healthy

  • I love living with intention

  • I love nursing. I mean it must seriously be the best, most rewarding, profession to be in

I started listening to podcasts and getting all the knowledge I could get in around Nursing. (The WoMed, Dr. Natalie Crawford’s As A Woman, Nutrition Rounds with Dr. Danielle Bolardo and Miraculous Mamas with Elizabeth Joy just to name a few). One day there was a midwife on. I started looking into doulas and midwifery and thought maybe that could be something I would excel in. I quickly pushed it to the back of my mind. Thinking how could I be there for women and support them in something I haven’t even experienced yet? Regardless I absolutely see myself going on to getting my APRN one day, whether it be kept general or more focused on a specialty.

Which is where my career stands. I guess I’ll have to update this post once I go through my L&D rotation and let you all know what I’m thinking after that! In the meantime I’ll be studying where we are at this week. Hematology, anyone?

I know I went off on a tangent but that’s what I do best and it should come to no surprise if you’ve been reading along with me since the beginning!

It’s kinda beautiful though, isn’t it? The way we keep reaching new versions of ourselves. How we let go of our past to hold onto the promises of the future. If you’re reading this now and we once had transgressions, just know they’re absolved. They have no place here. How can we grow with the weight of these on our shoulders? The way we evolve into our own, it’s like looking at a different person in the mirror, now. How empowering it is to be aligned with yourself and your purpose. I can only hope the same for you out there reading this.

How have you changed or stayed the same? Where did life throw curveballs you didn’t once expect? How did you rise above?

And if you’ve made it this far… Thank you for caring and reading about my innermost thoughts! I really appreciate it. Keep working hard at whatever it is makes your heart beat a little faster and eyes light up with excitement. You’re going to be great.

All the best,

Kelsey S, Future Nurse

Kelsey Swinburne