Dream Jobs

January 8, 2011 at 2:03 am (Personal) (, )

I’ve always heard if you love what you do, you’ll never really have to work.

After a wonderful 15 years spent as a Family Nurse Practitioner, for health and other reasons, I had to give up the career I loved  and for which I spent several years preparing. It was quite a career. While working on my Master’s Degree, I was lucky enough to have an internship with a world-renowned cardiovascular surgeon and become part of his organ transplant team. The experience was nothing short of amazing. How many people ever get to hold a human heart in their hands or participate in research that has an impact on the lives, and quality of life, of others? Our team performed the first heart-lung transplant. I’ll never forget that young woman, who was quite an inspiration to us. We had a fantastic unit, led by a terrific lady, who was a wonderful mentor to me. I landed a job in her unit where there was always a lengthy waiting list for positions, primarily because we had golf in common…and a love of Greg Norman. In addition to the heart-lung transplant, here were many other indescribable moments over the next few years. It was hard work, and I was often on call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. But it was very rewarding and I couldn’t imagine doing anything else.

Then, I got sick.  There were days when I probably shouldn’t have survived, when the doctors told my family I wouldn’t survive,  but I did.  The doctors told me that my immune system had taken a big hit and I wouldn’t be able to work with patients anymore because of the risk of infection. Telling me I could no longer take care of patients was like cutting off a limb. It seemed like a part of me was missing. For a long time, I wasn’t sure what I would do.

Then, by a strange sequence of events, I had to go with a friend to the Apple Store.  I chatted with the manager for a bit, and ended up with a job. When Macs first came out, I was just out of college and working for a small-town weekly newspaper. I became friends with the owner of an independent Apple store.  He had service contracts for businesses and schools all over the state. He taught me the ins and outs of operation, troubleshooting, and minor repairs. Then, I worked with him to install the computers and teach others how to use them. I kept up with Macs as they evolved, and doing so had just secured my first non-healthcare job in over fifteen years.

I stayed at the Apple Store for just over 4 years.  It was a great learning experience and I made some good friends, both online and off. It was one of these friends that led to my current position. It’s quite fun, actually. I get to help folks with problems figure out what is wrong with their setup and help them get things running correctly.  I tell people that it’s much like “telephone triage” by email…instead of helping with physical ailments, I help with mechanical ones 🙂

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I can work anywhere there is an internet connection. Is it a Dream Job? Well, you be the judge. I’m typing this from the courtyard of my villa in the Dominican Republic, at a very nice little place called Punta Cana. Our boss gets the whole group together occasionally for a little face time to encourage some social interaction…no mean feat when you consider the logistics of our group!  We’re spread across every time zone in the United States, as well as Canada, Great Britain, and the Netherlands. It’s nice for the group of us to hook up and share some activities. I actually swam with dolphins yesterday, which was one of the most amazing things I have ever done!  Many a brilliant idea has been born of an adult beverage and a hot tub 😉

 

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