Books that changed my life

This was written in my 7th grade year book

As evidence of my bookwormishness, as I was digging through my closet box of books (labeled “M’s” childhood books) I found some yearbooks, and some of my treasured tomes. These books have been through 5 moves and across the country. I know I have posted before in the about and favs pages my early reading experiences.  This post is a little different.

Going through all of the old and musty paperbacks, the memories came back.  I had forgotten just how many Babysitter’s Club books that I actually have.  Maybe I’ll post on those books one of these days.

I also found books that profoundly changed my life.  Literally.

I don’t know if people who are not “book” people understand that concept completely.  For me, reading is like completely immersing yourself in another world, another place and time.  It is true escapism for me.

In addition to providing escapism, I also gained knowledge of the world.  And increased by vocabulary.

I found my future occupational calling in my early books as well.  As I have discussed before, I am a nurse.  I come from a nursing family.  In some ways it was inevitable that I would be in the medical field.  But I was never encouraged to follow in their footsteps.  In fact, they tried to discourage me.  My parents pushed me to find something that I liked to do, and find a way to do it.

I was such a bookworm as a child, I would look for anything to read.  At flea markets, libraries, people’s houses.  I devoured books quickly.  To this day, I am a quick reader.  One of the books I found was this old book, “Cherry Ames, Visiting Nurse” .

“Cherry Ames, Visiting Nurse”

I haven’t read it since I was young, but as I remember it, a young girl goes to nursing school, and then is assigned to be the nurse to a neighborhood in New York. She visits with patient’s weekly and develops relationships with the impoverished of the city. I don’t know why that appealed to me, but it did. I had this innate urge to want to help people. I wanted to do what the character in the story did. I wanted to be the one that people looked to for help and guidance.  This book has stayed with me into adulthood.

I always looked for ways to help people.  I became a lifeguard in high school.  I volunteered in a local hospital during that time as well.  Later toward graduation, I started toying with the idea of being a physician’s assistant.  I went into college with that idea in mind, but after having surgery during semester break, my mind was made up.  I was going to be a nurse.

What made up my mind?  Well, I had an excellent surgeon.  One of the best.  To this day, I am thrilled with his ability.  But the doctor and his PA only came in to change my bandages and adjust my pain pump.  The nurses were there to comfort me.  In the middle of the night, a nurse was there to haul my butt to the bathroom to make me urinate because my kidneys needed to start functioning again after anesthesia.  If my pain wasn’t adequately controlled, the nurse was the one calling the doctor to get the order changed so it was controlled.

So the combination of this book as a child, my parents stories, and my own experience, let me to my profession.  I don’t know how many people can say that they read a book as a child and it lead to a profession.

Going through the box of childhood books also brought up many other topics I look forward to blogging on.

Anyone else have their lives changed by a book?


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