I suppose for those of you who do not know me, it might be nice to take a moment or two or 20 to pause and introduce myself. So here goes. Me, Cliffs Notes style.
Graduate from college. Get a job. Start down a fast-moving career path. Receive promotions. Join organizations. Be successful. That’s all it takes, right?
At least that’s what I thought. Two masters degrees and 15 years later, I realize that isn’t what constitutes success. I am successful when I turn the perfect phrase, when I help my girls learn something, when I create a new recipe that makes my husband smile, or when I go to bed at night feeling like I did something good that day.
Am I becoming a rose-colored-glasses wearing tree hugger? Maybe. But that’s okay. I’m a hundred times happier than I’ve ever been, and that’s what matters.
I am successful.
So, with that said, I guess you want to know about the letters behind my name and all that other official stuff. I graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a B.A. (major in journalism, minor in sociology) and moved to Tyler, Tx., to work for the East Texas Medical Center Regional Healthcare System where I spent the next five years busting my hind end while the system grew from five hospitals to 13.
I worked in the centralized marketing department, but we did a lot more than marketing. We were the go-to group for the proposals to take over other hospitals and win managed care contracts. We coordinated events throughout a 20,000-square-mile area, planned and executed millions of dollars in advertising and managed the largest prostate cancer screening campaign in the United States (at that time anyway). Of course, there were a million other things that passed our desks on any given day.
Cut to five years later, and I’m burned out beyond measure. I submitted my resignation and went back to Louisiana Tech to work on my masters of education. Somewhere in the previous five years, I had managed to find time to earn my masters of arts (major in journalism, double minor in speech communication and public administration), but that wasn’t where my interests lied.
I was going to become a teacher and save the world one student at a time. I actually made the comment that if I were shot in the head in the emergency room parking lot, just leave me lying there.
I wanted nothing to do with hospitals. Ever.
When I moved to Columbus, Ga., a year later, I ended up right back in healthcare marketing and was fortunate to work for St. Francis Hospital which sufficiently restored my faith in health care. Other than some substitute teaching I did between earning my M.Ed. and moving to Columbus, I have never spent a day in the classroom. And that’s okay. I’ll get around to it.
In August 2002, I moved back to Louisiana and went to work for HCA at their North Monroe Medical Center location. I was an administrative director with responsibility for being the army of one for marketing, public relations, advertising, planning and events, as well as being the administrative oversight for housekeeping, the wound care center, the Auxiliary and Senior Friends.
In early 2005, HCA decided to sell our hospital, and I now do grant development for the hospital that purchased us. Coincidentally, that hospital was once our local competitor.
Obviously, the last few years have been interesting, to say the least. Going to work for the people you fought against for so long puts a whole new spin on things. But that’s where I’m at today. Take it or leave it, that’s my life.
I think I’ll take it.