Who I am

For over a decade, I’ve infused my bubbly spirit into my role as a Registered Nurse.

From Surgical wards and Long Term Care to my stints in Urology and Obstetrics, my journey has been diverse.

Lately, my heart and skills have been devoted to Hemodialysis, offering care to those with Chronic Kidney Disease. 

I’ve been fortunate to experience life in a variety of settings outside the hospital walls.

These experiences have not only been enlightening as a healthcare professional but have also deeply enriched my personal growth and understanding of the world.

My Nursing Journey

Hi! I’m Len. I’m also called Helena, Maria Elena, Joy, Evelyn, and my favorite – Mafiosa.

No, I don’t have multiple personalities; these are what my patients call me. So far, no one has dared call me Sybil, Emily, or Nina (if you’re scratching your head at these references, I suggest a movie night with “Sybil,” “Hide and Seek,” or “Black Swan”).

I’m a true-to-life, living, breathing, scrub-wearing nurse- not an AI that has assumed my identity.

Speaking of identities, I juggle quite a few. Not in a “polymath genius” way, but more of a “regular girl who can’t resist exploring various passions” kind of way.

I started this blog to share my experiences with others who may be going through what I went through – from struggling to find their purpose to exploring other possibilities.

The Reluctant Nurse

I didn’t originally set out to be a nurse. When it came time to pick a career, I played it safe and chose what seemed like a no-brainer.

Plot twist: it wasn’t what I expected. Nursing school was far from the walk in the park I’d envisioned.

I shifted gears. I explored a different path, earned a degree in another field, and found myself working in a non-profit organization dedicated to HIV/AIDS.

I worked on the Hotline Project. The mission was to spread the correct information and answer queries from the public over the phone. With a fantastic group of volunteers by my side, we kept the lines open.

It was a different world from nursing, but the work was very rewarding.

While working here, I had my eyes opened.

It was like flipping the script: school and community activities took me backstage to the real-world drama of NGOs, the LGBTQ+ community’s fight and spirit, the gritty truth of poverty, and the dark side of prostitution.

These experiences not only shaped my beliefs, they gave me 3D glasses to see life’s wild array of stories, reminding me we’re all just trying to find our scene in this big cosmic movie. 

I loved my job. I felt like I was making a difference in the world, no matter how small my contributions were.

But my paycheck was modest, to put it politely. It wasn’t even enough to cover the rent for my apartment. The experience was priceless, but money was tight.

When the universe dangled the prospect of nursing in front of me again, my initial reaction was, “Nope, not diving back into that chaos.” But, as fate would have it, after two drama-filled years, I found myself warming up to the idea.

Cutting through all the twists and turns of my journey, I eventually found myself channeling my inner Florence Nightingale; tending to those in need, offering comfort to the sick, and immersing myself in the profession I’d once dismissed. 

Crossing Borders

Once I had my BSN, finding work was like hunting for a needle in a haystack.

For every single job post, a hundred eager faces were all vying for it. 2006 wasn’t exactly the best time to job hunt; the global financial crisis had cast its dark cloud, and every sector, every person, felt its shadow.

Just when I was starting to think my stethoscope might gather dust, the Gods of Opportunity and Luck smiled at me. I was offered work in a hospital in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.

From familiar horizons to the sands of the Middle East, my nursing journey was about to take an exciting detour. 

The idea of packing up and leaving the comforts of my home in the Philippines for a place thousands of miles away wasn’t exactly top of my wish list.

But sometimes, life hands you a map instead of a plan. And so, with a mix of hesitation and hope, I took the plunge.

Two years later, I came away rich with experiences. Riyadh, with its unique language, vibrant culture, relentless climate, and warm people, became a second home. The bonds that started as professional interactions evolved into lasting friendships I cherish to this day.

Next stop: Kuwait. This time I landed a role in a government-owned hospital. Life was more relaxed here, and the paycheck and benefits were a welcome change.

While Kuwait shared cultural similarities with Saudi Arabia, it also danced to its unique rhythm. I could have settled down for a longer stint when life dangled another enticing carrot.

The City That Never Sleeps

The winds of change blew me towards Uncle Sam. I found myself swapping the desert landscape for the skyline of the Big Apple.

Switching continents brought on a new round of adjustments in my nursing journey, the most jarring of which was learning the dreaded ‘T’ word – Taxes. 

Back in the Middle East, my paycheck was mine, untouched by the taxman’s grasp. But in Uncle Sam’s land, over 30% of my hard-earned income has a date with the IRS.

Geez!! The city might never sleep, but it sure knows how to keep my wallet on its toes!

My new nursing gig took me into the heart of Long Term Care.

It was no walk in the park.

Beyond the culture shock and wrestling with cutting-edge medical technology, the patient-to-nurse ratio was a real jaw-dropper. I cried in exhaustion every time I got home.

But you know what they say, tough times don’t last; tough people do.

With time, I grew into the role, learning to dance to the rhythm of my new work routine. 

However, after two years of unforgettable and heartwarming connections with my CNAs and patients, it was time to turn the page again.

After bidding farewell to LTC, I found myself drawn toward a field I’d always found fascinating – Dialysis.

And for half a decade now, I’ve been a Hemodialysis RN. I enjoy the work, I like the people I work with, and I love interacting with the patients. 

Beyond The Scrubs

While my nursing journey has shaped me, it isn’t all of me.

Beyond the scrubs and stethoscope, a quiet voice persistently nudged, “There’s more to you”.

But I didn’t know what I wanted outside of being a nurse. So I turned a deaf ear to that annoying little voice.

But it was relentless, I tell you. It kept me up at night.

I caught myself staring jealously at strangers working on their laptops in airports, bus stops, or train stations.

I imagined myself sitting at a coffee table, happily pounding on my keyboard, crafting something word by word, sentence by sentence; researching, planning and evaluating goals.

When that pesky little voice started screaming, I stopped and paid attention.

I swallowed all the fears and uncertainties about venturing outside my comfort zone, risked being the laughing stock and center of ridicule, and slowly dipped my toes into the waters of the digital realm.

My eyes opened to something that most people in my world know little or do not care about.

For the first time, I felt like I could BE, DO, and HAVE anything.

However, I was realistic about the learning curve with all of these platforms. I know that it takes time, money, effort, and a lot of perseverance and patience to learn the skills I need to be the new person I want to become.

Since the time I decided to explore this new world, I have been exposed to various platforms that opened me up to SKAs – skills, knowledge, and attitude.

E-commerce, copywriting, affiliate marketing, freelance writing, and book publishing are some of the -“ings” that are of particular interest to me.

I learned about strategies, techniques, and tools to perform tasks or activities faster and more efficiently.

I started to pay attention, to see possibilities everywhere. The word “creativity” burst into my conscious mind.

Instead of mindlessly scrolling through social media, I now use my time to read books listen to podcasts, or watch videos that contribute to my goals and personal development.

My word bank also expanded; words like marketing, accountability, mindset, ROI, sales, copy, click through rate, LLC, mastermind, SEO, lead magnet, and so many others have been added to my vocabulary. 

I began to see things from a different perspective and paid more attention to those I dismissed before- even acknowledging stuff I tucked in a secret compartment in my mind.

Once the lens through which I look at the world changed, my point of view also changed.

It helped me to accept all of me- the ups and the downs, the good bits and the not-so-great bits; all the quirkiness that makes me unique.

This journey of self-discovery didn’t just change my outlook – it empowered me to live more authentically, never mind what nay-sayers think (haters gonna hate, right?).

Today, when people ask what I do, I say: “I’m a nursepreneur!

Juggling the art of nursing and the thrill of entrepreneurship, I get to wear many hats!

– from caring for patients to blazing through the digital world.

It’s a unique blend of heart and hustle, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.

Charting The Course

I’m on a mission to make a difference in both worlds, one happy patient and one successful venture at a time.

If you’ve made it this far, please know that I appreciate you spending time to read my story.

I hope I make you smile or nod as you read through my posts. They’re not just my stories, they’re yours too.

Bedside Stories and Beyond…